CIP Codes and Your Program of Study

All programs of study at Montclair State have an assigned CIP code. The CIP code will determine if students qualify for STEM Extension OPT or not.

What is a CIP code?

The U.S. government has created a system to track and report fields of study at universities. This system is called the Classification of Instructional Programs (CIP). Each program of study at a university has its own CIP code.

Where can you find your program’s CIP code?

Find your CIP code on the first page of your Form I-20. Look at the Program of Study section, Major 1. The numerical code will be next to your major.

What if the academic program listed on your I-20 does not match the name of the major you applied for?

Sometimes the program description (the “name of the program”) does not match what is listed on the student’s Form I-20. For example, on Montclair’s catalog, the major is listed as “Data Science” (CIP 30.3001) but the For I-20 lists “Computational Science” (CIP 30.3001). Both have the same CIP code, which indicates to the government that the content of the program is the same, even though the “names” are different. If you have a question about the CIP code on your I-20, contact our office for more information.

What CIP codes allow for STEM Extension?

Only students with CIP codes approved by the Department of Homeland Security can apply for the STEM OPT Extension. For a list of approved CIP codes please visit DHS’s website. Note that not all our majors are STEM-eligible. Students must ensure their program is eligible for the STEM OPT Extension prior to submitting their applications for this authorization.