A Doctor of Philosophy degree with a major in Entomology, Plant Pathology and Nematology is offered in the Department of Entomology, Plant Pathology and Nematology (EPPN). Concentrations include:

  • Biodiversityand Ecosystem Resilience
  • Bioinformatics, Genomics, and Molecular Interactions
  • Organismal Biology and Ecology
  • Sustainable Disease and Integrated Pest Management


Submit application, fee, official transcripts, scores from the general portion of the Graduate Record Examination, three letters of reference (or three Graduate Rating Forms), and a detailed statement of professional goals and reasons for applying to Entomology and Plant Pathology directly to the Office of Graduate Admissions. In the statement letter and application, the concentration of interest and preferred major professor must be indicated.



The student and the major professor will select a minimum of three additional faculty from the University of Tennessee, who hold the rank of assistant professor or above, to serve on the student's doctoral committee. The major professor and two committee members must be approved to direct doctoral research by the Graduate Council. At least one member of the committee must be from another department. The doctoral committee must be formalized by the end of the second semester of graduate study.

Submission of an approved program of study by the end of the second semester of graduate study is required. A candidate for the doctoral degree must complete a minimum of 24 hours of graduate course work numbered 503 or higher beyond the master's degree. Candidates not having a master's degree must complete a minimum of 48 hours of graduate coursework beyond the baccalaureate degree, 24 hours of which must be numbered 503 or higher. A minimum of 12 of the 24 hours, or 30 of the 48 hours, must be graded A-F. At least 9 hours of the student's course work must be from outside the Entomology and Plant Pathology curriculum, and a minimum of 6 hours of courses numbered 601 or higher must be taken at the University of Tennessee, excluding EPP 603. In addition, 24 hours of course credit in EPP 600 Doctoral Research and Dissertation are required.

Satisfactory preparation of a written dissertation proposal to the student's committee is required. The dissertation proposal must be completed during the first two semesters of graduate study and before enrollment in EPP 600. Both written and oral sections of the comprehensive examination must be passed. Candidates will be tested on their knowledge of their proposed dissertation and related fields. Satisfactory preparation of a written dissertation and an oral defense to the student's doctoral committee are required. Presentation of two departmental seminars (2 hours of EPP 640), which includes an exit seminar, is required.


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