The Masters of Science in Kinesiology (M.S.) degree provides the knowledge and experience to students who have a related degree (e.g. B.S. Ed. in Health and Physical Education, B.S. in exercise science, exercise physiology, health science, allied health, etc.) to enhance their professional expertise. Programs of study will be individualized but will emphasize physical activity and health/wellness topics at the advanced level, advanced level education courses for those with a background in HPE, and other areas of specialization based on their science or health background. The M.S. degree offers a thesis (oral exam) and non-thesis option (a comprehensive written and/or oral examination).
The oral exam (Thesis option): Students selecting the thesis option will present their research and defend this to their committee as their final requirement for graduation. The student must have a minimum of three members on their committee; at least one must be from the kinesiology department.
Written and/or Oral Exam (Non-thesis option): For students selecting the non-thesis option, they will have a Committee of three Faculty Members; two must be from the kinesiology department. The selection of the Committee Members will be based on matching expertise to the Emphasis of Study and the career objective of the student. Committee selection will also consider workload across the faculty. A four-hour block of time will be reserved for the written Comprehensive Exam. After completion of the exam, the Committee will deliberate about whether the responses to the exam questions satisfactorily demonstrate expertise to confer completion of the degree. Should the Committee determine it necessary, the student will be offered an oral exam which allows the student to more clearly answer questions the committee found to be insufficiently answered.
The Comprehensive Exam will focus on global knowledge in Kinesiology as well as specific questions from coursework the committee feels reflect the expertise expected of the student given his/her overall program of study. The nature of the questions will be global and open ended, with an emphasis on application, critical thinking, and problem solving. The questions will be oriented to the student’s career objective and graduate emphasis of study. The exam will be pass/fail in nature. After the exam, the Committee will debrief the candidate concerning areas of strength and weakness on the exam. In the event that a candidate fails the exam, the debriefing will clarify the area(s) of weakness that should be addressed by the student when preparing to repeat the Comprehensive Exam. If a candidate fails the exam(s)he must wait until the next semester to apply to take the Comprehensive Exam.
Typical Plan of Study: Following are two options for M.S. in Kinesiology students. Students may choose either the non-thesis or thesis option. Note that those students interested in pursuing a doctoral degree would benefit from the thesis option in preparation for their dissertation research. A research course similar to the ones listed with a lab would be appropriate as preparation to conducting a research study. Non-thesis option students do need to have a research course but will not be conducting research as part of their degree. NOTE: The specific research course depends upon the approval of the appropriate departments and scheduling of classes.