Jun 15, 2024  
2022-2023 Graduate Catalog 
2022-2023 Graduate Catalog [Not Current Academic Year. Consult with Your Academic Advisor for Your Catalog Year]

Kinesiology, PhD

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Colleges  > College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences  > Department of Health and Human Performance  > Kinesiology, PhD

The Doctor of Philosophy in Kinesiology program currently focuses on four broad areas of kinesiology, namely motor control and learning, physiology, obesity studies, and sport and fitness administration.

Program Objectives

The Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Kinesiology is designed to provide doctoral level training to prepare a professional with the cognitive and research skills needed to be a productive scholar.

The primary objectives of the PhD in Kinesiology are:

  1. Understand, conduct, disseminate, and critically evaluate research in kinesiology and related fields.
  2. Deeply understand content in one’s chosen field
  3. Promote the learning of others through strong written and oral communication.
  4. Prepare program development and research proposals.

The usual time for completion of the PhD (Kinesiology) program is four to five years.

For more information, please visit the PhD in Kinesiology program website.

Admission Requirements

Admittance to the program will be based on a series of criteria that includes:

  • Undergraduate Grade Point Average (GPA):  Most admitted students have a GPA above 3.5.
  • Graduate Record Exam (GRE):  Most admitted students score above the 60th percentile on the Quantitative and Verbal Reasoning sections and at least 3.5 on the Analytical Writing section.
  • Three Letters of Recommendation
  • Letter of Research Interests with Statement of Professional Goals
  • Writing Sample (Examples: thesis, journal articles, professional reports, etc.)
  • Standardized Writing Exercise (Details available from the Graduate Advisor)
  • Personal Interview with a potential faculty advisor (Note: when possible, this should be an in-person interview; when travel distance is a concern, this may be a telephone or teleconference interview.)
  • Additional documents and English proficiency requirements for International Graduate Applicants

Degree Requirements

Credit hours required for this degree: 66.0

The PhD in Kinesiology requires a minimum of 66 hours, including 6 hours of required doctoral dissertation hours. These hours are comprised of the required courses below, HHP Journal Colloquium, course hours for preparing the required PhD Candidacy Project, and designated electives that are pertinent to a student’s course of study. After completion of the 2nd year, students are required to enroll in PEP 8304 HHP Journal Colloquium each semester until graduation. Electives are to be taken under the direction and approval of the student’s faculty advisor. These electives can be drawn from the designated elective course list and include classes (both scheduled and Special Problems classes) offered within the department, classes offered in other departments within the University of Houston, or classes offered in support areas at other academic institutions. The approved electives will provide the student with an academic foundation in the particular discipline of study within the PhD program.

After completion of 45 hours of coursework, students are eligible to sit for the comprehensive exam. In order to advance to candidacy students must pass the comprehensive exam. Students that fail either test two times will be dismissed from the program. To learn more about degree requirements please visit the program details web-page.

In addition to the sequence below, each student will be required to participate in on-going research projects, develop independent research projects, generate research results that form the basis of their candidacy paper and attend research seminars and thesis/dissertation defenses within both the department and the wider scientific research community.

The capstone experience within the PhD (Kinesiology) program is completion of a dissertation research project and dissertation document.

Department Core

The following classes are mandatory for all PhD (Kinesiology) students in HHP:

Analytical Methods (9 hours)

Students must complete 9 hours of analytical methods courses approved by their faculty advisory committee.

Emphasis Area (12 hours)

Students must complete 12 credits from their emphasis area approved by their faculty advisory committee. Typically, students will fulfill this requirement through PEP 8304 - Journal Club, however, the faculty advisory committee may approve additional courses.

Elective Courses (18-27 hours)

Graduate level courses offered inside or outside departments that are not used to meet previous requirements. Students will typically take 12 additional journal club hours and 6-15 hours of approved electives. Elective courses must be approved by the student’s faculty advisory committee. Additionally, students may take an additional 6 hours of PEP 8350 - Candidacy Project hours.

Dissertation Hours (6-12 hours)

Academic Policies

Residency Requirements

All PhD (Kinesiology) students are required to enroll in Residency during their first full academic year of entering the program (Fall and Spring semesters).

During this residency period, a student must be enrolled as a full-time student (i.e. 9 hours of academic classes per semester) for both the Fall and Spring semesters of their residency period.

During the Fall semester, each student in residency shall enroll and successfully complete the designated departmental residency class, Principles of Scientific Inquiry.

During their residency period, students will be introduced to “professional activities” including research experiences, journal club, seminar attendance, attendance at thesis/dissertation defenses and other experiences that are applicable to continual professional development.

Student Annual Review Process

Annual reviews are formative and are performed each year a student is enrolled in the program.

After review of the information supplied by the advisor and student by the GRD committee, there are three potential outcomes of the annual review process that can be arrived at.

These are:

  • Adequate progress (student continues in the program)
  • Academic probation (student continues in the program with remedial action determined by the GRD committee).
  • Termination from the program (after failure of probationary period)

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