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Master of Science

Strength and Conditioning Studies

The Master of Science in Strength and Conditioning Studies is designed to provide graduate level instruction in the theory and science of strength and conditioning. The 33 hour program is designed to meet the needs of coaches, physical educators, physical therapists, athletic trainers, and others interested in the fitness profession. Upon completion of this degree, students may pursue certifications such as the Personal Trainer and Strength & Conditioning Specialist (CSCS) by the National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA). This degree is recognized by the NSCA, which recognizes fewer than 38 Graduate Studies Programs.

Unconditional Admission

Students are eligible to apply for unconditional admission to the Master of Science in Strength and Conditioning Studies if they meet the following requirements:

  1. Applicants must meet the admission requirements for Graduate College.
  2. Applicants must meet a minimum undergraduate cumulative grade point average of 2.85.
  3. Applicants must have completed either undergraduate courses in PE 4033 Exercise Physiology and PE 3663 Kinesiology/Biomechanics with grades of “B” or higher or the leveling courses PE 5013 Structural and Mechanical Kinesiology Concepts and PE 5023 Applied Physiology Concepts with grades of “B” or higher.
  4. Approval from the Program Director.

*Admission will be awarded on a competitive basis due to limited availability.

Conditional Admission

Applicants who fail to meet the above requirement will be considered for conditional admission on a case-by-case basis. Students admitted conditionally must achieve a cumulative grade point average of 3.00 at the completion of twelve (12) semester hours toward the degree with no grade lower than “C”.

Degree Requirements

  1. Thirty-three credit hours are required for completion of the Master of Science in Strength and Conditioning Studies degree.

    Required Core Courses (27 hours)

    PE 6033 Exercise Physiology
    PE 6043 Motor Learning & Control
    PE 6053 Biomechanics
    PE 6083 Research Mthods and Statistics
    SCS 6013 Measurement and Evaluation in Strength and Conditioning
    SCS 6033 Strength & Conditioning Program Design & Development
    SCS 6043 Techniques for Development of Hypertrophy, Strength & Power
    SCS 6053 Techniques for Development of Speed, Agility, Reaction Time & Endurance
    SCS 6063 Trends in Sports Nutrition & Metabolism

    Electives (3 hours)

    MATH 5173 Advanced Biostatistics
    PE 6063 Current Issues in Coaching & Athletics
    PE 6073 Exercise & Sport Behavior
    PE 6891-3 Independent Study
    SCS 6023 Scientific Foundations of Strength & Conditioning
    SCS 6083 Instructional Strategies for Strength Coaches
    SCS 6093 Exercise Science Seminar

    Culminating Experience (3 hours)

    SCS 6103 Professional Project (could be research, internship, or other approved project)

  2. A minimum of 27 semester hours of graduate course work completed in residence at Arkansas Tech University.
  3. A cumulative grade point average of a 3.00 or better must be achieved in all graduate work attempted at Arkansas Tech University, with a maximum of six (6) hours of "C" grades. A student receiving more than six (6) hours of "C" or grades lower than "C" should refer to the section of the catalog on Academic Probation and Dismissal.
  4. Completion of all degree requirements within six (6) years from the time of unconditional or conditional admission into the program.

Degree Works

Degree Works is a software tool utilized by Arkansas Tech University designed to detail academic progression. It allows both students and advisors to monitor course progress towards degree completion and clearly indicates which course requirements have been met as well as how courses transfer into a program. Transfer courses must be approved through the use of a substitution/waiver form available via the Registrar for progress to display correctly within Degree Works. 

Degree Works will display course progression based on the current program of study, but a "what-if" scenario can be generated for any program to see how progression looks with the courses currently completed and in progress. Note that if you have applied to and been admitted to a graduate program while still finishing your undergraduate program, Degree Works will show your new program of study in the graduate program and you would have to generate a "what-if" query to see your undergraduate degree progress.

Application for Graduation

In addition to satisfying all degree requirements, a candidate for a degree must file an Application for Graduation online or at the Graduate College.  Students must apply for graduation upon completion of fifteen (15) graduate credit hours.

Special Conditions of Graduate Credit

Graduate Credit Taken Prior to Admission to Arkansas Tech University

A maximum of nine (9) semester hours of graduate credit with a grade point average of "B" or better may be transferred from an accredited graduate school if deemed appropriate to the graduate program by the head of the student's major department and the Graduate College Dean. Students must send a written request to the head of their major department to petition an acceptance of the transfer credit prior to requesting admission to candidacy to the graduate program. Graduate credit earned six (6) years prior to the completion date of all degree requirements may not be applied toward the degree without the approval of the appropriate program director and the Graduate College Dean. Credits earned by correspondence courses or for remedial purposes will not apply toward the graduate degree. No undergraduate course may be repeated for graduate credit.

Graduate Credit Taken After Admission to Arkansas Tech University

If after admission to graduate study, a student wishes to take a course at another institution to count toward degree requirements at Arkansas Tech University, the student must, in advance of enrollment, obtain written approval from the program director and the Graduate College Dean.