Sport Administration vs Sport Management – Which Degree is Right for You?

6 minute read

Are you confused as to what the differences are between a degree in sport administration vs sport management?

If so, you’re not alone!

There are a lot students who know that a career in sports is right for them, but trying to decipher the difference between the two program titles is no walk in the park.

Here’s what you should know; there is no true difference between “Sport Administration” and “Sport Management”. The two titles are often used to refer to the same program.

However, it’s important to keep in mind that not each program is created equal. Every master’s program is unique and requires researching and vetting to decide which curriculum will build the skills needed to benefit your future career in sports.

Not sure where to begin when researching a Master degree in Sport Administration?

No worries as we have you covered!

To make your research easier, we’re going to look at a few helpful tips and by the end, we are sure you will have a better understanding as to whether a master’s degree in sport administration is right for you.

Let’s first kick things off by looking at the most common question we receive from prospective students who are interested in our online Master’s in Sport Administration program.

What Can You Do With a Master of Science in Sport Administration?

This is the degree for the budding sport executives of the world. As a graduate student in a sport administration program, your focus will be entirely on the business side of sports.

This means you will be dedicated to providing the best experience for the team’s athletes and loyal fans.

Whether you take a behind-the-scenes role or a more front-and-center position, your work will revolve around pushing the business side of the athletic program forward. It’s truly all about being an asset to help the organization, athletes, and fans grow together.

Exciting, right!

With this said, here are a few things you can do with a Master’s in Sport Administration:

    • Athletic Director
    • Sports Executive
    • Media Relations Director
    • Guest Services Manager
    • General Manager
    • Advertising Sales Director
    • Facilities Director
    • Accounting or Finance Manager

And this list just scratches the surface as to all the potential career outcomes, as UC Sport Admin alumni find themselves working in a wide variety of careers!

A Master of Science in Sport Administration centers around a core set of corporate skills with a focused specialization in the business of sports. And these newly developed skills are easily transferable to a variety of roles within the sporting arena.

Is a Master of Science in Sport Administration worth it?

A degree in sport administration or management can lead to a fulfilling career that benefits both your local community and co-workers while operating in an industry you love.

But before pursuing a sport admin master’s degree, consider this:

  • Do you have a passion for helping others?
  • Are you driven to help make an organization or team as successful as possible?
  • Do you enjoy the business side of sports?

Do you find yourself answering “yes” to all the above? If so, a Master of Science in Sport Administration is right for you.

Choosing the Right Sports Administration Program

When making your decision on the right program for you, we recommend looking at the following items:

1. Overall Curriculum
2. Scheduling Demands
3. Accreditation
4. Cost
5. Career Growth

Let’s take a look at each one of these criteria.

1. Overall Curriculum

The first item to consider are the courses available.

Below are a few questions you should ask yourself when researching the program’s curriculum.

Will the required classes equip you with the skills you need to further your career? Will the outcomes of those courses provide you with the knowledge you’d like to develop? How long will it take to complete the program?

With our MS in Sport Administration program, the curriculum focuses on building the leadership skills needed to succeed in the field of sports, with a focus on interscholastic and intercollegiate athletics.

Courses range from Managerial Strategies to Sport Finance and Budgeting all the way to Revenue Generation in Athletics. As well, the course’s capstone allows students to connect with an individual within a sport organization.

Here is a complete guide of the offered courses for the online MS in Sport Administration.

2. Scheduling Demands

I think we can both agree that education is important. It’s the foundation for furthering your career.  However, between your work and life responsibilities, school can often feel like a burden. We believe that this shouldn’t be the case.

With UC’s online MS in Sport Admin degree, the courses are flexible and can be completed within one year of full-time study or two years of part-time study.

To top it off, our program is 100% online and no campus visits are required.

This means that each student can complete the coursework, interact with faculty and other students at a time that works best for him or her. Oh, and you will have continued support throughout the program from our team of advisors.

Who doesn’t love that?

This isn’t always the case for programs offered elsewhere, though.

When vetting out your options, research as much as you can about the structure of the coursework. If a class requires anything that conflicts with your life and work, then this should send up a red flag.

3. Accreditation

Is the program nationally recognized and/or accredited?

The online Master’s in Sport Administration degree is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission. Our program also offers the opportunity to complete the National Interscholastic Athletic Administrators Association (NIAAA) Certification Program while enrolled.

When deciding on the right sport administration program, be sure not to waste your money on a non-nationally ranked university.

4. Cost

Speaking of money, the fourth item to consider is which program provides the best value. Basing your choice purely on the smallest tuition cost isn’t always the best strategy.

Our recommendation is to keep in mind the overall value of the program.

5. Career Growth

Odds are you have heard this phrase before: “your network determines your net worth”.

We bring this up because your courses should provide you with opportunities to connect with lots of new people within the sports industry. When researching, look for programs that offer the ability to network with faculty, students, and prominent people within the industry.

Not only does our program offer networking opportunities with industry leaders, but you will be learning from nationally recognized faculty.

Graduates from UC’s online MS in Sports Administration program have found work across the country. The positions obtained have included roles in a variety of different positions ranging from college athletic departments to leadership positions within high school athletics.

Wrapping Up

Overall, a Master’s degree in Sport Administration is worth pursuing. This is due to items such as the networking opportunities, skill sets obtained, and knowledge acquired.

And the ability to complete this program in as little as one year makes this a popular degree for anyone looking to advance their career in the world of sports.

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