Request an I-20 (Graduate Students)

Newly admitted students who are not citizens or residents of the U.S. seeking F-1 (Student) Visa status must request a George Mason University Form I-20 (Certificate of Eligibility for Non-Immigrant F-1 Student Status) and apply for an F-1 via at a U.S. Embassy or Consulate BEFORE traveling to the U.S. to begin their degree program.

In Spring 2016 George Mason University switched to a paperless system: the online application Self-Service Center.  New graduate students must submit all required I-20 request documents through the online application Self-Service Center and should NOT submit paper documents to OIPS.

Table of Contents


On this page, you will find the following information:

  1. I-20 Issuance Timeline
  2. I-20 Processing Times
  3. Required Documents
  4. Step by Step Guide

Important


This information is for graduate students!

If you are an undergraduate student and you would like to request an I-20, please contact the Office of Admissions (world@gmu.edu).

If you are a Mason Korea student and you would like to request an I-20, please click here to proceed.

I-20 Issuance Timeline

SPRING 2020 SemesterDate
First day to issue I-20 for Spring 2020 admitsOct. 1, 2019
Final day to issue I-20 (sent outside the U.S. by first class or international express mail paid by students, to accommodate visa processing time)Dec. 19, 2019
MANDATORY SEVIS check-in with OIPS (international transfer students in the U.S. and change of academic level students)Dec. 1, 2019 – Jan. 28, 2020
MANDATORY SEVIS check-in with OIPS (for international students with initial entry into the U.S.)Dec. 14, 2019 – Jan. 28, 2020
Final day to issue I-20 (international transfer students currently in the U.S.)Jan. 28, 2020

FALL 2020 SemesterDate
First day to issue I-20 for Fall 2020 admitsFeb. 17, 2020
Final day to issue I-20 (sent outside the U.S. by first class or international express mail paid by students, to accommodate visa processing time)July 24, 2020
MANDATORY SEVIS check-in with OIPS (international transfer students in the U.S. and change of academic level students)July 1, 2020 – Sept. 1, 2020
MANDATORY SEVIS check-in with OIPS (for international students with initial entry into the U.S.)July 18, 2020 – Sept. 1, 2020
Final day to issue I-20 (international transfer students currently in the U.S.)Sept. 1, 2020

 

 

Processing Times

Once you have been admitted AND you have submitted all required I-20 request documents via the online application Self-Service Center, it will take up to 10 business days during peak times to process your I-20.

  • Peak processing time for Fall 2018 admits: March, April, May and June
  • Peak processing time for Spring 2019 admits: October and November

IMPORTANT: OIPS cannot expedite any I-20 processing requests due to high volume.  We operate on a first come, first serve basis.  You will be notified via email when your I-20 request has been processed.

Required Documents

If you are a new graduate student, you must submit the following documents:

  1. Copy of your passport
  2. Certificate of Financial Responsibility (CFR) (if you receive funding assistance from Mason or Government sponsorship you must also complete this form)
  3. Proof of funding

TIP: Review the Certificate of Financial Responsibility sample before you complete the form.

If you are a graduate transfer student (transferring from a U.S. education institution to George Mason University), you must submit the following documents:

  1. Copy of your passport
  2. Certificate of Financial Responsibility (CFR) (if you receive funding assistance from Mason or Government sponsorship you must also complete this form)
  3. Proof of funding
  4. Transfer In form (transfer students only)*
  5. Copies of pages 1, 2 and 3 of previous I-20s (transfer students only).  If you have dependents, please also submit a copy of their I-20s.
  6. Copy of visa page.  If you have dependents, please also submit a copy of their visa page.
  7. Copy of arrival stamp/I-94 available online at https://i94.cbp.dhs.gov/I94/#/home

*You can find the Transfer In form in the OIPS Self-Service Center.  Enter the key word "Transfer In" in the search box at the top of the table.  The form and a checklist will appear.  Download the form and follow the instructions.

TIP: Review the Certificate of Financial Responsibility sample before you complete the form.

Graduate Application Step by Step Guide

Graduate Application Step by Step Guide

Useful Links

You might also be interested in the following links: