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Faculty Research Assistants Funding (FRAF)

The Office of Undergraduate Research offers Faculty Research Assistants Funding (FRAF) to support faculty members interested in hiring undergraduates to assist their research endeavors. This funding supports faculty and student engagement and collaboration while pursuing original research. Selected faculty will receive funding to compensate the student researcher(s) at a recommended $15 per hour of project time (hourly amount to be determined by the department and compensated in accordance with UT policy) and a stipend for materials.  

Funding Schedule 

  • Academic Year – First Day of Fall Semester to Last Day of Spring Semester  
  • Fall Semester – First Day of Fall Semester to Last Day of Fall Semester 
  • Spring Semester – First Day of Spring Semester to Last Day of Spring Semester  
  • Summer – Mid-May to Mid-August 

Funding Amount 

  • Academic Year – $1500 + $250 for materials, per semester 
  • Fall Semester – $1500 + $250 for materials 
  • Spring Semester – $1500 + $250 for materials 
  • Summer – $1500 + $250 for materials 

Application Links

Applications for Summer 2024 to Spring 2025 closed on March 7, 2024.

Application Schedule

Next Application Period: February 2025  

  • Summer 2025: Due on TBD
  • Academic Year 2025-26: Due on TBD
  • Fall 2025: Due on TBD
  • Spring 2026: Due on TBD

Award notifications are made 3-4 weeks after submissions close. 

Application Review Process 

  • All applications will be reviewed by faculty and staff committees made up of the Undergraduate Research Advisory Council (URAC) members.
  • Priority will be given to new proposals during each submission period, though previously awarded proposals will still be considered, especially when new students are selected.  
  • Priority will be given to faculty who plan to hire a student who previously has not held a research position. 
  • This is a competitive process. Please invest time in the application. Please note that some Academic Year FRAF requests will be funded in full, some may not be funded, and some may be changed to a single semester grant as funds allow.


Faculty Applicant Requirements:

  • Only one project abstract per faculty member is considered.
  • Faculty can only hold one FRAF at a time.
  • Faculty members who apply for the program must have a teaching or research appointment (either full or part-time). 

Faculty Recipient Requirements:

  • Faculty members must complete the Office of Undergraduate Research & Fellowships acceptance form. 
  • Faculty members must follow all steps laid out in the FRAF Hiring Guide.
  • Upon acceptance of FRAF funding, Faculty must list the position in Handshake for a minimum of one week.
    • Handshake is the UT undergraduate employment database.
    • For additional help posting the position to Handshake you can use our guide or the CCDAE-recommends a help document offered by Handshake on how to post a job.
    • If you need further assistance posting to handshake, contact  
  • Work must be completed within the allowable time frame for the grant period.
  • FRAF recipients agree to judge research projects at the Exhibition of Undergraduate Research and Creative Achievement (EUReCA) held each spring. 
  • FRAF recipients agree to serve as a reviewer for a PURSUIT article.   

Student Employee Requirements:

  • Students hired by FRAF faculty must be enrolled full-time as undergraduate students at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. 
  • Students hired by FRAF faculty agree to present their research within a year of completing the FRAF position at either the annual fall research exhibition, Discovery Day, or the annual spring research event, EUReCA.
  • Students hired by FRAF faculty agree to complete a pre- and post-survey.
  • Students hired by FRAF faculty agree to attend an URF workshop and an URF advising session. 
  • Students hired under an Academic Year FRAF (both Fall and Spring Semester) must present at Spring EUReCA during that Year.  

Payment Details  

The current funding model requires that once the acceptance form is received by the Office of Undergraduate Research & Fellowships, faculty must submit their student’s information to DSS following the instructions on pages 6 & 7 of the FRAF Hiring Guide. The student will be paid through URF payroll, on an hourly basis, to be administered by DSS in partnership with your department. Should the funding mechanisms change, faculty will be alerted via email.


View Recent FRAF Recipients