Our increased focus on health and wellness has resulted in kinesiology becoming one of the fastest growing undergraduate majors in the US. And the need for PhD-trained faculty to educate these future professionals is strong. Working toward a PhD in Kinesiology, you’ll gain the training you’ll need to become a successful scholar and be able to conduct independent research in applied and academic settings.
This is your opportunity to become a successful scholar with a strong ability to ask and study relevant research questions in a dynamic world resulting in a positive impact on health and society.
Why choose us?
- You will contribute to, and lead cutting-edge research that will move the fields of human movement and health sciences forward.
- You will have opportunities to teach and mentor other students.
- You will one-on-one and group-based mentoring from our award-winning faculty who, as skilled educators and inventive scholars, integrate life experiences and active research projects into the classroom.
- You will experience a rich and collaborative learning environment that includes the opportunity to learn with other graduate students at the College of Health Sciences.
- All of our graduates have found employment within their chosen field, going on to a variety of faculty positions, post-doctoral fellowships and industry jobs.
- As the only Kinesiology PhD program in the Greater Milwaukee area, we offer an urban, research-intensive experience at a fraction of the cost of private schools.
To apply to the PhD Kinesiology Program you must apply to the UWM Graduate School.
For the most up-to-date information, visit the UWM Enrollment & Financial Services website . Be sure you are viewing the Graduate Fee Schedule for the appropriate semester.
UWM offers the following Tuition Reduction Programs for out-of-state residents:
These funds are earmarked for the support of certain student services. See the Mandatory/Segregated Fees document for the appropriate semester on the UWM Enrollment & Financial Services website .
Additional Course Fees
There may be additional course fees (in addition to regular tuition) that could include differential tuition, distance education fees, or special course fees. To see if your courses have additional fees, go to web.uwm.edu/registrar/tools/fee .
Teaching assistants support delivery of undergraduate curriculum at UWM. Appointments begin in mid/late-August and are for one academic year (9 months), renewable and dependent on funding. These part-time graduate assistantship positions provide a modest stipend and an excellent experience working closely with faculty.
Research or Project Assistantships
Research assistantships (RA) or project assistantships (PA) may be available pending individual faculty funding cycles. Only students admitted to Health Sciences Graduate Programs will be considered for an RA or PA appointment. Please contact the faculty member you are interested in working with to learn more information about available RA or PA positions.
UWM Fellowships & Awards
UWM & CHS Scholarships
Complete the FAFSA then go to the UWM Panther Scholarship Portal . Sign in using your PAWS credentials and complete the General Application and the CHS application. You may save your work and return to the portal at a later time. Additional information can be found at uwm.edu/scholarships .
State & National Scholarships/Awards
UWM Emergency Grant
The UWM Emergency Grant is funded by several private contributions and is available to students when they have unforeseen circumstances that may negatively influence their academic success. You can be awarded up to $1,000 for non-academic expenses (e.g., car repairs, medical bills, rent, utilities, child care, food, etc.). Learn more at uwm.edu/emergencygrant .
Program VisionProgram Vision
To foster the development of leading scholars who have the ability to create, evaluate, apply and advance knowledge at the intersection of the human movement and health sciences.
The Department of Kinesiology welcomes students from other academic areas at UW-Milwaukee, as well as students transferring to UWM from other institutions.
To apply to the PhD Kinesiology Program, you must first meet the admission requirements of the UWM Graduate School .
In addition to UWM Graduate School requirements, those applying into the PhD in Kinesiology Program must meet the following minimum departmental requirements:
- Possess, or be in the process of completing, a MS degree in Kinesiology or closely related field. In exceptional cases, applicants with a BS degree in Kinesiology or closely related field who demonstrate significant involvement in research and exceptional academic achievement may be considered for admission.
- Submit a curriculum vitae (CV) that includes all academic institutions attended, degrees achieved, and academic and professional accomplishments, such as publications or presentations.
- Submit verbal, quantitative, and analytical writing scores from the GRE General Test taken within 5 years of the application date.
- Demonstrate, through submission of official transcripts from all institutions attended, a minimum grade point average (GPA) of 3.0 for the highest degree program in which the student enrolled and/or completed. Particular attention will be paid to grades in classes that are relevant to the selected area of emphasis for the PhD in Kinesiology program. Applicants currently enrolled in a baccalaureate program must demonstrate a minimum undergraduate grade point average (GPA) of 3.0.
- Solicit 2 confidential letters of recommendation from previous university instructors and/or faculty advisors. These letters should be sent directly from the letter writer to the program director.
- Submit a writing sample from a research project in which the applicant was involved. Acceptable writing samples include, but are not limited to, submitted/published manuscripts, submitted/published abstracts, review of literature, report of a completed research project, research proposal, etc.
- Submit a letter of intent that addresses the applicant’s research interests (including intended area of emphasis and advisor at UWM) conducted research, ongoing research and career goals.
The final admission decision is contingent upon the availability of a faculty member to serve as primary advisor for the student.
Course of StudyCourse of Study
The program requires students to complete a minimum of 58 graduate credits beyond the master’s degree, or a minimum of 79 credits beyond the bachelor’s degree. The curriculum is comprised of 5 components:
- Core curriculum
- Area of emphasis curriculum
All coursework will be decided upon and approved by the student and their PhD committee.
|Students entering with an MS||Students entering with a BS|
|Core Curriculum||16 credits||22 credits|
|Area of Emphasis Curriculum||15||21|
All credits listed are minimum required credits for the program.
Area of Emphasis
Students pursuing the PhD in Kinesiology will propose an area of emphasis in consultation with their advisor and take an array of courses, offered within and outside the Department of Kinesiology, that explore the main dimensions of that area.
The academic area of specialization within kinesiology will be identified prior to the student’s entry into the program. The student’s doctoral committee will be charged with reviewing their program of study to ensure that sufficient doctoral level coursework will be/has been completed.
For information regarding the curriculum and for course descriptions, visit the UWM Academic Catalog .
Get InvolvedGet Involved
Kinesiology Graduate Student Association
Enriches the experience of its students by supporting opportunities for academic advancement and encouraging the application of knowledge and skills to improve the awareness of sport and exercise principles throughout UWM and its surrounding communities.
The UWM Center for Community-Based Learning, Leadership, and Research provides the campus with different opportunities to volunteer throughout the city and beyond. There are opportunities to make a real difference by working to improve the environment, mentoring local kids, stocking shelves at a food pantry, serving breakfast to Milwaukee’s homeless community, engaging in an alternative spring break, and helping older adults. Learn more at uwm.edu/community/students .
Timeline to CompletionTimeline to Completion
In addition to formal coursework, students are required to successfully complete a preliminary examination, a dissertation proposal, and a dissertation defense. The completion of a dissertation, consisting of original research, will be the final step in earning a PhD in Kinesiology from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.
It is expected that this degree will take an average of 4 to 5 years for a full-time student to successfully complete.
Additional information can be found in the UWM Academic Catalog .
Faculty & StaffFaculty & Staff
- Timothy K. Behrens, PhD, CHES, FACSM
Dean & Professor
- Stephen C. Cobb, PhD, ATC, CSCS
- Christy Greenleaf, PhD
- Kevin Keenan, PhD
Associate Professor, Chair
- Lori A. Klos, PhD, RD
Associate Professor, Nutritional Sciences Program Director
- Kristian O’Connor, PhD
- Scott Strath, PhD, ACSM Fellow
- Ann Swartz, PhD, ACSM Fellow
- Jinsung Wang, PhD
Associate Professor, Graduate Program Director