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The University of Tennessee

Center for Intelligent Systems and Machine Learning

Frequently Used Tools:

GRAMS -- Graduate Research Assistantship for Master Students

The GRAMS program, coordinated by CISML, is an assistantship program funded by the Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) and the Science Alliance (a UT Center of Excellence). The program is restricted to master students who are US citizens and who are currently enrolled in full time graduate study at the University of Tennessee.


GRAMS has three primary objectives:

  • To create a vibrant pipeline of outstanding masters level students who will complete their degrees while working to further research in science and engineering,
  • To expose UT students to the large-scale challenge problems faced by ORNL, and
  • To help offset some of the financial costs required to complete a master degree at UT
  • The program is specifically designed to allow MS students who are nearing completion of their degree requirements to conclude their studies while working at ORNL. GRAMS targets students who have completed their primary coursework toward the master degree. The assistantship program offers a competitive stipend and typically provides a tuition waver for up to 12 credit hours of thesis work, independent study, and similar work for academic credit that is conducted at the lab.

    ORNL offers numerous research areas in which GRAMS students can engage. A partial list of research offerings currently available is below:



  • Visual Analytics
  • Advanced Signal Processing with Application to Nondestructive Evaluation
  • Machine Learning/Data-Mining
  • Radio Frequency Testing
  • Statistical Techniques and Modeling
  • Physical Uncloneable Functions using Field Programmable Gate Arrays
  • Geographic Analysis
  • Click here for detailed descriptions of the MSSE/GRAMS projects above (docx file, posted 8/8/13)
  • Large-Scale Data Infrastructures
  • Microelectronic System Design (analog and mixed signal)
  • Policy Analysis (text-based inference, representation of policy, rule-languages, etc.)
  • Embedded System Design
  • Semantics (ontologies, vocabularies, knowledge representation, etc.)
  • Communication System Design
  • Natural Language Processing
  • Signal Analysis
  • Clinical Data-Exchange Standards
  • Image Processing
  • Biomedical/informatics
  • Control System Design
  • Graph Storage and Analytics
  • Sensor Platform Development
  • Large Scale Topic Modeling
  • Power Electronics Device Design
  • Information Visualization
  • Integrated Electro-Mechanical System Design

    To apply for an ORNL GRA, complete the ORNL GRAMS Student Form [Interactive PDF] and submit form to Julie Knoefel at jknoefel [at]

    If you have questions about the program or wish to discuss the program in person before applying, please contact Dr. Michael W. Berry.