Sports Medicine Colleges, Schools and Universities in the U.S.

Sports medicine colleges offer educational programs at multiple degree levels. Depending on a student's career goals, he or she will want to choose either a master's degree program or medical school. Both routes prepare students to work with athletes.

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Sports medicine programs require an undergraduate degree for admission. Master's degree and medical school programs, including postdoctoral study though a residency or fellowship, are available through 4-year universities.

Schools with Degrees in Sports Medicine

Listed below are just some of the schools offering training in sports medicine:

College/University Location Institution Type Programs Offered Graduate Tuition (2015-2016)*
Armstrong State University Savannah, GA 4-year, Public Master's $3,798 (In-state), $14,076 (Out-of-state)
University of Pittsburgh Pittsburgh, PA 4-year, Public Master's, Doctorate, Fellowship $21,260 (In-state), $34,944 (Out-of-state)
University of Western States Portland, OR 4-year, Private Master's $7,429
University of Utah Salt Lake City, UT 4-year, Public Master's, Doctorate, Fellowship $6,230 (In-state), $21,991 (Out-of-state)
Pennsylvania State University University Park, PA 4-year, Public Master's, Doctorate, Fellowship $19,328 (In-state), $33,142 (Out-of-state)
Michigan State University East Lansing, MI 4-year, Public Master's, Doctorate, Fellowship, Residency $16,122 (In-state), $31,674 (Out-of-state)
Ohio State University Columbus, OH 4-year, Public Doctorate, Fellowship, Residency $11,560 (In-state), $31,032 (Out-of-state)
Drexel University Philadelphia, PA 4-year, Private Doctorate, Fellowship $31,239
University of Missouri - Kansas City Kansas City, MO 4-year, Public Doctorate, Fellowship $6,213 (In-state), $16,043 (Out-of-state)

*Source: National Center for Education Statistics

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Program Selection Criteria

Consider the following when looking for a sports medicine program:

  • If a student chooses a master's degree program, consideration can be given to finding a program that offers the option of specializing in one specific aspect of sports medicine.
  • When choosing a medical school, students should consider asking about clinical rotations and opportunities to study under sports medicine physicians.
  • Students who are more interested in research will want to consider a research-focused institution with a thesis requirement, while students who are more interested in clinical practice should consider programs with a clinical focus.

Master's Degree in Sports Medicine

Students learn to evaluate current research in sports medicine and apply it to their clients' needs. Some programs allow students to develop a specialty in coaching, sports hospitality management or National Collegiate Athletic Association compliance. Programs with a thesis requirement have advisers that mentor students as they conduct original research, present their findings at conferences and possibly prepare their studies for publication. Programs may provide internship opportunities. Applicants need a bachelor's degree and GRE scores.

Doctor of Medicine (M.D.), Specialty in Sports Medicine

Most medical schools have similar curricula for the first 3-4 years, but differ in teaching style and class size. During the final two years, students complete clinical rotations in different areas of medicine. Students with an interest in sports medicine will want to apply for residencies and fellowships in sports medicine after graduating from medical school. Applicants to medical schools will need comprehensive education at the bachelor's degree level in biology, chemistry, organic chemistry and physics, along with scores on the MCAT.

Sports medicine programs are typically found at the master's and doctoral levels. Some programs focus on research, while others concentrate on clinical work.

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