University of Northern Colorado


The University of Northern Colorado appears in our ranking of the 50 Best Bachelor’s in Sports Science Degree Programs (Campus).

At the University of Northern Colorado, the study of sports management is called sport administration. Students have a variety of choices in studying that field. At the undergraduate level, the degree is the Bachelor of Science in Sport and Exercise Science, Sport Administration Emphasis. Students focus on a combination of marketing, finance, event management, organizational behavior, and facilities management.

Students begin their study with a 15-credit semester of liberal-arts core courses. In future semesters, they take classes like Management of Organizations, Sport Management, Foundations of Business Thoughts, and Business Administration. Students in this track must also minor in Business Administration. Those classes comprise 18-21 credits and bring the total for the degree to 130 spread out over four years.

At the graduate level, there are two options: the Master of Science and the Ph.D., both of which are Sport and Exercise Science, Sport Administration Emphasis. Unlike the undergraduate degree, neither requires a minor in Business Administration. Master’s candidates may select either the thesis track or the nonthesis track. The thesis itself takes up six credits. Ph.D. candidates must complete a dissertation, of course. The master’s degree comprises 30 credits, and the Ph.D. comprises 64-67 credits, depending on electives.

The bachelor’s degree and the master’s degree are both available online. The Ph.D. is not.

About the University of Northern Colorado

As with many universities of the type of the University of Northern Colorado, it began life as a normal school. In this case, the university opened its doors on October 6, 1890 after an 1889 bill passed the Colorado legislature to erect the Colorado State Normal School. By 1911, the name had been changed to the Colorado State Teachers College, and the school began granting bachelor’s degrees.

The school went through two other incarnations before being renamed the University of Northern Colorado in 1970. Throughout its history, the school has expanded programs to better serve the surrounding area. Although the school ranks No. 230 on U.S. News and World Report‘s list of National Universities, its online programs for both bachelor’s and master’s degrees rank in the top 50.

The University of Northern Colorado Accreditation Details

The university holds regional accreditation from The Higher Learning Commission. In addition, several of the university’s programs have received academic accreditation from the following organizations:

  • Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics
  • American Psychological Association
  • American Speech-Language-Hearing Association
  • Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business
  • Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education
  • Commission on English Language Program Accreditation
  • Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs
  • Council on Education for Public Health
  • Council on Rehabilitation Education
  • National Association of Schools of Art and Design
  • National Association of Schools of Music
  • National Association of Schools of Theatre
  • National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education

The University of Northern Colorado Application Requirements

The university selects roughly eight in 10 applicants as incoming freshmen. Students must submit their official transcripts and test scores on the SAT, ACT, or both from the applicable organizations. Self-sent materials will not be accepted. The university requires freshmen to have completed four years each of English and Math in high school. Additional requirements include three years of social studies and science, one year of a foreign language, and two full-year electives.

Graduate students must have a relevant degree, such as a bachelor’s to apply for a master’s or a master’s to apply for a Ph.D., from a regionally accredited institution. They must also have earned at least a 3.00 GPA in all work prior to the graduate school application.

Based on the program for which a graduate student is applying, one or more of the following items will also be required:

  • Auditions
  • Letter, or letters, of recommendation
  • Personal statements
  • Resume
  • Samples of their artistic work
  • Writing samples

One or more of the standardized tests might also be required. These include the Graduate Record Examinations, the Miller Analogies Test, or the Graduate Management Admission Test.

Tuition and Financial Aid

Tuition at the University of Northern Colorado is calculated by credit hour. Using 12 credit hours as a baseline, we get the following:

  • Colorado resident undergraduates pay $4,794.26 per semester.
  • Nonresident undergraduates pay $10,644.26 per semester.
  • Colorado resident graduate students in Sport and Exercise Science pay $7,380 per semester.
  • Nonresident graduate students in Sport and Exercise Science pay $13,800 per semester.

Rooms cost between $5,000 and $7,000 annually, depending on the dorm and type of room that is selected. This includes the available apartments, which also include utility costs. Meal plans cost between $1,600 and $3,500 and depend on a student’s age. People living on campus, even graduate students, must have an on-campus meal plan while people living in the apartments or in off-campus housing may select any plan they want.

Students who wish to apply for need-based financial aid begin the process with the Free Application for Federal Student Aid. On the FAFSA, students include all of their financial information, including that of their parents. The school and the government will then determine how much financial aid is applicable to each student.

Such aid is broken down into three basic categories: grants, subsidized loans, and scholarships. Work-study applies, too, but it’s considered a grant. Beyond the need-based aid, students are allowed to pursue as much private financial aid as they wish. They must remember, however, that any private aid so gained counts as an asset on the FAFSA and will likely reduce the amount of need-based aid for which the student qualifies. Students who have questions on the process should contact the Financial Aid Office.

The University of Northern Colorado continues to focus on both its online and brick-and-mortar students in an effort always to improve.

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