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Office of International Programs

Physical Presence Requirement

Per federal regulations, international students in F-1 status are limited to face-to-face classes at the main MSU campus location. This means that:

  1. International students in F-1 status are not allowed to enroll in MSU courses offered at the Minot Air Force Base or at the Bismarck, Fargo or Williston satellite locations.

  2. International students in F-1 status at Minot State University may take only one online or distance education course per semester to count towards full time enrollment. Undergraduate students in F-1 status must be registered in at least 9 credits face-to-face on campus; and graduate students in F-1 status must be registered in at least 6 credits face-to-face on campus. If an international student in F-1 status needs only one course to finish his or her program of study, it cannot be taken through online/distance education. There must be a physical presence requirement for the course.

  3. International students in F-1 status may enroll in a course offered by another university or college only with prior authorization from the International Student Coordinator.

  4. International students in F-1 status who return to their home country to pursue online or distance courses, or to complete practicum requirements of their degree, forfeit their F-1 status and benefits.

    Scenario 1: A Canadian student majoring in Communication Disorders returns home to complete a practicum in Canada during spring semester.
    - The student must inform the International Student Coordinator of her plans before the end of fall semester.
    - The student's F-1 status will end when she leaves the United States after fall semester. She should return the I-94 card upon crossing the border.
    - The student will not be eligible for F-1 benefits, such as OPT or change of level.
    - If the student wishes to return to MSU to continue studies, then she would need to apply for a new I-20 through Enrollment Services.
    - If the student wishes to return to MSU for the graduation ceremony, or to meet with her advisor, she will need to enter the country as a visitor.

    Scenario 2: A Japanese student wishes to return home to take online classes from Japan for one semester during her sophomore or junior year.
    - Depending upon how long she will be in Japan, her F-1 status MIGHT be forfeited, meaning she would need to apply for a new I-20 through Enrollment Services in order to return to MSU.
    - She should speak with the International Student Coordinator before making any travel plans to discuss her specific case and any repercussions.






last updated Oct. 22, 2014