F-1 Curricular Practical Training

Curricular Practical Training (CPT) is an employment option available to F-1 students when the practical training employment is considered to be an integral part of the curriculum or academic program. At Yale, the use of CPT is only available in the two circumstances listed below:

  • The employment (usually an internship or practicum) is a degree requirement of all students in the program.  Each school and/or degree program at Yale has different requirements that will affect your eligibility for CPT. Please check with your school or OISS.
  • You will receive academic credit for your proposed CPT employment.  The course must be listed in your school bulletin, be specifically designed to award academic credit for an employment experience, and be a degree requirement for all students in your program.  PhD students in dissertation status may be eligible for CPT if the training experience is an integral component of the dissertation.

Part-time vs. Full-time CPT

CPT can be granted on a part-time or full-time basis.  During the academic year, CPT is limited to part-time (no more than 20 hours per week) and you must continue to be enrolled as a full-time student.  Full-time CPT (more than 20 hours per week) is generally available to students only during the summer break.  If you use 12 months or more of full-time CPT, you will not be eligible for Optional Practical Training (OPT). 

Eligibility Criteria for CPT 

  • You must have been in lawful F-1 status for at least one academic year.
  • You must have an offer of employment that qualifies for CPT by establishing that the proposed employment is either a degree requirement for all students in your program or that you will receive academic credit based on your proposed employment experience.
  • PhD students requesting CPT must (1) provide a letter from their dissertation advisor explaining in detail the relationship between the proposed employment and their doctoral dissertation research, and (2) meet with your Graduate School Associate or Assistant Dean to obtain their signature on the CPT request form attesting that your activity is sanctioned by the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences and that you will continue to be a registered student during the requested period.

Applying for CPT

  • Contact OISS to evaluate your eligibility for CPT.
  • If all eligibility requirements are met, submit to OISS the completed CPT Request Form signed by your academic adviser or dean.  You must submit your request for CPT before your CPT begins. Students in the School of Music must submit the Music Student CPT Request form.
  • A new SEVIS I-20 will be issued denoting the employer and the dates authorized on page three.  You can present this new I-20, along with your passport and I-94 record, as proof of employment authorization to your employer.  
  • Apply for a Social Security Number if you do not have one already.

Multiple Employers and Extensions

CPT authorization must be granted for each incidence of employment for a specific employer and period of time. If you change employers or engage in concurrent employment, you require authorization for each employer and time period. If you are asked to extend your work period for an already approved employment you need to apply for and be granted an extension of your CPT through OISS.  Work undertaken after the expiration date of your CPT will be considered unauthorized employment.