Optional Practical Training (OPT)

Eligible Visas:
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Required: Online OPT Workshop

To apply for OPT, you must first complete our online OPT Workshop. Choose below between the Pre-Completion or Post-Completion workshop, depending upon when you will start OPT:

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After the Workshop: Your Application Materials

During the online OPT Workshop, you will have the opportunity to begin filling out the OISS OPT Request Form, USCIS Form I-765, and Form G-1145, which will be e-mailed to you as a PDF packet. You must bring this packet in to OISS to continue the OPT application process. More details on the required materials, below.

OISS OPT Request Form
for instructions on completing this form, see below


To be signed by your dean, department chairperson, or academic adviser.

Note for PhD students only:
Please note that any OPT prior to graduation either during term time or in the summer will require two signatures on the OPT request form, one from your academic adviser the other from the appropriate Academic Dean at the Graduate School. The Dean’s signature is required to ensure you will be considered full time registered during the OPT period and to give you an opportunity to discuss how this might affect your fellowship or stipend.

USCIS Form I-765 for OPT
for instructions on completing this form, see below


Be sure to type this form, except for the signature box.

Form G-1145


Add your email address.



Two recent photographs on thin, glossy paper per instructions from USCIS. Write your name and SEVIS number in pencil on the back of the photos. Do not cut to size or staple.

Check or money order


$380 payable to U.S. Department of Homeland Security.

Photocopies of:



All previous I-20s (pages 1 and 3)
I-94 record
F-1 visa
Passport ID pages including your photo, passport expiration date, and passport number
Previous EAD card (if you have been on OPT before)

OISS OPT Request Form signed by your dean, department chairperson, or academic adviser.

Pick an OPT start date:

For post-completion OPT, your start date can be any day after your end date through the 60 day grace period. Be sure to pick a work day (i.e., Monday) as you will not be able to begin work until the date you pick.


If you do not yet have a job offer, you will need to estimate what start date will work best for you. For those graduating on May 18, 2015, the latest date you could choose would be July 17, 2015.

Pick an OPT end date:

If you have not used OPT prior to graduating, your end date will be 365 days after your start date. For example, if your start date is June 9, 2015, your end date will be June 8, 2016.

If you have used pre-completion OPT, you will need to deduct that time from the allowable 12 months.


USCIS Form I-765 for OPT (questions 1-16 only)

  • Do not apply using the online USCIS process
  • Be sure to type this form, except for the signature box
  • Check the box: permission to accept employment
  • Question 3: Make certain that the address you put in item #3 will be valid for the next 90 to 120 days as that is where your receipt and employment card will be sent. Mail from USCIS will not be forwarded by the US Postal Service.
    ** We strongly advise that you use the OISS address (421 Temple St, New Haven, CT 06511) if you have any doubt where your mail will be delivered after graduation.**
  • Question 10: Number from your I-94 number (11 digit number)
  • Question 16: Eligibility codes:
    Pre-Completion: (c) (3) (A)
    Post-Completion: (c) (3) (B)
    STEM Extension: (c) (3) (C)
  • Question 17: Leave blank
  • Make sure your certification signature is in blue ink and does not touch any text or lines


Optional Practical Training (OPT)

Related Links

F-1 Students



Employment Authorization