Master of Science (MS) in Athletic Training

Why a Master of Science in Athletic Training?


McK Athletic Training

The Master of Science in Athletic Training Program is designed as an entry-level post-baccalaureate program for students who want to enter the profession of athletic training. Students enter the program as a cohort. The 48-hour curriculum is rigorous and challenging combining the 7th edition of the practice analysis by the Board of Certification (BOC), National Athletic Trainers Association (NATA), Professional Education Council (PEC), and the curriculum standards required of Commission on Accreditation of Athletic Training Education (CAATE). The two-year program extends over six semesters in a sequential order involving two 8-week summer sessions and four 16-week sessions.

McKendree also offers a 3+2 Accelerated Bachelor of Science in Exercise Science and Sports Performance and Master of Science in Athletic Training. The 3+2 program allows students who are just beginning college or are transferring to McKendree to pursue a bachelor's degree in Exercise Science and Sports Performance in three years and then the Master of Science in Athletic Training in two years.  




Why McKendree University?

The Athletic Training Program at McKendree University combines academic coursework and diverse clinical experiences, which provides the foundation to prepare students to be successful as athletic trainers in a variety of work settings. Completion of clinical experiences allows students to demonstrate clinical skill proficiencies, while integrating knowledge into clinical decision making, during the performance of direct patient care. These experiences take place in a variety of settings including Division II athletics at McKendree University, high school, outpatient rehabilitation, primary care settings and occupational and industrial settings. Students receive personalized attention in the classroom with a teacher to student ratio average of 1:12 and the clinical experience ratio average of 1:2.




Curriculum Requirements

The program is a residency program involving courses that are offered face-to-face and online.

Required Course of Study 48 Credits.

ATH 500 - Foundations of Evidence-based Practice (2 Credits)

ATH 501 - Diagnostics, Splinting, and Bracing (3 Credits)

ATH 510 - Evaluation & Assessment of Orthopedic Injuries I (3 Credits)

ATH 511 - Evaluation & Assessment of Orthopedic Injuries II (3 Credits)

ATH 512 - Evaluation & Assessment of Orthopedic Injuries III (3 Credits)

ATH 513 - Evaluation & Assessment of Medical Conditions & Illnesses (3 Credits)

ATH 514 - Therapeutic Modalities (3 Credits)

ATH 515 - Clinical Integration I (1 Credit)

ATH 516 - Clinical Integration II (1 Credit)

ATH 517 - Clinical Integration III (1 Credit)

ATH 518 - Clinical Integration IV (1 Credit)

ATH 519 - Clinical Integration V (1 Credit)

ATH 520 - Therapeutic Exercise & Reconditioning I (3 Credits)

ATH 521 - Therapeutic Exercise & Reconditioning II (3 Credits)

ATH 525 - Health & Recovery (3 Credits)

ATH 600 - Seminar I (1 Credit)

ATH 601 - Seminar II (3 Credits)

ATH 602 - Seminar III (2 Credits)

ATH 610 - Healthcare Administration I (2 Credits)

ATH 611 - Healthcare Administration II (2 Credits)

ATH 614 - Research & Professional Behaviors I (1 Credit)

ATH 615 - Research & Professional Behaviors II (3 Credits)





This program is offered in a campus-based day format. The two-year program extends over six semesters in a sequential order involving two 8-week summer sessions and four 16-week sessions.




Tuition for the Master of Science in Athletic Training is $510 per credit hour. There is an additional technology fee of $70 per credit hour fee for online courses. Graduate financial aid opportunities are available.


Athletic Training Group Picture 

Admission Requirement

McKendree University admits students who present evidence of their potential to complete graduate level work. Applicants are considered on an individual basis without regard to sex, race, disability, nationality, sexual orientation, or religion. The following documentation is required for consideration of admission:

A completed application for admission (no fee).

2. A bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited institution of higher education.

3. Official transcripts from each college or university attended. Official transcripts are those sent from institution to institution.

4. A minimum 3.0 GPA on a four-point scale in undergraduate studies.

5. Three recommendation forms completed by professors who can comment on your qualifications for graduate study. They should not be requested from a non-academic person unless you have extensive work experience with that individual and/or you have been away from academic institutions for some time.

6. A two-to three-page essay identifying: a) personal characteristics, skills and experiences that make you well suited for professional practice as an athletic trainer, b) primary career goals, and c) an explanation of how your primary career goals are connected to the current issues and trends in the profession of athletic training.

