There are 85,000 H-1B visas awarded each year by UCSIS via a lottery process with 20,000 of those reserved for individuals with advanced degrees. Effective April 1, USCIS will first select H-1B petitions submitted on behalf of all beneficiaries, including those that may be eligible for the advanced degree exemption.
In the second round of the lottery, USCIS will then award 20,000 H-1B visas to individuals eligible for an advanced degree exemption that did not receive one during the first lottery. Previously, applicants with advanced degrees would compete via a lottery process for the 20,000 H-1B visas earmarked for individuals with advanced degrees. For those that failed to receive a visa through that advanced degree exemption lottery, they would be added to the general pool of applicants vying for the remaining 65,000 H-1B visas.
To read more: https://ssti.org/blog/new-h-1b-visa-rules-will-benefit-applicants-advanced-degrees-us-institutions?utm_source=SSTI+Weekly+Digest&utm_campaign=c3033f5f8b-EMAIL_CAMPAIGN_2019_02_07_04_00&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_ecf5992d4c-c3033f5f8b-220101229