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MS in Kinesiology (Strength, Conditioning, and Fitness)

Explore the scientific basis of strength and motor skill development as well as conditioning and fitness capabilities at all stages of life while earning your master’s in kinesiology through our strength, conditioning, and fitness emphasis.

Through coursework, practicums, and internships, you will learn the knowledge and skills you need to earn certification by the National Strength and Conditioning Association, the National Academy of Sports Medicine, or the American College of Sports Medicine—a requirement of completing the program.


  1. Culminates in certification by one of three national organizations
  2. Coursework involves academic and hands-on work; no thesis required
  3. Two-year program for those with an exercise science background
  4. Access to well-equipped research laboratories and a working fitness center


This flexible program accommodates a variety of interests and career goals, and also prepares you to pass the national certification exams. These encompass:

  • Foundational knowledge, skills, and competencies in exercise science
  • Physical fitness assessment and development
  • Strength, conditioning, and fitness program design
  • Nutrition

Through your coursework and practicum experiences, you will learn to:

  • Administer appropriate tests and assessments
  • Design and implement safe and effective training and conditioning programs
  • Provide guidance regarding nutrition and injury prevention

You will work with strength and conditioning or fitness programs, whether through the university, a professional team, high school, or private club, as part of required practicum or internship experiences.

As part of the program’s required 36 credit hours, all students are required to take coursework in:

  • Research methods
  • Practicum and/or internship (in the United States or through study abroad)
  • Seminar in strength, conditioning, and fitness

Note that our students, prior to admission, must have a bachelor’s degree in a kinesiology-related field and have taken two semesters of anatomy / physiology, biomechanics, and exercise physiology.

You will work with your faculty advisor to select electives based on your career goals and the competencies required for certification. Elective areas include:

  • Motor learning and control, and exercise and sport psychology for those interested in sport skill development and improvement of athletic performance
  • Neuromuscular exercise physiology for those interested primarily in strength development
  • Motor development, therapeutic exercise, and instructional strategies for those interested in working with children and people with special needs
  • Metabolic and cardiorespiratory aspects of exercise, clinical exercise physiology, advanced exercise prescription of individuals with chronic diseases, and exercise epidemiology for those interested in personal training and improving health and fitness

Successful completion of any of the following certification exams while enrolled as a student will exempt you from a final oral exam.

  • National Strength and Conditioning Association, as a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist or Certified Personal Trainer
  • National Academy of Sports Medicine, as a Certified Personal Trainer
  • American College of Sports Medicine, as a Certified Personal Trainer, or Certified Health-Fitness Specialist

We recommend that you do not take these certification exams prior to admission.

Our faculty have expertise in a range of subjects, with faculty members who serve as advisors to students in the exercise physiology emphasis:

How to Apply

The Graduate School handles admission for all graduate programs at the University of Georgia, including those in the College of Education. The Graduate School website contains important details about the application process, orientation, and many other useful links to guide you through the process of attending UGA at the graduate level.

Start A Graduate School Application

The program is designed for students who have a bachelor’s degree in athletic training, exercise science, kinesiology, or physical education. You are also required to have taken undergraduate coursework in anatomy and physiology.

Admission to the program is competitive and considers a number of factors. At a minimum, you must have a recommended GPA of 3.0. The GRE is not a requirement for admission to the M.S. non-thesis program specializing in Strength, Conditioning, and Fitness.

International students should score at least 80 on the Internet-Based Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) exam, with at least 20 on the speaking and writing sections.

Prospective Graduate Student Application Checklist

The following should be uploaded to the Graduate School’s application:

  • Unofficial transcripts from each institution of higher education attended
  • Statement of Purpose
    • Statement of Purpose should summarize your career goals and how the degree program would help you attain those identified goals.
  • A CV or resume
  • Contact information for three references

Deadline to Apply

March 1

Login to Existing Application

Additional Resources

Please use our online form if you have any questions for the department. Please be as specific as possible so that we may quickly assist you.

Faculty and Advisors

The College’s programs are taught by dedicated faculty who are experts in a range of areas and are passionate about helping students succeed both in their programs and professionally.

Meet the Faculty

A close working relationship with your advisor is key as you progress through your program of study. Please note that most graduate students at UGA are not assigned to a faculty advisor until after admittance.

Tuition and Financial Aid

Almost all in-state students begin their studies at UGA paying limited tuition or fees. Please note that these amounts are subject to change and are meant to give prospective students an idea of the costs associated with a degree at the University of Georgia College of Education.

Students may qualify for a variety of assistantships, scholarships, and other financial awards to help offset the cost of tuition, housing, and other expenses.

Tuition Rates   Browse Financial Aid

Student Life

Work with UGA Athletic Association strength and conditioning coaches in football and Olympic sports, and gain experience from other professionals in the field through internships and practicums.

Take classes from faculty members who are respected as leaders in their field. Our faculty members believe in team science, which allows you to participate in research projects across many labs and disciplines. Also, you may participate in research funded by grants from organizations such as the National Institutes of Health, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

See for yourself how much UGA College of Education has to offer! Schedule a tour of campus to learn more about the UGA student experience.

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