Want to know more about the PhD application process? On this page we outline what you will need to meet the Kinesiology requirements for applying to the doctoral program in Movement Science or Sport Management.
The first step in applying to the PhD program in Movement Science or Sport Management is to contact a Kinesiology faculty member who has research interests similar to yours. All applicants must have a Kinesiology faculty advisor willing to work with them during their studies. Spend some time on our website learning about faculty research interests, and then contact the relevant faculty member to see if there is potential to work with him/her during your studies here.
HOW TO APPLY
PhD Program Funding Deadline: December 1
Rackham Graduate School and the Kinesiology Graduate Program team up to manage the application review process. As an applicant, you will be interacting with both offices.
Applications must be submitted online via the U-M Rackham School of Graduate Studies website. Program codes to use in the application may be found below:
- Movement Science PhD: 02156
- Sport Management PhD: 02158
Demographics and other data on our current and past PhD students can be found under Kinesiology, on the Rackham website.
To be considered for funding, applications for Fall admission to the doctoral program are due December 1. All other PhD applicants should apply by March 1.
1. GRE and TOEFL
NOTE: Due to COVID-19, GRE test scores are optional for the Winter 2021 and Fall 2021 admissions cycle.
- GRE scores are required for all applicants. TOEFL scores are required for all applicants whose native language is not English, regardless of your educational experience.
- The University of Michigan code for the GRE and the TOEFL is 1839. (The department code is not necessary, since GRE and TOEFL scores are automatically added to applicant records as long as name and birth date can be matched.)
- The Graduate Record Examination (GRE), prepared and administered by the Educational Testing Service, is required as part of the application for admission. The GRE is administered throughout the United States and many other countries throughout the year.
- The Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) is required of all non-native speakers. The University of Michigan requires a minimum TOEFL score for admission: 84 for the Internet Based TOEFL. (For other English test minimum scores, please refer to the Rackham website.)
2. Letters of Recommendation
Three (3) letters of recommendation in support of the student's application must be submitted. These letters should ordinarily be from professors at the student's last degree-granting institution. Recommenders must complete their recommendations online. When the applicant registers the recommenders' names in the Rackham application, an email is automatically sent with a link to enter the recommendation online. Applicants should check the status of their recommendations on the Rackham website status page.
Scanned copies of official transcripts should be uploaded with the application online. Official transcripts from degree-granting institutions only should be mailed to Rackham Admissions; see Instructions for Submitting Transcripts. Send the Academic Records/Transcript Submission Form with your official transcript so that it is quickly associated with your application. Be sure to include your University of Michigan ID number.
4. Academic Statement of Purpose
The Academic Statement of Purpose should be a concise, well-written statement about your academic preparation, practical experience, and/or research background related to the area(s) within Kinesiology that you’re interested in studying. It should also include your career goals and how Kinesiology's graduate program will help you meet your career, and educational objectives.
The following information is required on the header of your Academic Statement of Purpose:
- The title "Academic Statement of Purpose"
- Your name
- The name of the graduate program
- Your 8 digit U-M ID (if known)
5. Personal Statement
The personal statement should address how your background and life experiences, including cultural, geographical, financial, educational, or other opportunities or challenges, have motivated your decision to pursue a graduate degree at the University of Michigan. For example, if you grew up in a community where educational, cultural, or other opportunities were either especially plentiful or especially lacking, you might discuss the impact this had on your development and interests. This should be a discussion of the journey that has led to your decision to seek a graduate degree. Please do not repeat your Academic Statement of Purpose.
The following information is required on the header of your Personal Statement:
- The title "Personal Statement"
- Your name
- The name of the graduate program
- Your 8 digit U-M ID (if known)
1. What’s the difference between Rackham Graduate School and the School of Kinesiology?
The School of Kinesiology is one of the 19 schools and colleges at U-M. Our graduate program is co-administered by the Rackham Graduate School. Rackham oversees the requirements and procedures and certifies the admission recommendation as appropriate.
2. Should I come visit?
Visiting U-M and the School of Kinesiology is a good idea so that you can get a feel for the faculty and students, as well as the Ann Arbor area. Please set up appointments with faculty you wish to meet before you come to Ann Arbor.
3. What if I don't have a faculty advisor for my PhD studies?
Unfortunately, we cannot admit you without an advisor. It’s your responsibility to seek out an advisor with whom you wish to conduct research as you pursue your degree here. Spend some time on our website learning about faculty research interests, and then contact the relevant faculty member to see if there is potential to work with him/her during your studies here.
4. Do you have a GPA or GRE minimum requirement?
We don’t have minimum GPA or GRE scores – we look at all areas of the application equally and holistically. The recommended GRE scores are 155 Verbal, 160 Quantitative and 4.5 Analytical Writing. We also prefer at least a 3.4 GPA. Please keep in mind that your entire application package is taken into consideration.
5. Do you have minimum requirements for the TOEFL test scores?
Your Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) score should be at least 84. We also accept International English Language Testing System (IELTS) scores in place of the TOEFL. The minimum IELTS is 6.5. We require a TOEFL or IELTS from all applicants whose native language is not English, regardless of their educational background.
6. Can I transfer credits toward my doctoral program?
No, you cannot transfer credits into the doctoral program.
7. How do I view my admissions decision?
You can view application decisions on line by following directions found on the Admissions page on the Rackham website.
8. Does the University of Michigan offer distance learning for the graduate program?
No, we do not offer distance learning for any of our graduate programs.
9. Are assistantships available?
Yes, we have Graduate Student Instructor (GSI) assistantships available for doctoral students
10. How do I go about applying for a Kinesiology GSI Assistantship?
All PhD applicants are considered for our open GSI positions – there is no separate application. The number of open positions we have varies from year to year. Please make sure we have your completed application by December 1 prior to the fall you’ll be beginning your program.
11. How can I find a place to live?
Previous graduate students have found the University Housing website helpful.
12. Do you offer application fee waivers?
Based on the following criteria, if you believe you qualify for an application fee waiver, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.. In a brief e-mail, provide proof and explain your qualifications for a fee waiver. Fee waivers are limited and are reviewed on a rolling basis.
Application Fee Waiver Criteria:
- You have a record of high academic achievement (send unofficial transcript; AND
- You must meet one or more of the following:
- Come from an educational, cultural or geographic background that is underrepresented in a graduate study in your discipline in the United States or at the University of Michigan;
- Have demonstrated a commitment to diversity in the academic, professional, or civic realm through your work experience, volunteer engagement, or leadership of student or community organizations. By diversity, we mean efforts to reduce social, educational or economic disparities based on race, ethnicity or gender, or to improve race relations in the U.S.;
- Have experience financial hardship as a result of family economic circumstances;
- Are a first generation U.S. citizen or first generation in our family to graduate from a four-year college.
- Be a member of one of the following organizations:
- Gates Millennium Scholars Program (GMS)
- Louis Stokes Alliances for Minority Participation (LSAMP)
- Minority Access to Research Careers (MARC)
- Post-Baccalaureate Research and Education Program (PREP)
- Public Policy and International Affairs Junior Institute (PPIA)
- Research Initiative for Scientific Enhancement (RISE)
- Ronald E. McNair Post-Baccalaureate Achievement Program (McNair)
Please keep in mind race, ethnicity, gender, or national origin may not be used as criteria for requesting an application fee waiver.
- One fee waiver is allowed per applicant. Additional applications submitted by the applicant will require payment of the application fee.
- If you pay the application fee and are approved to receive a fee waiver at a later date, the fee cannot be refunded.