The United States citizen and Immigration service has issued a news release  regarding international students and online courses for Fall 2022.  During the Covid-19 emergency, flexibility was given to F and M visa status  students who were permitted to take more online courses than normally allowed for purposes of maintaining a full course of study and maintenance of their F-1 and M-1 nonimmigrant status.  The US Department of Homeland Security plans to make changes to these provisions. Beginning Fall 2020, these temporary exemptions are modified as follows:
  • 1.Non immigrant F-1 and M-1 students attending schools operating entirely online may not take a full online course and remain in the United States.  Students presently in the United States and enrolled in such programs must depart the country or take other measures such as transferring to a school with in- person instruction to remain in lawful status.  If not, they may face immigration consequences including, but not limited to, the initiation of removal proceedings.
  • 2.  Students attending schools operating under normal in-person classes are bound by existing federal regulations. Eligible F students may take a maximum of one class or three credit hours online
  • 3.  Students attending schools adopting a hybrid model—that is, a mixture of online and in person classes—will be allowed to take more than one class or three credit hours online. These schools on the Form I-20, that the program is not entirely online, that the student is not taking an entirely online course load for the fall 2020 semester, and that the student is taking the minimum number of online classes required to make normal progress in their degree program.
Language training programs are not permitted to enroll in any online courses. Additional information is available here.