Master of Science, with a Concentration in Sport and Exercise Psychology

The field of sport and exercise psychology is an interdisciplinary science that explores the relationship between various psychological factors and participation in sport and/or physical activity. The two-year program in the Department of Kinesiology and Health Promotion offers students the choice to pursue a graduate education in the field of sport and exercise psychology by either following an applied or research track. Each option integrates theory-based research and the application of key concepts associated with performance enhancement and life skill development. In this context, successful completion of this program will result in a strong understanding of the various psychosocial factors that influence sport participation and performance.

Upon admission to the program, students will be assigned a faculty advisor who will assist in course selection and planning. The exact program of study specified in an individual program plan will depend on previous coursework and/or individual goals.

 

Applied Track Curriculum

The applied curriculum aims to prepare students for professional certifications (e.g., CMPC) and careers (e.g., sport and performance consultant, coaching, master resilience trainer, strength and conditioning coach, academic advisor, etc.) in applied sport and exercise psychology. In addition to a 300 (minimum) hour supervised internship, students in the applied track will complete graduate coursework in various professional fields related to sport and exercise psychology, including counseling psychology, sport leadership, and exercise science. Students in the applied curriculum will be required to sit for written and oral comprehensive examinations.

Applied Curriculum

Students in the applied track will have the opportunity to choose from various approved internship sites and settings, allowing them to build a foundation in applied sport and exercise psychology/mental skills training. A certified consultant with the Association for Applied Sport Psychology (CMPC) will supervise all internships, preparing students for CMPC designation post-graduation.

Possible internship opportunities include:

  • Performance Psychology Consultant:
    • NCAA Division I, II, III schools
    • NAIA schools
    • Collegiate Club Sports
    • Kentucky High School Athletics Association
  • Life Skills Coordinator positions at major NCAA institutions
  • Performance enhancement specialist at a Military Performance Enhancement Center
  • Local community organizations (e.g., YMCA)
  • Behavioral Health Consultant – Student rec center/Wellness Program
  • Performance Enhancement Specialist at major sports facilities (e.g., IMG Academies)
  • Local coaching workshops
  • Local marathons or athletic events

 

Research Track Curriculum

The research curriculum is recommended for students who intend to continue their education at the doctoral level and/or pursue a career in academia. Students in the research track are encouraged to register for an upper-level research and statistics course and will complete a master’s thesis on an original topic related to the psychological aspects of sport and/or physical activity. Students following the research curriculum will be required to sit for an oral defense of their thesis project. In some cases, students in the research track may pursue limited applied experiences (e.g., co-consulting, shadowing, etc.) at the discretion of the program faculty.

Research Curriculum

Students entering the research track will complete an empirically-based thesis project that will allow students to further their knowledge in a research topic that interests them. Each thesis is expected to explore an original research idea to be submitted for conference presentation, publication in an empirical journal, and/or lead to future dissertation research topics

 

Admissions Criteria
  • An undergraduate degree in a field closely related to sport and exercise psychology (e.g., psychology, exercise science, health and/or wellness, health sciences, etc.).
  • A minimum cumulative undergraduate GPA of 2.75 (on 4.0 scale)
  • Minimum GRE scores of: 146 verbal; 146 quantitative; 2.75 analytical.
  • Personal interview (for those invited)

Required documents to include with application

  • Official undergraduate transcipts in a sealed envelope, mailed directly to:
    Sport and Exercise Psychology Graduate Program
    Seaton Building, Room 110
    Lexington, KY, 40506-0219
  • A current CV or professional resume.
  • Three letters of recommendation. At least two must be from a person with direct knowledge of applicants academic capabilities (e.g., instructor, research supervisor, advisor, etc.).
  • A professional goal statement describing the applicants professional background, motivations for seeking a graduate education in SEP, why the current program and desired “track” are an ideal fit, and career/research aspirations.

Apply Here

 

Program Faculty
Marc Cormier, Ph.D., CMPC
Assistant Professor, KHP Department
Program Director
marc.cormier@nulluky.edu
859-257-2952
Jeff Reese, Ph.D.
Professor, EDP Department
jeff.reese@nulluky.edu

859-257-4909

 

Current Students – 2017
Alycia Carrillo


Hometown:

Salinas, California

Previous Education:
B. S. in Human Performance, 2011 – University of Southern California
M.S. in Sports Medicine, 2015 – Lund University (Sweden)

Current Degree:
M.S. Sport and Exercise Psychology, Applied Track

Funding:
Graduate Assistantship in Strength & Conditioning – UK Athletics

About Me:
I originally came to UK in the summer of 2016 as a Volunteer Intern Strength & Conditioning Coach, after holding the same position at both Clemson University (2016) and San Jose State University (2015). I am currently a Graduate Assistant Strength & Conditioning Coach, working directly with Women’s Tennis, Women’s Cheer, and Diving. I also assist with all Olympic sports, predominantly Women’s Basketball, Women’s Volleyball, and Baseball. As a former Division 1 athlete (track and field – University of Southern California), I appreciate the importance of psychology as it relates to performance. Ultimately, I hope to use what I learn from this program to get the most out of my athletes in the strength & conditioning domain.

