The Master of Science in Sport Management is designed by UF’s expert faculty to reflect the latest advances in the field of sport, presenting an equally theoretical and practical approach to skills and knowledge critical to success in the industry. Students can choose between two options: 1.) Non-Thesis with Graduate Final Exam or 2.) Thesis.

Upon completion, students will be able to competently:

  • Introduce advanced concepts of planning, organizing, leading and evaluating organizational goals to sport organizations
  • Develop financial strategies and evaluate budgets and sources of revenues and expenses relevant to sport organizations
  • Apply fundamental marketing concepts to the sport industry, create marketing plans, evaluate market segments, and predict consumer behavior
  • Explain and judge fundamental legal concepts relevant to tort, contract, and constitutional law, and how they apply to the sport management field
  • Understand the interdisciplinary nature of sport management at an advanced level
  • Explain the internal and external factors that influence and shape sport
  • Use qualitative and quantitative analysis through formal and informal assessment strategies

An Online Master’s Degree in Sport Management is also available.

Admissions Requirements

The following admission requirements are for applicants applying for terms starting on or after July 1, 2020.

A recognized baccalaureate, graduate or professional degree from a regionally accredited U.S. institution or a comparable degree from an international institution.

A minimum grade point average of B (3.0), calculated from all grades and credits after the semester where the applicant reached 60 semester hours or 90 quarter hours.

The Master’s Program in Sport Management does not require the GRE/GMAT examination test scores as part of the application process for both thesis and non-thesis tracks.

Applications are evaluated individually by a faculty review committee. Admission to the program will be based upon the following criteria:

  • Undergraduate grade point average, TOEFL or IELTS score (if applicable)
  • Letters of recommendation
  • Statement of Purpose
  • Compatibility of applicant’s education, experience and research interest with the mission of the program
  • A sport management interest questionnaire, which will be emailed to the applicant once an application has been submitted.
  • Résumé - Pursuant to Florida Statute, your application requires inclusion of all post-high school education and employment, as well as information about ongoing international affiliations and research funding. Please ensure this information is included on your curriculum vitae (CV) or résumé.

Any specific questions regarding the application process should be directed to the graduate coordinator: SPMgrad@hhp.ufl.edu

>>Application instructions can be found here.



Non-Thesis Track

(36 credit hours)

Thesis Track

(30 credit hours)

The Non-Thesis program is 36 credit hours with the completion of the Graduate Final Exam, which serves as the exit requirement for the Sport Management degree. This project is the final step in the degree process and must be completed during their last 2 semesters of study.

The Thesis Program is 30 credit hours and each master’s thesis candidate must prepare and present a thesis that shows independent investigation and that is acceptable in form and content to the supervisory committee and to the Graduate School. The work must be of publishable quality and must be in a form suitable for publication, using the Graduate School’s format requirements.


Research Core (6 credits)

  • HLP 6515 Evaluation Procedures in Health and Human Performance (3)
  • HLP 6535 Research Methods in Health and Human Performance (3)

Required Courses (15 credits)

  • SPM 5016 Sport Sociology (3)
  • SPM 5309 Sport Marketing (3)
  • SPM 5506 Sport Finance (3)
  • SPM 6158 Management and Leadership in Sport (3)
  • SPM 6726 Issues in Sport Law (3)

Electives (15 credits)

Students will work with their advisor to determine the best fitting elective coursework to apply towards a program of study.


Research Core (9 credits)

  • HLP 6515 Evaluation Procedures in Health and Human Performance (3)
  • HLP 6535 Research Methods in Health and Human Performance (3)
  • Research Course Approved by Supervisory Committee (3)

Required Courses (15 credits)

  • SPM 5016 Sport Sociology (3)
  • SPM 5309 Sport Marketing (3)
  • SPM 5506 Sport Finance (3)
  • SPM 6158 Management and Leadership in Sport (3)
  • SPM 6726 Issues in Sport Law (3)

Thesis (6 credits)

  • SPM 6971 Masters Research (6)

Graduate Faculty

Graduate Program Guidelines

Below are some important guidelines and information necessary for completing your Master's Degree in the Department of Sport Management. If you have any questions, please contact your Graduate Coordinator or Graduate Advisor.

