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The State of Research

UTA reached a series of milestones in 2018, 2019, and 2020

UT Arlington is a research university that inspires bold solutions with global impact. In 2019, it launched an update to its Strategic Plan 2025 that is focused on a framework of six fundamental guiding aspirations, including one dedicated to Research and Creative Works.

The goals of this aspiration are to:

  • Serve as the model 21st-century research university for the state of Texas and around the world
  • Increase student participation in research and experiential learning
  • Enhance faculty and staff recognition nationally and internationally
  • Improve reputation and rankings in teaching, research, and creative activities
  • Grow and develop impactful research centers, partnerships, and scholarly collaborations
  • Strengthen the culture of innovation across campus

To that end, the University has expanded its research pillars to include Cultural Understanding and Social Transformations, along with Health and the Human Condition, Sustainable Communities, Global Environmental Impact, and Data-Driven Discovery. Together, these important topics will help guide the work of our faculty and students over the next five years as they conduct innovative research aimed at improving the quality of life for all.

By the numbers

19 fellows in the National Academy of Inventors, the most in Texas and tied for the 5th-most of all universities

4 out of the 38 National Academy of Inventors’ class of 2020 Senior Members come from UTA, the most of any university in the nation

228 Ph.D.s were conferred in the 2019-20 academic year, a growth rate of 78% over the past decade

13 graduate programs were named “Best Graduate Schools” in U.S. News & World Report’s 2021 rankings

UTA Total Research Expenditures by fiscal year, as reported in the THECB RD Expenditure Survey

2016: $84.6 M

2017: $94 M

2018: $99.5 M

2019: $116.9 M

2020: $125.6 M

Restricted and Federal Research Expenditures for fiscal years 2018, 2019, and 2020

Restricted Research Expenditures (14.5% increase)

2018: $45.4 M

2019: $46 M

2020: $52 M

Federal Research Expenditures (28.8% increase)

2018: $34.4 M

2019: $40.5 M

2020: $44.3 M

Amount of Awards (32.8% increase)

2018: $76.5 M

2019: $93.8 M

2020: $101.6 M

External Research Expenditures by Source fiscal year 2020

State: 5.7%

Federal: 68.6%

Gift: 16.2%

Corporate & Local: 9.5%

Federal Research Expenditures by Source fiscal year 2020

National Science Foundation: 19.4%

Dept. of Defense: 19.1%

Dept. of Commerce: 21.6%

Dept. of Health and Human Services: 21%

Dept. of Energy: 6.3%

Other Federal: 12.6%

Texas Tier One Milestones

UTA has successfully achieved and maintained the following criteria required to qualify for National Research University Fund (NRUF) support and Texas Tier One status:

  • At least $45 million in restricted research expenditures
  • At least 200 Ph.D.s awarded annually, something UTA has achieved for five consecutive years
  • High-quality faculty; UTA currently has seven members of the National Academies of Science, Engineering, and Medicine
  • Membership in the Phi Kappa Phi Honor Society
  • Designation as an emerging research university in the Coordinating Board’s accountability system
  • A freshman class with high academic achievement, a criterion for which UTA consistently ranks the highest among universities in the running for NRUF designation

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