Sports Management & Administration Degree Programs in Iowa

Overview in Sports Management & Admin. Programs

Iowa has a number of reputable sports management degree programs, despite being one of the smaller states in the Midwest. These courses provide students with an inside look at the sports industry and prepare them for careers in educational institutions, professional sports organizations, and a variety of other fields. Several sports management programs are available for students to choose from. Here are a few examples:

  1. Undergraduate Degree Programs: Usually leading to a Bachelor of Science (BS) or Bachelor of Arts (BA) degree, these programs concentrate on the business and management aspects of the sports sector. Courses in finance, management, marketing, accounting, and specific subjects like sports law, marketing for athletes, and sports ethics are all rather frequent. With this degree, you may become a sports agent, sales manager, sports journalist, or facilities manager.
  2. Graduate Degree Programs: A Master of Science (MS) or a Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in sports management is the usual result of these programs. Among the courses offered to students are sports analytics, sports law, facility management, and strategic management. Those with a master’s or doctoral degree in sports management may be qualified for higher level and more specialized professions in the sports industry, such as director of sports marketing, economist in sports, manager of sports analytics, psychologist in sports, or attorney in sports law.
  3. Certificate Programs – These programs offer students specialized instruction in a particular aspect of sports management, such as event management, marketing, or sports law, and are typically shorter in length.

Working in sports management is a fascinating career that could involve interacting with NFL stars or coaching aspiring athletes. Below are some accredited sports management degree programs in Iowa:

What Will I Learn in A Sports Management Program or Sports Administration Program?

Curriculum and Example Courses

Depending on the program and degree level, a sports management program’s curriculum and coursework may vary. Nonetheless, the following are some sample courses that can be found in a program in sports management:

Sports Facility and Event Management: The planning, design, operation, and maintenance of sporting venues and events are all covered in this course. It teaches students the rules and procedures for operating several kinds of sporting venues, including stadiums, arenas, and recreation facilities. There may be coverage for logistics, crowd control, risk management, and venue upkeep.

Sports Media and Communication: The function of the media and communication in sports is studied in this course. It covers a wide range of sports communication tactics and distribution channels, including broadcast, social media, and public relations. The usage of various communication technologies by sports organizations to advertise events, maintain their brand, and interact with supporters will become clear to the students. There may be discussion about media ethics, crisis communication, and the use of digital media in sports.

Sports Finance and Budgeting: The financial components of the sports sector are covered in this course, including managing financial resources, creating budgets, and analyzing financial data. Students will learn about the particular financial rules and procedures that govern the sports sector as well as how these rules relate to different institutions such professional sports teams, collegiate athletic departments, and sporting venues. In addition to learning about costs like player salaries, facility management, and travel expenses, students will also learn about income creation, which includes ticket sales, sponsorships, and merchandise sales.

Degree Timelines

The length of sports management programs varies depending on the program type and educational level. Below are some example timetables for different sports management programs:

  • Bachelor’s Degree: The typical length of time to obtain this degree in sports management is four years.
  • Master’s Degree: A master’s degree in sports management can be earned in one to three years, depending on the program’s full-time or part-time format.
  • Doctorate Degree: Sports management doctoral programs often run three to five years.
  • Certificate Programs: These quick courses in sports management can last anywhere between a few weeks and several months.

Overall, the duration of a sports management program varies depending on the school, the type of program, and the individual student’s circumstances.

Difference Between Sports Management & Sports Marketing

Sports management is the term referring to the financial and administrative facets of the sports industry. Teams, facilities, events, and athletes are under the direction of sports management experts. Sports marketing, on the other hand, relates to the marketing and promotion of athletic events, teams, and merchandise. Professionals in sports marketing employ marketing techniques to increase income and brand recognition for sports organizations.

There is considerable overlap between the two disciplines, but the fundamental difference is that sports management is more concerned with the business aspects of the sports industry, while sports marketing is more concerned with the marketing aspects. Both positions are essential to the sports industry’s development and call for a combination of business know-how and a passion for sports.

