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International Accelerator Program

  • Student meeting with a professor

Before you Arrive

Complete Your Pre-Arrival Checklist

You should apply for your visa as soon as possible. It requires an interview with the U.S. embassy and can sometimes take several weeks to schedule.

Please visit to learn more about scheduling your visa appointment. The website also has information on what to expect and the documentation you will need to take with you for your interview. Here are other links that might be helpful to you: visa photo requirements, visa application and I-901 Fee and study in the states.

Check out two videos below that will help you on how to apply and prepare for your visa interview.

Download this useful Immigration Guide to help you learn more about the process for getting your F-1 visa.

 1.  Visit, click on ‘Account Claiming’ to establish your log in information.

  • Your USC ID and VIP ID is on your acceptance letter.
  • Please remember the security questions that you will establish in this step. These must be questions that you (the student) create. Make a note of them, so you do not forget the answers. Also, please remember the password you establish in this.

2.  Once your security questions are set, visit, then click on ‘Update Account Settings’. Log in using your VIP ID and password. Answer security question and press submit.

  • It is important that you take a picture and save all your IDs – VIP ID, USC ID, and Network Username.

3.  Go to the ‘Multi-factor’ tab, add your phone number. It is okay to add an international number if you have a smart phone (iPhone, Google, Android etc.)

  • If it’s an international number, make sure to add the country code. For example, a Chinese number would start with +86, an Indian number would start with +246.

4.  Next to your phone number, you will see an “Activate” button. Click on this button and you will see a QR code.

5.  Take out your smartphone and download the “Duo Mobile” application on your phone. It is a green App with the word 'DUO' written on it.

6.  Go into the Duo Mobile application and click on the + on the top right corner. 

7.  Point your phone and scan the QR code on your computer screen. Your USC account will be added to your Duo Mobile App.

8.  When you sign in your USC account in the future, the system will give you three options – Click “Send me a push.” The Duo Mobile App on your phone will then notify you to accept a push. You will click accept on your phone and you will be successfully logged in!

 You will use this “multifactor authentication” to log into important sites. You will need to do this for your Math Placement test and to complete your Immunizations. When you sign in, it will give you three options – Click “Send me a push.” The Duo Mobile Application on your phone will then notify you to accept a push. You will click accept on your phone and you are successfully logged in!

1.  Log into to submit required immunizations.

2.  Click on Student button.

3.  Login using your network username.

  1. Network username is assigned by the university and is based on your name.
  2. You will need to complete Step 2 in order to see your Network Username.
  3. It is the first portion of your official university email address ( or
  4. Find information about Network Username and passwords at, then click on ‘Update Account Settings’. You can log in with your VIP ID and password.

4.  Select Immunization Upload (left side of the screen). Click 'Add Immunization Record', upload your document. Click Save.

5. Select Medical Clearances (left side of the screen). Click on TB Screen Risk Form “update” button and answer the questions. Click Submit.

6.  Please contact if you have any questions.

 You must enter your immunizations in the "Medical Clearances" portion of and click on "Immunizations Record" and attach supporting documentation signed by a medical provider before orientation. (Note: You can take a photo of your documentation with your phone and upload the photo). Please also enter your immunization dates and vaccine types in the "Medical Clearances" portion for each vaccine received. You will not be able to register for classes until we have your required immunizations on file. The required immunizations include: 

1. MMR Vaccine (two doses)
You'll need two doses of the measles, mumps and rubella vaccine (MMR), or positive blood titer reports. Please record these on in the "Medical Clearances" portion.

2. Meningococcal Vaccine
You'll need the meningococcal vaccine to prevent meningitis if you are younger than 21. If you've had a meningitis vaccine but it's more than five years old, you'll need a booster. Please record these on in the "Medical Clearances" portion.

3. TB Risk Screening Question
Complete the questionnaire found on in the "Medical Clearances" portion. 

You can only be exempt from fulfilling immunization requirements if:

· You have a permanent medical contraindication.

· You have conflicting religious beliefs.

· You are enrolled in only distance education courses.

You will need to provide proof of your exemption status. 

Recommended Immunizations

The UofSC Student Health center recommends all students get these preventive vaccines for their overall health and well-being.

· Gardasil (all students younger than 26)

· Hepatitis A & B

· Varicella (chicken pox)

· Tetanus/Diphtheria/Pertussis (Tdap)

· Meningococcal Group B

Please carefully read information about the International Accelerator Program's student health insurance, here

The FERPA Disclosure Form allows us your consent to disclose information to parents, guardians, financial sponsors and agents.

All incoming undergraduate USC students are required to take a math placement test before they arrive on campus. You will need to complete this before you leave your home country. After you have completed the math placement test, please email and include a screenshot of your test score in your email.

Note: Pre-Sessional students do not need to take the math placement test.

When you arrive on campus, you will need to take an English test in order to ensure that you are placed in the correct program. This practice test will help you to get familiar with the test before you arrive.

When purchasing your ticket to Columbia, South Carolina, plan to arrive on or before your scheduled move-in day. Once you book your flight, enter your arrival itinerary and confirm your free airport pickup. These important details will help the campus team prepare for your arrival and make your big day go as smoothly as possible.

We offer free transportation from Columbia Metropolitan Airport (CAE) to campus.

Important Dates

Program  Move-in Date Program Start Date
Pre-sessional English

Spring 2020: January 7

Summer 2020: May 19

Fall 2020: August 12

Spring 2020: January 8

Summer 2020: May 20

Fall 2020: August 13

Academic English Session II

Spring 2020:  March 10

Fall 2020: TBA

Spring 2020: March 11

Fall 2020: TBA

Undergraduate Programs

Spring 2020: January 7

Summer 2020: May 26

Fall 2020: August 12

Spring 2020: January 8

Summer 2020: May 27

Fall 2020: August 13

Graduate Programs 

Spring 2020: January 7

Fall 2020: August 12

Spring 2020: January 8

Fall 2020: August 13

 Making your payment in full two weeks before you arrive will help avoid delays with enrollment. Before you begin, please make sure you have your acceptance letter in front of you, as you will need to refer to the information in the letter.

Please visit USC’s flywire portal to complete the transfer process. Please note that you can not use a U.S. credit card or U.S. bank account.

Helpful Resources



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