A change in a program’s Classification of Instructional Programs (CIP) Code can have major, long‐lasting implications for financial aid, international students, IPEDS reporting, census, funding, and other programs and reports. As such, any change in CIP code will be carefully vetted before being approved or denied.

Note that CIP codes are not changed just to qualify a program for a STEM designated CIP. Changes to CIP codes will only be made when it is clear that changes to a program’s curriculum or updated documentation of a program’s curriculum warrants a change to a different CIP code.

CIP code changes will only be implemented in the Fall term of each academic year. If the change is approved that will qualify a major program for a STEM designated CIP, in most cases this will apply to recent international graduates of the major who are in the federally sponsored optional practical training (OPT) program.


The following procedure must be followed to request a change to an existing program’s CIP code:

  1. A department wishing to change the CIP code of its major(s) should complete the CIP Change Request Form and attach the form to the program’s CourseLeaf page, along with any supporting documentation. The request must include a letterhead statement from the dean in support of the change.
  2. A designee from the Office of the Provost will consult with the Registrar’s Office and the Office of Institutional Research in reviewing the request. If that review results in a consensus that the change is warranted, the change can be approved for implementation in the Fall of the next academic year.
  3. These offices may consult with Information Services, International Student and Scholar Services, and Financial Aid before determining if the CIP code change will be approved.
  4. Decisions made through this process are final. Additional requests to change a CIP code for a major will only be considered if there are documented changes to the curriculum.

CIP Code Change Request Form