Sport Psychology Overview
One of the most often asked questions by students and professionals interested in sport psychology is: “How can I become a sport psychologist?” Because of the interdisciplinary nature of the field -- drawing from psychology and the sport/exercise sciences -- there are many different educational pathways to take to get there. Thus, a central issue for those interested in sport and exercise psychology is determining exactly what they want to do in the field. Do they want to teach and conduct research at a college or university? Do they want to coach? Do they want to work with athletes on mental skills training or performance enhancement issues? Do they want to provide athletes with counseling or therapy? How you answer these and other questions will guide your choice graduate and professional training.
To assist students and professionals with answering these and other education-related questions, members of different professional sport psychology organizations, such as the American Psychological Association – Division 47 (Exercise & Sport Psychology) and the Association for Applied Sport Psychology (AASP) have developed several brochures and sets of information. If you are interested in sport and exercise psychology, whether as a current undergraduate or graduate student or a licensed psychologist who is looking for additional specialization, we strongly encourage you to read the information that is relevant to your situation before making any decisions concerning a graduate or additional professional training. If you have additional questions about the field or would like to talk to us regarding graduate and professional training opportunities at the University of North Texas, please contact us as email@example.com or at 940-369-SPORT (7767).
- For information on Graduate Education and Career Opportunities in Sport and Exercise Psychology, click here.
- For information on Supervision and Consultation in Sport Psychology, click here.
- For information on how you, as a current licensed mental health professional, can specialize in sport psychology, click here.
- For information on what sport psychology is and APA’s Proficiency in sport psychology, click here.
- For additional resources developed for students and professionals interested in sport psychology, click here.
You Can Also Learn More About Sport Psychology By Following These Guidelines:
1. Join professional organizations and committees within those organizations
- APA Division 47
- The International Society of Sport Psychology (ISSP)
- The Association for Applied Sport Psychology (AASP)
- The North American Society for the Psychology of Sport and Physical Activity (NASPSPA)
2. Attend professional conferences
- APA, annual convention, usually in August
- AASP, annual convention, usually in September or October
- NASPSPA, annual convention usually in June
- ISSP, convention held every four years, usually in the summer
3. Obtain Continuing Education (CE) Credits
- APA and AASP sometimes offer CE courses in sport psychology each year just prior to
their respective annual meetings. Check their websites for details.
- The conventions and regional conferences listed above also offer CE credits.
4. Read professional journals and textbooks in the field
5. Join an internet sport psychology listserv (click here for more information)
6.Take courses in sport psychology and exercise science at a local college/university.
7. Begin applied work while receiving supervision from a sport psychologist
8. Join a sport psychology research group at a local college or university.
9. Pursue professional certification in the field through AASP (the Association for Applied Sport Psychology) or through APA Division 47’s proficiency.
UNT Center for Sport Psychology Services
Top level athletes know that to achieve performance excellence, they have to be at their best, not only physically, but mentally as well. Are you doing everything possible to ensure that you are mentally prepared to perform consistently at the highest level?
Whatever your skill level, your age, gender, or sport, we can help you evaluate your current performance and develop the skills and mindset needed to reach your optimal level of performance and enjoy what you are doing. We offer specialized services and resources for:
Graduate Education in Sport Psychology at UNT
At UNT, there are two educational options for students interested in pursuing a graduate degree in sport psychology. First, within the Department of Kinesiology, Health Promotion, and Recreation, students can pursue a master’s degree in Kinesiology that emphasizes the psychosocial aspects of sport. To learn more about this degree option, click here.
Second, students can pursue a doctorate within the Psychology Department’s APA-accredited counseling psychology program and then select sport psychology as their specialization. Students who graduate from the doctoral program will be eligible for licensure as a psychologist and certification as a sport consultant through the Association for Applied Sport Psychology. To learn more about this degree option, click here.