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All students are required to demonstrate financial ability to pay for at least one year of academic and living expenses (to receive an I-20) or for the entire cost of your program of study (to receive a DS-2019). Additionally, a deposit is generally required before any immigration document can be issued. For more information on deposits, contact your admissions office.
Step 1: Determine the Cost of the First Year of Study
There are different costs for each AU program of study. To find the costs of the first year of your program of study please see our Cost Guides for International Students.
Step 2: Complete the Certification of Finances for International Students (CFIS) Form
After you have determined the cost of your program of study, please fill out the Certification of Finances for International Students (CFIS) (PDF). If you have additional sources of funds, you may need to submit the Attachment to the Certification of Finances for International Students (PDF).
Step 3: Gather Supporting Financial Documents
Please keep copies of these financial documents as you will need them when you apply for your visa.
Valid financial documents must:
- Show available funds (funds that can be liquidated (PDF) before the first day of classes) sufficient to cover the cost of your first year in your program of study.
- Be in English or be accompanied by a notarized English translation.
- Be dated within the past 3 months.
- Be on official bank letterhead with the bank's contact information, stamped and signed by a bank official.
Appropriate financial documents include, but are not limited to:
- Bank Letter, stamped and signed by a bank official, and specifies the date, monetary currency, and name of the account holder.
- American University scholarship or graduate merit award letter.
- Signed letter from the U.S. Government, Home Government, International Organization, Company, or Employer on government or organizational letterhead specifying dates, amount, monetary currency, and terms of sponsorship.
- An individual sponsor who is not a U.S. citizen, U.S. Permanent Resident, or non-immigrant legally present in the U.S., must sign the CFIS Form and attach supporting financial documents.
- An individual sponsor who is a U.S. citizen, U.S. Permanent Resident, or non-immigrant legally present in the U.S., must submit a completed I-134 Affidavit of Support Form (PDF) with supporting financial documents. Please note: Under item #7, please do not submit a copy of your last income tax return.
Step 4: Submit CFIS and Supporting Financial Documents to Your Admissions Office
Submit the completed CFIS Form and supporting financial documents to your Admissions Office. For questions on how to fill out the form(s), you can contact your admissions office or ISSS at (202) 885-3350.
Examples of Supporting Financial Documents
The following are examples of acceptable financial documents. Please note that these supporting financial documents will also be required at the U.S. Embassy or Consulate when you apply for your visa.