Master of Science in Athletic Training

Mission Statement

The mission of the Whitworth University Athletic Training Program is to equip graduates with the knowledge and skills necessary to become highly proficient and professional entry-level athletic trainers. The program utilizes a multi-faceted approach including quality instruction and clinical education, relational mentoring, and diverse professional experiences to develop holistic healthcare professionals and servant-leaders within the context of Christian higher education.

Program and Student Learning Outcomes

  1. Whitworth University athletic training students will demonstrate entry-level proficiency through classroom, laboratory and clinical learning experiences in the 5 domains of athletic training: (1) Injury/Illness prevention and wellness protection, (2) Clinical evaluation and diagnosis, (3) Immediate and emergency care, (4) Treatment and rehabilitation, and (5) Organizational and professional health and well-being
  2. Students will develop as a holistic healthcare professional in the context of Christian higher education
  3. Students will demonstrate progression in professional behaviors consistent with the athletic training profession and healthcare.
  4. Students will appreciate the value of participation, service and/or leadership within the athletic training profession.
  5. Students will benefit from rigorous, hands-on, quality instruction from instructors with content expertise.
  6. Students will learn clinical skills under the supervision of high-quality preceptors at high-quality clinical sites.
  7. Students will gain clinical experience as part of a healthcare team with a variety of patient/client populations and health conditions commonly seen in AT practice.
  8. Students will successfully complete the program and be well prepared to meet the challenges of entry-level employment positions.

Admissions

Students applying to the professional phase of Whitworth's MSAT program must first complete the following admission requirements. 

  • Students applying directly to the two-year professional phase of the athletic training program must have a bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited institution.
  • Current Whitworth students and transfer students applying for the five-year accelerated track must demonstrate successful completion of all undergraduate major and shared curriculum requirements prior to beginning the professional phase of the MSAT program. Completion of the pre-athletic-training track does not guarantee entry in the MSAT program.

All prospective students (accelerated track or two-year master’s track) must complete the following admissions materials, which will be submitted to the graduate admissions office:

  • completion of the Supplemental Athletic Training Application (including current résumé, written essay and letters of recommendation);
  • more than 60 observation hours documented in at least two different clinical location/practice settings;
  • a successful interview with the AT program admissions committee (if needed);
  • an overall grade-point average (GPA) of 3.0 or higher; or GPA above 3.0 in the last 90 quarter/60 semester credits. Official transcripts must be submitted as part of the application for all courses completed at institutions other than Whitworth;
  • completion of the prerequisite courses listed below with a grade "C" or better within the last eight years. (Eight-year expiration does not apply to psychology.) Equivalent Whitworth courses are suggested in parentheses. It is the student's responsibility to check for course equivalency. Refer to the Whitworth Transfer Equivalency Guide or contact the Whitworth University Registrar's Office (registrar@whitworth.edu) for more information. Course title, credits and numbers vary by school.  Prerequisite courses must be completed prior to starting the MSAT cohort in July but do not need to be completed at the time of application.
  1. Anatomy & Physiology: Two courses in a combined anatomy & physiology sequence (i.e., Anatomy & Physiology I & II), or one course in each anatomy and physiology; must include laboratory experience (HS 220, HS 221)
  2. Exercise Physiology: One course covering human physiology during exercise; must include a laboratory experience (HS 326 AND HS 326L)
  3. Introduction to Psychology: One course covering introductory human psychology and behavior (PY 101)
  4. General/Introductory Biology: One course emphasizing the role of cells in living systems and foundational biology principles. Lab recommended (BI 140 & BI 140L)
  5. General/Introductory Chemistry: One course covering foundations of chemistry. Lab recommended (CH 101 & CH 101L; CH 161 & CH 161L)
  6. General/Introductory Physics: One course covering basic principles of mechanics. Lab optional. Either algebra or calculus based is acceptable. (PS 151, PS 130)

General Policies

  • Students should be familiar with graduate school policies, including specific academic standards, class attendance, suspension, appeals and graduation procedures.
  • No credit toward a master’s degree will be allowed for a course in which the student receives a grade of “C” or lower. A student will be required to retake (at additional expense) any required course in which s/he earns a “C” or lower. Note: This is a higher standard than the Whitworth graduate studies policy of “C-” or higher. 
  • The MSAT program does not accept any transfer courses to apply toward the completion of graduate course requirements. Exceptions may be granted on appeal for certain courses.
  • Students must maintain full-time status and follow the required course sequence each term. This is an intensive, full-time program with day and evening requirements. As such, outside employment is discouraged and may not be possible while a student is completing this degree.
  • The athletic training student handbook, updated annually, includes additional policies and procedures related to the MSAT program.
  • Fees associated with the MSAT program