7. Technical standards form.

8. A grade of C or higher in the following prerequisite courses:

Health and Wellness – 2-3 hours

General Biology or Principles of Biology (with lab) – 4 hours

College Chemistry 1 (with lab) – 4 hours

General Physics 1 (with lab) – 4 hours

Anatomy and Physiology (with lab) – 8-10 hours

Medical Terminology – 3 hours

Kinesiology – 3 hours

Exercise Physiology – 3 hours

Pharmacology – 3 hours

Statistics – 3-4 hours

Principles of Athletic Training (must include taping competencies) – 3-4 hours

9. Those who meet initial qualifications will be interviewed by the Athletic Training Selection Committee.


Application Deadline

The program admits students once a year, for the summer semester. Applicants should use the deadline of March 1 in order to receive consideration for admission to the program.

Applicants who are completing pre-requisite coursework after the March 1 application due date may apply to the program, however, final review and full acceptance into the program will not be made until official transcripts showing all required pre-requisite coursework have been submitted.

The following items are required after admission and prior to registration:

1. Copy of current certification in: a) Red Cross First Aid, b) Basic Life Support for the Healthcare Provider or CPR/AED for the Professional Rescuer, c) Epipen and d) Administering Emergency Oxygen.

2. Copy of immunizations - Hep-B, MMR, T-dap, Chickenpox and Meningococeal.

3. Background check through Castlebranch (Certified Background) by April 15.



Career Opportunities

Graduates with a Master of Science in Athletic Training find employment in:

    • College/University

    • Professional Sports

    • Secondary Settings

    • Military

    • Occupational Health

    • Performing Arts

    • Physician Practice

    • Public Safety

    • Health Care Administration & Rehabilitation




Program Highlights


  • You’ll receive personalized attention from a teacher/student ratio for classroom courses of one professor to every 12 students. In clinical settings, the maximum ratio for clinical preceptor to student is 7:1; however, the ratio is frequently one-to-one.

  • Athletic Training Faculty and Staff join together in providing didactic and clinical instruction and supervision to all students.

  • Each student spends 5 semesters in clinical rotations. Three of these rotations involve direct contact with our team physicians. On campus clinical rotations provide exposure to a wide variety of intercollegiate activities including collision, contact and non-contact sports as well as team and individual sports.

  • All students complete a minimum of one off-site clinical experience, which can include: high school, outpatient rehabilitation, primary care setting and/or occupational and industrial settings.





McKendree University will be seeking initial accreditation for our new graduate program in Athletic Training.  McKendree University will be submitting a self-study to begin the accreditation process on July 1, 2020. Submission of the self-study and completion of a site visit does not guarantee that the program will become accredited. Students that graduate from the program prior to accreditation WILL NOT be eligible to sit for the credentialing examination for athletic trainers and will not be eligible for licensure in most states.



Employment & BOC Rate

Alumni (72%) of the McKendree University undergraduate Athletic Training Program currently work as athletic trainers in a variety of settings including: college/university, high school, health care administration and rehabilitation (outpatient sports medicine and rehabilitation), physician practice, military, performing arts (Mixed Martial Arts), occupational health (Boeing), and professional sports (Baltimore Orioles, Barcelona Soccer, Kansas City Royals, Washington Nationals and Yankees). Another 18% of alumni are dual-credentialed as certified athletic trainers and nurses, physical therapists, or physician assistants.



Next Step

Contact your student service specialist below and get details on the admission process and our next start date.  

Student Service Specialist

(618) 537-6943




Key Faculty

Photo of Dawn HankinsDawn Michele Hankins, Ph.D., ATC, LAT

Director of M.S. in Athletic Training
Director for Athletic Training
Bearcat Hall 102
(618) 537-6917



Photo of Katy GayfordKaty Gayford, PhD, ATC, LAT

Assistant Professor of Athletic Training
Clinical Coordinator for Athletic Training
Chair, Division of Health Professions
Bearcat Hall 101
(618) 537-6472


Photo of Jessica Henderson

Jessica L. Henderson, M.S., ATC, LAT, CSCS

Assistant Athletic Trainer
Clinical Preceptor
Fitness Center
(618) 537-6929



Photo of Kristin Von Hatten

Kristin Von Hatten, M.S., ATC, LAT, CSCS

Assistant Athletic Trainer
Clinical Preceptor
Fitness Center
(618) 537-6929



Photo of Jay Noffsinger

Jay E. Noffsinger, M.D.

Medical Director/Team Physician
Clinical Preceptor




Photo of Lawrence Stein

Lawrence N. Stein, M.D.

Team Physician
Clinical Preceptor




Michael Hughes, M.D.

Team Physician
Clinical Preceptor

Brian Klostermann, M.D.

Team Physician
Clinical Preceptor

Robert Dizes, PAC, MPAS

Board Certified Physician Assistant
Clinical Preceptor




Commission on Accreditation of Athletic Training Education (CAATE)

Bureau of Labor Statistics

National Athletic Trainers’ Association

Twitter: @McKendreeAT (Dawn Hankins)




Take the First Step  Apply Today!