The graduate concentration in sport administration offers a challenging and rewarding experience which prepares its graduates for employment in a variety of areas within the sport industry.  Students have the opportunity to pursue a Master of Arts (M.A.) or a Master of Science (M.S.) depending on their career goals.  To earn an M.S., students will complete a 33-credit hour curriculum highlighted by the completion of their own research (thesis).  This option is ideal for students interested in pursuing further education at the doctoral level.  The M.A. is earned through a 33-credit hour curriculum highlighted by an on-site internship at an organization chosen by the student, or a research project supervised by a faculty mentor.  The focus of the M.A. is applied experience that can translate to employment after graduation.

The curriculum for both the M.A. and M.S. begins with four core courses that include: Sport Marketing and Promotion, Sport Law, Financial Principles in Sport, and Sport Administration. These core courses are designed to provide the essential foundation for viewing the complex world of sport through an administrative lens. Beyond the core courses, students will earn 9-12 hours in electives focused on areas of interest. There are a variety of potential electives, but some of the more popular options include Facility and Event Management, Ethics and Philosophy of Sport, and Intercollegiate Athletics Policy. The final component involves the research/applied requirements. For the M.S., students will complete courses in research methods and statistics before engaging in their thesis research. The M.A. requires one course in research methods, as well as a 6-credit hour internship or a 3-credit hour research project.

In addition to the comprehensive curriculum, sport administration graduate students engage in a variety of valuable and immersive learning experiences. Many students are granted graduate assistantships through the School of Kinesiology of Intercollegiate Athletics. These assistantships allow students to gain practical, real-world experience while pursuing their degrees. Students can also gain research experience by working directly with faculty members on an assortment of research endeavors. It is not uncommon to have our students as co-authors on a variety of sport research articles. Furthermore, serving as mentors to the undergraduate students in the Sport Administration Association, especially during Division I athletic events, has been a valuable source of experiential learning.  Additional evidence of our strong program has been demonstrated by results in the College Sport Research Institute national case study competition, where our teams have earned first place four of the last six years.  When these opportunities are combined with Ball State's prime location between Indianapolis and Ft. Wayne, as well as a record of first-rate internship placement, Ball State’s graduate program in Sport Administration offers a premium graduate experience. 

Sport Administration Graduate Program Points of Distinction

  1. This program won four national case study competitions at the College Sport Research Institute annual conference.
  2. Commits to partnerships with youth, high school, college, and professional organizations through state, regional, national, and international internships (e.g., Colts, Pacers, etc.).
  3. Experiential learning is interwoven into the curriculum through service learning and graduate assistantships, many of which occur by partnering with the NCAA Division I FBS Athletic Department.
  4. The curriculum is flexible with approximately half of the courses taught in an online or blended format. Students can choose one of three research options to complete their degree, and programs plans are uniquely tailored to each student’s goals.


The links below provide more specific information:

Prospective Student Information
Financial Aid

For more information: contact Dr. James Johnson, Program Coordinator or Amy Vold, Administrative Coordinator