SEAS Doctoral Fieldwork (CPT) Policy

Submit the following documents to the department’s PhD Program Administrator:
1. Employer Offer Letter
2. Advisor Letter of Support
3. F-1 CPT Request Form
4. Most Recent I-94 Form

The PhD Program Adminstrator will add a completed Registration Adjustment Form (RAF) to register the student for ENGI E8000 Doctoral Fieldwork before submitting to SEAS and ISSO. 

The Employer Offer Letter must be an official offer letter from the company (on letterhead and signed by the employer) that includes: the physical address of the workplace, start and date, detailed job description, and number of hours of work per week. Detailed requirements and a sample letter can be found on the ISSO CPT webpage

For students who have more than one advisor, e.g., two research co-advisors or a research advisor and a departmental advisor, the Advisor Letter of Support must be signed by all the advisors.  The department’s Advising Policy is here

Coursework Phase (students who have completed less than 60 points):
■ May do at most two CPTs. Students may not petition for additional Fieldwork.
■ The advisor letter of support must approve the student’s request to conduct fieldwork.

Dissertation Phase (students who have completed 60+ points):
■ May do one CPT and may petition for at most one additional CPT.  Petition approval is on an exceptional basis, and is not guaranteed.
■ The internship must be absolutely essential to the dissertation.
■ The advisor letter of support must confirm whether the fieldwork experience is essential to the completion and production of the student’s dissertation, and address and elaborate on:

  • What the student’s dissertation topic is;
  • What and how the research will be carried out;
  • Why the internship is necessary for the dissertation.   


All doctoral fieldwork requests are subject to review and may warrant additional supporting documentation. If in the event a letter of approval from the relevant Department Chair, Vice Chair or Director of Doctoral Programs is needed, the department will be contacted directly.

Last updated February 28, 2023.