Completing the I-983 for STEM OPT for Students.

Overview of Form I-983

This guide provides the instructions for students who need to complete the form I-983 as part of their approval for a STEM OPT extension request. This form is completed jointly by the student and the employer, and sent to the Designated School Official (DSO) at the University of Tennessee for review and retention.

IMPORTANT NOTE: It is possible to apply for an extension based on a degree you earned at another school. For example, you earned a STEM bachelor’s degree at another school and completed a non-STEM masters at the University of Tennessee. If this is the case, you need to meet with your immigration advisor and make sure you understand the process. You can find your advisor using the guide at The process will be different from the instructions below.

Resources for the Form I-983

There are several external resources for the form I-983 available:

The form I-983 is available form download at

Study in the States has a resource page with helpful information at .

Step One: Complete the Student Section of the Form I-983

The initial section of the form I-983 is completed by you (the student petitioner). Study in the States provides a detailed guide on the required sections at .

Section One of the Form I-983

Student Name: This is the name as listed on your passport and I-20.

Student Email Address: This is your Vols email account.

Name of School Recommending STEM OPT: This is the University of Tennessee.

Name of School Where STEM OPT Degree Was Earned: If the basis of your STEM extension is on the degree you earned from the University of Tennessee, you will put the University of Tennessee.

SEVIS School Code of School Recommending STEM OPT (including 3-digit suffix: This is NOL214F10519000 for the University of Tennessee, Knoxville campus. You can also find this number on your form I-20 if you are on a different campus.

Designated School Official (DSO) Name and Contact Information: This is your immigration advisor. You can find who your advisor is at .

Student SEVIS ID No.: This is the SEVIS number found on your form I-20.

STEM OPT Requested Period (mm-dd-yyyy): The from date is the day after your current OPT expires. the to date is 24 months from that date.

Qualifying Major and Classification of Instructional Programs (CIP) Code: This is the six-digit code on your form I-20. You must check that it is STEM eligible by matching it to the list at

Level/Type of Qualifying Degree: List the name of the degree you are basing this request on.

Date Awarded (mm-dd-yyyy): This is the date that you received your degree.

Based on Prior Degree? This is typically checked “no.” This is only checked if you are basing the extension request on a previous degree. If this is the case, you must speak with your immigration advisor before proceeding.

Employment Authorization Number: This is the number on your Employment Authorization Document (EAD) card that you are currently using for OPT.

Form I-983 Section 2

After you have completed section 1, you must read section 2, sign, print your name, and date the attestation of compliance.

Step Two: The Employer Completes Sections 3 and 4

After you have completed Sections 1 and 2, give the form I-983 to your employer for the completion of sections 3 and 4. The person completing these sections must have signatory ability within the company. This is not always your supervisor. Employers can find additional help on completing their sections at .

Step Three: Complete the Training Plan with Your Employer

Section 5 contains the training plan necessary for your STEM OPT extension. This plan is developed by you and your employer. It is very important that you understand all parts of this plan. The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) can require proof of these goals and outcomes at any time. More information on the developing the training plan is available at .

Step Four: Final Employer Certification of the Form I-983

The final step in the completion of the form I-983 is a final certification of accuracy in Section 6 by the employer. This must be completed by someone with signatory ability in the company. See for more information.

Step Five: Submit the Form I-983 as Part of Your STEM Extension Request

Once the form has been completed, you can submit the form I-983 as part of your STEM OPT application in the iVols portal by logging with your Net ID and password. After logging in, you can find the “STEM OPT Extension Request” in the “F-1 Practical Training” section.