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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

MFA Student Nguyen Duc Diem Quynh Receives 2019 Art Future Prize - Nguyen Duc Diem Quynh (also known as Quynh Lam), a graduate student pursuing an MFA in Studio Art (Painting + Drawing) at the University of Tennessee, is one of 15 young and emerging artists selected for the 2019 Art Future Prize in Taiwan. Quynh was chosen for this honor from among artists in 48 countries in Asia. She was the only artist selected from Vietnam. In addition to the Art Future Prize, Quynh received the Special Jury Prize and an invitation to exhibit her work in Taipei this January. Read more about Quynh at the School of Art.
Grad Student Selected National Humanities Without Walls Fellow - Jeffrey Pannekoek, a PhD student in philosophy, was chosen to represent UT as a predoctoral fellow at a summer workshop organized by Humanities Without Walls, an association of humanities centers at 15 major research universities throughout the United States. As a predoctoral fellow, Pannekoek will spend July 15 to August 2 in Chicago at a workshop to learn about alternative career opportunities for humanities PhD graduates outside academia. Read more about Pannekoek and the workshop at Tennessee Today.
EEB PhD Student Co-Author on a Study Involving Evolution at the Extremes of the Food Chain - Samuel Borstein, a PhD candidate in the Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, is co-author on a recent study published in Nature Ecology and Evolution. This study challenges current ways of thinking about evolution in relation to where a species is positioned on the food chain. Read more about the study in Tennessee Today.
Graduate Student Uses Own Experiences, Research to Help Others - Amber Giffin graduates today with a Master of Science in educational psychology. Her goal is to improve support for sexual assault survivors and help better educate campus communities about sexual assault prevention. Read more about her work at Tennessee Today.
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.