Curricular Practical Training

Curricular Practical Training (CPT) is off-campus employment or training related to your field of study. The key aspect of CPT is that it is granted on a quarterly basis. You must be registered for a course (i.e., internship course, independent study, directed research, etc.) where you will receive unit credit for the CPT training or work.  Any additional requirements for the course (e.g., a paper, presentation) will depend upon what you and the instructor for the course agree upon.  You need to be registered in this course during each of the academic terms that you intend to be involved in the CPT training.  If you plan to engage in summer CPT, you will have to register for a course through Summer Sessions.


  1. To be eligible for CPT, you must have been in F-1 student status for at least one academic year (3 quarters).The three quarter rule does not apply to you if you transferred to UCSB from a school within the United States.
  2. During the academic term, you are only eligible for part-time CPT (20 hours/week).
  3. During break periods between quarters and during the summer break, you are eligible for full-time CPT (up to 40 hours/week)
  4. If you are already employed 20 hours/week on-campus during an academic term (e.g., 50% TA ship), you cannot engage in off-campus CPT at the same time.
  5. Throughout your degree program, you are eligible to take part in as much CPT as the curriculum, or your academic department, will permit.However, the CPT authorization cannot go beyond the completion date of your degree program.
  6. If you engage in one year or more of full-time CPT during your degree program, you will not be eligible for any Optional Practical Training (OPT).For example, if you have been granted three months of full-time CPT during four summer periods, you have then taken 12 months of full-time CPT and are no longer eligible for OPT.Part-time CPT does NOT count toward this ineligibility.
  7. Authorization for CPT is granted by OISS.Allow two weeks to process your request.
  8. You can begin your training only after receiving CPT authorization.The authorization cannot be backdated.
  9. The authorization will be indicated on the last page of a new I-20 form that will be generated for you through the SEVIS system.This will be the documentation that you should present to the employer to verify your employment eligibility.

To participate in CPT, you must receive work authorization from the Office of International Students & Scholars (OISS). CPT does not require an application to the USCIS or an Employment Authorization Document (EAD). OISS will give you a new I-20 that includes the valid CPT training period.


All CPT applications must be submitted to OISS. Please allow 2 weeks to process the application. To apply, you will need to:

□  Attend a Practical Training Information Session or meet with an International Student Advisor

□  Obtain a job offer letter from the company

□  Complete the F-1 Curricular Practical Training Request Form

□  Enroll in the appropriate course, or show that the employment is a requirement for your degree

□   Gather all required documents

□  Submit your complete CPT application package to OISS

Once your application is process and approved, you can pick-up your documents and new I-20. You CANNOT work until you receive the new I-20 that includes the valid CPT training period.

Guidelines for the Job Offer Letter

You will need a job offer letter from your employer. The letter must be on original company letterhead and signed by your supervisor. It must include:

  • Name and address of employer (including zip code)
  • Supervisor’s name and title
  • Position offered, including a description of the work
  • Specific employment start and end date
  • Hourly or weekly wage

Guidelines for the CPT Application Package

Gather all your documents. Submit your complete package to OISS at least two weeks before your employment start date. The package will include:

□  Completed Curricular Practical Training Request form

□  Original job offer letter from company

□  Copy of class schedule from GOLD showing enrollment in CPT course

Incomplete applications will not be accepted and will result in a delay in CPT approval.