A masters in physical education and coaching degree combines elements of education, curriculum design, injury prevention, and physical activity to teach how to effectively create curriculum and apply coaching principles.
Physical education teaching and coaching master’s degrees strive to teach a complete understanding of the current research and theories in the fields of:
These, plus other topics, help you understand the principles of each and how you can apply them to your career in the classroom and as a coach in various sports.
Did You Know?
In 2015, there were 2,021 master’s degrees in physical education teaching and coaching awarded.
Some of the common admissions requirements for physical education master’s degree programs are:
Many programs ask that you have a bachelor’s degree from a similar or related subject, such as kinesiology. In addition, some schools look for applicants who have earned their bachelor’s degree with a 3.0 GPA or higher. Other schools may not be as strict in their admissions requirements.
Another requirement of some schools is that you have an interview with a professor in the department either in person or on the phone. These differences are why it’s important you check with a variety of schools before applying.
Usually, physical education master’s degrees come in two different types of degrees:
In addition, there are usually slight variations in the names of the degrees offered in the field, which include:
While these programs have a similar overall structure and share common curriculum, each program may focus on a different aspect of the field. For instance, sport science and human performance programs usually focus more on physiology. On the other hand, education programs focus more on the different aspects of instruction design and creating lesson plans.
Some schools offer a master’s in physical education with different tracks depending on whether or not you are a licensed and practicing teacher for elementary and secondary teaching positions.
For instance, schools that offer an initial teaching certification as part of the coursework for the master’s degree, usually have more courses and assignments that focus on curriculum design and include student teaching to prepare you for and to meet your state’s certification requirements.
Some of the common courses while earning your master’s degree in physical education include:
Every program has a unique design, especially when it comes to the variations in degrees mentioned above.
For instance, some programs customize your coursework depending on your educational and work experiences.
This is especially true for programs that offer an initial teaching certification, which are usually designed for students with a bachelor’s degree in an area other than physical education who want to pursue careers as an elementary or high school teacher.
Some of the common graduation requirements for a masters in physical education and coaching degree include:
As mentioned, those programs that offer initial teaching certification also include student teaching assignments to meet your specific state’s certification. This usually includes a certain number of hours a course that reviews what you’ve learned, challenges you’ve faced, and minor assignments.
Many masters in physical education and coaching degree programs also require that you complete a capstone or portfolio project, which usually includes samples of exemplary work that reflect your ability to plan and implement dynamic physical education programs.
Physical education provides children and teens an opportunity for physical activity, as well as lessons on the skills and knowledge to establish and sustain an active lifestyle.
As Americans continue to battle obesity, physical education may be one of the contributing factors to help children understand the benefits of a healthy lifestyle, different ways to remain active, and the negative effects of a sedentary life.
Obesity in America
According to new data, nearly 40% of American adults were obese in 2015 and 2016 and 7.7% were severely obese. This is a sharp increase from 2007 and 2008, when 33.7% of American adults were obese and 5.7% were severely obese.
When pursuing a masters in physical education and coaching degree, the key concepts you’ll study are similar to other subjects in education, simply with a physical education tilt.
For instance, some of the most important topics while earning your degree include:
Programs also focus on the specific benefits of physical activity for children, which include:
Therefore, your coursework, research, and portfolios will consist of applying current theories in the field in order to effectively teach students the benefits of physical activity, but also life lessons that they can apply to other classes and other aspects of their life.
Coaching education is the process of teaching ways for coaches, especially those at the elementary and secondary school levels, how to effectively:
Usually, courses while earning your physical education master’s degree focus on different elements of coaching. Some programs may offer concentrations in coaching, while others may offer more courses in the elements of coaching in specific sports.
Some of the key topics you’ll study while pursuing a master’s degree in coaching education, while similar to a physical education degree, are tailored more towards effectively guiding athletes to achieve their goals as individuals and as part of a team.
Many programs focus on teaching the eight domains of coaching responsibility from SHAPE America, which are:
These standards, while developed by SHAPE America, is recognized by the National Committee for Accreditation of Coaching Education (NCACE), which is the premier authority on coaching education in the United States.
Usually, there are two learning formats available for you to pursue your masters in physical education and coaching degree:
The formats share many similarities and are academically equivalent. Mainly, the differences include how you access course materials, communicate with professors and classmates, and how you submit assignments.
In addition, many programs take two years for you to earn your degree as a full-time student, whether you choose to pursue your degree online or on-campus, though it takes part-time students longer to earn the degree.
Did You Know?
The odds of high school football players to go pro is 1 in 6,000. For baseball, it is 1 in 4,000 and in basketball it is 1 in 10,000.
The National Association for Sport and Physical Education (NASPE) is the largest of the five professional organizations within the American Alliance for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance, which was recently renamed as SHAPE America.
This nonprofit membership association strives to enhance the knowledge, improve professional practice, and support high quality physical education.
With more than 15,000 members, NASPE offers an array of informational conferences, valuable resources, and grants and awards to members, who include:
Some of the careers you can pursue after earning a master’s in physical education and coaching degree, and their 2016 median annual salary according the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), are:
Keep in mind that many of the positions above only require a bachelor’s degree. However, earning a master’s may set you apart from other candidates and may qualify you for leadership positions.
In addition, some states require that high school and elementary school teachers earn a master’s degree after earning a teacher certification and obtaining a job.vi
Specific certification requirements vary from state to state, however, all states require that teachers in public schools be licensed or certified in the specific grade level that they will teach. Usually, the requirements include:
In addition to initial licensure, teachers are generally required to complete annual professional development classes to keep their license or certification.vii
Looking to jumpstart your career by learning how to teach physical education and coaching? Find the perfect masters in physical education and coaching degree program for you!
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[i] bls.gov/ooh/entertainment-and-sports/coaches-and-scouts.htm#tab-2 [ii] bls.gov/ooh/community-and-social-service/health-educators.htm#tab-5 [iii] bls.gov/ooh/entertainment-and-sports/coaches-and-scouts.htm#tab-5 [iv] bls.gov/ooh/education-training-and-library/high-school-teachers.htm#tab-5 [v] bls.gov/ooh/education-training-and-library/kindergarten-and-elementary-school-teachers.htm#tab-5 [vi] bls.gov/ooh/education-training-and-library/high-school-teachers.htm#tab-4 [vii] bls.gov/ooh/education-training-and-library/kindergarten-and-elementary-school-teachers.htm#tab-4