The Sport Leadership Specialization Graduate Program focuses on preparing leaders in all sport related fields. Housed in the Department of Kinesiology and Health Promotion at the University of Kentucky College of Education, our goal is to help sport leadership master’s degree students develop the knowledge and skills to be more effective practitioners and researchers in the field of leadership.

Requirements for Admission

  1. A bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university with adequate preparation in health, physical education, or related fields. Deficiencies will be determined by the program faculty of the specialized area chosen by the student.
  2. GRE not required
  3. Undergraduate GPA 2.75 or higher
  4. Three letters of recommendation

Application Deadlines

The deadline to apply for the fall semester is July 15 and the spring semester deadline is December 1.



The Sport Leadership Curriculum has been updated for students entering the program in Spring 2017. All students who began the program before that date will follow the original curriculum. If you have any questions, please contact Dr. Justin Nichols (

Sport Leadership Curriculum (PDF)

The specialization in Sport Leadership in the Department of Kinesiology and Health Promotion is designed to enhance leadership and administrative skills for those who work in a variety of leadership settings. The specialization will benefit professionals who work in areas such as sport administration (scholastic and collegiate), sport management, coaching, community and youth sports, and recreation (commercial and municipal). While the emphasis allows for opportunities to take coursework in business, its primary focus is on training leaders, supervisors, and administrators who recognize the need for a wide variety of skills as applied to leadership.

The sport leadership specialization offers students the choice between the Thesis Option (24 hours of approved course work, 6 hours thesis plus oral thesis defense) and a Course Work Option (30 hours of approved course work, written exams, and an oral exam). There are 6 hours of research and statistics classes and 12 hours of core classes that are required. Beyond that, the student will choose electives in consultation with the advisor. Even though possible electives are listed for each separate emphasis, it may be permissible to take electives from any of the three areas of specialization listed under Teaching, Coaching, and Sport Leadership. Design of the program MUST be done in conjunction with the advisor. Students choosing the thesis option are required to discuss specific thesis topics and related course recommendations with their advisor. Choosing the proper courses will ensure that students have the skills needed to complete the thesis in a timely manner.


Marta Mack-Washington, Ph.D.
Justin Nichols, Ed.D.
Assistant Professor


Sport Leadership Advisory Committee