    Program fee: $800 per year fee for expenses the program pays for students, such as conference registrations, cadaver lab supplies and drug tests for clinical sites
    Course fee: $20 fee for CPR & First Aid certification in AT 520
    Graduation fee: $80 (subject to change)
    Course books and supplies, transportation, immunizations and personal expenses vary from student to student depending on individual circumstances and are described in the AT Program Handbook:  https://www.whitworth.edu/cms/media/whitworth/documents/academics/athletic-training/athletic-training-manual.pdf

Courses

AT 520 Emergency Response and Acute Care3
This course provides a comprehensive survey of emergency management of sudden injury and illness, including appropriate recognition and evaluation strategies, acute care considerations (e.g. splinting, CPR), and referral. The intention is to provide the knowledge and skills necessary for the trained healthcare professional to manage an emergency situation and provide care which sustains life, reduces pain, and minimizes the consequences of injury or sudden illness until more advanced medical help arrive or the situation is resolved.
AT 521 Techniques in Athletic Training1
Survey of techniques utilized in clinical athletic training practice which are essential before the first clinical rotation. Techniques will include taping, bandaging, protective equipment & device application, and therapeutic interventions
AT 532 Pathophysiology and Therapeutic Modalities3
This course will address the effective application of therapeutic modalities in order to facilitate the healing and rehabilitation of athletic injuries. Content includes the pathology of injury to various body tissues, the healing response, and the physiological effect of therapeutic modalities commonly used in sports medicine.
AT 534 Examination of Lower Extremity Pathology4
In-depth study of primarily orthopaedic conditions affecting the lower extremities including physical examination, injury recognition, treatment, prevention and emergency management. Laboratory experiences emphasize the methods and techniques in evaluating lower extremity injuries/conditions, as well as preventative taping/bracing.
AT 537 Clinical Anatomy Lab2
Course will include dissection of the human cadaver, emphasizing the musculoskeletal, articular, nervous and vascular systems. Emphasis will be placed on the role of anatomical structures as they relate to common pathologies in physically active populations.
AT 544 Techniques in Manual Therapy2
This course is an introduction to the principles and application of common manual therapy techniques in athletic training. Topics will include joint mobilizations, proprioceptive neuromuscular facilitation, strain-counterstrain, trigger point, and other soft-tissue techniques.
AT 545 Examination of Spine and Upper Extremity Pathology4
In-depth study of primarily orthopaedic conditions affecting the spine and upper extremities including physical examination, injury recognition, treatment, prevention and emergency management. Laboratory experiences emphasize the methods and techniques in evaluating spine and upper extremity injuries/conditions, as well as preventative taping/bracing.
AT 546 General Medical Conditions3
This course prepares the athletic training student to be able to appropriately identify, evaluate, treat, refer and counsel patients who present with non-orthopedic medical conditions. Topics include (but are not limited to) medical conditions of the nervous system, urinary/reproductive system, cardiovascular/respiratory systems, endocrine system, renal system and integumentary system.
AT 549 Research Methods for Evidence Based Practice3
This course focuses on the design of clinically-relevant original research as well as utilizing the current literature to answer a clinical question. Topics include critical review of literature, experimental methods, interpretation of basic statistics in clinical research, and writing a manuscript.
AT 552 Therapeutic Exercise3
Instruction on the effective application of therapeutic exercise in order to reduce disabilities, functional limitations, and impairments in a variety of athletic/patient populations. Content includes principles of therapeutic intervention design, implementation and progression for a variety of orthopedic pathologies including post-surgical care.
AT 557 Biomechanics of Human Movement3
This course introduces students to advanced analysis of human movement using biomechanical principles. Course will cover the fundamental principles of biomechanics, with application to human movement analysis using biomechanical software, laboratory and clinical instrumentation.
AT 559 Statistics in Health Professions Research3
This course introduces statistical concepts common in health professions research (including t-tests, ANOVA, repeated-measures ANOVA, correlation, and regression). Emphasis will be placed on selecting appropriate statistical tests, analyzing data using statistical software, interpreting results, and effectively communicating results through text, tables and figures.
AT 561 Exam Preparation1
This course is a guided review aimed at improving student success on the Board of Certification (BOC) national licensure examination. An emphasis will be placed on self-assessment of professional competence and creation of a professional development plan to achieve goals of initial and on-going credentialing.
AT 562 Advanced Clinical Practice3
This course focuses on integration and synthesis of athletic training knowledge into the evaluation and care of complex clinical pathologies and patients. Utilizing a case-based approach, students will acquire knowledge and skills (such as casting, suturing, interpretation of diagnostic imaging, etc.) used in advanced clinical practice.
AT 563 Administration and Business in Athletic Training3
