PhD in Kinesiology

The research-intensive PhD in Kinesiology at Temple’s College of Public Health offers concentrations in two distinct disciplines: Integrative Exercise Physiology and Athletic Training. As a student, you will focus on the discovery and dissemination of knowledge about human physical activity through biophysical, behavioral and professional practice perspectives.

Integrative Exercise Physiology (IEP) Concentration

The concentration in Integrative Exercise Physiology trains students to investigate the physiology of exercise at the molecular and cellular levels. Students will conduct intellectually rigorous biomedical research on physiological responses to exercise and physical activity, and on the ways in which exercise can influence the progression of disease.  

Students collaborate with internationally renowned faculty members on research that examines:

  • the molecular links between specific types of exercise interventions and disease prevention;
  • the precise mechanisms by which exercise promotes whole-body health; and
  • the pathogenic processes underpinning cardiovascular, neuromuscular and metabolic disorders associated with physical activity.

The PhD program prepares students for research and teaching careers at institutions of higher education (including Carnegie I institutions) as well as in relevant healthcare industries. Under the guidance of faculty mentors, students will hone a research agenda; prepare publications and present research at national and regional conferences; and develop grantsmanship expertise. These experiences position our doctoral students to be competitive candidates for postdoctoral training pathway or biomedical scientist job opportunities, which are standard precursors to academic and research careers.

Athletic Training (AT) Concentration

The concentration in Athletic Training is open to currently certified athletic trainers only. If you are interested in becoming an athletic trainer, you should apply to our MS in Athletic Training program. If you are more clinically-focused athletic trainer, you should apply to the Doctor of Athletic Training program.

Our AT Concentration is one of the only programs of its kind in the nation, giving certified athletic trainers unparalleled opportunities to conduct original scientific inquiry and contribute new knowledge to the disciplines of athletic training and sports medicine. The program is designed for certified athletic trainers who want to use advanced biomedical research methods to evaluate accepted clinical practice and enhance the proficiency of sports injury prevention, treatment and rehabilitation in physically active populations.

Students collaborate with internationally renowned faculty members on innovative research that examines sport-related concussion and subconcussive head impact. Many students develop their own research agendas in this area. The program’s research strengths also include tissue adaptation to stress and overuse, exercise addiction, sensorimotor control systems, and sports policy development, among other areas.

This PhD program prepares students for research and teaching careers at institutions of higher education and research (including Carnegie I institutions), as well as advanced clinical roles in athletic training and sports medicine. Under the guidance of faculty mentors, you will hone your research agenda, prepare publications and present research at national and regional conferences, and develop grantsmanship expertise. These experiences position our doctoral students to be competitive candidates for academic and research careers.

What sets us apart?

  • Exceptional faculty: As a doctoral student, you will participate in cutting-edge research with faculty members who are recognized experts in translational exercise biology, muscle physiology, sensorimotor control systems, and strength and conditioning. 
  • Top-tier research facilities: Students have access to state-of-the-art kinesiology and biomedical science research technology. These opportunities help students become competitive candidates for postdoctoral training and future research careers. 
  • Flexibility to shape your research interests: Our location in the College of Public Health facilitates interprofessional collaboration. Students have access to faculty in athletic training, physical therapy, public health and other disciplines. This provides you with opportunities to establish a unique research agenda that integrates expertise from multiple fields of research.
  • Preparation for a successful academic career: Our students build grantsmanship experience that includes identifying funding sources, preparing grant applications and navigating the application process. You can also enroll in the Teaching for Higher Education certificate program, offered by Temple’s Center for the Advancement of Teaching, while pursuing your PhD.

Funding for Doctoral Students

The College of Public Health offers all PhD students a competitive level of support, including tuition, stipend and health insurance, for four years. Graduate assistantships sponsored by the College of Public Health are outlined below.

  • Research assistants perform supervised research activities and work with faculty on grant proposals and ongoing research. Through these experiences, you will develop both research and grant writing competencies.
  • Teaching assistants are assigned to assist in teaching courses, including grading exams and papers or teaching lab sections. Teaching assistants learn current pedagogies that prepare them for academic teaching. They can also receive certification in higher education teaching.

Highly qualified candidates are nominated for university fellowships, and candidates from minority groups can be nominated for Temple’s Future Faculty Fellow program.

Program Format

IEP Concentration

Full-time study is required. Students entering with a master’s degree can complete the program in three to four years, while students entering with a bachelor’s degree can complete the program in four to seven years. See a full list of program courses.

AT Concentration

Students are required to take full-time classes and can complete the program in four years. See a full list of program courses.

Concentrations

You can focus on Kinesiology or you can take one of the following concentrations.

  • Athletic Training

    Examine advanced inquiry and understanding of the human body’s physical matter and dynamics. Develop the ability to think critically as a certified athletic trainer. Evaluate accepted clinical practice; conduct scientific inquiries; and create, examine and apply research that enhances proficiency in sports injury prevention, treatment and rehabilitation.

    View Concentration Details
  • Integrative Exercise Physiology

    Prepare for a career as a scientist, clinical researcher or clinician in a variety of practice settings, including clinics, hospitals and wellness centers. Gain advanced knowledge and skills in clinical or applied integrative physiology of exercise.

    View Concentration Details
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