Michael Forster, Ph.D., Interim Director
118 College Drive #5142
Hattiesburg, MS 39406-0001
Gearity, Gould, F. Green, S. Hall, Holcomb, Murray, Phillips, Piland, Webster
The School of Human Performance and Recreation (HP&R) offers the Master of Science and the Doctor of Philosophy degrees. Program development is oriented toward supply and demand in the professional job market and academic disciplinary definition. Flexibility of program requirements allows for academic fulfillment of individual career interests.
The following degree programs are offered within the School of HP&R: Master of Science degree in Human Performance, Master of Science in Sport Management, Master of Science in Sport Coaching Education, dual degrees of Master of Science in Sport Management and Master of Science in Business Administration (MBA), Doctor of Philosophy.
Emphases within the human performance master's degree program include: exercise science and physical education. The human performance doctoral degree program includes three distinct emphases: biomechanics, exercise physiology, and sport pedagogy. The sport management (master's) program is approved by the National Association of Sport and Physical Education/North American Society of Sport Management (NASPE/NASSM). The Sport Coaching Education (master's) program is accredited by the National Council for the Accreditation of Coaching Education.
Interdisciplinary Minor and Graduate Certificate in Gerontology
The school participates in the interdisciplinary minor in gerontology and the graduate certificate in gerontology. Specific requirements and courses available for the minor and the certificate can be found under the Interdisciplinary Minor and Graduate Certificate in Gerontology headings in the College of Health and Human Sciences section of this Bulletin.
The doctoral degree program in human performance: biomechanics emphasis is designed for those who wish to pursue the interdisciplinary field that describes, analyzes, and assesses human movement.
The doctoral degree program in human performance: exercise physiology emphasis is designed to prepare students for advanced teaching and research careers in higher education and/or industry.
The doctoral degree program in human performance: sport pedagogy emphasis is designed for those who wish to pursue a further concentration in research and teaching of motor skills in physical education and sport settings.
The Master of Science degrees require a minimum of 36 semester hours beyond the bachelor's degree (with 18 hours of 600 level or higher). Some emphasis areas may require greater minimum hours beyond the bachelor's degree. The Doctor of Philosophy degree requires a minimum of seventy-two (72) semester hours beyond the master's degree, including the dissertation, research tools, and program coursework. Comprehensive exams and a 3.0 GPA are required for graduation.
Admission to human performance and recreation degree programs is selective. Members of all underrepresented groups are strongly encouraged to apply. Regular admission is contingent on having graduated from a college or university with accreditation from appropriate, recognized national-level accrediting agencies. Admission to the program is contingent upon an applicant's academic background, work experience, demonstrated leadership, and communication skills meeting the challenging demands of graduate programs in the fields of sport management, human performance, or recreation. The School of Human Performance and Recreation adheres to university policies with regard to admission of graduate students on a conditional basis. In evaluating applications for program admission, the HP&R program admission committees utilize the following criteria:
- Academic record. a) a cumulative grade point average (GPA) of 2.75 or higher based on 4.0 scale and calculated on the last 60 hours of the applicant's bachelor's degree program; b) bachelor's level major/minor in an appropriately related field of study or evidence of foundational and professional coursework in major which are deemed necessary or prerequisite for graduate-level course enrollment. Lack of evidence of work completed in foundational areas specific to particular program emphasis requirements will result in either a) prerequisite satisfaction prior to regular admission into specific programs or b) additional degree requirements identified as undergraduate deficiencies to be satisfied during the graduate degree program. Doctoral applicants must have achieved a GPA of 3.50 on all previous graduate work in order to be admitted under regular status.
- Graduate Record Examination. Applicants are required to submit the official test results from the GRE (all sections) as part of their application. The GMAT will also be acceptable for the Master of Science in Sport Management degree only.
- Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL). Applicants whose native language is not English must achieve a TOEFL score of 550 or more on the paper test or 250 or more on the computer test.
- Professional experience. While professional level work experience is not required for admission to the master's level program, two to three years of relevant work responsibilities strengthens support for an applicant's admission, particularly at the doctoral level. Doctoral applicants should submit a resume which indicates professional experiences and accomplishments as well as a one or two-page description of research interests and how this degree will support their career plans. Doctoral students should arrange for either an in-person or telephone interview with program faculty during the application process.
- Letters of recommendation. Each applicant should request a minimum of three letters of recommendation from persons qualified to assess the applicant's readiness for graduate study, and these letters should be sent to the school. Two of the letters should address the applicant's academic preparation and capabilities. At the doctoral level, at least one letter should address professional competence.
Prior to completion of the 12th semester hour in the HP&R graduate program (master's or doctoral), the student must request approval of an advisory committee through the director's office. Upon approval of committee membership by the graduate dean, the student must submit a proposed plan of study for advisory committee approval. This plan should include all degree requirements and specification of planned electives and options within the degree program. The approved plan should be forwarded to the director's office prior to the student's enrollment in his/her 13th graduate hour.
Written and oral comprehensive examinations are required of all graduate students in the master's and doctoral programs. Requests to take these examinations must be made in the director's office. A 3.0 GPA is required for graduation.
The student's graduate advisory committee shall be responsible for administration and evaluation of the student's comprehensive examination. The chair of the advisory committee shall be responsible for reporting the results of the examination to the director. At least three HP&R graduate faculty members within the degree emphasis area must comprise master's advisory committees. Doctoral advisory committees shall be a minimum of four graduate faculty and must include at least three eligible HP&R graduate faculty within the degree program area emphasized.
Chairs of all advisory committees must be eligible HP&R graduate faculty.
A student's thesis or dissertation committee may be comprised of members of his/her advisory committee. It is expected that at least three (3) HP&R graduate faculty members from the advisory committee will be included on the student's thesis/dissertation committee. Additionally, an eligible HP&R graduate faculty member from the program emphasis area must serve as chair of the thesis/dissertation committee. The student may request eligible members outside of the school to serve on the committee. All committee membership (advisory or thesis/dissertation) must be approved by the graduate dean. All committee membership requests are submitted to the college dean upon the approval of the director of the school.
Continuous Enrollment Requirement: Students must meet the requirement specified in the front section of this Bulletin.
Plan of Study. Students must submit their signed, official Plan of Study Form to the Graduate School by the end of the first semester they are enrolled. The Plan of Study Forms are available at www.usm.edu/graduateschool/planofstudy.php - click on the "Plan of Study" link.
Research and Scholarly Integrity Education
All faculty holding Regular or Associate graduate faculty status, must complete CITI training modules required by the Graduate School and their departments. All graduate students must complete the CITI training modules required by the Graduate School and their departments the first semester they are enrolled in graduate school. The RSIE policy and training information are found on the Graduate School web page –www.usm.edu/graduate-school. Contact the Dean of the Graduate School if you have any questions regarding the policy of training information.
ProgramsMaster of ScienceDoctor of PhilosophyNon-degree