Master of Science in Athletic Training

Master of Science in Athletic Training students

Program Overview

Athletic trainers are healthcare professionals who render service or treatment under the direction of, or in collaboration with, a physician in accordance with their education and training and their states' statutes, rules, and regulations. Services provided by athletic trainers include injury and illness prevention, wellness promotion and education, emergent care, examination and clinical diagnosis, therapeutic intervention, and rehabilitation of injuries and medical conditions. Students who want to become certified athletic trainers may earn a single M.S. degree or pursue the combined degree program that includes a B.S. in Exercise Science and the M.S. in Athletic Training. See the B.S. in Exercise Science in the General Catalog.

The Master of Science in Athletic Training program (MSAT) requires 62 semester hours (s.h.) of coursework. The program occurs over two years, including summers, of concentrated didactic and clinical experiences that lead to eligibility for the Board of Certification (BOC) examination. Courses for the didactic and clinical components of the program must be taken in the sequence outlined in the two-year education plan. The curriculum is six semesters long, starting in the summer session with foundational courses.  The clinical education component is a four-semester experience that begins in the fall semester of year 1. During the first year, students will be assigned to four, 8-week experiences throughout the fall and spring semesters. During the fall semester of year 2, students will complete a semester-long immersive clinical experience. During the spring semester of year 2, students will complete several short, clinical experiences encompassing non-traditional athletic training settings and specialty clinics.  Additionally, during year 2, students will complete a clinical experience with a non-sport population/non-orthopedic injury setting. 

The MSAT program has over 50 trained preceptors and roughly 20 clinical sites in the region.  Clinical experience opportunities include high school, community college, Division III, and Iowa Hawkeyes Division I athletics programs; University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics orthopedics and sports medicine clinics; industrial settings; work injury recovery clinic; prosthetics clinic; urgent care clinics and emergency departments; student health clinic; and more.  Discover more on our clinical site and preceptor list page.

Iowa Athletic Training Program Historical Perspective:

The Athletic Training Program is a long-standing program at the University of Iowa and has been approved and in good standing with the NATA, JRC-AT, CAAHEP, or CAATE since 1974. The program received its first formal/initial accreditation in November of 1994.  It was originally housed in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences and the Department of Health and Human Physiology. With the transition of the undergraduate to the graduate program, the curriculum and program have moved into the Carver College of Medicine and Department of Orthopedics and Rehabilitation.  

The University of Iowa is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Athletic Training Education (CAATE).

There are two routes available to apply to the Master of Science in Athletic Training program.

  1. Students may either complete the Pre-Athletic Training requirements along with their chosen bachelor's degree at an accredited institution in the United States.
  2. Complete the Undergrad-to-Grad (U2G) program.

MSAT Program Vision

Our vision is to be the program known for producing highly competent athletic training practitioners who are committed to continual learning and dedicated service to the diverse healthcare and safety needs of their patients.

MSAT Program Mission 

Our mission is to blend high quality education together with exemplary clinical experience creating a seamless environment where student growth and development are natural outcomes.

We aspire to be the model for clinical education that promotes interprofessional collaboration that impacts the future of healthcare. We achieve our mission by maintaining Iowa traditions, striving for excellence through continuous improvement, and incorporating clinically relevant research to be innovative.

MSAT Program Learning Outcomes (PLO)

  1. The program will facilitate student knowledge and clinical skill development among diverse populations.
  2. ​The program will maintain a 3-year aggregate retention/graduation rate of 90% or higher.
  3. The program will facilitate direct engagement and learning approaches to healthcare that will add to successful professional development through inter-professional experiences.
  4. The program will maintain a 3-year aggregate first-time BOC pass rate of 90% or higher.
  5. The program will publicly disseminate scholarship based on clinically relevant research in athletic training to enhance engagement and produce creative works to support learning.  
  6. The program will graduate students who demonstrate cognitive and psychomotor competence and clinical proficiency based on clinically relevant research in the following BOC Practice Analysis content areas:
         a. Risk Reduction, Wellness, and Health Literacy (Domain 1)
         b. Assessment, Evaluation, and Diagnosis (Domain 2)
         c. Critical Incident Management (Domain 3)
         d. Therapeutic Intervention (Domain 4)
         e. Healthcare Administration and Professional Responsibility (Domain 5)
  7. The program will maintain a 3-year aggregate graduate placement rate of 90% or higher within six months of graduation.



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