STEM OPT Expansion
A new policy notice updated the STEM OPT Designation Degree Program List.
What is OPT and STEM?
OPT is a work permit available to certain F-1 nonimmigrant students. Students can use OPT to work for one year after their studies.
The STEM OPT extension is a 24-month extension of OPT available to F-1 nonimmigrant students who have completed 12 months of OPT and received a degree in an approved STEM field of study as designated by the STEM list. STEM fields are those that fall within science, technology, engineering, or mathematics.
What are the new STEM OPT programs?
There are 22 new fields being added to the STEM list.
Bioenergy: A program of study that focuses on the environmental and economic impact of using plants and microbes for the production of bio-based fuels such as ethanol and biodiesel. Includes instruction in biochemical engineering, bioprocessing, bioseparations, conversion, feedstock, economics, environmental sustainability, hydrology, and natural resource management.
Forestry, General: A program that generally prepares individuals to manage and develop forest areas for economic, recreational, and ecological purposes. Includes instruction in forest-related sciences, mapping, statistics, harvesting and production technology, natural resources management and economics, wildlife sciences, administration, and public relations.
Forest Resources Production and Management: A program that focuses on the application of forestry principles to the production, harvesting, and processing of forest resources and that prepares individuals to perform associated technical and managerial functions. Includes instruction in forest production and utilization, industrial forestry, agroforestry, transplantation, timber harvesting, selection and identification of trees, processing technologies and systems, equipment operations and maintenance, and related management skills.
Human-Centered Technology Design: A program that focuses on incorporating a human perspective into designing, researching, and creating technological interfaces. Includes instruction in design, human-computer interaction, learning, neuroscience, perception, product design, user-centered design, and usability.
Cloud Computing: A program that prepares individuals to design and implement enterprise software systems that rely on distributed computing and service-oriented architecture, including databases, web services, cloud computing, and mobile apps. Includes instruction in data management, distributed and cloud computing, enterprise software architecture, enterprise and cloud security, mobile systems and applications, server administration, and web development.
Anthrozoology: A program of study that combines anthropology and zoology in order to examine the relationship between animals and humans. Includes instruction in animal behavior and communication, animal welfare, animal conservation, animal training, animal-assisted therapy techniques, biology, ethics, and education.
Climate Science: A program that focuses on the scientific study of the climate system of the earth with emphasis on the physical, dynamical, and chemical interactions of the atmosphere, ocean, land, ice, and the terrestrial and marine biospheres. Includes instruction in biology, chemistry, climate analysis, climate change adaptation/mitigation, climate policy, ecology, energy development, environmental impacts, marine chemistry, meteorology, and oceanography.
Earth Systems Science: A program that focuses on the interaction of the Earth’s oceanographic, atmospheric, and terrestrial systems. Includes instruction in biogeochemistry, climate dynamics, geographical information science (GIS), geophysics, hydrology, landscape ecology, meteorology, and satellite remote sensing analysis.
Economics and Computer Science: A program of study that focuses on the theoretical and practical connections between computer science and economics. Includes instruction in data analysis, database design, data mining, computer algorithms, economics, econometrics, computer programing, mathematics, and statistics.
Environmental Geosciences: A program that focuses on the scientific study of the environmental implications of geological processes and human activities on Earth. Includes instruction in environmental/natural resource management, geographic information systems (GIS), geology, hydrology, regulatory agency compliance, hazard identification and mitigation, environmental law, environmental policy, and sustainability studies.
Geobiology: A program that focuses on the scientific study of how living things interact with geological systems. Includes instruction in evolution of Earth systems, geochemistry, geology, geomicrobiology, marine chemistry, paleobiology, paleoecology, paleontology, and petrology.
Geography and Environmental Studies: A program that focuses on interactions between people and the natural and built environments. Includes instruction in climate science, sustainability, environmental science and policy, research methods, geographic information systems (GIS), human geography, physical geography, remote sensing, and public policy.
Mathematical Economics: A program that focuses on the application of mathematical methods to the development of economic theory, models, and quantitative analysis. Includes instruction in data analysis, applied business economics, calculus, econometrics, linear algebra, microeconomic theory, probability, and statistical methods.
Mathematics and Atmospheric/Oceanic Science: A program that focuses on the application of mathematics to atmospheric and oceanic problems. Includes instruction in chemistry, physics, atmospheric/ocean dynamics, climatology, weather simulation, climate modeling, mathematics, oceanography, and atmospheric science.
Data Science, General: A program that focuses on the analysis of large-scale data sources from the interdisciplinary perspectives of applied statistics, computer science, data storage, data representation, data modeling, mathematics, and statistics. Includes instruction in computer algorithms, computer programming, data management, data mining, information policy, information retrieval, mathematical modeling, quantitative analysis, statistics, trend spotting, and visual analytics.
Data Analytics, General: A program that prepares individuals to apply data science to generate insights from data and identify and predict trends. Includes instruction in computer databases, computer programming, inference, machine learning, optimization, probability and stochastic models, statistics, strategy, uncertainty quantification, and visual analytics.
Business Analytics: A program that prepares individuals to apply data science to solve business challenges. Includes instruction in machine learning, optimization methods, computer algorithms, probability and stochastic models, information economics, logistics, strategy, consumer behavior, marketing, and visual analytics.
Data Visualization: A program that prepares individuals to organize and derive meaning from data by using visual presentation tools and techniques. Includes instruction in cognitive science, computer programming, data management, data visualization theory, graphic design, infographics, perceptual psychology, statistics, and visual design.
Financial Analytics: A program that focuses on financial big data modeling from algorithms to cloud-based data-driven financial technologies. Includes instruction in financial analytics, financial data processing, knowledge management, data visualization, effective decision communication, machine learning for finance, statistical inference and dynamic modeling on financial data, and project management.
Data Analytics, Other: Any instructional program in data analytics not listed above.
Industrial and Organizational Psychology: A program that focuses on the scientific study of individual and group behavior in institutional settings, applications to related problems of organization and industry, and that may prepare individuals to apply such principles in industrial and organizational settings. Includes instruction in group behavior theory, organizational theory, reward/punishment structures, human-machine and human-computer interactions, motivation dynamics, human stress studies, environmental and organizational influences on behavior, alienation and satisfaction, and job testing and assessment.
Social Sciences, Research Methodology and Quantitative Methods: A program that focuses on the design of research studies, measurement of variables, data analysis, and formulation of models. Includes instruction in experimental, quasi-experimental, and case study methods; historical research; participant observation; questionnaire design; sampling theory; and statistical methods.
Contact Silver Immigration if you require assistance applying for STEM OPT.