The Mike Cleary Major in Sports Studies (SPS)

Associate Professors:  G. S. Farnell (chair); J. Nagle Zera, A. Simonson; Assistant Professors: B. Turner; Visiting Instructor: J. W. Beiting; Practicum/Internship Coordinator: B. C. Beigie

The major in Sports Studies (SPS) is offered by the Department of Exercise Science and Sports Studies.

Sports and sports-related business are significant aspects of society across the continuum of age and time, encompassing the world in which we live—physically, emotionally, mentally, and socially. Sports can be found in all corners of our lives, e.g., school, community centers, business, politics, and world relations. The Mike Cleary Major in Sports Studies is designed to develop and prepare the John Carroll graduate to make a significant contribution to others through, and with, sports: to recognize and respect that sports play a vital role in our society and world—from business to education, to health and wellness; and to follow in the footsteps of John Carroll alumni who have distinguished themselves in sports and sports-related roles such as athlete, coach, athletic trainer, physician, allied health professional, administrator, and sports-information professional. The major in Sports Studies provides our graduates the knowledge, skills, and dispositions to become a leader with, and for, others in sports and sports-related careers.

The major in Sports Studies is one of two majors offered within the Department of Exercise Science and Sports Studies. The overall program is committed to the value and importance of high-quality physical activity in the lives of all people and, to that end, provides a comprehensive curriculum that encourages the development of knowledge, skills, and dispositions across the continuum of physical activity. The ESSS program is grounded in the Ignatian ideal of the dignity of the individual and promotes goals and outcomes that respect this dignity and strives for the maximum achievement of individual potential.

Candidates will receive in-depth preparation for careers in sports and sports-related positions in such areas as sports administration and management, sports, fitness, and wellness for diverse populations. The curriculum focuses on administration, management, program development and implementation, leadership, and working with diverse populations. In addition to the course work, candidates for the major will experience fieldwork, practicums and internships that enhance their sense of vision and mission in connection with their career. The Sports Studies major is composed of 27-28 hours of core courses, 16 hours of course work within a selected program, and 6 hours of electives. Candidates selecting a major in Sports Studies are encouraged to pursue a minor or additional course work in business, economics, exercise science, communications, entrepreneurship, or psychology to enhance career and graduate school options.

The degree requirements for the major in Sports Studies can be found here.

The Department of Exercise Science & Sports Studies is committed to providing a progressive sequence of professional development opportunities for our candidates within courses, and specifically through fieldwork, practicum and internship experiences.

Program Learning Goals in Sports Studies

Students will have the knowledge, skills, and dispositions to be able to:

  1. Demonstrate their knowledge of history, philosophy, mission, personal and professional identity.
  2. Demonstrate their knowledge of working with diverse populations within multiple types of sports administration and sports-related settings, and provide evidence of their ability to be an effective leader.
  3. Demonstrate their knowledge of organization, leadership, and planning for a variety of situations.
  4. Demonstrate their knowledge of research and the appropriate use of research in papers and projects, and for problem-solving and critical thinking.
  5. Demonstrate their knowledge related to the collection and interpretation of data and the effective use of date-driven decision-making in an ethical and moral manner with attention to the decision-making process and its impact on others, e.g., employees, those being served, and the broader community.
  6. Demonstrate their knowledge related to moral and ethical behavior in decision-making for sports professionals in leadership positions.
  7. Demonstrate their knowledge in a professional internship setting in sports administration, coaching, or working with diverse populations, through planning, organization, decision-making, reflection, oversight and implementation of rules, policies, and procedures.