Coaching Degree Programs and Courses

Learn about the degree and certificate programs that can qualify you to work as a coach. See state certification requirements, and learn what courses are included in these programs. Schools offering Athletic Coaching degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What You Need to Know

Educational programs coaching are offered at the certificate, undergraduate and graduate level. These programs provide you with the option to focus on the sport you'd like to coach. Some programs are designed for distance learners, though they may require some hands-on components.

Online Training programs for certification, certificate and degree programs
Programs Certificates, associate's, bachelor's and master's degrees are available
Classes First aid, ethics, coaching theory, sports safety, athletic organization, health science, coaching techniques, injury prevention, nutrition, drug education, sports physiology, psychology, leadership, organizational skills and athletic administration

What Coaching Degree Programs Are Available?

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics ( reports that in order to coach at the high school or college level, you typically need a bachelor's degree in a subject like physical education, athletic training or sports management. However, coaching education programs are available at multiple levels, from certificate to master's degree. You can even find some programs specifically designed to prepare aspiring coaches for certification, which may be needed in certain locales if you plan to coach students in kindergarten through 12th grade. Often, these certification-prep programs don't have any educational prerequisites and can be completed in as little as one semester.

Master's degree programs could be beneficial to you if you already hold a bachelor's degree, are already coaching and are looking for a more advanced specialization in the field. At the master's level, you may have the opportunity to study athletic administration alongside coaching.

What Courses Will I Take?

Training programs for aspiring coaches are composed of several courses that could help you meet coaching certification requirements, such as first aid, ethics, coaching theory and sports safety. You may also take courses in areas like athletic organization, health science and coaching techniques.

Certificate, associate and bachelor's degree programs also may include courses in areas like injury prevention, nutrition, drug education, sports physiology and psychology. You will continue to study these subjects in more depth in a master's program, along with increased focus on leadership, organizational skills and athletic administration.

As an aspiring coach, you will likely focus on a specific sport. Coaching programs allow you to choose from a long list of coaching specialties in areas like:

  • Baseball
  • Basketball
  • Hockey
  • Volleyball
  • Bodybuilding
  • Cross country
  • Soccer
  • Softball

What Online Options Are Available?

Training programs for certification, as well as certificate and degree programs in coaching, are available online. These distance education options could be useful to you if you're a working professional, such as a high school teacher or coach in need of specialization. Because online coursework can be completed at any time, you can participate in classes while continuing to work.

However, you may be required to complete an on-site coaching practicum for some programs. Other online programs may require you to attend a workshop on campus that lasts a week or less.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

  • 1. Degree Options:
The schools in the listing below are not free and may include sponsored content but are popular choices among our users. Tuition and costs will vary across programs and locations. Be sure to always request tuition information before starting a program.

Popular Schools

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