Admission Requirements for MS and PhD Programs

To be considered for admission, a student must have at least a 3.0 grade point average (GPA) on a 4.0 scale in a completed undergraduate degree program in Animal Science or related field (or at least a 3.0 GPA each term during the junior and senior years). Prerequisite courses with grade of B or higher may be required if the applicant has insufficient background or low GPA.

Domestic students must satisfy the GPA above 3.0 requirement in any graduate work they have completed. International students that have taken graduate classes must have a 3.5 GPA for previous graduate classes: (http://graduateadmissions.utk.edu/int-adm-guide.shtml ).

In addition to the materials to be submitted to the Office of Graduate Admissions, applicants must request at least THREE Animal Science rating forms be submitted by professors familiar with the applicant’s scholastic ability and professional potential. At least two of the three individuals requested to provide a rating form must be from the applicant’s former academic institution(s). If the applicant was previously enrolled in a graduate program, one rating form must be completed by the graduate mentor (major professor).

Admission will be contingent upon evaluation of the applicant’s undergraduate or graduate grade point average, Graduate Record Examination (GRE) scores, information provided by evaluators or others, educational and career goals, relevant experience, and scores from the TOEFL or IELTS, if applicable. Final admission is contingent upon the applicant obtaining a commitment from a graduate research faculty member to serve as their graduate mentor (major professor).

Applicants to the PhD program normally should have completed a MS degree with thesis before beginning the doctoral program. In exceptional cases where a student is admitted to PhD program having onl y a BS and/or DVM but no thesis-based MS degree, they would be expected to obtain a Concurrent MS degree. 

Accelerated Five Year BS-MS Program, Animal Science Major

For qualified students, the Department of Animal Science offers an accelerated 5-year BS-MS degree program with a BS major in Animal Science and a thesis-based MS major in Animal Science. Central to this program is that a qualified student may take up to 9 hours of approved graduate courses for their senior undergraduate electives and have them count toward both the BS degree and the MS degree. Students are typically considered for conditional admission to the program during, or immediately following, their third year of undergraduate study at UT. Because the MS program requires that a student write a thesis based on original research, efforts related to developing and starting a research-based project in consultation with a graduate advisory committee (that meets MS committee requirements) is required immediately following their third year of undergraduate studies.

To be considered for conditional admission to the program:

  1. A student must be a declared Animal Science major with a minimum GPA of 3.4, must have completed at least 15 hours of credit in Animal Science, and must have completed at least 90 hours of the 120 hours of coursework required for the BS degree with a major in Animal Science.
  2. A student must provide three letters of recommendation and complete a personal interview with individuals comprising the Graduate and Undergraduate Committees in the Department of Animal Science.
  3. A student must obtain a commitment from an Animal Science graduate research faculty member to serve as their graduate mentor-advisor (i.e., major professor) and at least two other graduate research faculty members to serve on their graduate advisory committee.

Applicants are required to have completed at least 6 credit hours from the following Animal Science core courses (i.e., ANSC 320, ANSC 330, ANSC 340, ANSC 380 or their Honors counterparts). The Department may consider other relevant factors such as an applicant's work experience and level of maturity before conditionally admitting a student to the BS-MS program. Conditional admission of a student into the 5-year BS-MS program must be approved by both the Department of Animal Science and the Graduate School. Students will be typically informed of the outcome of their application before the beginning of their fourth year of undergraduate study.

Any course taken for graduate credit before satisfying all requirements for the BS degree must be approved both by the Graduate Director and by the Graduate School. These courses must be identified in advance, in consultation with the graduate advisory committee members. The form "Senior Requesting Graduate Credit" is found on the Graduate School website and must be completed, signed, and submitted to the Graduate School for approval and processing.

UT's Senior Privilege rule imposes a maximum limit of 9 hours on the number of graduate-level hours that an undergraduate student may complete before completing an undergraduate degree and being formally admitted to the Graduate School. A student that is conditionally admitted to the BS-MS program completes 9 hours of graduate credit during the student's fourth year of undergraduate study (by submitting the "Senior Requesting Graduate Credit Form" to the Graduate School), and applies those 9 hours to satisfy BS degree requirements may also apply the 9 hours towards MS degree requirements.

Conditional admission into the BS-MS program does not guarantee acceptance into either the Graduate School or the MS program. Students in the BS-MS program must apply for admission to the Graduate School and to the MS program during their fourth year of undergraduate study, following the same procedures that all other student applicants follow. A GRE score must be submitted as part of the application for admission into any graduate program in the Department of Animal Science. Students will be fully admitted to the MS program after they have been accepted both by the Graduate School and by the Animal Science MS program. Students will not be eligible for graduate assistantships until they are enrolled as graduate students in the Graduate School. 


Dr. J Lannett Edwards
Graduate Program Director
jedwards@utk.edu

 


Denice Milligan

Graduate Program Assistant
dmilligan@utk.edu