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International Students

Glossary of Terms

Admission Number: a unique 11digit number assigned to non-immigrants as they enter the U.S. This number can be found on the I-94 Arrival / Departure Record.

Arrival / Departure Record: Form I-94 which is processed at the port of entry, and includes USCIS Admission Number, date and place of entry, visa classification, and length of time the person is permitted to remain in the U.S.

Certificate of Eligibility (I-20): forms issued by an institution for a student or scholar to use in applying for a visa to enter the U.S.

Curricular Practical Training (CPT): permission given to an F-1 student by a Designated School Official to engage in employment that is an integral part of the established curriculum.

Designated School Official (DSO): an employee with USCIS authorization to sign I-20s.

"D/S": Duration of Status- length of time in which a student can remain in the U.S. while maintaining non-immigrant visa status.

Employment Authorization Document (EAD): a photo ID card issued by USCIS to authorize work permission.

Full-course of study: The number of credits a student must take to maintain non-immigrant visa status.

Non-Immigrant: someone who is admitted to the U.S. for a specific purpose and temporary period of time.

Optional Practical Training: permission given to F-1 students to engage in employment directly related to the field of study.

Out-of-Status: when a non-immigrant fails to comply with all of the conditions of his/her immigration status.

Passport: biographical booklet issued by a national government to its citizens to allow for travel to other countries and return to home country.

Reinstatement: an application procedure to have a non-immigrant visa status revalidated after falling out-of-status.

Student & Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS): Department of Homeland Security's web-based system for maintaining information on international students.

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS): the U.S. government agency responsible for controlling the borders of the U.S. and for providing services to non-U.S. citizens in the U.S.

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE): has a broad range of law enforcement authorities, with responsibility for enforcing more than 400 federal statutes related to national security and public safety.

Visa: a label in a passport indicating the classification in which one may apply for entry to the U.S.