Raegan Geldart


Hometown:
Severna Park, Maryland

Previous Education:
B.S. in Sport and Exercise Psychology, 2017 – West Virginia University

Current Degree:
M.S. Sport and Exercise Psychology, Applied Track


Funding:

Graduate Assistantship – UK Club Sports

About Me:
I am second-year graduate student, originally from Severna Park, Maryland. I completed my undergraduate degree in Sport and Exercise Psychology, with a minor in Counseling, from West Virginia University. Here at UK, I am the co-chair for the upcoming Midwest Sport and Exercise Psychology Symposium, as well as the Club Sports Graduate Assistant. I serve as a Student Delegate for the Association of Applied Sport Psychology. Following the completion of the applied track in SEP, I hope to become a Certified Mental Performance Consultant. Long-term, I aspire to help the U.S. Military with mental skills training. Outside of academia, I enjoy attending sporting events and playing intramural sports.

Trevor Tierney


Hometown:
Louisville, Kentucky

Previous Education:
B.S. in Psychology, 2017 – University of Kentucky

Current Degree:
M.S. Sport and Exercise Psychology, Research Track

Funding:
Center for Academic and Tutorial Services (CATS) – UK Athletics

About Me:
I am a second-year graduate student, originally from Louisville, Kentucky. I am currently on the research track, where my thesis will examine emotional regulation techniques with a focus on mindfulness. It is my goal to use the wealth of knowledge and experience gained from this program as a springboard into a doctoral program in either Sport Psychology or Counseling Psychology. I also plan to pursue CMPC designation, post-graduation, in an attempt to better prepare myself to help athletes of all ages and skill levels, with a desired emphasis in combat sports. Outside the program, passions of mine include practicing Brazilian jiu jitsu, listening to interesting podcasts, cooking, and spending time with family and friends.

Current Students – 2018
Ninah Bertrand
Hometown:
Lansing, ILPrevious Education:
B.S. in Kinesiology, 2018 – University of KentuckyCurrent Degree:
M.S. Sport and Exercise Psychology, Applied TrackFunding:
Teaching Assistantship – Department of Kinesiology & Health Promotion

About Me:
I am a first-year graduate student, originally from a south suburb outside Chicago, Lansing, IL. I completed my undergraduate degree in Kinesiology with a minor in psychology, from the University of Kentucky. After completing this master’s program I intend to take the required exams and become a Certified Mental Performance Consultant and enter the field. In the future, I would like to work on a sports medicine team and possibly open a practice as well. I am currently a teaching assistant for an undergraduate sport psychology course, and the KHP department’s main office. Outside of academics, I enjoy spending quality time with my favorite people, playing intramural basketball, and other forms of physical activity.

Kaite Conway

Hometown:
Louisville, KY

Previous Education:
B.S. in Kinesiology, minor in Psychology, 2018 – University of Kentucky

Current Degree:
M.S. Sport and Exercise Psychology, Applied Track

Funding:
Teaching Assistantship – Department of Kinesiology & Health Promotion

About Me:
I am a first-year graduate student from Louisville, Kentucky.  Although I grew up in Cardinal Town, I have been a lifelong UK fan and attended UK to earn an undergraduate degree in Kinesiology with a minor in Psychology.  I plan to further continue my education beyond a master’s degree by pursuing a Ph.D. in Applied Sport Psychology and becoming a Certified Mental Performance Consultant.  Beyond the classroom, I enjoy exploring neighboring cities and planning outings among friends, for I am a foodie, adrenaline junkie, and a seeker of unique experiences.

Natalie Jehn

Hometown:
Taylor Mill, KY

Previous Education:
B.A. in Psychology, 2018 – University of Kentucky

Current Degree:
M.S. Sport and Exercise Psychology, Applied Track

Funding:
Teaching Assistantship – Social Psychology with Dr. Richard Smith

About Me:
I have had a love for sports ever since I was born and began watching my older brother pitch on the baseball mound. During my undergraduate education in psychology at UK, I was inspired to find a way to combine both sports & psychology.  I felt like a door was opening up for me to work towards my dreams here in the Bluegrass state when Dr. Cormier developed an M.S. program in Sport and Exercise Psychology. Growing up I played almost every sport possible, but the primary ones were soccer, basketball, cross country, and track. I later worked at Great American Ballpark, home of the Cincinnati Reds. While at UK, I’ve been a part of the Club Running Team in which we compete regionally and nationally in both cross country and track through an organization called NIRCA (National Intercollegiate Running Club Association). I am also an active member of the UK Catholic Newman Center/Holy Spirit Parish. During me free time I enjoy playing guitar & singing, working out, hiking with friends & family, tossing frisbee, going to quaint coffee shops, and having game nights with friends. I am excited to continue living the journey that God has planned for me!

