About This Program
You'll earn a PhD in physical education.
Michelle Moosbrugger, PhD
The PhD program in Physical Education at Springfield College is one of approximately 25 programs in the United States, and the only one housed at a small to medium-sized college. This niche allows graduates of the program to be uniquely prepared to fill gaps in the job market. Specifically, graduates are well-positioned to attain and flourish in faculty and athletic leadership positions in higher education. The curriculum, experiences, and nature of the bachelor's and master's programs at Springfield College combine to support the success of doctoral students.
The Ph.D. in Physical Education curriculum includes a choice of tracks in Physical Education Teacher Education, Athletic Administration, or the flexible General Studies. From there, students engage in a rigorous research sequence culminating in the dissertation in a student-identified area of interest. Another element of choice is the cognate, in which students explore a selected focus area within physical education such as adapted physical education, ethical and legal dimensions, or psychosocial aspects. A final curricular highlight is the Preparing Future Faculty series where students examine the roles and responsibilities of faculty. The timing of courses allows for full-time or part-time study, and options for courses in the fall, spring, and summer.
Experiences within the program include field time, academic and social gatherings, research collaborations, and interactions with peers who have taught, coached, or led in a variety of settings. Students are also encouraged to apply for teaching fellowships to further build competence and confidence in faculty responsibilities.
Key to the structure of the doctoral program is the relationship to the bachelor's and master's programs in Physical Education and Athletic Administration. These programs are well-renowned and offer doctoral students opportunities to mentor, teach, and supervise student teachers while receiving guidance and feedback from a faculty member.
Recent graduates of the Ph.D. program have landed positions as faculty and administrators in higher education across the United States and around the world. Many are seen presenting at national and international conferences and publishing their work in academic journals.