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Admissions for International Students

The University welcomes applications for admission from all countries and encourages students to examine and compare the many educational opportunities available at the University of Tennessee. If you are an applicant from a country other than the United States, there are a few requirements that you should be aware of, with respect to deadlines, admission requirements, English-language proficiency, and costs.

Application Deadlines

Knowing the deadlines for applying to a program at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, is critical for the success of your application. As with domestic applicants, it is imperative that you check with the program to which you are applying, to know their internal deadlines. If a program has deadlines that are earlier than those listed below, those deadlines take priority. 

All international applicants intending to enroll with VISA types F and J must follow the deadlines below. International applicants intending to enroll with other VISA types may be eligible to apply after the deadlines noted below and should contact the Office of Graduate Admissions for more information.

Term Deadline File Completion Deadline
Fall February 1 May 15
Spring June 15 October 1
Summer October 15 February 15

There are two deadlines for each term. The first deadline is when the initial application must be submitted online, provided the department has no earlier deadline. By the file completion deadline, admission must be granted and copies of passport, financial documentation and degree confirmations must be received.

Admission Requirements

For admission to a graduate program, an international student must have an equivalent 4-year bachelor’s degree. Individuals with degrees from foreign institutions must have earned a minimum of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale on all undergraduate work and a minimum of 3.3 on a 4.0 scale on all graduate work. US degree holders must have earned a minimum 2.7 out of a possible 4.0 GPA or a minimum of 3.0 during the senior year of undergraduate study and a minimum of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale on all graduate work.

English Language Requirement

Applicants whose native language is not English are required to take and pass the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or the International English Language Testing System (IELTS). Passing marks are 550, 80, and 6.5 for paper-based, internet-based (iBT) TOEFL, and IELTS respectively. Applicants may be eligible for English Proficiency Conditional Admission. Applicants who have received a degree from an accredited US institution in the past two years are exempt from the TOEFL or IELTS requirement.

In order to be admitted to the Graduate School, official scores must be received directly from the appropriate testing service. When taking either test, you will be given an opportunity to request that your scores be sent to the institutions to which you are applying.

In order for TOEFL scores to be sent to The University of Tennessee, you’ll just need to provide the score reporting code for TOEFL, which is 1843. For IELTS, you will need to provide the mailing address for the Office of Graduate Admissions. If you have already taken either test, you can request that your scores be sent by TOEFL or IELTS to UT, in the manner described. However, the scores must not be older than two years from the requested date of entry. If your scores are older than two years, you will need to retake either the TOEFL or the IELTS.


Before an I-20/DS-2019 can be issued for an admitted student, documented availability of sufficient funds for the first 12 months of studies must be submitted to the Center for International Education (CIE). Please visit the CIE website for the most current estimate of expenses.

For more information on funding opportunities at the university and beyond, visit our Costs and Funding pages.

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