Graduate Degree

Kinesiology - Master of Science

Kinesiology - Master of Science
Plan Code:
Program Level:
Award Type:
Master of Science
College of Education

Excerpt from the official Academic Programs Catalog:

Listed below are the approved requirements for the program from the official Academic Programs Catalog.
Students must consult their advisors to learn which specific requirements apply to their degree programs.

College of Education

Department of Kinesiology

Graduate Study
Kinesiology - Master of Science

Graduate study in kinesiology provides opportunities for students to specialize in areas leading to the Master of Science and Doctor of Philosophy degrees. The programs are designed to prepare individuals for professional positions as educators, researchers, and consultants in a variety of sports, health, and educational contexts. Collaborative course work, laboratory and field experiences, clinical placements, and research are available with other departments and schools both at Michigan State University and at other universities, as well as with various community agencies.

The primary objective of the master's degree program in kinesiology is to help students to acquire a breadth of knowledge grounded in theory, to gain expertise in one or more areas of specialization, and to develop competence in methods of inquiry.  The program follows the guidelines that were adopted by the National Association for Sport and Physical Education (NASPE).

A range of relevant courses and experiences can be incorporated into the student's program to satisfy individual needs and interests.

Five major areas of study within the discipline of kinesiology are available to master's  students:
    Cognitive and Motor Neuroscience
    Exercise Physiology
    Psychosocial Aspects of Sport and Physical Activity
    Strength and Conditioning
    Student Athlete Development

For each student, one of these five areas of study is designated as the concentration.

In addition to meeting the requirements of the university and of the College of Education, students must meet the requirements specified below.


To be considered for admission into the master’s program, applicants must have completed an undergraduate degree. Factors considered in admissions decisions include (a) clarity of applicant’s professional goals; (b) relationship between the program and the applicant’s goals; c) previous academic experience and performance as indicated by transcripts from previous degrees including a competitive cumulative grade-point average of 3.0 or higher on a 4.0 scale; (d) Test of English as a Foreign Language for international students; (e) three letters of recommendation.

Requirements for the Master of Science Degree in Kinesiology

Breadth requirement. Students who have not completed an undergraduate degree in kinesiology (or similarly named program such as physical education or exercise science) must complete a minimum of 6 credits of Kinesiology courses representing at least two of nine different disciplinary areas (adapted physical activity, athletic training, biomechanics, coaching, exercise physiology, growth and motor development, psychosocial aspects of sport and physical activity, sport administration, student athlete development) outside of the student’s major area/concentration, as approved by the student’s guidance committee. Credits earned in 200 or 300 level courses may be used to fulfill the breadth requirement, but will not count toward the master’s degree.

The program is available under both Plan A (with thesis) and Plan B (without thesis).  Students must complete 30 credits and meet the requirements specified below:

Requirements for Plan A and Plan B (18 credits):
1. Required core course (3 credits):
KIN 871 Research Methods in Kinesiology 3
2. A minimum of 9 credits of kinesiology graduate level courses in the student’s concentration as approved by the student’s guidance committee.
Additional Requirements for Plan A (12 credits):
1. Both of the following courses (9 credits):
One additional research methods course at the 400–900 level approved by the student's guidance committee  (3 credits).
KIN 899 Master's Thesis Research 6
2. Additional credits in courses approved by the student's guidance committee (3 credits).  
Additional Requirements for Plan B (12 credits):
1. Additional credits in courses approved by the student's guidance committee (12 credits). One of the following courses is recommended:
KIN 893 Internship in Kinesiology 4 to 6
KIN 897 Project in Kinesiology 4
2. Final certifying examination.
Students who complete Kinesiology 893 or 897 are required to pass an oral certifying examination.
Students who do not complete Kinesiology 893 or 897 are required to pass a written certifying examination.