Student success is at the heart of MTSU’s academic offerings. Here is a glance at a new campus-wide effort to improve the learning experience, as well as some signature programs with national reputations and name recognition.

Engaging Students from the Start

Engage logo: engage Academically. Lean Exponentially. Showcase Yourself.MT Engage, MTSU’s new curriculum improvement effort, emphasizes “academic engagement and integrative thinking and reflection” as a part of students’ learning from the moment they arrive on campus.
The curriculum initiative encourages students to:

• Engage academically
• Learn exponentially
• Showcase yourself

As a key aspect of MT Engage, students will create an ePortfolio to demonstrate knowledge, skills, and abilities gained over their college careers.

“Student involvement, student interaction, student life on the campus—those variables are among the most important when it comes to student success,” said Dr. Sidney A. McPhee, MTSU president.

MT Engage expands on the University’s highly successful Experiential Learning (EXL) program, which emphasizes hands-on activities and public service as an integral part of a student’s learning experience.

“We envision these types of courses beginning in the freshman year and going on until graduation,” said Dr. Dianna Rust, chair of the committee that selected the MT Engage theme.

Students who want to participate can discuss registering for MT Engage courses with their advisor and attend MT Engage workshops on ePortfolio development offered each semester. For more information, visit


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Better by design

Mobile robots that can move traffic safety barrels for road repairs, freeing workers from a dangerous task; surgical robots that allow doctors to perform operations through small incisions or get enhanced views of an abdominal cavities; specialized robots for space exploration: all are examples of mechatronics systems, and MTSU has initiated a Mechatronics Engineering major to meet industry demands. People trained and certified in mechatronics engineering can expect growth opportunities and higher wages.

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The sky’s the limit

MTSU is one of just five colleges or universities in the U.S. to offer Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) studies leading to a degree. Students who earn a bachelor’s in the Department of Aerospace’s new UAS Operations concentration will be a part of a growing business sector. The field is expected to produce 70,000 new jobs, starting salaries of $50,000 or more, and $13.6 billion for the U.S. economy in the next three to five years.

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Row, row, row…

Billboard recently called the Recording Industry Department at MTSU one of the nation’s five top places internationally for learning about the music industry. Hollywood Reporter also listed MTSU’s Music Business program among its “Top 25 Music Schools” for both 2014 and 2015, ranking it ahead of Belmont’s Curb College of Entertainment and Music Business.

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From flora to pharma

MTSU’s latest research partnership with China has great potential to yield significant dividends for Tennessee’s economy and cure some of the world’s worst illnesses. In concert with the Guangxi Botanical Garden of Medicinal Plants in Nanning, China, MTSU has gained exclusive access to a library of traditional Chinese medicinal (TCM) extracts, creating the opportunity to develop new medicines based on the proven healing powers of TCM. An analysis of 52 plant extracts recently produced by the garden identified 29 with promising results, including 12 with anti-cancer potential, eight with indications of anti-inflammatory properties, and one that may be useful in the treatment of diabetes.

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Reaffirming our roots

Founded in 1911 as a teacher-training school, MTSU is still one of the finest teacher preparation institutions in the Southeast. The newest doctoral program, the first of its kind in Tennessee, is the Doctor of Education in Assessment, Learning, and School Improvement.