Kinesiology, PhD

UCF Division of Kinesiology

Advance the knowledge of human movement by becoming a kinesiology researcher, sport scientist, educator and/or professional leader

The purpose of the Kinesiology, PhD program is to develop the next generation of teacher-scholars and professional leaders to advance the broad discipline of kinesiology through exploration of human movement, applied physiology, sports performance, sports medicine and clinical rehabilitation. Students will become proficient in conducting research, while interpreting and applying their findings in order to impact professional practice.

The Kinesiology, PhD program requires a minimum of 63 credit hours beyond the master’s degree. Students must complete 24 credit hours of foundational research core courses, 24 credit hours of specialization elective courses, and 15 credit hours of dissertation after being admitted to candidacy. Advancement to candidacy and completion of dissertation hours requires support from a qualified faculty mentor.

Looking to get your Ph.D. at UCF?

Conducting Cutting-Edge Research to Advance the Understanding of Human Movement

female UCF student
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Top 10 doctoral program rankings (relative to size) by the National Academy of Kinesiology in 2014 and 2020.

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UCF's PhD in Kinesiology program has had a 100% job placement for graduates since 2011.

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The kinesiology field is expected to see 10-20% employment growth over the next decade.

Get Hands On Learning

We offer a wide variety of research labs and opportunities to support our mission:

Ultrasound Biofeedback of the Core Muscles in Golfers with Low Back Pain

The main purpose of this research is to compare the effectiveness of traditional instruction to ultrasound feedback to increase thickness of the core muscles…

External Oblique Muscle Testing

The purpose of this study is to determine an appropriate testing position to maximally activate the external oblique muscle….

The Acute Effects of Continuous and Intermittent Blood Flow Restriction on Sprint Interval Performance and Muscle Oxygen Responses

The purpose of this study is to compare the effects of continuous blood flow restriction to intermittent blood flow restriction….

Institute of Exercise Physiology and Rehabilitation Science

The institute supports mechanistic and translational research by faculty members and students in the school’s Division of KinesiologyDivision of Physical Therapy and Athletic Training Program. The institute also partners with colleagues from the College of Health Professions and Sciences and Academic Health Sciences Center to contribute to the research mission of the university. With its current resources and faculty expertise, the institute has a broad capacity to advance the fields of exercise and rehabilitation sciences.

Physical Therapy student helping another student into her knee brace

National Conferences

The institute proudly presents at numerous national conferences.

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Logo for National Strength and Conditioning Association
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Logo for National Athletic Trainer's Association
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My time at UCF allowed me to receive outstanding mentorship from experts in the field, learn and collaborate with other Ph.D. students, and utilize new, state-of-the-art research equipment. Teaching upper-division courses helped me develop my instructional practices, and at the end of the program, I felt prepared for an academic career with meaningful research and teaching experiences.”

— Nicolas Clark, '21 PhD

Ph.D. Program News

Frequently Asked Questions

The GRE is not required for admission into this program.

A master’s degree in a closely related field and master’s level competency in research and statistics.

Research experience, prior publications, and/or completion of a relevant thesis project are desirable as these experiences assist with preparation for the Kinesiology PhD program.

Enrollment in the program is considered a full-time commitment and students typically complete the program in 4 years.

You can check the status of your application anytime online at myUCF. If you have questions regarding submitted materials, please contact the College of Graduate Studies at 407-823-2766 or [email protected].

Estimated school costs are posted on the Office of Student Financial Assistance website.

The program requires a minimum of 63 credit hours, including 15 credit hours of dissertation research.

Potential applicants are encouraged to familiarize themselves with the research being conducted at UCF and contact faculty with similar areas of interest. Our college has a published list of research participation opportunities:  If you filter by Kinesiology or Exercise Physiology and Rehabilitation Science, you’ll see those specific to our labs.

Typically, only those applicants with funding support are admitted to the Kinesiology PhD program. Graduate assistantship positions in the Division of Kinesiology are generally allocated through specific faculty and there is limited availability, which makes the process of securing them highly competitive.  The best approach is to reach out directly to core and affiliated faculty members that you might be interested in working with and see if they have any availability.

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