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PhD in Kinesiology (Athletic Training)

Undertake in-depth studies and original research in injury prevention, evaluation, immediate care, and rehabilitation through this Ph.D. program in kinesiology with a specialization in athletic training.

You will work with esteemed faculty in our updated classrooms and labs to complete your dissertation and prepare for research-intensive careers in university, government, or private sector settings.

This program is for students who have:

  • Completed a master’s degree in athletic training or a related area
  • Earned the athletic training certification or a related certification
  • Met requirements for licensure in Georgia


  1. Three- to four-year program for those who have completed a master’s degree
  2. Kinesiology doctoral program ranked in top 10 by the National Academy of Kinesiology
  3. Access to well-equipped research laboratories
  4. Limited number of assistantships available on a competitive basis


Overview Of Academic Demands

Through this specialization, you will undertake advanced scholarly study and research into athletic training. To earn your degree, you must demonstrate proficiency in research, breadth and soundness of scholarship, and thorough knowledge in your field to your major professor and advisory committee.

Through 30 hours of coursework, research, and a dissertation, you’ll build in-depth knowledge in your area of specialization as well as proficiency in designing and conducting research.

You’ll also engage in active research throughout the course of the program in our well-equipped athletic training lab, biomechanics lab, and sport-related concussion lab.

You will work with a three-person advisory committee to design a 30-hour course of study based on your background, interests, and career goals. All students, however, must complete the following:

  • Four hours of a research seminar
  • Two courses in statistics
  • A minimum of three hours of doctoral dissertation work

You may use courses taken as part of your master’s degree to fulfill requirements.

Common coursework topics include:

  • Advanced statistics
  • Neurological aspects of sport injuries
  • Performance-enhancing drugs in sports
  • Emergency care
  • Exercise physiology and epidemiology
  • Measurement and surveillance of physical activity
  • Biomechanics
  • Neuromuscular control

You will study with faculty who have expertise in a wide range of exercise science subject areas. Three faculty members—Julianne Schmidt , Rob Lynall , and Caroline Lisee —serve as the program’s primary student advisors.

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

This program is for students who have:

  • Completed a master’s degree in athletic training
  • Earned the athletic training certification
  • Met requirements for licensure in Georgia In some cases, candidates with only a bachelor’s degree will be admitted if they meet the following formula: undergraduate GPA x 1000 x GRE verbal + GRE quantitative = 4300.

Admission to the program is competitive and considers a number of factors. Students with strong backgrounds in athletic training and exercise science who have interests compatible with our ongoing research are given preference.

At a minimum, you must have:

  • A graduate GPA of 3.5 International students must score at least 213 on the Internet-Based Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) exam.

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.
    • If applying to a MS-thesis or Ph.D. program, ensure you describe your research interests and how your interests fit with a specific faculty member within the Department of Kinesiology.
  • A CV or resume
  • Contact information for three references

Deadline To Apply

January 10

Log Into 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

Most graduate students at UGA are not assigned to a faculty advisor until after admittance. A close working relationship with your advisor is paramount to progressing through your program of study.

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

You will gain hands-on experience in our well-equipped athletic training laboratory, as well as our many other research labs, including biomechanics labs and sport-related concussion labs.

Graduate students can also gain experience working in an accredited undergraduate athletic training program.

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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