PhD in Kinesiology

Pedagogy and Psychological Sciences

The Doctor of Philosophy in Kinesiology with a specialization in pedagogy and psychological sciences prepares candidates for successful careers in higher education as well as a broad range of professional positions involving knowledge of research and program development. Pedagogy and Psychological Sciences Specialization focuses on factors that influence teaching and learning in a broad range of physical activity settings, acquires and advances knowledge regarding the social-cognitive determinants of physical activity and exercise. Specific areas of study include:


  • Using quantitative and qualitative approaches to conduct research that answers important questions about effective teaching and learning for individuals across the lifespan, including those with disabilities;
  • Investigating focus areas on teacher and learner cognition, emotion, and motivation;
  • Incorporating innovative research methods and data collection techniques;
  • Preparing individuals for careers as university faculty members in teacher certification and sport pedagogy programs; and

Psychology of Physical Activity 

  • Advancing the understanding of determinants of physical activity behavior; and
  • Further the understanding of the influence of physical activity and exercise on health and well-being in diverse populations, including older adults and individuals with disabilities.


Admission requirements

BS or MS in Kinesiology or related field.


Course requirements

Ph.D. Program for Specialization in Pedagogy and Psychological Sciences***

Research Skills Credit Hours
KIN 7900 Introduction to Research Methods 3
EXST 7003 Statistical Methods/Techniques I (or equivalent, including EXST 7004, 7005, 7009) 4
EXST 7013 Statistical Methods/Techniques II (or equivalent, including EXST 7014, 7015, 7019) 4
KIN 7574 Qualitative Research in Kinesiology 3
Advanced Research Elective* 3


Kinesiology Core

Motor Behavior Elective (select one of the following courses) 3 Credit Hours
KIN 7508 Analysis of Human 3
KIN 7510 Motor Learning 3
KIN 7512 Motor Control 3
KIN 7520 Motor Development 3


Exercise Physiology Elective (select one of the following courses) 3 Credit hours
KIN 7534 Exercise in Health and Disease 3
KIN 4526 Physiology of Endurance Training 3
KIN 7537 Exercise and the Environment 3


Specialization Requirement Select 5 of the following courses 15 Credit hours
KIN 7502 Curriculum Construction in Physical Education 3
KIN 7513 Seminar in Physical Education Professional Preparation 3
KIN 7514 Pedagogy in Physical Education 3
KIN 7515 Theories of Achievement Motivation in Physical Activity 3
KIN 7528 Sport Psychology 3
KIN 7601 Changing Health Behavior 3
KIN 7602 Social Ecological Influences on  Physical Activity and Health 3
KIN 7603 Stress Management and Emotional Health 3


Approved Electives/minor specialization* 25 Credit hours
Approved Electives/minor specialization* 25 Credit hours
KIN 9000 Dissertation Research 12
Degree Total 75 Credit Hours


* Electives and Minor: Electives and/or the selection of a minor will be chosen on the basis of agreement between the student and the student’s advisor. Courses required for the minor will be based on agreement between the student and the student’s minor professor. Each of these agreements is subject to approval by the student’s PhD committee.

*** This is a list of suggested courses and should be viewed as a model program rather than a required course list. Students should consult with faculty advisor(s) as to the coursework plan  will prepare them to meet their goals. Courses taken in an approved master’s program may be used to fulfill degree requirements.

Contact Us

Alex Garn
Phone: 225-578-5954



Program Area Faculty


Senlin Chen