The DS-160 form is the visa application form for a U.S. non-immigrant visa, like the F-1 visa most students apply for. This is a very important form as it cumulatively represents all the information that you are providing to the US embassy about yourself. It is really essential to be accurate and truthful in providing this information as, if you make any mistakes, you will not be able to rectify the form.
If you are new to DS-160 form filling, this is the place for you! Keep reading as this blog will tell you the minutest details on how to fill DS-160 form, and walk you through the complete process to fill DS-160 form online!
What is the DS-160 Form?
The DS-160 form is an online visa application form required to be filled by non-immigrants to start the US visa application process. Not just the student visa, you will be required to fill DS-160 form for a visitor visa, tourist visa and a work visa as well. You can fill DS-160 entirely online, through an online application. The DS-160 application takes around 15-20 minutes to complete the process.
Why is the DS-160 Form Important?
The DS-160 application is extremely essential for your US visa application process, as the form contains information about your academic and personal background. Moreover, the form acts as a piece of information for the US Consulate in your home country, and is used to make decisions on your F-1 US student visa application.
It is therefore necessary to fill DS-160 form with utmost care and honesty.
Step by Step Process of Filling DS-160 Form
To fill DS-160 form online can be time consuming, but not a tedious process. You should be up to date with all of your information, and be truthful while DS-160 fill. Always remember to save your progress while DS-160 form filling, so that when the session times out, your progress is already saved.
Let us now move onto discussing the step by step process to fill DS-160 form online:
Step 1: Staring with the DS-160 Application
Once you’re on the sign in page, enter your preferred consulate and the CAPTCHA code. Select ‘Start an application’ to start your new application, or select ‘retrieve an application’ if you already have your application number.
Step 2: Fill in the Security Question
The security question is the same for everyone, i.e. the name of your mother’s mother, which has been shown in the DS-160 form sample below.
Step 3: Fill in Your Personal Information
The next two pages require you to enter your personal information. This includes your full name, name in native alphabet, information of any previous name you might have had. Check ‘No’ where they ask you if a Telecode represents your name. On page 2, you will be asked about your nationality, and whether or not you hold the nationality of another country. Do fill in the necessary details according to your profile.
Step 4: Fill in Passport Details
The next two sections are about your address, phone numbers, travel information, passport information, etc.
Some important points to note while DS-160 fill are:
- The type of passport is Regular, unless you come into any of the other categories.
- The type of visa is generally a student F-1 student visa.
- If you have booked your flight tickets, then you can mention it while filling the DS-160 form. If not, you need to enter the intended date of entry to the US. This could be 5-7 days before your orientation.
- The address where you will stay is the University’s address mentioned on the I-20.
- If you’re paying for the trip then mention Self, else mention your sponsors name, contact details and relation to you.
- You can mention whether or not you’re travelling with anyone who isn’t a student as well, like your parents.
- Describe any previous US travels.
- Your US Point of Contact is mentioned on your I-20. They are a school official, generally from the office of international admissions or such. Their address is the college address mentioned on your I-20 and their email address and phone number can be found on the website.
Step 5: Fill Your Family Information
The next section of DS-160 form is very generic and requires you to fill your basic family information.
Step 6: Fill Your Education Details
In the next section, you need to mention your post secondary education (undergraduate degree, graduate degree, etc.) You also need to mention your current and previous employment details. For people who are not employed as well as not studying can select 'NOT EMPLOYED' in the Primary Occupation section.
You will also be asked questions about the languages you can speak, places you have travelled to (abroad) in the past 5 years.
This is followed by a few questions about you, such as whether you have any special skills in the field of explosives, if you’ve ever served in the military, if you’ve been a part of a rebel group, etc. The answer to all these questions should be NO, unless it’s valid for you and you have a valid explanation for it.
Step 7: Answer the Security Questions
The next section of ds 160 form contains security questions. These are to ensure that you are not going to cause any trouble in terms of violence, communicable diseases, etc. while in the US. It is a 5 part section.
They may even ask you questions like whether you have any communicable diseases, any disorders, drug addiction, whether your or any member of your family have been involved in criminal activities, etc.
The US consulate also asks you whether you have ever tried to gain immigrant status in the US by unlawful means. The answer to all these questions should be NO, otherwise you raise red flags with the visa officer!
Step 8: Fill in F-1 Visa Specifics
The next section is specific to the F-1 visa. It contains fields to enter your SEVIS ID, school name and address, course information, duration, etc. This is specific to student visas.
Step 9: Review Your DS-160 Form
After knowing how to fill DS-160, and filling it completely, you need to review your application carefully. You don't have to upload any photograph as the photograph will be taken at the ASC (Application Service Centre).
Now that you are aware how to fill DS-160, you very well go about the same. Make sure that you check your information thoroughly as you cannot make changes once you submit. Once submitted, you will receive the confirmation. After which you can proceed to book the US visa interview dates on the embassy or consulate website.
The process to fill DS-160 is an easy process, provided you have all the relevant information. We would suggest you to only fill in information which is honest, and creates no hassle in your US student visa application process. the To get further assistance from our experts and overwatch your DS-160 form, we encourage you to look into our Yocket Premium service for a smooth visa process.
Still not sure? In this video, you will learn about the entire process of filling the visa application form 160 to study in the US!