You must have a student visa to study in the United States. Your course of study and the type of school you plan to attend determine whether you need an F visa or an M visa. F visa is discussed separately. To attend vocational or other recognized nonacademic institution, other than a language training program, you need M visa. A visitor (B) visa permits enrollment in a short recreational course of study, which is not for credit toward a degree or academic certificate. Study leading to a U.S. conferred degree or certificate is never permitted on a visitor (B) visa, even if it is for a short duration. For example, a student in a distance learning program that requires a period of time on the institution’s U.S. campus must obtain a student (F or M) visa prior to entering the United States.