Skip to content

Graduate Student Life

While studying at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, as a graduate student, there are a number of resources available to support you in successfully completing your program. This section of the Graduate School website is devoted to helping you find those resources.

The Big Picture

If you are a new graduate student, or just looking to refresh your view of the graduate education process, the Graduate School provides an overview of the entire process. This “big picture” can help you navigate your way through your time at UT. The Graduate Catalog is also available as the definitive guide to course offerings and requirements. Each fall term, the Graduate School organizes orientations for new graduate students and new graduate teaching assistants and associates.

Pursuing Your Degree

Particularly at the beginning of your program, your coursework will comprise the bulk of your work. UT’s One Stop service can help you in registering for classes, and the Graduate School can help you understand the requirements of your program. If, during the course of your work, you find it necessary to change to a different program, learn about the process for changing your program.

Engaging in Research

While engaging in research as a graduate student at UT, you are a representative of the university. Be sure you understand the rights and obligations involved in conducting research and publishing your work. The Office of Research Engagement is more than happy to assist you in ensuring that your research is in compliance with UT policy and federal regulations. The University of Tennessee Libraries has created a toolkit for graduate students that can help with publishing your work. If you’re beginning your thesis or dissertation research, visit the Theses and Dissertations area for some things to consider.

Costs and Funding Opportunities

The reality is that graduate education can incur costs, such as tuition (which depends upon your residency classification) and research funding. The Graduate School can help you locate funding for your graduate student career through various means, such as teaching or research assistantships and fellowships, both within and without the University of Tennessee. Find out more about Costs and Funding.

Understanding Your Rights and Obligations

The Graduate School and UT have developed a set of policies that are designed for administration and to protect the rights of students and staff. Be sure to understand and abide by these policies. We hope that you do not have any difficulties that add to the challenges inherent in graduate education, but if you do, the appeals process and the complaint procedures can help you protect yourself.


Spotlight on Graduate Students

UT Grad Student Studies How Libraries Can Better Serve the Homeless - Olivia Forehand, a graduate student in the School of Information Sciences, has studied how libraries can better serve poor and homeless people in their communities. Her research, conducted last spring for the course Diversity Leadership in Information Organizations, taught by Professor Bharat Mehra, will be published this month in the International Journal of Information, Diversity, and Inclusion. Read more about Forehand's Research in Tennessee Today.
Student Shares Her Experience Working on Documentary - In the September 2018 Torchbearer, Lindsey Owen, a graduate student in the College of Communication and Information, recounts her experience working with UT’s Land Grant Films on a documentary about the 100 millionth book being given away by Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library. Owen learned not only about filmmaking but also how the program changes lives. Read her article, 100 Million Stories in Torchbearer.
Graduate Student Returns from White House Internship - Jorge Narvaez, a second-year doctoral fellow in the Energy Science and Engineering Program in the UT-Oak Ridge National Laboratory Bredesen Center for Interdisciplinary Research and Graduate Education, worked in the White House’s Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP), which advises the executive office on scientific affairs. As one of only eight interns and one of six in the policy sector, he conducted research concerning artificial intelligence, STEM education, and strategic management. Read more about Narvaez at Tennessee Today.
UT MFA Student Involves Knoxville Community in Creation, Installation of Murals - Graduate student Jillian Hirsch was reaching out to organizations in the Knoxville area for ways to bring mosaic murals to communities even before she arrived on the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, campus. A year of planning and creating later, a mosaic mural featuring Beaver Creek was unveiled at the Karns Senior Center in June. Read more about Jillian Hirsch in Tennessee Today.
PhD Candidate Brittany Coppinger Receives Awards for Research - PhD student Brittany Coppinger recently received two awards for a research project involving social and communicative complexity in avian populations. Read more about these awards and her research.

The flagship campus of the University of Tennessee System and partner in the Tennessee Transfer Pathway.

Report an accessibility barrier.Privacy.