Academic Training

What is Academic Training?

J-1 international students are eligible for training that is related to the student’s field of study, called Academic Training. This can be done either before or after program completion so long as the request is approved before their DS-2019 expires. It requires the support of the academic advisor, who must fill out a recommendation form for the student.

Students may be authorized for more than one simultaneous/sequential AT experience and may work for several different employers at the same time, provided the application and approval procedures are followed by each employer and the student does not exceed the AT time limitations (see below). Academic Training can be either paid or unpaid.

What Must I do to be Eligible for Academic Training?

  • You must be maintaining valid J-1 status
  • You must be enrolled full-time and in good academic standing
  • You must find an AT experience that is directly related to the major listed on your DS-2019

Student Instructions For Completing This Form

  1. Fill out Page 1 with your information.
  2. Give Page 2 to your Academic Advisor to fill out.
  3. Obtain a letter from your prospective employer on company letterhead which includes:
    • Name of position offered
    • Name and contact information of supervisor
    • Physical address of employment
    • Number of hours per week
    • Start and end dates of employment
  4. If applying for post-completion Academic Training, you will also need to complete:
    • Page 4 – Financial certification form
    • Page 6 – Health insurance compliance form
  5. Submit the completed packet to the front desk in Laurel Hall or by email to

Academic Advisor Instructions For Completing This Form

  1. If you support the Academic Training opportunity, complete Page 2, Academic Advisor Recommendation Form, with descriptions of the following:
    • The goals and objectives of the specific Academic Training program
    • How the Academic Training relates to the student’s major field of study
    • Why the training is an integral or critical part of the academic program of the student.

Additional Information

What are the limitations to Academic Training?

  • Students in a bachelor’s or master’s degree program can be authorized for up to 18 months of AT, or the time you spent enrolled in a full course of study (whichever is shorter)
  • Students in a doctoral program can be authorized for up to 18 months of AT prior to completing the program
  • Students who have completed a doctoral program can be authorized for up to 36 months of AT for a postdoctoral position (provided they have not utilized any previous AT)
  • Students in a non-degree program (such as exchange/VIP students) can be authorized for AT that does not exceed the amount of time they spent enrolled in a full course of study
  • Academic Training can be either full-time or part-time, but both are counted as full-time toward the time limitations

How do I maintain my immigration status during Academic Training?

  • You will be in J-1 status during AT and must continue to report any changes to your physical address, email address, or name to the ISSS office within 10 days of any changes.
  • Students doing pre-completion AT can report these updates through Ramweb.
  • Students doing post-completion Academic Training must report any changes by email to
  • All students must submit an Academic Training evaluation form to ISSS before completing their Academic Training.
  • Students participating in AT are still Exchange Visitors in the U.S. and expected to continue to engage in cross-cultural activities and programs during the period of authorized AT.

What do I need to know about health insurance?

  • During Academic Training, all J-1 students must continue to maintain health insurance that complies with the Department of State regulations for themselves and any J-2 dependents.
  • Federal regulations require all J-1 Exchange Visitors and their J-2 dependents to maintain comprehensive medical insurance meeting specific minimum requirements from the start date of the J-1 program (indicated in item 3 of the DS-2019) and continuing to the end of the J-1 program.
  • Students on pre-completion AT are automatically enrolled in CSU’s student health insurance plan, which meets all of the J-1 requirements.
  • Students on post-completion Academic Training are no longer eligible to purchase the CSU student health insurance plan (unless they are enrolled in Continuous Registration during the Academic Training period) and must purchase separate coverage.
  • As per the regulations, CSU is required to terminate the SEVIS record of a J-1 exchange visitor who does not maintain the appropriate health insurance for the duration of the program, including any post-completion Academic Training.

Please see page 5 for additional information about the health insurance requirements.