Grant Lanning

Hometown:
Midland, MI

Previous Education:
B.S. in Physical Education, 1994 – Western Michigan University

Current Degree:
M.S. Sport and Exercise Psychology, Applied Track

About Me:
I’ve always been interested in physical activity and athletics and played many sports growing up (e.g., baseball, basketball, and football). Following my undergraduate degree, I accepted a position as a high school P.E. and Health teacher while continuing work as a fitness coach. Years later, I ventured out on my own to open my own personal training studio, Fast Track Fitness, Inc.. While I am passionate about helping people of all needs to become healthier as they embark on their personal training journey, I also believe that training the mind should receive equal emphasis to achieve total wellness.

Victoria Lomaka

Hometown:
Twinsburg, OH

Previous Education:
B.S. in Sport & Exercise Psychology, 2018 – West Virginia University

Current Degree:
M.S. Sport and Exercise Psychology, Applied Track

Funding:
Center for Academic and Tutorial Services (CATS) – UK Athletics

About Me:
I am a first-year graduate student, originally from Twinsburg, Ohio. I completed my undergraduate degree in Sport and Exercise Psychology, with a minor in Counseling, from West Virginia University. I am currently an Academic Services Assistant in the Center for Academic and Tutorial Services (CATS), working with the academic advisors and student athletes from baseball, volleyball, softball, and men’s golf. Within the applied track of this program, I hope to utilize the various experiences and coursework with a goal to work as an academic advisor in a collegiate athletics department. Outside of the classroom I enjoy going to sporting events, reading a good book, and spending time with family and friends.

Kristen Sanford

Hometown:
Louisville, KY

Previous Education:
B.A. in Psychology, 2015 – University of Kentucky
M.S. in Sport Leadership, 2017 – University of Kentucky

Current Degree:
M.S. Sport and Exercise Psychology, Applied Track

About Me:
I am a first-year graduate student, originally from Louisville, KY. I completed my undergraduate degree in Psychology with a minor in Communications. After graduating, I pursued a Master’s in Kinesiology and Health Promotions with focus in Sport Leadership. While studying in the program, I worked as a graduate assistant in Operations followed by a full-time position as the Director of Volleyball Operations. Upon completion of the SEP program, I plan to pursue qualification as a Certified Mental Performance Consultant. Outside of my studies, I enjoy music, yoga, and quality time with my people.

Travis Scheadler

Hometown:
Goshen, OH

Previous Education:
B.A. in Psychology, 2018 – Wilmington College (OH)

Current Degree:
M.S. Sport and Exercise Psychology, Research Track

Funding:
Teaching Assistantship – Department of Transformative Learning

About Me:
I am a first-year graduate student from Goshen, Ohio. I am interested in happiness, altruism, and peace-building in sport. While pursuing my Masters, I am collaborating with the Center for Sport, Peace, and Society at the University of Tennessee to help develop my interests, passion, and knowledge in the field of Sport for Peace. I also serve as Co-Chair of Best Practices in Research, a student initiative of the Association for Applied Sport Psychology. After completion of my Masters, I plan to pursue a doctoral degree in a related field. Outside of academia, I enjoy lifting weights, running, playing and watching sports, and spending time with family and friends.

Abby Snowden

Hometown:
Grayslake, IL

Previous Education:
B.A. in Psychology, 2018 – University of Kentucky

Current Degree:
M.S. Sport and Exercise Psychology, Applied Track

Funding:
Teaching Assistantship – Department of Psychology

About Me:
I am originally from a small suburb of northern Chicago and moved to Lexington in 2014 to pursue a bachelor’s degree in psychology. During my time at UK, I was lucky enough to participate in the Disney College Program twice. I got the chance to work in both Fantasyland attractions in the Magic Kingdom, and Rock ‘N’ Roller Coaster at Hollywood Studios. I also worked as an Arts & Sciences ambassador for three years and was also a member of psychology scholars. In addition to pursuing the applied track of the SEP program, I work with the psychology department as a teaching assistant for PSY 215 (experimental psychology). When I’m not in classes, I enjoy attending baseball games, traveling, and trying new food.

Shannon White

Hometown:
Mississauga, Ontario, Canada

Previous Education:
B.S. in Recreation Management, 2015 – Acadia University (Canada)
M.S. in Community and Leadership Development, 2018 – University of Kentucky

Current Degree:
M.S. Sport and Exercise Psychology, Research Track

Funding:
Teaching Assistantship – College of Agriculture, Food, and Environment

About Me:
Originally coming to UK as a student in the Community and Leadership Development Department, I found a passion for research and teaching. More specifically, my research focused on the use of adapted sport for Veterans who have experienced an injury while serving, and I hope to expand that further during my time in the SEP program to encompass more to do with Traumatic Brain Injuries. Following the completion of this program, I hope to pursue my PhD in Sport and Exercise Psychology, ultimately landing a faculty position that will allow me to continue to teach and conduct research.