Graduate Program:  Doctor of Philosophy

The Department of Animal Science offer a graduate program leading to the Doctor of Philosophy with a major in Animal Science. Major areas of emphases include animal physiology (e.g., ruminant and monogastric nutrition, reproduction, stress or obesity) or health and well-being (immunology, genomics, microbiology, pre-harvest food safety, or behavior).

The Doctor of Philosophy Program

The program requires the student to write a dissertation based on original research and complete at least 24 hours of graduate
coursework at the 500- and 600-level beyond the master’s degree, plus 24 hours of ANSC 600. Coursework must include the following: 
  • A minimum of 6 hours at the 600 level.
  • A minimum of 8 hours in related courses outside of animal science (ANSC cross-listed courses may be used for this).
  • At least 1 credit hour of Teaching/Extension experiential learning.
  • At least 3 hours in statistics chosen from courses approved for use in the intercollegiate graduate statistics program (or 6 hours if student has no previous graduate level statistics coursework).
  • 1 hour of research ethics coursework if not taken for the Master of Science degree.
  • 3 hours of graduate-level multi-systems physiology coursework if not taken for the Master of Science degree (as approved by the student’s advisory committee).
  • ANSC 696  each spring term for first- and second-year students.
The remainder of coursework will be selected by the student in consultation with the major professor and committee, reflecting the student’s area of emphasis and professional objectives. A majority of coursework must be completed at the University of Tennessee.
The student and major professor select the graduate advisory committee which must be comprised of at least 5 faculty members at the rank of assistant professor or above. The major professor serves as chair, 3 members must reside within the Department of Animal Science, and one member must be from outside the Department. The major professor and at least 2 other members must be approved to direct doctoral research. The student’s advisory committee assists in the planning of course work and may require specific courses in addition to those required by the Animal Science graduate program. The graduate advisory committee also aids in formulating an appropriate research project and administers other degree requirements, including the comprehensive exam and dissertation defense.
Students are expected to choose their graduate advisory committee in their first semester, present proposed coursework and research plan to the committee before the beginning of the second semester, and present a written research project proposal to the committee no later than the fourth semester of matriculation.