Curricular Practical Training for F-1 Students

Curricular Practical Training (CPT) is a form of work authorization for students whose degree programs require certain training as an integral part of their established curricula.

You can only do CPT during your program, and it requires a specific position (paid or unpaid) that is directly related to your academic major. It’s authorized for one semester at a time.

If you are considering an unpaid internship or position, you should get written verification that your position is not in violation of the Fair Labor Standards Act from someone in HR at your organization. Financial compensation is not the only indicator of employment.

You can apply for CPT if:

  • The practical training is required of all students in your degree program (for example, the Rollins practicum for public health students);
  • You’re enrolled in a class that includes training as a course requirement; or
  • The training is necessary for you to complete your doctoral thesis or dissertation (course enrollment is required).

If your CPT is for a specific course, it can only begin after the course starts and it has to end before the last day of the course.


You can apply for CPT if:

  • You currently hold F-1 status.
  • You have finished at least 1 academic year as a full-time student at a US institution.
  • If you re-enter the US using a new SEVIS record after your previous record was terminated, you need to complete another academic year of full-time study before you can apply for CPT.
  • CPT during last semester: 
    • Only part-time CPT is allowed as it is not an F-1 vacation term.
    • In addition to enrollment in a CPT-associated course, you will need to have at least one more degree-required course that has a physical class attendance requirement on Emory campus. This means that you must remain in Atlanta as there are restrictions on distance-learning for F-1 students.

Part-time vs. full-time

  • You can participate in CPT part time (20 hours/week or less) during the fall and spring semesters. Your CPT can be full time (20+ hours/week) during the summer, unless the summer is your first or last term.
  • If you are a PhD student and you've completed all your coursework excluding dissertation, you can participate in CPT full time during the fall and spring as long as it’s required to complete your dissertation.
  • CPT is not approved during your last semester at Emory unless it is required for your degree completion.
    • Only part-time CPT is allowed as it is not an F-1 vacation term.
    • You will need to have one another degree required course that has a physical class attendance requirement on Emory campus. 

Required documents

  1. CPT request e-form
  2. Employment offer letter on the company's letterhead, signed by the hiring manager. Please email this letter to your academic advisor as well as uploading it via e-form. This letter should include:
    1. Job title
    2. Brief description of the goals and objectives of your employment
    3. Exact start date and end date for your employment
    4. Full physical address of your employment including zip code
    5. Number of hours you are expected to work per week
    6. Name and email address of your supervisor
    7. Expected salary for your position


  1. Log in to ISSS Link and fill out the CPT request e-form. You'll need to upload a copy of your employment offer letter.
  2. Your academic program confirms that your position meets a curricular requirement.
  3. Your ISSS advisor determines your eligibility and processes your request within 5 business days.
  4. We'll email you when your I-20 is ready for you to pick up.

School-specific workshops

ISSS has worked with individual schools to create workshops specific to their CPT requirements.  Even more workshops are on the way, so please continue to check back.

Workshops are for Emory students only, so you'll need to log in with your NETID to access the workshops.


Emory College of Arts and Sciences 

Rollins School of Public Health