Masters of Science in exercise and sport science

Explore the science behind human performance and wellness. A master's in exercise and sport science gives you the science-based insights you need to help people make healthy choices designed to optimize wellbeing and functionality over their lifespan.

Program highlights

Our program combines in-depth coursework with real-world research and internships. Working with leading scholars in the field, you explore the psychology of physical activity, learn to assess, and promote physical fitness and prescribe appropriate exercises to optimize human performance  through the lens of biomechanics of human motor activity.

  • Choose from full-time and part-time learning options
  • Complete your degree in 2 years (full-time schedule)
  • Get hands-on experience in an internship or research project in Kinesiology, Health and Sport Studies
  • Apply without taking the GRE (not required)

What will you learn?

Throughout the program, you study the principles and practices in the analysis of human movement and complete a biomechanical analysis project on an appropriate human motor skill.

You explore the determinants of well-being and examine exercise psychology from a multi-theory perspective and conduct research in motor learning and performance. With a strong understanding of the physiological principles of physical fitness, you learn to assess exercise prescription guidelines.

Science-based program curriculum

To earn a master's degree in exercise and sport science, you complete at least 30 course credits, including 15-21 credits of required courses, three to nine credits of electives, and one to eight credits in a culminating internship or research experience.

You can customize your degree path to meet your goals, by choosing from the following curriculum options:

  • Plan A: 30 credits including an eight-credit thesis
  • Plan B: 30 credits including a three-credit project
  • Plan C: 30 credits including an internship (variable credit option)

Whichever option you choose, you have the opportunity to apply what you’re learning to the real world through research, a project or an internship.

Review the M.S. in exercise and sport science curriculum

Masters in exercise science and sport sciences courses

Required Courses (15 credits)

Courses Cr. Hrs. Term/Year
KIN 5100 Anatomical and Physiological Bases of Physical Activity* 3 F
KIN 6300 Physiology of Exercise I* 3 F/W
KIN 6310 Physiology of Exercise II* 3 F/W
KIN 6320 Fitness Assessment & Exercise Prescription* 3 F/W
KIN 7580 Biomechanical Analysis of Motor Activity 3 W
KIN 8530 Motor Learning (or KIN 5110 in Winter) 3 F
KIN 5523 Physical Activity & Exercise Psychology* 3 F/W

* Substitutions required if taken for undergraduate degree credit at WSU

Elective Courses with advisor approval 
(30 credits 15 required credits - culminating experience credit = Number of electives)

Culminating experience - one of the following:

Courses Cr. Hrs. Term/Year
KHS 8999 Master's Thesis Direction (need assigned advisor) 1-8 All terms
KHS 7999 Masters Essay and Project Direction 3 All terms
KHS 8750 Internship in KHS 3-8 All terms

Opportunities for research with faculty

Our distinguished faculty members conduct groundbreaking research which challenges long-standing conventions. As a master’s student at Wayne State, you will have the opportunity to work directly with these leading scholars on everything from exercise motivation and psychology, obesity prevention and treatment to nutrition and behavioral interventions in physical activity.

Meet our faculty

Accelerated Graduate Enrollment program

Save time and money by enrolling in our master's in exercise and sport science degree while you’re still an undergraduate. As a junior or senior at Wayne State, you may qualify for the Accelerated Graduate Enrollment (AGRADE) program, which allows you to apply up to 16 credits to both your bachelor’s and master’s degrees. We even offer scholarships for qualified participants.

Learn more about AGRADE
Apply for AGRADE

Careers in exercise science

A master's in exercise and sport science sets you up for a successful career in any aspect of the fitness and wellness industry — for example, corporate wellness, exercise physiology, cardiac rehabilitation, strength and conditioning, and a wide variety of therapeutic exercise and recreation positions.

By earning the degree, you also build a solid foundation to go on to further study in medicine, nursing, physical therapy and other health professions.

Tuition and financial aid

We’re committed to investing in your future. Leverage our affordable tuition and scholarships to help you pay for your graduate study in exercise science at Wayne State University. 

Explore financial aid and scholarships.  

Admission requirements

Admission to the M.S. program is contingent upon admission to the Graduate School. In addition, you must provide official transcripts showing you meet the following criteria:

  • Undergraduate GPA of 3.0 or higher for regular admission
  • Undergraduate GPA of 2.8 to 2.99 for qualified admission
  • No GRE required

Learn more about graduate admissions at the College of Education.

Promote health and bring positive impacts to lives with a master's in exercise and sport science

Want to help people lead healthier lives? Prepare for a rewarding career with a master’s degree in exercise and sport science.


Patrick Mason
Assistant professor of teaching and program coordinator

Primary Graduate Advisor for Exercise and Sport Science

Mario Vassallo, Ph.D.
Associate professor of teaching

Kinesiology Health and Sport Studies

Phone: 313-577-4249