Distance Learning: Online Enrollment for F-1 visa holders
The United States government has specifically limited F-1 visa holding students to
take only degrees that are on-campus. Online degrees are specifically prohibited.
Additional activity on campus does not mitigate the circumstances; if the DEGREE PROGRAM
is known as an online degree program, then it is absolutely not allowed for F-1 visa
If an F-1 visa holder is pursuing a regular degree, then they are restricted to one
online or distance learning class per semester, in combination with all other classes,
in order to count towards their total enrollment requirements.
This is not a U of M policy, it is not mandated by the Tennessee Board of Regents
– it is a federal regulation issued by the United States Department of Homeland Security.
Absence: Skipping a semester, Withdrawing or Leaving the U.S. for multiple months
If tan F-1 visa student is outside the United States for a semester, it is vitally
important that they consult with the International Students Office before leaving.
A semester break or absence could adversely affect a student’s eligibility for practical
training and internships (OPT and CPT) in the future.
Students who are outside of the U.S. for more than five months may have to obtain a
new I-20, and may possibly be required to apply for a new visa. Please remember
to contact your international student advisor before dropping a semester, or before
leaving the U.S.