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University of Tennessee Board of Trustees Approves Guaranteed Admissions Standards at All UT Undergraduate Campuses

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Seal of the University of Tennessee

The University of Tennessee Board of Trustees held a special meeting of the Education, Research and Service Committee followed by a meeting of the full board today to discuss a guaranteed admissions standards proposal that would impact all UT undergraduate campuses.

The approved proposal means all UT undergraduate campuses would guarantee first-year admission to all Tennessee high school students who meet any of the following eligibility criteria:*

  • Finish in the top 10% of their high school’s graduating class; or
  • Achieve a 4.0 or higher cumulative GPA.

Additionally, UT campuses in Martin, Pulaski, and Chattanooga would add a third criteria:

  • Achieve a 3.2 or cumulative higher GPA and have an ACT composite score of 23 or higher (or an SAT score of 1130-1150 or higher).

“We want Tennessee high school students and their families to know how they can be guaranteed admission to the UT campus of their choice,” UT System President Randy Boyd said. “Identifying these standards allows us to make earlier admissions offers for more Tennessee students, and it allows them to start planning for their college experience with more certainty.”

The UT System joins public institutions in at least a dozen other states, including Arizona, Florida and Texas, that offer guaranteed admissions to eligible students. This change will apply to all undergraduate campuses and go into effect for the Fall 2024 admissions cycle. Results of the initiative will be reviewed annually with the Board of Trustees and adjustment may be made in future years based on outcomes and effectiveness tied to the University’s mission and goals.

“We want to keep our state’s best and brightest in Tennessee,” Boyd said. “By offering automatic admission, prospective students will know earlier in the college selection process that there is a place for them at their state’s top public university system.”

In 2022, Tennessee’s public high schools graduated 64,580 students. Using this total as a baseline, UT’s proposed admission policy would make upwards of 6,400 prospective students automatically eligible for admission to the university in 2024. During that same year, 15,939 (27.7%) of Tennessee’s high school graduates had an ACT composite score of 23 or higher.

The University of Tennessee System is comprised of campuses at Knoxville, Chattanooga, Pulaski and Martin; the Health Science Center at Memphis; and the statewide Institute of Agriculture and Institute for Public Service.

The UT System has a presence in each of Tennessee’s 95 counties. Through the combined force of education, research and outreach, the University serves students, business and industry, schools, governments, organizations and residents statewide.


  • All applicants are required to submit ACT/SAT test scores, regardless of class rank or GPA.
  • Guaranteed admission means an offer of admission to the University of Tennessee campus to which the applicant has applied (subject to satisfaction of the applicable eligibility requirements), but such offer does not guaranteed acceptance into any particular college, school, department, major or program. Students must meet campus application deadlines for guaranteed admission.
  • Class rank and GPA will be determined based on an applicant’s 6th semester transcript (i.e., following the completion of their junior year). · UT Knoxville calculates and utilizes a weighted Core GPA based on a student’s grades in 16 core academic subjects. Other UT campuses may choose to use other measures, including a student’s cumulative high school GPA.



Melissa Tindell
505 Summer Place, UT Tower #1236, Knoxville, TN 37902

Natalie Keener
505 Summer Place, UT Tower #1241A, Knoxville, TN 37902

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Category: Announcements