Loyola University Chicago

School of Education

International Students

The School of Education welcomes graduate applications from international students who have completed a four-year degree or its equivalent.

Visa Requirements

All admitted international students must fill out the Declaration and Certification of Finances Form for International Graduate and Professional Students. Download and mail the form along with your proof of support as described on the form to:

Office for International Programs
Loyola University Chicago
6525 N. Sheridan Road
Chicago, IL 60626-5311

If you are accepted into a Loyola program, we must have all of the above documentation in order to issue the I-20 or DS-2019 form which you must take to the U.S. Consulate to request your visa.

The certificate of eligibility, form I-20, is the document which enables individuals to apply for the F-1 student visa. The certificate of eligibility, DS-2019, is the document which enables individuals to apply for the J-1 exchange visitor visa. Only upon full acceptance to the university is a certificate of eligibility issued. Full acceptance is based on the following criteria:

  • Submission and approval of all appropriate academic requirements
  • Satisfactory TOEFL or IELTS score from applicants who did not attend an English speaking undergraduate program
  • Sufficient, documented financial support  

Transcripts and Credentials

International applicants who have completed their studies outside the United States must present all post-secondary credentials. Credentials must include all grades or examination results and all degrees, diplomas, and certificates earned. Documents must be authentic or certified by the institution or authorized agency. Those not in English must be accompanied by certified English translations. One (1) set of your post-secondary credentials with supporting documents must be submitted to:

Graduate Enrollment Management
Loyola University Chicago
820 N. Michigan Avenue
Lewis Towers 800
Chicago, IL 60611

In addition, international students are required to submit non-U.S. transcripts to an outside credential evaluation service. Go to https://www.ece.org (Educational Credential Evaluators, Inc.) for information on this service and to download an application. The evaluation is to be sent to Loyola directly from the credential service to the address above.

International applicants applying to the programs that include Illinois certification must request the Course-by-Course evaluation. All other international applicants should request the General Evaluation with Grade Average. The evaluation report must show that your non-U.S. education is equivalent to a U.S. bachelor's degree to be considered for admission.

Applicants currently enrolled in a program outside of the U.S. should not request the evaluation from ECE until the last term of enrollment, or until after graduation. If an evaluation is requested prior to the last term of enrollment, the equivalency of a U.S. bachelor's degree cannot be established or verified by ECE.

*Note: The evaluation is waived for applicants who have completed a master's degree from an accredited U.S. institution.

*Note: Copies and faxes are not accepted as official documents; we must receive the report directly from ECE.

English Language Requirements

In addition to completing the regular application procedures, all international applicants must submit passing scores for the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) - except those who are from, or who have completed a bachelor's or master's degree from a recognized institution in Canada, the United Kingdom, Ireland, Australia, or New Zealand at which the language of instruction was English. Test scores must be sent directly to Loyola University Chicago (institute code 1412) to be considered official. TOEFL minimum required scores are 550 on the paper and pencil version, 213 on the computer version or 79 on the internet based (iBT) version, and the IELTS minimum score is 6.5.

Registration materials and information about the locations and dates for testing may be obtained from:

MA and PhD Student Only

Students enrolled in The Graduate School (earning an MA or PhD) who have not received a bachelor's degree from an institution where English is the language of instruction are required to complete the English language requirement. This is a very important requirement - students who do not fulfill the requirement will not be eligible to receive a degree.

Incoming students are required to take a placement test at the beginning of the first semester as a degree-seeking student (the placement test is a different test from the TOEFL or IELTS).  The ESL department will notify students regarding testing information. Depending on their test results, students may be required to complete one or two ESL courses to satisfy the English language degree requirements. Students with questions regarding this policy should contact their graduate program director or The Graduate School. 

Proof of Financial Resources

In order for us to issue the I-20 or DS-2019, you need to prove that you already have enough money in savings for tuition and living expenses for a period of twelve months, with the understanding that you will be able to fund your entire education at Loyola University Chicago. The financial proof can be in the form of your personal bank statement or a letter from any agency, government or employer offering to cover your tuition and living expenses. You may also receive financial support from a family member or another source. If support is obtained from a family member or another sponsor, there must be a written letter on behalf of the sponsor stating that they will cover your expenses accompanied by an original bank statement for the academic year. This amount is listed with the Declaration and Certification of Finances Form (PDF) for International Graduate and Professional Students.

The total expense for the academic year is non-negotiable and must be shown to receive an I-20 form. Bank statements must be originals, written in English and converted into U.S. dollars. We will not accept any statement that is over 6 months old.

You must provide written proof of financial support to:

Office of International Programs
Loyola University Chicago
6525 North Sheridan Road
Chicago, IL 60626-5311

After you have been admitted to an academic program, and after the International Center has received a copy of your proof of ability to pay, you will receive a Form I-20 in the mail. Take this form to a U.S. consulate to apply for an F-1 student visa for entry into the U.S.

Hospitalization Insurance

The university requires that all international students carry hospitalization insurance before they register for classes. The university participates in an insurance program which is available to international students.

Visa Deadlines

Applicants from within the United States must submit all supporting documentation (proof of financial support, TOEFL score, hospitalization insurance information) at least 30 days prior to the beginning of the academic term they wish to attend. This is necessary to ensure that applicants will have sufficient time to make arrangements for their transfer.

Applicants applying from outside the United States must submit all supporting documentation (proof of financial support, TOEFL score, hospitalization insurance information) at least 90 days prior to the beginning of the academic term they wish to attend. This is necessary to ensure that applicants will have sufficient time to make arrangements for their visa.

Initial Attendance and Transferring Schools within the U.S.

The Immigration and Naturalization Service requires that an international student who enters the United States on the F-1 or J-1 visa for study at a particular school must complete at least one academic term at the school before being eligible to transfer to another school. For example, if you enter the U.S. on an I-20 from Loyola University Chicago, the U.S. government requires that you attend Loyola for at least one term before you are permitted to transfer to another university.

If you are transferring to Loyola from another school in the United States, you must obtain a transfer verification form from your current institution and send it to Loyola so that we can transfer your F-1 or J-1 status. The international advisor should complete this form at your current or most recent school attended. You need to instruct the international advisor at your former school what date you would like to be released and transfer to Loyola. Loyola cannot issue the transfer I-20 or DS-2019 until your previous school releases you to transfer. If you are out of status with your former school, please contact the Office for International Programs at intlcntr@luc.edu or 773.508.3899.

If you are currently in the U.S. on a dependent non-immigrant visa such as H-4, L-2, F-2, J-2 or Permanent Residency, please let the Office for International Programs know your status and if you are interested in changing your non-immigrant status to F-1.


On-campus housing is available on a limited basis for unmarried international graduate students. For more information, please visit housing for international students.

Financial Assistance

International students are not eligible for any state or federal financial aid. Institutional aid is available on a very limited basis and is generally awarded according to academic merit.


Illinois Public Act 85-1315 requires that all students born on or after January 1, 1957, entering universities must present proof of immunity to measles, mumps, rubella, diphtheria and tetanus. This requirement applies to international applicants. A medical health report form will be sent with the certificate of eligibility. 

Contact Us

The Office for International Programs will be happy to answer any questions you have about your immigration status in the U.S. Please contact them at:

Office for International Programs
Phone: 773.508.3899
Fax: 773.508.7125
E-mail: intlcntr@luc.edu