(Major Code: 08375) (SIMS Code: 556523)
The School of Exercise and Nutritional Sciences offers graduate study leading to the Master of Science degree in athletic training. The is the entry degree to the profession degree and is a CAATE accredited professional master’s degree program. The program leads students to a career in athletic training and eligibility to sit for the Board of Certification athletic training examination. Certified athletic trainers are responsible for the management, prevention, and rehabilitation of athletic and physically active injuries. The athletic training program is comprised of two components of study-an academic component and a clinical component. The academic component encompasses a holistic and integrative approach to education that is based upon evidence-based practice principles that optimize patient outcomes. The clinical education component is an intensive, hands-on clerkship that provides students with the opportunity to apply psychomotor skills in a traditional athletic environment under the direct supervision of a certified athletic trainer. Students are given the opportunity to practice what they learn in a variety of clinical education settings. Due to the required supervision of the clinical education component, a limited number of spaces are available for students in the professional program per year. Therefore, the application process is competitive and based upon a variety of criteria outlined under “Requirements for Admission.”
The program is a cohort model program beginning in late May of each year. The program is delivered over two calendar years. Students enter as a cohort during the summer session and matriculate through sequenced didactic and clinical courses over the subsequent two years.
Requirements for Admission to the Master of Science in Athletic Training
All students must satisfy the general requirements for admission to the university with classified graduate standing as described in Part Two of this bulletin. In addition, a student applying for admission to the graduate program in athletic training must meet the following requirements.
An undergraduate degree earned at an institution accredited by a regional accrediting association. A kinesiology or exercise science degree is recommended.
Completion of the prerequisites or equivalent coursework to include biomechanics, exercise physiology with a laboratory, fundamentals of nutrition, general, abnormal, or developmental psychology; human anatomy with a laboratory and physiology, introduction to athletic training with a laboratory, introductory or general chemistry, introductory or general physics, introductory or general statistics, and introductory weight training. Additional recommended prerequisites include courses in applied or clinical kinesiology, medical terminology, and research methods.
Classes can be in progress at the time of application but must be completed prior to the start of the program.
Prerequisite coursework completed with a “C” or better. Grades of C- or lower will not be accepted for prerequisite completion.
A grade point average (GPA) of at least 3.0 in the last 60 units of coursework.
Students must possess demonstrated evidence of exposure to the field and an appreciation of the breadth, depth, and scope of practice. This can be accomplished through either volunteer or paid work experience in an athletic training setting. Verification of at least 100 total hours of observation under a certified athletic trainer in two or more settings (e.g., university/college, high school, and/or clinic) within two years of the application date.
Students are required to have current CPR as a health care provider through the American Red Cross or as a professional rescuer through the American Red Cross. In addition, students must have first aid certification at the time of application, and are expected to maintain current certifications in both CPR and first aid throughout the time of enrollment in the program.
All students upon admission to the athletic training professional program must have medical clearance by a physician, nurse practitioner, or physician assistant for the following technical standards of abilities and expectations:
- The mental capacity to assimilate, analyze, synthesize, integrate concepts and problem solve to formulate assessment and therapeutic judgments and to be able to distinguish deviations from the norm.
- Sufficient postural and neuromuscular control, sensory function, and coordination to perform CPR, primary and secondary surveys, emergency transport and transfers, appropriate physical examinations, and manual therapeutic exercise procedures; including the safe and efficient use of equipment and materials during the assessment and treatment of patients.
- The ability to communicate effectively and sensitively with patients and colleagues, including individuals from different cultural and social backgrounds; this includes, but is not limited to, the ability to establish rapport with patients and communicate judgments and treatment information effectively. Students must be able to understand and speak the English language at a level consistent with the competent professional practice.
- The ability to write effectively as it relates to the discipline.
Admission to the Degree Curriculum
The following admissions materials must be completed and submitted electronically via the ATCAS website by the application deadlines noted on the admissions website.
- Applicant observation form;
- Curriculum vitae or resume;
- Prerequisite course checklist;
- Professional essay of 400-500 words including the student’s professional goals and reasons for selecting athletic training as a career and an understanding of the challenges facing the athletic training profession and willingness to work with diverse clients in a variety of athletic training settings;
- Program disclosure form;
- Supplemental application form;
- Technical standards for admission document;
- Three references (at least one academic and one clinical) who will be invited to complete a recommendation for the applicant electronically;
- Video (1-3 minutes) explaining the student’s desire to be a certified athletic trainer and interest in the program;
Students will be admitted only in the first summer semester.
Advancement to Candidacy
All students must satisfy the general requirements for advancement to candidacy, as described in Requirements for Master’s Degrees .