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Trends and Improvements

The Trends and Improvements section of Study in the States is the central repository for tracking and monitoring the government’s progress on feedback received from the international student community.

This section aims to increase transparency by providing the most up-to-date information about the government’s response to stakeholders’ feedback. Within this section, we categorize each piece of feedback into four topic areas:

  • School Certification: Topics relate to the Student and Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP) School Certification Life Cycle and Form I-17, "Petition for Approval of School for Attendance by Nonimmigrant Student," updates.
  • Student and Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS): Topics relate to SEVIS functionality and enhancements.
  • Policy: Topics relate to clarifying SEVP's interpretation of federal regulations and guidance for school and student compliance.
  • Customer Service and Outreach: Topics relate to improving the government's direct interaction with stakeholders via the SEVP field representatives, SEVP Response Center, Study in the States and other outreach platforms.

Each piece of feedback includes a description of the concern, the government’s response and any action taken to address the concern, along with any related content available on Study in the States, ICE.gov/SEVP or other government websites.

We will update the Trends and Improvements section regularly to reflect progress made on identified issues and to include any new feedback the government receives. To explore this section, you can filter the below feedback by the categories listed above.

Recently Updated

School Certification
Last Updated: August 2018
Stakeholders note that long processing delays for Form I-17 updates can affect a school’s ability to properly function and serve students. SEVP made reducing processing times for adjudicating PDSO and DSO updates on the Form I-17 a top priority.
School Certification
Last Updated: May 2018
Stakeholders requested that SEVP improve and provide greater transparency about the Form I-17 process.
Customer Service and Outreach
Last Updated: May 2018
Stakeholders requested that SEVP take the lead on engaging with partner agencies to ensure a more consistent interpretation and application of federal regulation concerning the international student life cycle.
Policy
Last Updated: November 2017
SEVP stakeholders continue to express interest in further clarification from SEVP on guidance for pathway programs.
Filter Catalog By:
School Certification
Last Updated: May 2018
Stakeholders requested that SEVP improve and provide greater transparency about the Form I-17 process.
Customer Service and Outreach
Last Updated: May 2018
Stakeholders requested that SEVP take the lead on engaging with partner agencies to ensure a more consistent interpretation and application of federal regulation concerning the international student life cycle.
Policy, School Certification
Last Updated: April 2017
Stakeholders requested that SEVP provide clearer guidance on how to handle changes to a school’s business structure, such as change of ownership and school or campus “spinoffs” on the Form I-17. 
Policy
Last Updated: March 2017
As the trend toward nontraditional, dynamic educational programs continues, stakeholders recognize the need to address innovative shifts to the way programs are structured in higher education. However, they suggest that SEVP provide guidance that accommodates and facilitates modern and innovative educational programs.
Policy
Last Updated: December 2016
Stakeholders request more guidance about the responsibilities designated school official have in reviewing and approving of the Form I-983, “Training Plan for STEM OPT Students.” 
SEVIS
Last Updated: October 2016
SEVIS users express the need for new SEVIS functionality, such as the ability to export data and search records. With input from stakeholders, SEVP prioritized making SEVIS enhancements that improve user experience and modernize the system.
SEVIS
Last Updated: October 2016
Stakeholders request that SEVP provide more advanced notice for planned SEVIS outages and other events that may affect a school’s batch processing capabilities.
Customer Service and Outreach
Last Updated: September 2017
Stakeholders note areas of improvement for SEVP field representatives, specifically requesting a more strategic approach to visiting SEVP-certified schools and more consistent training across the board.

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Questions?

For general and case-specific questions, call 703-603-3400 or email SEVP@ice.dhs.gov and include Trends and Improvements in the subject line. Our offices are open Monday through Friday, from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. ET, except holidays.