Online Masters Degree in Sports Management: Program Summary

Learn about online sports management degrees with sports management courses. Get an overview of the program types, requirements and course descriptions available for this field.

Essential Information

There are a variety of online master's degree programs available in sports management. Students take courses online, but they may need to attend summer residency programs, where they complete hands-on components of the program, such as sports training. Students can also gain practical experience through internships completed close to where they live. These internships and on-campus visits allow students to coach and participate in a variety of sports. The experiences can help them practice the real-world skills needed to take on jobs in coaching, scouting, sports marketing, athletic training or team management. Applicants to these programs must have previous work experience in the sports industry.

Master of Science in Sports Management

Through this online master's degree program, students learn management techniques for a wide variety of sports. The program also provides business training. Students acquire skills in business management, marketing, leadership and sports law. In order to be eligible for the master's program, students must have at least a bachelor's degree and practical experience working in the sports industry. Typically, this program is science intensive, but students take a variety of business, management and leadership courses as well.

Information and Requirements

An online Master of Science in Sports Management program takes between one and two years to complete. Students log on using the school's Web-based applications to watch and listen to lectures, complete assignments and interact with other students.

Students interested in completing this program must have a working computer and reliable Internet access. Other computer software programs, such as Microsoft Office Suites, Adobe Flash and Acrobat Reader, may be required. A Webcam and media player is also essential.

List of Common Sports Management Courses

Online courses are completed in one of two ways, either with regular due dates and assigned class periods, or in a flexible manner conducive to a student's own schedule. Students take only courses related specifically to the major.

Promotion and Sales in Sports

Students study ways to raise money to develop and promote sports. They learn methods used to generate funds, make a profit and keep the sports team running effectively.

Society and Sports

This course familiarizes students with the role sports play in contemporary society. Students examine cultural factors influencing participation in sports and addresses ethical issues.

Sports Law

This course introduces students to legal concepts in sports and issues associated with sports, sports management and the sports industry. These include an overview of the relationship between the athlete and the agent and issues faced by professional sports teams or athletes, including media scandals and sports-related injuries.

Media and Sport Marketing

Students completing this course analyze current sports marketing problems and learn to develop marketing plans that could help sports teams raise money to purchase necessary equipment. They also learn ways to find sponsors and evaluate the cost of different aspects of managing a sports team, including paying athletes, coaches and promoting sponsors.

Coaching Sports Methodology

Through this course, students learn how to coach sports and teach students sports skills. Students develop a coaching philosophy based on contemporary trends in sports and learn how to adapt it to meet possible future trends.

Career Information

Upon completion of a master's degree in sports management, students can find careers as coaches, athletic trainers, sports marketing directors, scouts, sports team managers or athletic directors. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (, the median annual salary for coaches and scouts was $31,000. The BLS predicts that job growth in this field will be 6% from 2014 to 2024, which is about as fast as the national average.

Online master's degree programs in sports management offer an overview of the business, legal and administrative aspects of the sports world while also giving students the chance to develop their own coaching philosophies based on athletic training principles. Course content is provided in a virtual classroom environment where students can watch lectures, submit assignments and discuss sports-related issues with fellow students.

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