Quick Facts For Faculty

This section in for UIW Faculty and Staff who work with international students, we hope you find this useful in your classroom and office.

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Quick Facts about F-1 and J-1 Students

F-1 and J-1 students have different requirements than Legal Permanent residents and other visa types. The F-1 and J-1 student visa is granted to a non-immigrant to enable them to study inside the US. Some students, such as exchange students are in the US for 1 to 2 semesters, while others are degree-seeking and may remain in the US for 4-8 years. When advising an international student in your office please keep in mind these three guidelines.

Full-time Enrollment

All F-1 and J-1 students must maintain full-time enrollment. Students must be enrolled full-time every spring and fall semester.

      • Undergraduate - 12 credits
      • Masters - 6 credits (minimum 3 per mini-term)
      • Doctoral – 6 credits

If a student is starting a new program in the summer semester, the student is also required to enroll full time for the summer semester. Otherwise, summer enrollment is optional.

Reduced Course Load Authorization:

There are few allowable reasons per federal regulation for a reduced course load, such as illness, graduation in the current semester, and completion of formal coursework for graduate and doctoral students. These reasons must be verified by an academic advisor and then approved by our office before a student is authorized to drop below full-time enrollment. If you feel a student may be eligible, please contact our office.

Work Authorization

All F-1 and J-1 students are here on “student” visas and have U.S Department of Homeland Security (DHS) restrictions on employment. Since the primary purpose in the US is academic and not employment-based, the following restrictions apply for On-Campus and Off-Campus employment.


Eligible to work on-campus with the following restrictions:

  • No more than 20 hours a week for Fall & Spring
  • No more than 30 hours a week Summer & vacation
  • Exchange Students are NOT eligible to work on- campus
  • Working more than allowable hours a week on-campus has SEVERE immigration consequences, such as deportation and denial of any future US visas.


To work off-campus students must be pre-authorized by International Student & Scholar Services and Department of Homeland Security. Working before authorization is granted or more than allowable hours a week will result in SEVERE immigration consequences.

  • Off-campus work is defined as any employment off-campus to include paid internships, unpaid internships, volunteering for a for-profit company. Students may also require work authorization for other volunteer work. Please see the International Office if the student is planning to do volunteer work or an internship.

F-1 Work Authorization.

There are two main types of Off-Campus authorization

  • CPT (Curricular Practical Training) - Apply for CPT with the International Office semester BEFORE starting the internship course.
  • OPT (Optional Practical Training) - Apply for OPT at the beginning of your last semester.

J-1 Work Authorization.

There is only one type of Off-Campus authorization.

  • AT (Academic Training). - It can be used for internships or employment after graduation. Students should apply the semester before enrolling in an internship course or the semester before graduation.

For detailed requirements, please review the Appointments and Requests page or review the International Student Employment Presentation.

Forms for Faculty

Informational Handouts