This course is focuses on healthcare administration and business skills necessary for success within the athletic training profession, especially how to create and comply with administrative policies and regulations that guide and govern safe and effective healthcare practice. Content includes themes of management, leadership, legal concerns, and business modeling.
AT 571 Clinical Experience I2
Clinical experience in athletic training I. Primarily involves the completion of clinical hours under the direct supervision of a licensed preceptor (athletic trainer or other healthcare provider), fulfillment of clinical competencies, and assignments integrating traditional academic coursework with clinical practice.
AT 572 Clinical Experience II2
Clinical experience in athletic training II. Primarily involves the completion of clinical hours under the direct supervision of a licensed preceptor (athletic trainer or other healthcare provider), fulfillment of clinical competencies, and assignments integrating traditional academic coursework with clinical practice. Students will develop professional characteristics, attitudes, and communication skills. Students will have opportunities to incorporate holistic, compassionate patient care and demonstrate servant-leadership within the athletic training profession
AT 573 Clinical Experience III1
Clinical experience in athletic training, emphasis on general medical pathologies and skills. Primarily involves the completion of clinical hours under the direct supervision of a licensed preceptor (athletic trainer or other healthcare provider), fulfillment of clinical competencies, and assignments integrating academic coursework with clinical practice.
AT 574 Clinical Experience IV1
Clinical experience in athletic training IV, emphasis in clinical practice settings. Primarily involves the completion of clinical hours under the direct supervision of a licensed preceptor (athletic trainer or other healthcare provider), fulfillment of clinical competencies, and assignments integrating traditional academic coursework with clinical practice in rehabilitation.
AT 575 Clinical Experience V3
Clinical experience in athletic training V. Primarily involves the completion of clinical hours under the direct supervision of a licensed preceptor (athletic trainer or other healthcare provider), fulfillment of clinical competencies, and assignments integrating traditional academic coursework with clinical practice.
AT 576 Clinical Experience VI1-3
Clinical experience in athletic training VI. Primarily involves the completion of clinical hours under the direct supervision of a licensed preceptor (athletic trainer or other healthcare provider), fulfillment of clinical competencies, and assignments integrating traditional academic coursework with clinical practice.
AT 581 Seminar in Healthcare2
An overview of the U.S. health care system, including the roles, responsibilities, scope of practice and referral guidelines for various health professionals. Special emphasis will be placed on the role of athletic trainers within the system, as well as systemic opportunities and barriers affecting athletic training practice.
AT 582 Seminar in Athletic Training2
An overview of the historical and current context of the athletic training profession, including roles and responsibilities of various governing organizations (e.g. NATA, BOC, CAATE, and state licensing boards), government regulation, and understanding important athletic training professional documents (e.g. position statements, Standards of Practice, NATA Code of Ethics, etc.).
AT 583 Pharmacology for Athletic Trainers2
This course prepares the athletic trainer to safely and effectively recommend over the counter medications, recognize common prescription medications and their implications for physical activity, understand basic pharmacological principles, and act appropriately when the abuse of legal or illegal substances is suspected.
AT 584 Psychology for Athletic Trainers2
This course equips athletic training students with the knowledge and skills to respond appropriately to psychosocial disorders and mental health emergencies, as well as address psychological factors in injury response and rehabilitation in order to facilitate return to optimal function. Emphasis is placed on developing clinician skills in communication.
AT 585 Sports Nutrition3
This course will focus on the role of evidence-based nutrition in optimizing physical performance in active individuals. An emphasis will be placed on evaluating recent research in the field and translating this information to lay audiences.
AT 586 Strength and Conditioning Programming3
This course is designed to be a practically-based and administrator-focused strength and conditioning experience for athletic training students. In the course of this class, students will learn basic strength and conditioning program design principles and how to perform, teach, and supervise relevant weightlifting skills and athletic assessments. Students will also learn various concepts related to the administrative aspects of strength and conditioning, such as facility design, risk management, and industry best practices. Competence with the content covered in this course, combined with pre-requisite content knowledge, should allow students to successfully sit for the Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist exam.
AT 598A Capstone in Athletic Training1
This capstone experience is designed to prepare athletic training students for successful transition to entry-level employment in athletic training or further graduate education. The course will include engagement with current professional issues and reflection on professional philosophy, as well as completion of a capstone graduate project.
AT 598B Capstone in Athletic Training (B)1
This capstone experience is designed to prepare athletic training students for successful transition to entry-level employment in athletic training or further graduate education. The course will include engagement with current professional issues and reflection on professional philosophy, as well as completion of a capstone graduate project.