Kyriaki Kaplanidou, Ph.D.
Professor, Graduate Coordinator

Cyntrice Thomas, J.D., Ph.D. | cthomas10@ufl.edu
Instructional Associate Professor, Associate Chair, Graduate Advisor

Non-thesis Elective Coursework

The student and advisor select elective coursework based on the student’s career or research interests. Projects relating to interest areas can be completed as non-lecture coursework. Coursework taken outside of the SPM department must be approved by the student’s advisor.

Undergraduate courses (1000-2000) may not be used as any part of graduate degree requirements. All 1000- and 2000- level courses may be taken on a satisfactory/unsatisfactory (S/U) basis to enhance one’s background knowledge, if enrolled as a graduate student, but do not count towards the credits needed for an MS degree.

Six credits of upper level undergraduate courses (3000-4000) outside the SPM department may count when taken as part of an approved graduate program. Consult your Academic Advisor/Committee Chair before registering to determine if the proposed course is acceptable to your degree plan. Enrollment without approval may result in the course being evaluated as inadequate to count towards the MS degree.

Advisors and Supervisory Committee

The Graduate Coordinator will assign the student to a graduate faculty advisor prior to his/her first semester of enrollment. The student has until the end of the first semester of enrollment to select a different supervisory committee chair if desired. There must be a minimum of three supervisory committee members for thesis students and a minimum of two committee members for non-thesis master students (this includes the supervisory committee chair).  Note that each member must hold graduate faculty status. It is strongly recommended that the supervisory committee members be selected by the end of the first semester of enrollment. However, in no case shall they be selected later than the end of the second semester of enrollment.

If the student selects the thesis option, one supervisory committee member must be from outside the student’s major department. If the student selects a minor, one supervisory committee member must be from the minor department.  If the student desires to change his/her supervisory committee chair or members, he/she must petition to the department graduate committee, who makes a recommendation to the Department Chair for final approval.

Minimum Committee Member Requirements

Transfer of Credit

Only graduate-level (5000-7999) work with a letter grade of B or better is eligible for transfer of credit. A maximum of 15 transfer credits are allowed. This total can include no more than 9 credits from institutions approved by UF, with the balance obtained from post-baccalaureate work at the University of Florida. Credits transferred from other universities are applied toward the degree requirements, but grades earned are not computed in the student’s grade point average. Acceptance of transfer of credit requires approval of the student’s supervisory committee and the Dean of the Graduate School.

Petitions for transfer of credit for a master’s degree must be made during the student’s first term of enrollment in the Graduate School.

The supervisory committee is responsible for using established criteria to ensure the academic integrity of coursework before accepting graduate transfer credits.

Time Limitation

All work (including transferred credit) counted toward the master’s degree must be completed within 7 years before the degree is awarded.

Leave of absence

Any student who will not register at UF for a period of more than two semesters needs prior written approval from the supervisory committee chair for a leave of absence for a designated period of time. This approval remains in the student’s departmental file. The Graduate School does not require notification. The student must reapply for admission upon return.

Non-lecture coursework

To register for independent study, internship, or supervised research courses, students must complete and submit a or Internship Proposal Packet to their advisor for approval, and then to the Graduate Program Assistant for processing.

Practicum - SPM6948

  • Every 48 clock hours = 1 credit hour of coursework
  • Registration credits vary from 1-3 credits with a maximum of 6 credits
  • The student’s supervisory committee chair/advisor will assist with the practicum placement and serve as the university practicum supervisor
  • Proposal Packet: SPM 6947/6948

Internship - SPM6947

  • Every 48 clock hours of internship = 1 credit hour of coursework
  • Registration credits vary from 3-9 credits with a maximum of 9 credits
  • The student’s supervisory committee chair/advisor will assist with the internship placement and serve as the university internship supervisor
  • Proposal Packet: SPM 6947/6948

Combination Degree Program

UF undergraduate students who major in Sport Management are eligible to apply for the Combination Degree Program. More info can be found here


Concurrent Degree Programs

The Department of Sport Management is able to develop a concurrent plan with several other programs on campus. The purpose of a “concurrent” program is to allow students to pursue more than one graduate degree at the same time, with the opportunity to share credits. We strongly prefer our concurrent degree students to take at least 1-2 SPM classes each semester or alternate semesters.

