After everyone has completed the steps for applying for school STEM extension application, you can start to organize the materials and prepare to submit them to USCIS.
Beginning in April 2021, the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) allows F-1 students seeking pre- or post-completion Optional Practical Training (OPT) or STEM OPT extensions to electronically file I- through their USCIS online account. Form 765. To submit these forms online, individuals must first create a USCIS online account at myaccount.uscis.gov.
This free account allows students to:
- submit form;
- pay fees;
- Track their case status;
- Communicate with USCIS through a secure inbox;
- Respond to discovery requests.
Things to note when submitting I765 application online :
- If the student has already submitted by mail, please do not submit the online application. USCIS may deny repeated applications.
- You can only file Form I-765 online within the United States. You are not eligible to apply for OPT from abroad.
- Although filing Form I-765 online may be faster and easier than filing by mail, it does not speed up the time it takes for USCIS to decide your petition. Please see the USCIS website for current processing times.
- Once you submit your application, you will not be able to go back and edit or change your information. If you believe that you provided incorrect or incomplete information when submitting Form I-765, please contact your International Student Center advisor immediately. Failure to do so may result in an RFE, processing delays, or rejection of the application by USCIS.
- USCIS reserves the right to require a biometric appointment on a case-by-case basis.
- Students still have the option of filing I-765 using the paper process. However, as mentioned in point (1) above, please do not archive using both methods at the same time.
How to submit OPT EXTENSION online
- Prepare required documents
Whether you file Form I-765 electronically or by regular mail, the first step is to gather the required documents. Regardless of whether you choose to submit your OPT EXTENSION/OPT extension application online or by mailing it on paper, the documents required to submit Form I-765 online are the same (except Form G-1145 and check/money order). Please refer to the OPT Checklist or STEM OPT Checklist on the school’s International Student Center homepage for a list of required documents. Please note that you will need to scan all documents (documents need to be clear) in order to upload them to the online system.
- Create an online account
After gathering the required documents, create an online account at https://myaccount.uscis.gov. You will need to provide a valid phone number where you can receive a verification code for two-factor authentication, which is required every time you log in.
- Start your application
Once logged in, select “Submit form online” under “Choose what you want to do.” Then, under Submit a Form, select Application for Employment Authorization (I-765). You will be taken to a page with an overview of the online application process, including eligibility requirements, required documents, payment details, and action items for you This may be required after submitting Form I-765. If you have any questions, please read this page carefully and contact your designated International Student Center Advisor. Carefully review the “Fill out the form online” section. Please note that your response will be automatically Save. If you log out, you can log back in and continue where you left off.
Fill out the online application form for OPT extension
- Basis of eligibility
- c(3)(A) for pre-Completion OPT;
- c(3)(B) for post-Completion OPT; (selected when applying for the first Opt)
- c(3)(C) for the STEM Extension. (Select when applying for Opt extension)
- Reason for applying
- Pre- or post-Completion OPT applicants should select Initial permission to accept employment.
- STEM OPT Extension should select Renewal of permission to accept employment. ( Students applying for Opt extension choose)
- Have you previously filed Form I-765?
- Select “No” if you have not previously applied for work authorization with an I-765.
- Select “Yes” if you have previously filed an I-765 (you will be required to upload a copy of your last Employment Authorization Document in the “Evidence” section. (You will need to upload a scan of your most recent EAD card in the Evidence section)
- Preparer and interpreter information
- Select “no” unless someone (e.g., an interpreter) is assisting you with the application.
- Your immigration information
- Information about your Form I-94 can be found on the CBP website. (I94 can be downloaded from the official website of the Immigration Service)
- Be sure to select the correct immigration status, as the list of available statuses is quite long (F1 – Student, Academic, or Language Program).
- Your SEVIS number can be found on the top left corner of your I-20.
- Other information
- If you do not have a previous EAD, leave the A-Number field blank. If you have a previous EAD, your A-Number will be listed under USCIS# on your card. Leave the field blank. If you had an EAD before, your A-Number will be listed under the USCIS# on your card.)
- If you have been issued a Social Security Number, please provide it (if known). If not, please select “Yes” under “Do you want the SSA to issue you a Social Security card?” , please provide (if known). If not, select “Yes” under “Do you want the SSA to issue you a Social Security card?”)
