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Build your Career with Advanced Skills

One of the first U.S. universities to offer a master’s degree in sport coaching, UNC is a national leader in the field. We helped establish the model for sport coaching master’s degree programs, integrating online coursework with real-world experience, professional coaching standards and action research. Learn from nationally recognized experts in sport coaching, gaining an exceptional graduate education that can greatly expand your career opportunities.

Designed for working adults who already hold a full-time or part-time coaching position, our online M.A. in sport coaching covers all aspects of the profession. Build advanced expertise in communication, motivation, psychology, training, safety, ethics and law, benefitting from focused guidance and specific techniques that make you a more effective teacher, mentor and advocate for athletes.

Degree Details

Credits Required:




Time to Completion:

18 months

Cost Estimator

Degree Option

M.A. in Sport Coaching

UNC offers one of the few sport coaching master’s degree programs in the country. You’ll earn 31 credits, capping the degree with an independent action research project of your own design. Program strengths include nationally renowned faculty, international perspective, an emphasis on research and metrics and a focus on applied expertise that you can use immediately in your current work. The master’s degree in sport coaching incorporates professional standards set forth by the National Association of Sport and Physical Education (NASPE).

Take the next step! Explore courses, contact information and admission requirements.

Degree Requirements

Online Program

Your Future in Sport Coaching

Our master’s degree in coaching empowers you to get the most out of your career. You’ll develop skills that can help you get better results in your current job, and possibly earn a promotion to a coaching position at a higher level of competition. You can also use the master’s degree to hone your skills in a coaching specialty or prepare for an international position. We designed the online sport coaching master’s degree in response to rapid growth in demand for highly trained coaching professionals. Put yourself in a position to meet this growing demand by earning a master’s in coaching from UNC.

Consider UNC’s M.A. in Sport Coaching if you:

  • Want to build outstanding leadership skills
  • Are driven to get the best out of yourself and your athletes
  • Have a commitment to excellence
  • Seek to maximize your career opportunities

You’ll learn:

  • Psychology of athletes
  • Advanced training and conditioning
  • Sports law and administration
  • International perspectives on coaching
  • Applied use of metrics and research

Sample courses:

  • Sports Administration for Coaches
  • Psychology for Sports Coaches
  • Training and Conditioning Principles
  • Coaching With Technology
  • Bridging Theory and Practice in Coaching
Scott Douglas

Faculty Spotlight

Scott Douglas, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, School of Sport and Exercise Science

Scott Douglas, Ph.D. is the program coordinator of UNC’s sport coaching program and teaches in the School of Sport and Exercise Science. Known to his students as "Dr. D.," he is a former professional athlete who won the bronze medal in wheelchair tennis doubles at the 2000 Paralympic Games in Sydney. Today, he applies what he’s learned as an elite wheelchair athlete in his classes, sharing his stories with students. He shares insight and experiences—such as the time he traveled to Greece in a diplomatic role as the Paralympics assistant chef de mission in 2004, during a tense time when America was at war with Iraq. A member of the Paralympic Research and Sports Science Consortium, Douglas helps facilitate Paralympic-related research and presents his own research on Paralympic and adaptive sports and coaching at conferences around the world.

Read more about Douglas, featured in UNC Magazine

Learn more about Dr. Douglas

Beyond the Classroom

Although you’ll take most of your courses online, our sport coaching master’s degree program includes an extensive real-world component. You’ll gain expertise you can apply right away in your current job, with coursework and assignments that help you find practical solutions to coaching challenges. The program culminates in an action research project, in which you’ll test a new technique or concept in your coaching job, then analyze the results and draw conclusions.

Where can your degree take you?

  • Professional or college coaching staff
  • International coaching
  • Administration and management
  • Higher levels of competition within your sport
  • Specialized coaching niche

Ready for what's next? Here's what you need to know.

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Still not completely sold? We understand. Here's more information on costs and funding and how to apply.

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