Study abroad checklist which tells you what to carry as an international student

Every international student’s study abroad checklist

Last Updated on October 20, 2020 by iSchoolConnect

There are an endless amount of items on every student’s study abroad checklist. To help you with the documents, we’ve made a study abroad document checklist; right from your university application to the process for your visa.

No time to read? Check out this video with the ultimate study abroad checklist!

Documents are a very essential part in the process of studying abroad. Right from the application process to arriving at the destination country. As an international student, you need to keep the documents ready in advance. So we thought we would come to your rescue by listing all the necessary documents you need to keep a track of.

Study abroad checklist
A detailed list of the preparation items you need to take care of before studying abroad

Test scorecards:

IELTS test result
IELTS and TOEFL are language proficiency tests mandated by most universities for an international student.

Test scorecards are probably at the top of a student’s study abroad checklist. IELTS or TOEFL are supposed to be taken as a language proficiency test by an international student. Similarly, some of the universities might ask for additional test scores like GRE\GMAT for the program of your choice. Not every university mandates these tests. But if asked, make sure you have the test scores ready before the application process starts. Some universities have different deadlines for submission of test scores but it is better to send the scores with the application.

LOR and SOP:

Your Letters of Recommendation (LORs) and Statement of Purpose (SOP) are as important as any academic score and test scores. A letter of recommendation is an account of one’s character from a third person’s point of view. SOPs focus strongly on the field of your choice and also shows a sense of purpose of applying for the particular field.  Make sure the SOP is original and not too lengthy. Stick to the word limit given. A well-written SOP and a favorable LOR will definitely help you in securing the place.

Financial support proof:

Financial support proofs are important for Visa application process.
Examine your financial support proofs thoroughly before you apply for your visa.

Financial support proof shows the current financial circumstances and is available at the bank as a bank statement. It is an essential document for the student visa application. Financial proofs show if the student will be able to support himself during his stay while paying the tuition fees. If your parents are the ones supporting your education, present the statement accordingly.


Universities require academic scripts of certain grades depending on the degree level you are applying for. Get all the scores converted into a transcript. Transcripts are a record of scores throughout your academic course. The last university or school you have been to will help in getting the transcripts ready. Some universities charge a certain amount for these transcripts. Keep at least 4 to 5 transcripts ready according to the number of universities you are applying for.


Passport is an important document in the study abroad checklist
Your passport is your identity and proof of nationality when living in a foreign country.

Your passport is your ultimate proof of identity. Right from the standardized test registration to the visa application, the passport will be required everywhere. Use only the original passport while traveling or for your student visa application. However, since using your original passport as an ID proof everywhere is risky, keep the spare photocopy around. In the event of misplacing your passport, contact the embassy in that particular country. One can also contact the university for assistance.

Offer Letter:

Your offer letter is your proof of acceptance by a particular university. It is an essential document in the study abroad checklist for the student visa application process. You should also keep a copy of the letter as well as your I-20 form issued by your university and carry the original as well the photocopies when joining the university.


India has the second highest number of students studying in the US universities.

Your Visa is the final step and the most important document in your study abroad checklist. With the right documents, obtaining a visa is not as difficult as it seems. Apply for F1 visa if going for a masters degree. Get the visa ready about 120 days prior to the beginning date of your course. Student visa for USA from India costs around $160(11398 INR). For your F1 visa application form, DS-160 form, your I-20 form which the university provides on getting accepted, and the bank statement of last 3 months are the documents you need to keep ready.

Remember, no matter which document it is, always keep multiple photocopies of the same. A study abroad checklist helps in keeping a track of things so that you don’t miss out on anything. Check out our blog to find out more about the how-to’s of your letter of recommendation. You can also know more about creating an ideal scholarship application and get elaborate information on IELTS. iSchoolConnect helps you with everything you need for studying abroad. Right from shortlisting universities to arriving at the destination. So reach out to us on our website or call us on+91 22 62863000.

Akanksha Vora

Bright, bold, and bubbly, Akanksha Vora is a writer at iSchoolConnect. She writes creative and curious blogs that help students with their life and studies abroad.

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