STEM OPT Reporting Requirements
In order to maintain legal F-1 status, a STEM OPT student must regularly submit updates to their DSO throughout the duration of their approved STEM OPT period including changes made to the student's Form I-983 training plan.
For more information about STEM OPT Reporting Requirements review the following Study in the States sites:
STEM OPT students must submit to the DSO every six months a validation report confirming their SEVIS information is correct:
- Legal name
- Residential or mailing address
- Employer name and address
- Status of current employment
The SEVP Portal will send STEM OPT students a reminder email 30 days before any validation report is due. Validation Reports are due at
- 6 months after start of STEM OPT Extension
- 12 months after start of STEM OPT Extension
- 18 months after start of STEM OPT Extension
- 24 months after the start of STEM OPT Extension
STEM OPT students must report a change in this information, including any loss of employment, within 10 days of the change.
Each STEM OPT student must complete and submit to their DSO an annual self-evaluation, using the Form I-983, describing the progress of the training experience. Students and their employers must sign the student's self-evaluation before the student submits it to their DSO, who will include it in the student's record.
The student must ensure that the DSO receives the assessment no later than 10 days following the conclusion of the training period. The student must submit the assessments for the stated periods:
- Initial Assessment: 12 months after the STEM OPT start date, and a
- Final Assessment: 24 month after the STEM OPT start date
- OR any time during STEM OPT when employment ends.
The SEVP Portal will send STEM OPT students a reminder email 30 days before any validation report is due.
Not submitting a final evaluation is a violation of the terms of the Form I-983, “Training Plan for STEM OPT Students,” and may jeopardize the student’s nonimmigrant status.
It is not the DSO's responsibility to be proactive with material changes. It is the student's responsibility to provide changes in information to their DSO, and failure to do so would constitute a violation of the student's F-1 status.
Each STEM OPT student must report to their DSO any material changes to, or material deviations from, the student's formal training plan.
Material changes and deviations include any change or deviation that renders an employer attestation inaccurate, or renders inaccurate the information in the Form I-983 or successor form on the nature, purpose, oversight, or assessment of the student's practical training opportunity. The student and employer must ensure that the modified Form I-983 or successor form is submitted to the student's DSO at the earliest available opportunity.
Material changes or deviations from the original Form I-983 may include, but are not limited to:
- Any change in the student's employment address.
- Any change in the student's supervisor or supervisor's contact information.
- Any change of the employer’s EIN.
- Any reduction in student compensation that is not tied to a reduction in hours worked.
- Any significant decrease in hours per week that a student engages in a STEM training opportunity.
- Changes to the employer’s commitments or student’s learning objectives as documented on the Form I-983.
So long as the STEM OPT student and employer meet the regulatory requirements and the modified Form I-983 meets the specified requirements, the student’s employment authorization will not cease based on a change to the plan.
A change in employer requires the student to submit a STEM OPT Employer Update.
The SEVP Portal will allow you to:
- View details about your post-completion or STEM OPT
- Report changes to your name, address, telephone number, and employer information
- View and update data on all your employers in one place
- STEM OPT students are not be able to add a new employer or change the start date with their employer but can update other information about an employer already in the system. The Form I-983, “Training Plan for STEM OPT Students,” requires DSOs to add new employer information directly into SEVIS for STEM OPT students, because DSOs must verify the form has been completed and submitted.
All changes must be reported within 10 days of the change in the SEVP Portal.