MS in Kinesiology (Exercise Science)

Total units required for the MS: 30, including 15 units for concentrations (see below).

Program Description

The graduate program leading to the Master of Science degree in Kinesiology is designed to expand the students' knowledge and to augment their qualifications for leadership in their chosen profession.

The objectives of the program are to increase the students' breadth and depth of knowledge relative to the discipline of Kinesiology; to provide the opportunity for students to engage in scholarly activity that includes creative and analytical thinking, interpreting, evaluating and reporting published research, designing and conducting research; and to provide a focus of study that will enhance career commitment and allow for experiences that will lead to continued self-development and growth.

Admission Requirements

For students with an undergraduate major in Kinesiology, admission to the MS program as a classified graduate student requires:

  • an overall GPA of 2.8 or 3.0 in the last 60 semester and 90 quarter units; and
  • a statistics course (e.g., STAT 1 or equivalent).
  • GRE scores;
  • a statement outlining academic and professional goals related to graduate study in Kinesiology, including a selection of 2 faculty members with whom the student would like to study;
  • a recent writing sample (e.g., research paper, creative project)
  • 3 letters of recommendation that speak specifically to academic ability.
  • passing score on the CSCS/NSCA exam (Strength and Conditioning Option students only)

Students who have deficiencies in admission requirements which can be removed by specific additional preparation may be admitted to unclassified or conditionally classified graduate status for the purpose of removing deficiencies. Coursework taken to qualify for classified graduate status is in addition to and not counted toward the master's program. While completing admission deficiencies, students may, if they possess the necessary prerequisites, enroll also in degree coursework, but no more than 6 units as an unclassified student or 12 units as a conditionally classified student can be applied toward the MS degree. Students must remove all admission deficiencies before being considered for classified status.

Students applying for admission to the Kinesiology graduate program who do not have a degree in Kinesiology, are required to take a minimum of 20 specified units in Kinesiology. These students should see the graduate coordinator or a graduate advisor for details.

Admission Procedures

Applications are accepted for Fall admission only. All prospective graduate students, including Sacramento State graduates, must file the following with the Office of Graduate Studies, River Front Center, Room 215 (916) 278-6470:

  • an online application for admission;
  • two sets of official transcripts from all colleges and universities attended, other than Sacramento State; and
  • GRE scores
  • writing sample
  • three letters of recommendation
  • evidence of passing score on the CSCS/NSCA exam (Strength and Conditioning Option students only)

For more admissions information and application deadlines please visit the Office of Graduate Studies website.

Following closure of the application period, faculty will review the applicant pool, and will make a recommendation to either admit, place on the waitlist, or deny admission. The review process will take approximately four weeks. Once a decision is made, the applicant will be notified by the Office of Graduate Studies. Students who earn a place on the waitlist will be notified by the Office of Graduate Studies if their admission status changes. 

Note: A 15-unit core of courses is required of all students; 11 units of required courses and four units that are earned through the completion of a thesis or project. The thesis or project is required of all candidates for the Master of Science in Kinesiology. The courses in the core are designed to focus on an advanced study of the knowledge which is of common interest and concern to all graduate students pursuing a degree in Kinesiology. Within the remaining 15 units, the student is focused in an area of special interest by selecting a concentration: Exercise Science or Movement Studies. Each concentration includes a set of required courses and a specified number of elective units.

Note: Six semester units of graduate work taken at other accredited institutions may be approved by the Graduate Coordinator or the student's graduate advisor. Prerequisite units, units taken for undergraduate majors/minors, and units taken to qualify for fully classified graduate status, will not be counted for graduate credit. Only rarely are undergraduate Kinesiology courses approved for graduate credit. A maximum of six elective units may be taken in upper division undergraduate courses with advisor approval. A maximum of four units of graduate Practicum or Directed Individual Study may be taken for degree credit with advisor approval.

Minimum Units and Grade Requirements for the Degree

Units required for the MS: 30, including 15 units for concentrations (see below).

Minimum Cumulative GPA:  3.0

Advancement to Candidacy

Each student must file an application for Advancement to Candidacy indicating a proposed program of graduate study. The procedure may begin as soon as the classified graduate student has:

  • removed any deficiencies in admission requirements;
  • completed at least 12 units of 200-level courses with a minimum 3.0 GPA; and
  • taken a Graduate Writing Intensive (GWI) course in their discipline within the first two semesters of coursework at California State University, Sacramento.

This application must be filed no later than the semester prior to enrolling in KINS 211. Advancement to Candidacy forms are available on the Office of Graduate Studies website. See the Department's graduate coordinator for more information about this process.

Program Requirements

Required Courses (15 Units)
KINS 209Graduate Studies in Kinesiology 3
KINS 210Research Methods in Kinesiology3
KINS 211Research Seminar1
KINS 294AContemporary Topics in Sport Performance 14
KINS 500Culminating Experience 24
Select one of the following concentrations:
Exercise Science Concentration
Exercise Science/Strength Conditioning Option
Movement Studies Concentration
Movement Studies/Sports Psychology Option
Movement Studies/Sport Pedagogy Option
Total Units30

 Exercise Science Concentration (15 units)

KINS 250Advanced Exercise Physiology Laboratory3
KINS 252Advanced Exercise Physiology3
KINS 254Advanced Biomechanics3
KINS 259Research in Exercise Physiology3
Select 3 units of electives in consultation with an advisor3
Total Units15

Exercise Science/Strength Conditioning Option (15 units)

KINS 250Advanced Exercise Physiology Laboratory3
or KINS 252 Advanced Exercise Physiology
or KINS 259 Research in Exercise Physiology
KINS 203Specificity of Conditioning3
KINS 295Practicum3
KINS 254Advanced Biomechanics3
Select 3 units of electives in consultation with an advisor3
Total Units15