What Are The Standard Entrance Requirements to Enroll?

Depending on the university and degree of education, different applicants may have different prerequisites for admission to a sports management program. Students should be aware of the following basic requirements, though:

  • High school diploma
  • Official transcripts
  • GPA
  • Standardized Test Scores (SAT/ACT)
  • Letters of recommendation
  • Personal statement
School NameCityStateProgram LevelProgram NameProgram URL
Ashford UniversityClintonIowaBachelorOnline B.A. in Sports & Recreation ManagementClick Here
Ashford UniversityClintonIowaBachelorB.A. in Sports & Recreation ManagementClick Here
Buena Vista UniversityStorm LakeIowaBachelorOnline Bachelor's in Business : Sport BusinessClick Here
Buena Vista UniversityStorm LakeIowaBachelorBachelor's in Business : Sport BusinessClick Here
Clarke UniversityDubuqueIowaBachelorBachelors in Physical Education/Sport ManagementClick Here
Graceland University - IowaIndependenceIowaBachelorB.A. in Sport ManagementClick Here
Grand View UniversityDes MoinesIowaBachelorBS in Sport ManagementClick Here
Iowa Wesleyan CollegeMount PleasantIowaBachelorB.B.A. with a concentration in Sport ManagementClick Here
Loras CollegeDubuqueIowaBachelorBachelor's in Sport ManagementClick Here
Simpson CollegeIndianolaIowaBachelorB.S. in Sports AdministrationClick Here
St. Ambrose UniversityDavenportIowaBachelorB.A. in Sport ManagementClick Here
University of DubuqueDubuqueIowaBachelorB.A. in Sport ManagementClick Here
University of IowaIowa CityIowaBachelorB.S. in Sport & Recreation ManagementClick Here
University of Iowa - Des MoinesIowa CityIowaBachelorB.S. in Sports & Recreation ManagementClick Here
Upper Iowa UniversityFayetteIowaBachelorBachelors in Business Administration: Sports Administration EmphasisClick Here
William Penn UniversityOskaloosaIowaBachelorOnline B.A. in Sport and Recreation ManagementClick Here
William Penn UniversityOskaloosaIowaBachelorB.A. in Sport and Recreation ManagementClick Here
Grand View UniversityDes MoinesIowaMaster'sMS in Sport ManagementClick Here
University of DubuqueDubuqueIowaMaster'sMMSM in Sport ManagementClick Here
University of IowaIowa CityIowaMaster'sMA in Leisure StudiesClick Here
Upper Iowa UniversityFayetteIowaMaster'sMasters in Sport AdministrationClick Here
William Penn UniversityOskaloosaIowaMaster'sOnline Masters of Sport ManagementClick Here

University of Iowa

Bachelor of Science in Sport and Recreation Management
Delivery Method:
On-Campus, Online
Credits Required: 120 Credits Hours

In fostering the analytical, rhetorical, and research skills necessary for leadership roles in the sport and recreation sector, this curriculum pushes students to think critically and creatively. To further support learning and growth, the program places a strong emphasis on experiential learning and offers opportunity for students to apply concepts and abilities in real-world contexts. All required courses include Contemporary Issues in Sports, Managerial Operations in Sport and Recreation, Sales in Sport, and Communications and Public Relations in Sports. ACT or SAT scores must be submitted in order to apply.

Master of Arts in Sport and Recreation Management
Delivery Method: On-Campus
Credits Required: 30 Credit Hours

Students who complete this program will be able to apply and analyze financial and risk management principles, as well as marketing and promotion strategies in the sport and recreation industries. They will also be able to demonstrate a thorough understanding of leadership principles and the experience economy and how it applies to the sport industry. Experiential learning in a field experience course is required, as is a capstone course that allows students to conduct research in an area of interest with practical application during the final semester before graduation. Field Experience in Sport and Recreation, The Economy of Experience, Risk Management, Economics and Financing, Sport Administration, and Marketing and Sport Promotion are all covered. To be admitted to the program, applicants must have a baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited college or university in the U.S. or an equivalent degree from another country as determined by the Office of Admissions, as well as a minimum GPA of at least 3.00.


