Master of Arts (MA in Coaching): Coaching Degree Overview
A Master of Arts in Coaching program explores coaching methods, strength training techniques and sport psychology. Graduates are prepared to work as coaches or instructors within schools, universities or community programs.
M.A. in Coaching
The coaching program enhances students' leadership skills and increases employment opportunities. Prospective and existing coaches learn coaching styles and proper training methods, as well as budgeting and fundraising techniques. Sociology of physical activity and principles of effective coaching topics help students to increase marketability. Professional development seminars allow students to examine the fundamentals of a specific sport.
Applicants must hold a minimum of a bachelor's degree, and some programs require a major or minor in coaching. Additionally, some M.A. in Coaching programs may require previous coaching experience.
Programs typically consist of 36 hours of classroom study and field experience. Students explore theories in human performance, program evaluation, administration of sports and mental training for athletes. Courses commonly offered in a graduate coaching program include:
- Sports safety
- Measurement and evaluation
- Strength and conditioning
- Methods of coaching
- Social aspects of sports
Popular Career Options
Graduates have the training to teach athletes, hold practices, instill sportsmanship practices, evaluate game strategies and minimize training risks. Common career titles can include:
- High school coach
- University coach
- Private sports instructor
As stated by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), job opportunities for coaches and scouts are predicted to increase by 15% during the 2012-2022 decade (www.bls.gov). BLS reports from May of 2012 estimate the average annual salary of these professionals was $36,680.
Continuing Education Information
According to the BLS, those interested in coaching in public schools may be required to obtain a state certification. They predicted those who are state certified to teach academic subjects will have the greatest chances of obtaining coaching positions within schools.
While a Ph.D. in Coaching is not commonly offered, students seeking leadership roles in physical education or motor behavior may consider a doctoral degree in physical education. The degree is available as a Ph.D. in Physical Education or a Ph.D. in Kinesiology with a concentration in physical education pedagogy. Within a doctoral program in physical education, students learn the psychology of physical education and cognitive factors in motor skill acquisition. Coursework may involve research, dissertation or group projects.
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