Master's in Sports Administration

Advance your career in sports — on campus or online

Sports is a huge economic enterprise that offers a wide range of career opportunities — but competition for sports-related jobs can be quite heavy. If you're interested in starting or advancing your career in the business of sports, you can build the skills you need in Northwestern's Master of Arts in Sports Administration (MSA) program.

Sports administration master's classes are taught by faculty members who share their insights and practical knowledge based on extensive professional experience in sports. The program offers access to team executives and professionals in areas such as operations, marketing, and sponsorship in collegiate, professional, and amateur athletics. The curriculum offers a wide range of electives to enable you to focus on your areas of interest. Optional specializations in sports analytics and college sports management are also available.

Whatever your career goal, in Northwestern's MSA program you'll build a deep skill set and broaden your network. Earn your Northwestern master's in sports administration degree on campus or online.



A.J. Lewis, MSA graduate, wears Colorado Rockies shirt on the baseball diamond.

I knew that there were a lot of key insights that I could take from this program and apply directly to my life, both during my playing career and when I [move to the sports business sector].”

A.J. Lewis (MSA '22), professional baseball player at Colorado Rockies; MBA Candidate, University of Michigan

A.J.'s Full Story


I don't think I’d be where I am in the sports industry without the MSA program.”

Jamie Litoff (MSA '14), Brand Partnerships Manager, Guaranteed Rate



About the MA in Sports Administration

Master's in Sports Administration Program Goals

An interdisciplinary professional program, graduates of the sports administration master's program will possess the knowledge, skills and aptitude to:

  • Lead enterprising sports organizations within an evolving environment
  • Synthesize data to support evidence based decision making
  • Evaluate revenue streams and risk mitigation
  • Create effective business plans to set strategic direction of a sports entity

Sports Administration Curriculum & Specializations

Students in the Master's of Sports Administration program are required to complete 11 courses to earn the degree. The Sports Administration curriculum covers six core courses, three elective courses, a leadership course, and a capstone class or thesis project. Review curriculum details and elective choices while you consider applying to this program. 

The Sports Analytics specialization, offered only online, provides technical and leadership training required for key positions in sports team management and analytics. It provides an understanding of how to work in sports management roles in today’s data-intensive and data-driven world. Building upon Northwestern University's graduate program in predictive analytics and data science, it reviews key technologies in analytics and modeling, probability theory, applied mathematics, statistics and programming. It shows how analytic techniques may be utilized in evaluating player and team performance and in sports team administration.

The College Sports Management specialization focuses on the unique management issues related to collegiate athletics in the United States. College sports, an $8 billion industry, plays a vital role in the US sports market, higher education, media, and the social justice landscape. Students in this MSA specialization learn how to manage the internal and external workings of an athletics department, including the unique human resource, legal, compliance, public relations, marketing, sponsorship, and financial issues facing college athletic departments.

MA in Sports Administration Courses

Explore MA in Sports Administration courses. You can narrow your course search by day, location or instructor.

Master's in Sports Administration Admission

A variety of factors are considered when your application to the Master's in Sports Administration program is reviewed. Background and experience vary from student to student. For a complete list of requirements, see the Admission page for SPS graduate programs.

Sports Administration Tuition and Financial Aid

Tuition for the Master's in Sports Administration program at Northwestern is comparable to similar US programs. Financial aid opportunities exist for students at Northwestern. Complete details can be found on the Sports Administration Tuition and Financial Aid page.

Registration Information for Sports Administration

Already accepted into the Master's in Sports Administration program? Get ahead and register for your classes as soon as possible to ensure maximum efficiency in your trajectory.

Sports Administration Networking Opportunities

Successful networking can be an essential component for entry into the sports field. Northwestern University's Sports Administration networking opportunities provide students and alumni with a competitive advantage as they begin and look to advance in their careers.

Careers in Sports Administration

Only a tiny fraction of people will ever join the professional ranks as players, coaches or top executives, but jobs connected to sports marketing and administration will continue to grow, a result of demographics and the increasing demand for sophisticated organizations that specialize in youth sports. Those with appropriately rigorous education in the field will likely find significant professional opportunity.  For details visit the Sports Administration Career Options page.

Sports Administration Faculty

Instructors in the Master's of Sports Administration program at Northwestern are leaders in the field. They share insights from practical real-world experiences and engage with students on an interpersonal level. Get to know the instructors on our Sports Administration Faculty page.

MSA Student Board

Learn about the MSA Student Board and their efforts to create and host network events for the program. 

Student Stories

There is such a tremendous world-class network of people who are truly there to help and want to offer ideas to students who are getting their start in the sports industry.”

A.J. Edds (MSA '19), Assistant Director of Sports Administration, Big Ten Conference

The MSA program... has truly impacted my career.”

Jabari Saunders (MSA '14), Brand Manager, Nike Basketball 

It gives you a background in a lot of different things. Whether you're talking about accounting, marketing, legal issues, or leadership, it really gives you a broad sense of the sports business.”

Katherine Damisch (MSA '17), Marketing Coordinator, Chicago Wolves

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