Psychology 387

PSYC 387: Sport Psychology

Prerequisites: PSYC 121

Credit Hours: (3)

Provides students with an opportunity to learn about the application of psychology in a specific context (i.e., sport and exercise). Students will be exposed to theoretical perspectives, applications, and research methods used to examine individuals participating in sport and exercise. Students will be expected to write, discuss, and apply psychological principles to individuals participating individually in sport and/or exercise or in team settings.


Detailed Description of Course

The course is designed for the presentation of applied perspectives in sport psychology, which are based on theoretical and empirical evidence.  Readings may include chapters from a sport psychology text, research articles, and popular literature articles.  Concepts examined may include learning, motivation, leadership, team performance, mental/cognitive skills (e.g., relaxation, attention/awareness, arousal), and psychological problems encountered in sports (e.g., drug abuse, burnout, stress).  Students will be introduced to these topics through readings and discussions in class.  Demonstration of mental/cognitive skills will be explored through projects and in-class activities.   


Detailed Description of Conduct of Course

The course is designed to combine lecture and in-class discussion of major topics.  Readings will be assigned and discussed in class.  Special attention will be emphasized on the applications of psychological theories and principles.  Students will be encouraged to evaluate the effectiveness and generalizability of sport psychology applications.  Students will complete a semester-long project evaluating specific applications of sport psychology in an applied context.


Goals and Objectives of the Course

Having successfully completed this course, the student will be able to:

1)     Identify the major theories and applications in the field of sport psychology.

2)     Identify major areas of employment for students with a background in sport psychology.

3)     Evaluate research in the field of sport psychology.

4)     Understand the limitations of different methods used to evaluate applications of sport psychology.

5)     Identify appropriate research methods to address questions in the field of sport psychology.

6)     Identify sport psychology applications that contribute to successful performance.


Assessment Measures

May include the following:

1) Students may have quizzes, unit exams, midterms and/or comprehensive finals in this course.

2) A term project. Students will be required to evaluate sport psychology principles and theories in an applied context.  Students may be required to prepare a written report and/or summaries and present term project findings orally.

3) Participation, project critiques, homework, and in-class exercises may also be part of the assessment process for this course.


Other Course Information



Review and Approval

November 2008