Master of Science in Kinesiology

Ranked by Niche as the top Kinesiology department in Washington state and the Pacific Northwest, the Kinesiology program at PLU brings a tradition of excellence into the Master of Science degree.

The program combines a rigorous academic experience with real-world, relevant and impactful applications designed to intentionally address critical gaps in Kinesiology training and practice.

Unique features of the program include a commitment to diversity and inclusion, along with intentional mentorship and leadership development opportunities.

Through coursework, mentoring support, and an applied project, M.S. candidates develop the knowledge and skills they need to become effective evidence-based practitioners who can enhance their own career while positively impacting those they serve.

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Program Goals

Highlights of our program include:

  • Flexible Program – may be completed in as few as 14 months, or over the course of 26 months. Classes occur in the evenings and are a mix of traditional and hybrid in design.
  • Theory to Practice Focus – coursework focuses on building an evidence-based practice through rigorous coursework applied to real world situations. All students complete an applied project as part of the program.
  • Mentorship – all students are assigned a faculty mentor who also serves as lead advisor for the applied project.
  • Inclusive – two required courses examine issues of diversity, justice and inclusion in order to inform how we do our work and how we can best serve a diverse population.
  • Career Enhancing – designed to serve high growth professions and to enhance the skill set of novice and experienced practitioners in exercise, sport, performance and health related careers.

Two Concentrations Available

The program of study for the Applied Sport Psychology concentration focuses on integrating theory, research and application related to factors such as motivation, communication, feedback, attribution and leadership that impact experiences and performance in sport and physical activity. The concentration is designed to prepare students to serve as performance consultants in a wide variety of settings including athletic programs at all levels, physical activity related organizations and businesses, and branches of the U.S. military. Athletic coaches, health-and-fitness teachers and others interested in maximizing human performance are also a good fit for this focus area. A Master’s degree is required to become a Certified Mental Performance Consultant through the Association for Applied Sport Psychology.

The Applied Exercise Science concentration blends theoretical, applied and research training into a dynamic program focused on preparing practitioners who can effectively bridge the theory-to-practice gap and provide evidence-based, inclusive practices in the field. Courses in this concentration focus on the design and implementation of individual and group exercise programs. Physiological adaptations to acute and chronic training, functional anatomy, exercise testing and prescription, and applications to diverse populations are areas of emphasis within the program. The Applied Exercise Science degree supports the needs of those wishing to pursue specific credentials such as a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist (NSCA), Certified Exercise Physiologist (ACSM), and Clinical Exercise Physiologist (ACSM).

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