Frequently Asked Questions
Find the answers to commonly-asked questions! Questions are grouped by topic:
- Admissions & How to Apply
- I-20 and F-1 Visas
- Travel to the U.S.
- Cost of Attendance & Scholarships
- Class Registration
Admissions & How to Apply
Applying to Skyline College is simple and easy! Just follow the 5 simple steps to apply and submit your application online. You will receive an admission e-mail within 5-7 business days.
The application deadline varies depending on which program you are applying for and whether or not you are already in the U.S. Please check our How to Apply page for more information.
For the F-1 and Global Online Learning (GOL) program, you need a minimum of TOEFL iBT 56, IELTS 5.5, or Duolingo 85. For the University Access Program (UAP), you need TOEFL iBT 49+, IELTS 4.5+, or Duolingo English Test 75+.
Your financial documents must show a minimum of $29,000 dated no earlier than 3 months before the date you submit your application. The document must be in English or be accompanied by a certified English translation. If dependents (spouse or child) will be accompanying you, the bank letter/statement must include an additional $5,000 for the first dependent and an additional $2,500 for each additional dependent.
If you are 18+ years old, you do not have to show proof of high school graduation. Students under the age of 18 will need to show proof of high school graduation or the equivalent.
Students under the age of 18 will need to show proof of high school graduation or the equivalent and complete the Minor Consent Form.
If it has been more than a year since the last time you took our classes, you must start a new application. Log into the Student Success Portal and start a new application.
The University Access Program (UAP) is a 6-week program (June-July)/ 8-9-week program (October-December) designed for international students to strengthen their English and prepare for their higher education studies at American universities. Therefore, the English language proficiency requirement for the UAP admission is slightly lower than the regular admission. UAP students take ESL classes and two college-level credit bearing classes, whereas the regular academic program requires students to take a minimum of 12 units each semester.
Yes! Upon successful completion, UAP students will be matriculated to the following academic semester as an F-1 student. Their I-20s will be extended accordingly.
No. The Global Online Learning (GOL) is specifically for students outside the U.S.
Yes! The Global Online Learning (GOL) students can always request to switch to the F-1 program so they can study in the U.S.
Skyline College offers certificate programs that are designed for students who wish to enhance a specific skill area or course of study. Students in our certificate programs typically finish their programs in 2-3 semesters. Upon successful completion, students are eligible to apply for Optional Practical Training (OPT).
I-20 / F-1 Visa
If your application is complete, you will receive an admission e-mail with an electronic Form I-20 within 5-7 business days. Please make sure to print out the I-20 and sign the first page.
Once you receive your Form I-20, please follow the steps below:
- Pay your SEVIS I-901 fee from https://www.fmjfee.com/i901fee/index.html. Make sure to keep your payment receipt. If your spouse and/or children plan to reside in the USA with you while you study, they will be required to have individual Form I-20s, but they will not have to pay a separate SEVIS I-901 fee.
- Visit https://ceac.state.gov/genniv to submit the Online Nonimmigrant Visa Application (DS-160)
- Find the US embassy/consulate near you to schedule a visa interview: http://usembassy.gov
- Check the website of your local US embassy/consulate regarding specific visa application procedures and required documentation.
- Attend the visa interview at the U.S. embassy/consulate.
- Inform the International Student Program (ISP) at Skyline College as soon as you receive your visa (E-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org).
Yes! Not completing the SEVIS fee payment can result in visa denial. Please make sure to pay the fee before you submit the Online Nonimmigrant Visa Application (DS-160).
It is advisable to apply for the visa at a U.S. consulate in your home country, unless circumstances or travel plans make this impossible. Visas can only be obtained outside of the U.S. at a U.S. Embassy or Consulate.
Once you receive an admission e-mail from our office, print out or forward a copy of your acceptance letter to the appropriate school official at your current school and request them to transfer your SEVIS record to Skyline College (SFR214F00591000). Your SEVIS record must be transferred by the first day of classes and you must have an active SEVIS status to transfer to Skyline College.
There are two ways to change to an F-1 student status:
- Travel & Re-entry: travel outside the U.S. and re-enter the U.S. with a new "initial attendance I-20" or
- Change Status in the U.S.: stay in the U.S. and request a Change of Status by sending an application to the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS)
When deciding which option is best for you, you should consider various factors, such as processing time, upcoming travel plans, etc. Please consult with the International Student Program (ISP) at Skyline College if you are changing your status to an F-1 student.
Canadian citizens do not need visas to study in the U.S. However, they do need to obtain an I-20 from Skyline College and pay a SEVIS fee at https://www.fmjfee.com/i901fee/index.html. The U.S. Embassy in Canada recommends that Canadian students enter the U.S. with the following documents (https://ca.usembassy.gov/visas/canadian-students/):
- A Canadian passport;
- The original I-20 certificate;
- Proof that the SEVIS fee has been paid;
- Proof of ability to pay school fees and living expenses in the United States; and
- Proof of ties to Canada
Travel to the U.S.
The closest international airport to Skyline College is San Francisco International Airport (SFO). Skyline College is a 15-20 min drive from SFO.
You may enter the U.S. 30 days before the program start date on your I-20.
It is strongly recommended that you arrive by the program start date on your I-20. Please consult with the International Student Program (ISP) at Skyline College if you are unable to arrive by the program start date.
Skyline College does not have on-campus housing. However, we offer the homestay program for our international students. Our homestay program is safe and affordable. New international students should secure housing before arriving in the U.S.
Cost of Attendance & Scholarships
The tuition rate for international student is $359 per unit (as of the 2023-2024 Academic Year). International students need at least US $32,000 per academic year to cover school and living expenses. For more information, review the Cost of Attendance page.
All college fees (including tuition) are due and payable at the time of registration.
Yes! New international students can apply for our SMCCCD institutional scholarships when they open in November of each year. For more information, please contact us using our Inquiry Form.
After you are admitted to Skyline College, you will be invited to meet with a counselor to discuss your classes. The counselor will guide you in selecting classes based on your ESOL and Math level, major, and academic goal.
You will meet with a counselor to discuss your classes. The counselor will guide you in selecting classes based on your ESOL and Math level, major, and academic goal. The counselor will provide a Student Education Plan (SEP) to help you navigate your first semester class registration.
Yes. Students have two weeks into the semester to add/drop classes. However, we advise students to consult with the International Student Program (ISP) office before they drop their classes.