William Penn University

Sport Management
Delivery Method:
Credits Required: 124 Credit Hours

This carefully designed academic program combines specific coursework in sports and recreation with the business fundamentals required to become a successful professional. The extensive curriculum, combined with hands-on experience gained through field experiences and internships, provides students with the academic knowledge and practical training needed for success in the sport and recreation industry. Fundamental Concepts of Kinesiology, American Sports History, Sports Communication, and Sports Marketing are all required courses. Admission requires graduation from an accredited secondary school, a 2.0 cumulative high school GPA or higher (2.5 recommended), and a composite ACT score of 18 or equivalent SAT score.

Masters of Sport Management
Delivery Method: On-Campus
Credits Required: 30 Credit Hours

This program is designed to provide students with the necessary skills to excel in marketing or management positions in professional or collegiate sports. Students will take courses in Ethical and Moral Business Leadership, Sport Marketing, Risk Management in Sport, and Sport Finance. Admission requires proof of an undergraduate degree from an accredited institution, transcripts, a cumulative 3.0 GPA on previous college credit, two letters of recommendation, a current resume, and a statement of purpose.


Upper Iowa University

Master of Sport Administration (MSA)
Delivery Method: On-Campus, Online
Credits Required: 36 Credit Hours

This program follows an 8-week curriculum that is particularly flexible, convenient, and affordable for adult learners. It equips students with the most up-to-date theories, concepts, and learning models for administrative, coaching, and leadership positions in high school, higher education, and sports business settings. The degree can be obtained with a Sport Management emphasis. Sport Administration, Ethics in Sport, and Sport Communication and Marketing are all required courses. Applicants must have a baccalaureate degree from an accredited institution and at least a 2.75 GPA in their undergraduate coursework or a 3.0 on the most recent 60 semester credits of undergraduate work to be eligible for the program.


Loras College

Sport Management, B.A.
Delivery Method: On-Campus
Credits Required: 120 Credit Hours

Students in this program learn about the business side of sports. The curriculum includes relevant coursework, applied learning, and field education. Women in Sport, Sport Marketing & Promotions, Sport Facility & Event Management, Ethics in Sports, and Sport & Society are among the courses available.


St. Ambrose University

Bachelor of Arts in Sport Management
Delivery Method: On-Campus
Credits Required: 120 Credit Hours

This major is intended to prepare students for careers in sport management, which includes the financial, legal, management, and marketing aspects of the sport, athletics, wellness, and fitness industries. Students must be willing to participate in hands-on learning experiences both inside and outside of the traditional classroom, have a strong interest in business, finance, and accounting, and be committed to developing a broad range of communication skills. Introduction to Sport Management, Sport Promotions and Marketing, and Inequality in Sport, Recreation, and Exercise are all required courses. To apply for admission, you must have a cumulative, unweighted GPA of 2.5 or higher (on a 4.0 unweighted scale) from an accredited high school, as well as your academic transcript.


Career & Salary Opportunities in Sports Management & Administration in Iowa

There are numerous chances for those interested in a career in sports management in Iowa’s vibrant and expanding sports business. The Iowa Wolves NBA G League basketball team, the Iowa Wild AHL hockey team, and the Cedar Rapids Kernels minor league baseball team are just a few of the professional sports teams that call Iowa home.

Together with sports teams, Iowa is also where you’ll find a significant number of sports businesses, such as sports marketing companies, sports equipment producers, and sports venues. These organizations provide several chances for anyone interested in sports management and administration. Here are some careers you will be qualified for as a graduate of sports management programs:

  • Coach
  • Facility manager
  • Health/fitness club manager
  • Personal relations director
  • Player personnel
  • Sales representative
  • Scout
  • Sports agent/recruiter
  • Sports broadcaster and media relations
  • Sport marketer
  • Ticket and sponsorship director