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Info for International Admitted Students

Congratulations on your acceptance to the BAC!  We look forward to welcoming you to our community.  Now that you have been admitted, here are your next steps to finalize your enrollment, including paying your registration fees, applying for your student visa, and deciding where to live.

What are the Next Steps in the Enrollment Process?

  1. Pay your $150 Intent to Register fee and $350 International Student fee via International Payment or U.S. Payment to secure your spot at the BAC, as applicable:
    1. Students enrolling in an onsite program in Boston, please pay both fees for a total of $500
    2. Students enrolling from a distance in fully-online program, please pay just the Deposit fee of $150, as F-1 advising does not apply to you

  2. Register for both the International New Student Orientation and New Student Orientation (NSO). NSO is intended for students enrolling in an onsite program in Boston; orientation for Online M.Arch students will occur separately, on the first day of the 8-day intensive.

  3. Submit I-20 documents to the International Admissions Counselor so they may process an initial or transfer-pending 1-20. After all I-20 documents are submitted and approved, you must pay the SEVIS I-901 fee, using your SEVIS ID as shown on your initial or transfer-pending I-20.

  4. Apply for the F-1 Student Visa via the online DS-160 Form and then schedule an appointment at your local U.S. Embassy.

  5. Review Tuition Information and Payment Options.

  6. For incoming Architecture students who worked in a design firm or design-related position prior to the BAC, submit your Prior Practice Hours application (pdf) to apply to transfer in Prior Practice hours into your program (optional).

  7. Get around Boston on our public transportation systems! Submit your order form for MBTA Discounted Student Pass.

  8. Explore your housing options

  9. Submit your immunization and health record (pdf).

  10. All BAC students are required to have U.S.-based health insurance. Sign up for health insurance or submit a waiver.

  11. Check out your schedule! All students are pre-registered for their first semester of courses by our Advising team, based upon their preferences listed within their BAC application. Students will be notified by email when their schedule is ready to view.

Certificate of Eligibility (I-20)

Degree-seeking international students must obtain an F-1 visa in order to seek admission to the U.S. for full-time studies. You will be issued a Certificate of Eligibility (I-20) to apply for your F-1 visa to enter the United States. The Form I-20 is processed and maintained in the Student and Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS).

*Citizens of Canada require F-1 visas. However, they do NOT need to request a visa appointment at an Embassy. They must complete the interview at the point of entry. 

To receive a Certificate of Eligibility (I-20), accepted international students must submit the following to Jennifer Stanley, International Admissions Counselor via email at

1. Copy of your valid passport
2. Copy of current bank statement that reflects total amount of tuition and fees for one academic year
3. Certificate of Finance

Obtaining a Certificate of Finance

Before an admitted international student can apply for an F-1 visa to study at the BAC, you must receive an immigration form called the Certificate of Eligibility (I-20) from us. The BAC must receive proof of sufficient financial support before issuing an I-20 and thus requires a Certificate of Finance for all international students.

It is important that you submit your information as quickly as possible to ensure that there is enough time for you to apply for the visa and enter the U.S. before your courses begin.

Onsite Programs (Except MDS-RED)
Online Master of Design Studies Program
Onsite MDS in Real Estate Development Program

The Certificate of Finance form requires that you indicate the amounts and sources of funds available to you while you pursue your degree at the BAC. The financial documentation must adequately cover a minimum of one year's academic and living costs:

  • Undergraduate amount needed:$48,0670.00 USD
  • Graduate amount needed:$46,902.00 USD

Accessible funds may come from scholarships, fellowships, sponsoring agencies, personal funds, or family funds. Sufficient funds documentation must accompany the Certificate of Finance:

  • Scholarships and sponsorships must be on official letterhead.
  • Personal and family funds may be verified by an official bank statement certified by a bank, OR a bank letter verifying sufficient financial resources.
      • Must be in English
      • Currency can be in USD (preferred) or in local currency
      • Date cannot be older than six months
      • Must be on bank letterhead
      • Must be in English
      • Currency must be in indicated in USD
      • Date cannot be older than six months

How Do I Submit my Certificate of Finance?

Your completed Certificate of Finance and all supporting materials must be submitted to Jennifer Stanley, International Admissions Counselor, at or faxed to +1.617.585.0121. (Please note that admitted students will be asked for original documents if authenticity cannot be reasonably determined by the electronic or faxed copies.)

After carefully reviewing your financial documentation, the BAC will determine whether we will issue an I-20. Please note that we will not review financial documentation until a student is fully admitted to one of our degree programs.

Be sure to keep copies of all documents sent to the BAC. You will need them for getting your student visa from the U.S. Consulate and maybe to present to the U.S. Customs and Border Protection upon entry to the United States.

Students transferring from another U.S. institution or English language program must also submit:

  1. F-1 Transfer Verification Form
  2. Copy of current Form I-20
  3. Copy of current visa
  4. Copy of current I-94 printout

Applying for a Visa

In order to apply for an F-1 visa, most international students must provide the U.S. Embassy or Consulate with:

  • Your Form I-20
  • Passport
  • Statement of funds
  • Any documents required by the U.S. Embassy or Consulate in your home country

In the case of Canadian citizens, you must use your Form I-20 to seek admission to the US in F-1 status at a US port-of-entry (without an F-1 visa). You cannot enter the US on a B-2 (tourist) visa and change to F-1 visa status after you arrive. You also cannot enter the US on a visa waiver and change to F-1 status after your arrival.


F-2 Status for Spouses or Children

The spouse or child of an F-1 student enters the U.S. in F-2 status and is admitted for the same length of time as the F-1 student. Any student wishing to bring a spouse and/or child to the U.S. should email the International Student Advisor to discuss the financial implications and to have the necessary documents prepared. Individuals in F-2 status are never allowed to be employed and cannot study full-time.


Need More Assistance?

Jennifer Stanley, International Admissions Counselor or +1.617.585.0278