There are four main definitions of a STEM program, depending upon the agency/entity that defines it:

  1. STEM for International Students OPT Extension- The STEM OPT extension is a 24-month period of temporary training that directly relates to an F-1 student's program of study in an approved STEM field. View the DHS STEM OPT Programs list.

  2. STEM for Carnegie Classification of Doctoral Degrees (used in the Basic Classification for R1/R2 designation) - The Carnegie Classification categorizes research doctoral degrees into four groups: STEM, Humanities, Social Sciences, and Other Research Doctorates. View the 2021 Carnegie Program Classification list.

  3. STEM for the NSF Survey of Graduate Students and Postdoctorates in Science and Engineering (used in the Carnegie Basic Classification for R1/R2 designation) - One of the metrics in the data model for Carnegie Classification is the number of Post Doctorates and Non-Faculty Researchers employed. View the NSF STEM programs list.

  4. STEM for the THEC Outcomes Based Funding Formula - THEC identified a list of STEM and Healthcare programs that will earn a premium in Bachelor's degrees awarded and undergraduate progressions.  This applies to undergraduates only. View the THEC Workforce Investment Focus Population programs list.