Contact Us

International Student & Scholar Services (ISSS)

555 W. 57th Street
New York, NY 10019

Phone: 646-664-8800
Fax: 646-664-8861

student in the library, BOOKWORM, taken by Josue Mendez, Baruch College


Academic Calendar

A calendar that defines a school’s academic semesters

Academic Honesty

Ethical consideration for students, pertaining to the avoidance of plagiarism

Academic Training (AT)

Also known as AT; employment option available for international exchange visitors (those with a J-1 visa)

Associate’s Degree

A two-year degree


Bachelor of Arts (BA)

A four-year degree in a non-scientific field

Bachelor of Science (BS)

A four-year degree in a scientific field


A section/area of a city


A college official in charge of collecting tuition and fee payments

Bursar Office

The office at a college that is responsible for the collection of tuition and fees



The location of a university’s classrooms and offices

Citizenship andImmigration Services (USCIS)

The U.S. Government bureau dealing with citizenship and immigration issues

Credit (noun)

Units measuring the number of hours of class one has during a semester (degrees require a certain number of accumulated credits)

Credit Card

A magnetic card given to a customer by a bank or other business for the purpose of making purchases on credit (deferred payment)

Curricular Practical Training (CPT)

Curricular Practical Training; A type of F-1 student employment which is an integral part of an established curriculum such as internship


Debit Card

A magnetic card that enables the holder to withdraw money or to have the cost of purchases charged directly to the holder’s bank account

Degree Requirements

The actual courses and other academic stipulations needed to obtain a specific degree

Department of Homeland Security (DHS)

U.S. government agency concerned with immigration and national security

Designated School Official (DSO)

The designated official at a school who works with the USCIS

Doctoral Degree

The highest degree that can be held in a field; usually obtained only after first receiving a bachelor’s degree and master’s degree

Doctoral Student

A student pursuing the highest academic degree, one that is higher that a Master’s Degree

DS 2019

The U.S. Department of State document issued to Exchange Visitor Program participants

Duration of Status (D/S)

A stamp placed on the I-94 card, indicating that the holder of the card may remain in the U.S. during the length of time it takes them to complete their degree


Extracurricular Activities

Activities not directly related to a student’s classes, such as membership in clubs, involvement in community activities, & hobbies


F-1 Student Visa/Immigration Status

The type of U.S. visa required for international students (non-U.S. citizens) to enter and study in the U.S.

F-2 Visa

The visa given to the spouse or dependent child of an F-1 student


A student who has completed 27 or fewer credit hours (usually someone in his/her first year of university study)

Full-Time Student

A student who is taking at least 12 credits (usually four classes)


Grading System

A scale used to translate letter grades in to point values. The grading scale used at most U.S. colleges is: A 4.0 96-100, A- 3.7 90-95, B+ 3.2 87-89, B 3.0 83-86, B- 2.7 80-82, C+ 2.2 77-79

Graduate Degree

An advanced degree beyond the bachelor’s Degree (for example a Master’s or Ph.D)

Graduate Student

A person participating in post-graduate study (for example, an MA, MS, doctoral, or Ph.D. program)



A government form institutions use to certify to the U.S. government that an international student is eligible for F-1 student status


A form given to visitors when they enter the U.S. and stapled into their passports; Contains an “arrival number” that is used to monitor the visitor’s entrance and departure from the country


A paid or unpaid job position held by a student to gain working experience and/or class credits


J-1 Exchange Visitor Visa/Immigration Status

The type of U.S. visa required for international exchange visitors to enter and study in the U.S.

J-2 Visa

The visa given to the spouse or dependent child of an J-1 student to enter the U.S.


Leave of Absence

A break in attendance from school or work

Liberal Arts

A college or university curriculum aimed at imparting general knowledge and developing general intellectual capacities, in contrast to a professional, vocational, or technical curriculum


Master’s Degree

An advanced degree awarded after obtaining the Bachelor’s Degree and upon completion of a one to three year program

Master’s Student

A student pursuing a master’s degree

Metro Card

A magnetic card one can purchase to ride on subways or buses in New York City



Outside of a school’s primary location

Office of the Registrar

The university office responsible for student enrollment/registration


Within a school’s primary location

Optional Practical Training (OPT)

Optional Practical Training; a program that allows international students to work for up to one year after graduating from an American university



The act of selecting and officially signing up for specific classes

Responsible Officer (RO)

A college official authorized by the U.S. Department of State to oversee the J-1 Exchange Visitor Program; issue the DS 2019, advise Exchange Visitors on obtaining and maintaining J-1 and J-2 U.S. Visa and Immigration status



A 15-18 week period of time constituting half of an academic year


A student who has completed 90 or more credit hours (usually someone in his/her fourth or last year of university study)


Student Exchange Visitor Information System A U.S. Department of Homeland Security internet database, used to collect information, issue I-20 and DS 2019 forms, request employment authorization and monitor all other visa and immigration requirements relative to F -1 and J-1 non-immigrants and their dependents

Social Security Number

A nine digit number assigned by the U.S. Social Security Administration primarily to track individuals for taxation purposes. In recent years, it has been used quite frequently as an identification number


The condition of a person or thing in the eyes of the law (in this tutorial, refers to a person’s student status in the U.S.)


Transfer Student

A student who changes colleges/universities prior to completing his or her degree


Undergraduate Degree

The degree received after completing a two year college program (Associate Degree) or a four year college program (Bachelor’s Degree)

Undergraduate Student

A college student seeking an Associate Degree or a Bachelor’s Degree

U.S. Citizenship

The quality of being a citizen of the United States

U.S. Department of State

The foreign affairs agency of the U.S. Government. Oversees the issuance of U.S. Visas at U.S. Embassies and Consulates in foreign countries. Governs the J-1 Exchange Visitor Program

U.S. Higher Education System

U.S. universities and colleges