Any student interested in pursuing two master’s degrees in two different programs or two master’s degrees in the same program concurrently should discuss the proposed study with Graduate Student Records before applying. Written approval is needed from each academic unit and the Graduate School Dean. The student must be officially admitted to both programs through regular procedures. No more than 9 credits from the first program may be applied toward the second.

Joint Degree - Juris Doctor/M.S. Sport Management

The Joint Degrees Program is a credit-sharing arrangement that allows qualified students to combine their legal studies with graduate work, resulting in two degrees earned in a reduced amount of time. Candidates must apply for and gain admission to both the Levin College of Law and the Graduate School. Enrollment in one program may precede enrollment in the other according to timelines set by the programs.

The faculties of the College of Law and the College of Health and Human Performance have prepared a joint degree program culminating in both a Juris Doctor degree, awarded by the College of Law, and a Master of Science in Sport Management, awarded by the Department of Sport Management. Under this joint degree program, a student can obtain both degrees in approximately one year less than doing both programs sequentially, if both degree programs are pursued simultaneously. Students need to propose and obtain approval (from both programs of study) to share 12 of the same credits, to count towards both individual program degree plans of study. You can learn more about the combination degree at the link below.

Non-Thesis Graduate Final Exam

In their final semester, students on the non-thesis track will submit a Graduate Final Exam that consists of key projects from five of the core courses in the degree program as well as a professional portfolio. The goal of the graduate final exam are to:

  • Allow students to demonstrate their knowledge and ability to apply key concepts and skills to the professional practice of sport management and the issues facing the industry.
  • Help the student understand their weaknesses and strengths when seeking employment.
  • Prepare the student in organizing information that will help them in seeking employment by effectively promoting themselves.

Thesis Procedures

  • The student develops a prospectus.
  • The supervisory committee chair approves the prospectus.
  • The student works with his/her advisor to select the additional supervisory committee members.
  • The student writes the first three chapters (Introduction, Review of Literature, and Methods) and presents the proposal in a public forum.
  • The student completes and defends the thesis in a public forum.
  • All forms must be completed and submitted per the university’s schedule.

NOTE: Students must defend their Thesis during their last 2 semesters of study.

Engagement, Industry Outreach and the Training Room : Obtaining employment in the sport industry requires an intentional effort. The University of Florida Department of Sport Management provides opportunities both on and off campus in order to network and build meaningful relationships with alumni and industry professionals while seeking your degree. 

Engaged learning and outreach opportunities are shared through Canvas (e-learning platform) and social media. Every UF SPM student is provided access to a course called SPM Engaged Learning and Outreach (Public version) upon entry into the program. This platform will provide you with industry news, job posting sites, insights from industry professionals, tools to craft your narrative, and a listing of previous students’ internship locations. 

Additionally, a second platform is available on Canvas exclusively for UF SPM graduate students called The Training Room. The Training Room is specifically designed for graduate students to serve as a resource for career planning. 

This is an evolving platform that currently outlines requirements to conduct one-on-one or group discussions with the Director of Engaged Learning and Outreach, identify career goals and establish relevant career counseling from an industry professional, and will assist with establishing the next steps as you enter your chosen profession. 

For more information about engaged learning and outreach opportunities, contact Jessica Francis, the Director of Engaged Learning & Outreach at jessica.francis@ufl.edu, or Shelley Lyle, the Director of Engaged Learning and Outreach for Graduate Programs. at shell88@ufl.edu.

Students who pursue careers in Sport Management have a variety of options. Among the most popular career opportunities are:

  • Athletic/sport equipment companies; 
  • Professional, intercollegiate and amateur sport organizations; 
  • Sports facilities; 
  • Sports governing organizations; and, 
  • Sports marketing organizations.

For more information about career opportunities in Sport Management, please schedule an appointment with your Academic Advisor or visit the UF Career Connections Center. Please take some time to explore and consider your next steps based on your progress in the program. 

SPM Graduate Student Forms