Master of Science in athletic training
If you’re interested in pursuing an athletic training career, we can help you achieve your goal of becoming a certified athletic trainer.
The Master of Science in athletic training is an entry-level, two-year allied health care professional residency program.
In this program, you’ll encounter diverse clinical sites with 16 weeks of immersive opportunities, interactive classroom learning and dedicated faculty who strive to maintain contemporary expertise.
Program highlights include:
- use of diagnostic ultrasound for anatomy and evaluation
- soft tissue management techniques such as dry needling, cupping, Graston technique, Mulligan technique, etc.
- movement assessments such as NASM Corrective Exercise (certification) and Functional Movement Screening (FMS)
- applications such as suturing, intravenous set-up, oxygen delivery and high-fidelity simulation mannequins (via the DeWitt School of Nursing)
- and Anatomage Clinical Table for gross anatomy.
You’ll also have an opportunity to pursue additional professional certificates, including:
- "Stop the Bleed" instructor
- NASM corrective exercise specialist
- AHA CPR instructor
Admission to our graduate athletic training program is highly competitive. Prospective students must first apply to the SFA Graduate School.
- A minimum of 18 students will be admitted per cohort
- Acceptance into the graduate school or meeting the graduate athletic training program (GATP) criteria does not guarantee acceptance into the program
- Transfer students from another graduate program will have to apply and begin the program during the Summer II session.
- Applications are due Jan. 10 of the calendar year, but they may continue to be submitted until all positions are filled
Program Administrative Assistant:
GATP Admission Process
Students may apply using the Athletic Training Centralized Application System (ATCAS) or SFA’s GATP application. Applications are due Jan. 10 with a rolling admission until all seats are filled. The two-step process must be completed: Graduate School application is submitted via the Apply to SFA page, and the GATP application is submitted directly to the program.
Please include a copy of all syllabi in your application package if your course title is different from the examples provided.
A minimum grade of "C" in the following prerequisites:
- Anatomy and Physiology I
- Anatomy and Physiology II
- Introduction to Nutrition or Sports Nutrition
- General Psychology or Sports Psychology
- General Chemistry (Labs not required)
- General Physics (Labs not required)
- General Biology (Labs not required)
- Biomechanics/Analysis of Movement
- Exercise Physiology
International students, visit the Office of International Studies and follow its application process.
You’ll find more details about this program and enrollment requirements in the graduate bulletin.
About the GATP: Vision, Mission and Goals
Our vision is to develop graduates who are recognized by future students, their peers and employers as athletic trainers who demonstrate passion for continual learning and teaching, integrity and selflessness in clinical practice, a commitment to responsible global citizenship in the community, and aspiration toward new levels of excellence that advance the profession in meaningful ways.
The mission of the GATP is to develop effective athletic trainers through a student-focused environment that creates opportunities for student application of innovative clinical practice, diverse clinical settings and preceptors, and interactive learning in preparation for a career in global health care settings.
- To attract and support high-quality faculty, preceptors and students
- To foster academic and co-curricular innovation
- To instill the program’s core principles throughout the program
- To increase connections
GATP Program Learning Objectives
Upon completion of the program, students will:
- Demonstrate a sound understanding of evidence-based practice concepts and their application by using a systematic approach to ask and answer clinically relevant questions that affect patient care.
- Demonstrate an ability to develop and implement strategies and programs to prevent the incidence and/or severity of injuries and illnesses and optimize their clients’/patients’ overall health and quality of life while incorporating the importance of nutrition and physical activity in maintaining a healthy lifestyle and in preventing chronic disease (for example, diabetes, obesity, cardiovascular disease).
- Demonstrate the ability to perform clinical examination skills in order to accurately diagnose and effectively treat their patients while applying clinical reasoning skills throughout the physical examination process. The development of these skills requires a thorough understanding of anatomy, physiology and biomechanics in order to assimilate data, select the appropriate assessment tests and formulate a differential diagnosis.
- Demonstrate a sound understanding and application of the knowledge, planning and skills in the evaluation and immediate management of the acute care of injuries and illnesses.
- Demonstrate proficiency in the understanding and application of therapeutic interventions including therapeutic modalities, therapeutic rehabilitation and therapeutic medicines designed to maximize the patient’s participation and health-related quality of life.
- Demonstrate the ability to recognize the role of mental health in injury and illnesses using interventions to optimize the restoration of participation and to refer these individuals as necessary.
- Demonstrate an understanding of risk management, health care delivery mechanisms, insurance, reimbursement, documentation, patient privacy and facility management.
- Assess the development of a desire for professional development, ethical behaviors and responsibilities through a progression of clinical rotations, participation with professional organizations, and an understanding of effective supervision and management in the athletic training clinic.
- Complete the Board of Certification requirements for eligibility of the national board examination through the completion of the competencies and proficiencies as set forth and endorsed by the NATA-EC, BOC and the CAATE.
GATP Assessment Objectives
1. Comprehensive program effectiveness
1a. Preparation for entry-level athletic training position (knowledge). Assess student cognitive and clinical skills of foundational knowledge in preparation for becoming an entry-level professional by proctoring comprehensive content examinations and clinical integrated proficiencies throughout the curriculum.
1b. Core principles (affective domain). Evaluate student understanding, demonstration and integration of program core principles through self-reflection interviews and clinical evaluations throughout the curriculum.
1c. Program quality improvement. Appraise student acquisition of knowledge over time utilizing an ongoing, semester-by-semester student work sample that will result in a comprehensive project.
2. Student learning
2a. Core competencies. Assess students’ ability to construct athletic training concepts and knowledge based on core competencies through the evaluation of clinical proficiencies, student work samples and comprehensive course exams.
2b. Patient/client care. Monitor students’ progressive development of autonomous patient care through the review of clinical evaluations, clinical proficiencies and course assignments.
2c. IPE integration. Provide students with ongoing interprofessional education and interprofessional practice opportunities. This will be accomplished through two IPE courses within the GATP curriculum, as well as diverse clinical sites where students will interact with various health care professionals.
3. Educational effectiveness (quality of education)
3a. Faculty effectiveness. Summarize faculty teaching effectiveness with the integration of student evaluations, peer teaching evaluations and institutional teaching effectiveness resources.
3b. Preceptor effectiveness. Evaluate preceptor effectiveness utilizing student evaluations of preceptors at the completion of each rotation period, specifically attending to the “Teaching Attributes” subsection and contemporary expertise.
4. Quality of clinical education
4a. Diverse clinical experiences (patient populations and sites). Interpret data of patient encounters and clinical settings to ensure students are gaining experience with diverse patient populations across various clinical settings.
4b. Exposure to contemporary expertise (table). Appraise preceptor and program faculty competence to identify settings that foster educational environments for student learning and clinical skill development.
4c. Competent preceptors (preceptor evaluations). Evaluate preceptors’ knowledge, skill and supervisory effectiveness to promote and ensure quality clinical experiences for our students.
Our core principles are used to shape the identities of our faculty, preceptors and students. These principles are unwavering and should be the foundation of our program.
- Commitment: To oneself, one another, the program and the profession.
- It may be demonstrated through the behaviors of reliability, resiliency, accountability, advocacy.
- Integrity: Guides daily actions and behaviors.
- It may be demonstrated through the behaviors of honesty, respect, ownership, unity.
- Selflessness: Influences our interactions and relationships.
- It may be demonstrated through the behaviors of servitude, compassion, patience, humility. (student centered, patient centered)
- Excellence: Aspire to better oneself.
- It may be demonstrated through the behaviors of initiative, consistency, tenacity, grit.