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Recreation, MS | (Recreation Administration)

Master Of Science In Recreation

As a result of people today spending more time and money on leisure, fitness, sports, and recreation activities than ever before, the job outlook for recreation administration graduates is excellent. According to the National Recreation and Park Association, the average park and recreation agency employs four executive personnel, seven administrative personnel, and three planning/development personnel.

The IU Online Master of Science in Recreation with a major in recreation administration includes coursework in the philosophy of leisure and recreation; human resource management; finance and budget; research in health, kinesiology, and recreation; and statistics in public health. In this non-thesis degree program, students will complete a capstone project involving the application of key principles to an in-depth study of a practical problem, or an experiential internship.

As a student in the program, you will prepare for executive and administrative positions, managing recreation and leisure services in a variety of settings, including public agencies, private and commercial organizations, parks, and campus-recreation and military-recreation organizations.

Your IU Online MS in Recreation Administration prepares you for careers in:

  • Parks and Recreation Departments
  • Campus Recreation Programs
  • Private/Commercial Agencies
  • General Park Administration
  • Military Recreation

Degree Requirements

To graduate with the MS in Recreation Administration, you must complete a minimum of 35 credit hours.

Requirements are broken down as follows:

  • Recreation administration foundation courses (21 credit hours) 
  • Elective courses (9-12 credit hours) 
  • Capstone experience (2-5 credit hours) 

NOTE: Your elective coursework must be completed in fields of Management and Administration, Theory and Foundations, and Topics and Trends. Electives must be approved by your academic advisor.

You have two options for completing the required capstone experience: (1) an intensive master's project that summarizes the knowledge and skills obtained from coursework, or (2) an internship through which concepts and principles learned from coursework are applied.


To be accepted to this program, you must have:
  1. A bachelor's degree

NOTE: This program is authorized, exempt, or not subject to state regulatory compliance and may enroll students from all 50 states

To apply to this program:

Complete an online application that includes:

  • Transcripts 
  • Three letters of recommendation
  • Statement of purpose (600 words or less)
  • Resume
  • GRE scores
  • TOEFL or IELTS scores (international students only)


Capstone CoursesSPH-R 598 Master's Project in Administration (2-4 credits) --or-- SPH-R 697 Internships in Recreation and Parks (3 credits)2-4 Credits
SPH-Q 501Introduction to Statistics in Public Health3 Credits
SPH-R 510Philosophy of Leisure and Recreation3 Credits
SPH-R 512 or 511SPH-R 512 Administrative Theory and Management Practices in Leisure Services --or-- SPH-R 511 Organizational Leadership of Leisure Services3 Credits
SPH-R 542Fiscal Management in Recreation Administration3 Credits
SPH-R 544Legal Aspects of Recreation Administration3 Credits
SPH-R 585Leisure as a Determinant of Health3 Credits
SPH-X 590Introduction to Research in Health, Kinesiology, and Recreation3 Credits
EDUC-Y 520Strategies for Educational Inquiry3 Credits
SPH-B 535Contemporary Issues in Aging and Health3 Credits
SPH-R 524Fundraising for Public and Nonprofit Agencies3 Credits
SPH-R 531Planning & Design for the Built Environment3 Credits
SPH-R 571Recreational Sports Administration3 Credits
SPH-R 573Current Events in Recreation Administration2 Credits
SPH-R 574Human Resource Management in Recreation3 Credits
SPH-R 685Trends in Survey Methods & Public Health Research3 Credits
SPH-R 691Readings in Recreation2-3 Credits
SPH-R 693Independent Study and Research3 Credits
SPH-R 695Practicum in Recreation and Parks and Tourism Studies1-3 Credits

Find course descriptions with our Search Schedule of Classes/Courses tool.

Tuition & Fees

Cost for Indiana Residents
  • Per Credit Hour
  • Tuition: $508.45
  • 3 Credit Hours
  • Tuition: $1525.35
Note:  Additional fees will apply.
Cost for Out of State Residents
  • Per Credit Hour
  • Tuition: $609.78
  • 3 Credit Hours
  • Tuition: $1829.34
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