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Physical Education Strand

Considering a Ph.D. in physical education? The Ph.D. in Education Science at the University of Kentucky can be tailored to your interests.

Choose an Education Science Ph.D. program:

  • Physical Education (on-campus)
  • Physical Education (fully online)

Contact a faculty member who shares your potential research interests. Our bios provide a brief introduction. You are encouraged to initiate one-on-one conversations with our faculty to discuss research interests and potential dissertation areas.

Students are admitted into our program through a mentor-based admission process, under the direct supervision of a specific faculty member. This link can occur during the application process, but we encourage you to identify the faculty member with whom you wish to work prior to applying to the program.

Your advisor and committee will help you structure your Ph.D. program. Our program typically takes between 3-5 years, including your dissertation.


Ph.D. in Education Science – Physical Education Strand

Faculty (Physical Education Strand)

Aaron Beighle

Heather Erwin

In the Education Science Ph.D. Physical Education Strand, you will:

  • participate in guided research projects designed to prepare you for conducting your own research;
    conduct independent research as you develop scientific expertise;
  • gain teaching experience at the university level, preparing bachelor’s and master’s students for careers in physical education and health teaching;
  • write and publish research in high-quality journals;
  • collaborate with faculty on research and service projects; and
  • network with physical education teacher educators from across the country and around the world.

With a Ph.D. in Education Science Physical Education Strand, your future career options could include:

  • Teaching and research in higher education
  • Physical education teacher (rank advancement)
  • Intramural positions
  • Athletic director
  • YMCA
  • Park districts

Funding Opportunities
Teaching assistantships are available to help fund your doctoral experience. Students can also explore university and college fellowship/scholarship opportunities.

Doctoral Handbook