University of Tennessee Knoxville

Office of the Provost Newsletter


The emergence of new artificial intelligence tools has generated thoughtful conversations on our campus and at colleges and universities around the country. Our campus steering committee and taskforces (pedagogy, philosophy, technology, research, and policy) have been engaged throughout the semester in reviewing the impact of the new AI tools from multiple perspectives. The policy taskforce is developing a recommendation on syllabi language, which we will share for faculty use when it is finalized.
I also want to call your attention to resources compiled by Teaching and Learning Innovation on Artificial Intelligence in the Classroom.
In addition, the Judith Anderson Herbert Writing Center in the College of Arts and Sciences has compiled information for instructors about how to manage A.I. capabilities in courses that use writing assignments.
These resources are valuable tools for all faculty seeking guidance in navigating use of AI as a learning tool while also upholding academic integrity. Our faculty steering committee and taskforces will have additional recommendations. I am deeply appreciative of their engagement on this important topic.
If you are interested in this issue, I encourage you to get involved. The pedagogy taskforce will host a session on Thursday, April 27 on Student Engagement in the Age of A.I. The session will address innovative ways that artificial intelligence can be incorporated into the classroom to foster student connection and enhance student learning.
As we gather information and resources, the campus website on emergence of AI tools in higher education will be regularly updated.
John Zomchick
Provost and Senior Vice Chancellor

News and Notes

The campus honorary degree nominating committee is accepting nominations for honorary degrees, the highest form of recognition offered by the University of Tennessee. Nominators must hold a current faculty appointment with UT. Nominations are due April 19. Information about criteria, required documentation, and a link to the nomination form are available on the honorary degree information page.
The inaugural cohort of the Faculty Mentoring Certificate program recently completed the final session of the year. Thank you to the following faculty participants for making the first year such a success: Benjamin Auerbach, Vitaly Ganusov, Beth Cooper, Kimberly Smith, Susan Groenke, Frances Harper, Jud Laughter, Stefanie Benjamin, Anna Sandelli, Nathalie Hristov, Agricola Odoi, Eva Cowell, and Becky Trout Fryxell.
Faculty are invited to attend an upcoming Vision in Action: Cultivating the Volunteer Experience session on Friday, April 21 from 2 p.m.–3:30 p.m. in room 360 of the Student Union. This presentation is focused on ways the Division of Student Success and Teaching & Learning Innovation are developing key initiatives related to the first goal of UT's Strategic Vision: Cultivating the Volunteer Experience. Participants will have the opportunity to share thoughts and ideas about student needs and future points of collaboration. Refreshments will be provided.
The Office of Research, Innovation, and Economic Development and the UT Humanities Center are hosting the third installment of the Big Hairy Grants workshop series on Tuesday, April 18 at 11:30 a.m. This session focuses on providing faculty with guidance and recommendations for tackling grant proposals. Participants will learn the do’s and don’ts of drafting applications, how to use every aspect of an application to strengthen a proposal, and how to avoid common pitfalls in artist statements.
ORIED has launched the Broader Impacts Connector, a new tool aimed at helping researchers expand the societal impact of their work. The Connector identifies resources that can be leveraged to increase the impact of research, scholarship, and creative activities. Users can filter results by broader impact category and audience. Explore the Broader Impacts Connector.
The Division of Faculty Affairs is accepting nominations for the 2023-2024 Research Development Academy (RDA) and the Leadership Development Program: LADRS and LEAPS. Deadline to apply is May 5, 2023.


In Case You Missed It (ICYMI): Achievements, recognitions, and more good news
Dawn Duke, Professor of Portuguese and Spanish, recently published her fourth book, "Mayaya Rising: Black Female Icons in Latin American and Caribbean Literature and Culture," which celebrates the work of writers who intentionally center powerful female cultural archetypes.
Tony Schmitz, professor of mechanical engineering in the Tickle College of Engineering, received the 2023 Southeastern Conference Faculty Achievement Award for UT. He has also been elected as an associate member of the International Academy for Production Engineering (CIRP).
Duygu Yıldırım, an assistant professor in the Department of History, has been awarded a prestigious ACLS Fellowship from the American Council of Learned Societies. The fellowship will provide her with research and writing support for her book project, Uncertain Knowledge: The Making of Slow Science between the Ottoman Empire and Early Modern Europe.
Dawn Coleman, an associate professor in the Department of English,  won a Franklin Research Grant of $3,000 from the American Philosophical Society to support archival research related to her book project, Margaret's Ghosts: Inventing Secular Womanhood in American Literature.
There is more good news on campus than can fit in one newsletter. If you have some good news you'd like to send us for a future monthly edition, we'd love to hear it. Send a 2-3 sentence summary and link to

Making Connections

Upcoming events where you can gather, connect with colleagues, and have fun.
Save the Date! The Spring Celebration for Faculty is scheduled for May 25, 2023 from 4–7 p.m. at Circle Park. More details will be available soon!

Leading and Learning

Upcoming professional development opportunities
  • April 19 | Teaching Reflections and Strategies for the End of the Semester
Faculty Promotion and Review Workshops
Teaching and Learning Innovation Spring Workshops

Contact Us

Office of the Provost
527 Andy Holt Tower
Knoxville, TN 37996-0184
Phone: 865-974-2445

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