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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

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.
Emily Simmons, Master of Music Graduate, Soloist at the Spring 2018 Graduate Hooding Ceremony - Every semester, we find outstanding vocalists to perform the national anthem and to lead the audience in the UT Alma Mater. For the Spring 2018 Graduate Hooding Ceremony, we are honored to have Emily Simmons as our soloist. She will be performing at the ceremony on May 10 at Thompson Boling Arena. Emily Simmons, soprano, graduates in the Spring of 2018 with a Master of Music in vocal performance. During her time with UT Opera Theatre she has been featured in roles such as Countess Almaviva (Le nozze di Figaro), Abigail Williams (The Crucible), and Fortuna/Giunone (Il ritorno d'Ulisse in Patria). Emily is proud to be a Vol!
Graduate Students Chisa Huffman and Carrie Lingerfelt Featured in #UTellOurStory - Meet Sadie Hutson, interim assistant dean and associate professor of nursing, and graduate nursing students Chisa Huffman and Carrie Lingerfelt. #UTellOurStory is a series of short videos that showcase some of the exciting, life-changing, and powerful moments that happen in UT classrooms. View this video on YouTube.
Nursing PhD Candidate Came to UT Because of Faculty Mentors - Sandy Cobb first became interested in seizure disorders while working as an EEG technician at the University of North Carolina Medical Center. Now Cobb, earning her PhD in nursing, was in the first group of students to receive the Tennessee Fellowship for Graduate Excellence. The premier program provided top-dollar fellowships that helped UT recruit some of the nation’s best graduate students in all fields. Read more about Sandy and her work at Tennessee Today.
Big Orange Power: Spencer Cochran Working on Third Engineering Degree - For Knoxville native Spencer Cochran, staying at UT for graduate school was a given. Cochran began his journey at UT after graduating from Halls High School in 2011. During his undergraduate years, a few things pushed him toward an electrical engineering degree. Cochran finished his master’s degree in power electronics this past fall while starting work toward his doctorate in power electronics. Read more about Spencer and his work at Tennessee Today.

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