Graduate students in the Tennessee Cooperative Fishery Research Unit (TN CFRU) earn Master of Science degrees through the Department of Biology. Annual stipends for research assistantships are competitive; tuition fees are waived.
All graduate students must conduct master's research projects, in addition to course work chosen in consultation with an advisory committee. Students in the TN CFRU are supported by research assistantships. Most students assist each other on their projects, thus increasing their research experience and opportunities. All students must deliver at least one seminar at the completion of their research, as well as complete a written thesis and successfully defend it in front of their advisory committee. Often students also help write a semi-technical final report to fulfill the requirements of their project contracts with the funding agency. Students usually are expected to give at least one talk about their research at a professional meeting. All students are encouraged to participate in professional societies and university functions.