International Students

The College Prep Program invites you to join students from around the world to immerse yourself in rigorous course work and experience the American college culture. Rising high school juniors and seniors have three options to choose from:

Students will also have many opportunities to participate in campus-wide Summer Session activities including lunchtime entertainment on Lake Michigan, barbecues on the beach and an evening outdoor film festival. Additionally, University-sponsored activities, such as theatre and music performances, are open to all students as well as access to many of the university's resources including the gymnasium, library, and private student beach.

TOEFL/IELTS/DET Requirement

An English proficiency score is required for applicants whose first/primary language is not English or whose secondary schooling has not been in English. An unofficial copy is acceptable. There is no minimum score required by Northwestern. Competitive applicants demonstrate a high level of English proficiency and often score in the high range on all four sections (Reading, Listening, Speaking and Writing) of the TOEFL, or receive IELTS band scores in the highest three bands on the overall and individual scores (Listening, Reading, Writing and Speaking).

Immigration Information

Online College Credit and e-FOCUS Students
International students enrolled in solely online courses are not required to have an F-1, J-1 or B-1/B-2 visa since participation in Northwestern summer online courses does not entail entry into the U.S.

On Campus Credit Students
Students enrolling in the on-campus study option qualify for a J1 Visa. As part of the J1 visa requirement, international students enrolling in the college credit on-campus study option must enter the U.S. on a student visa and enroll as a full-time student. In order for a student to have full-time status, they must enroll in the following:

  • Three weeks: Students must enroll in one class
  • Six weeks: Students must enroll in two classes

More than six weeks (commuter only): Students must enroll in three classes. All International Students enrolling in College Credit Courses must submit an Immigration Document Request Form through the OISS Portal. Please visit the Northwestern University Office of International Student & Scholar Services website for details. Under the "Student Visas" link, select "Steps for New Students." Please begin your request as soon as you receive your NetID to allow sufficient time to apply for your visa. Under the "Academic Program" dropdown menu, please choose "SPS: College Preparation Program: x Weeks" for the number of weeks of your selected and approved course. The College Preparation Program will email a copy and mail your original DS-2019 to you as soon as it has been issued.

Contact our office if you already have an immigration document, such as I-20 or DS-2019, from another institution, such as a U.S. high school, as you may not be required to request immigration documents from Northwestern University or enroll in three courses.

IN FOCUS Students
International students enrolling in the IN FOCUS Seminars will need to obtain a visitor visa to enter the US and participate in the program. Please check with the US Embassy or Consulate in the country where you live to confirm the type of visa you will need.

If you are currently studying in the U.S. at another institution, contact our office if you already have an immigration document, such as an I-20 or DS-2019, from another institution, such as a U.S. high school

For more information about the DS-2019 immigration documents for J1 students, please visit the Northwestern University Office of International Student & Scholar Services website. Under the “Student Visas” link, select “Steps for New Students” to review the process and access all necessary forms. Please begin your request as soon as you receive your NetID to allow sufficient time to apply for your visa stamp.

Contact our office if you already have an immigration document such as an I-20 or DS-2019 from another institution, such as a U.S. high school.

Health Insurance Requirements

All College Prep international students will be billed for the University-sponsored Visiting Scholar Health plan. The cost of the Visiting Scholar Health plan is $53.00 per week. Students may waive this requirement if they provide proof of comparable insurance documentation and approval by the College Prep Office.
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