- 2 x 2 photo
- Be sure to review the guidelines for taking and uploading photos. Selfies are not accepted and photos must be taken on a pure white or off-white background. Without photos, your application will not be approved. For additional tips, see USCIS’s requirements for the passport photo page .
- Form I-94
- Please see the CBP website for a copy of this form. You can also attach a copy of your passport page (white card)
- Employment Authorization Document
- Upload the front and back scanned sides of your OPT EAD card
- Form I-20
- Provide a copy of the I-20 of STEM OPT recommend (note that this is the new I20 validity and update issued by the school)
- College degree
- Upload evidence of your STEM-eligible degree.
- Students applying based on a degree earned should provide the following: copies of diploma, diploma translation , and official or unofficial transcript. (Copies of current Stem Degree degree certificate and transcript)
- Students applying based on a previously earned degree from another institution should upload copies of the STEM-eligible diploma and transcript.
- Upload evidence of your STEM-eligible degree.
- Institutional accreditation
- Only required if you are applying based on a previously earned degree. This does not apply to most students. For example, you applied for OPT based on your master’s degree in social work earned at the University of Pennsylvania, and you would apply for STEM extension based on your bachelor’s degree in statistics earned at another U.S. university. If you are applying based on a previously earned degree, contact the school that awarded your STEM-eligible degree to obtain proof of accreditation.
填写例子#1: If you need to enter your degree/major information:
- Section: Select “Getting Started”;
- Page: Select “Basis of Eligibility”;
- Question: Select “What is your degree””
- Additional information: Enter the name of your major as listed on your I-20 and as listed on your diploma/transcript. For example:
- Master of Science in Robotics
CIP Code: 11.0102
Major as listed on I-20: Artificial Intelligence
- Master of Science in Robotics
Fill in Example #2: If you have a previous SEVIS number:
- Section: Select “About You”;
- Page: Select “Your immigration information”;
- Question: Select “What is your Student and Exchange Visitor Information (SEVIS) Number (if any)?”
- Additional information: Enter your previous SEVIS ID number, the name of the institution, degree level, and program start date. For example:
8/15/2014 – 5/21/2018
Example #3: If you have previous CPT authorization:
- Section: Select “Evidence”;
- Page: “Previously authorized CPT or OPT”;
- Question: “Previously authorized CPT or OPT”;
- Additional Information: Enter the type of authorization, employer, full- or part-time status, dates, degree level, and SEVIS ID. For example:
- CPT, Amazon, Part-time
5/31/2018 – 9/1/2018
- CPT, Amazon, Part-time
Review and submit
At this stage, you will be alerted to any errors or incomplete fields and given the opportunity to make corrections. However, please also manually review each section of the form to ensure you are submitting accurate information under “Summary of Your Application.” You will also have the opportunity to download a .pdf copy of your response, which you can save for your records by clicking “View Draft Snapshot.” After your application is reviewed, you must show that you can read and understand English. You will then be required to provide a digital signature by entering your full legal name to confirm that all information you submit is accurate at the time of submission.
Pay the fee
After signing the application in the previous step, you will pay the application fee ($410). The online application allows you to pay using a credit card, debit card , or withdrawal from a checking or savings account. After clicking “Pay and Submit” you will be taken to pay.gov to complete your payment. Please note that USCIS filing fees are non-refundable. Avoid clicking “Back” or “Refresh” on your browser. If you are not ready to complete your payment, click Cancel to return to the USCIS Online Portal
After completing the payment, you will be redirected to the confirmation screen. Click “Go to My Case” to view your case card and receipt notification. Please keep a copy of the receipt number for your records. After you submit your application and receive payment, you will use your online account to: View your receipt notification View your biometric notification (if applicable) Review your Request for Evidence (RFE) View your case status (via the Case Status tab) View PDF of completed Form I-765 View your decision letter. All notices will also be mailed to the mailing address you specify on the form.
NOTE: Acceptable file formats
- Photos: JPG, JPEG, PNG
- Files: JPG , JPEG , PDF , TIF , TIFF (no .doc or .bmp files allowed )
- Maximum size: 6MB per file