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KNOXVILLE — Richard Tucker, director of research and analysis for Northwestern University’s Graduate School, has been named assistant vice provost and director of the Office of Institutional Research and Assessment (OIRA) at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville.

Tucker will report to UT Provost Robert Holub and will lead efforts to collect, analyze and disseminate essential information about the university’s environment and performance. OIRA produces a variety of data-based reports on topics such as retention and diversity to support institutional management, strategic planning and policy formation.

Tucker will join UT later this month. At Northwestern, he has been responsible for directing the design and implementation of an evidence-based approach to inform the Graduate School’s decision-making and planning. Tucker also led Northwestern’s participation in the National Research Council’s assessment of U.S. research doctoral programs. Prior to his current post, he was associate director of assessment and evaluation for the Tennessee Higher Education Commission (THEC).

“Richard Tucker is well-qualified for the position and comes with a wealth of ideas on how we can improve our data collection, analysis and presentation. His experience working with THEC should serve him extremely well in preparing external reports for higher education authorities in the state,” Holub said.

Tucker earned a master’s degree in political science at Pennsylvania State University. He spent several years at Harvard as a Harvard-MIT Data Center Research Fellow and was associated with the Weatherhead Center for International Affairs and the Olin Institute for Strategic Studies. Tucker also served as a faculty member at Vanderbilt University and taught several courses in international relations, quantitative methods and formal modeling.

Tucker replaces Don Scroggins, who had been the director since 1996 and passed away in April 2006.


Elizabeth Davis, UT media relations, (865) 974-5179,