Skip to Content

College of Education

  • An adapted physical education teacher leads a student in a physical activity involving a soccer ball

Adapted Physical Education, M.S.

This is a 100% online program, so you do not have to leave your current position in order to complete your degree. The M.S. in adapted physical education is ideal for anyone who wants to successfully include children with disabilities in general physical education classes, is interested in learning about disability sporting and recreation opportunities, or wants to become an itinerant adapted physical educator.

With this degree, you will be able to support all children, with and without disabilities, and maximize learning in psychomotor, cognitive and affective domains in a general physical education setting.

This is not an initial teacher certification program, however it will qualify you to seek the Certified Adapted Physical Educator credential required to be an adapted physical educator in some states or seek an Adapted Physical Education add-on endorsement or certificate if it is available in your state. If seeking an add-on teaching endorsement, confirm with your state’s Department of Education regarding applicability.


What will I study?

You will acquire the knowledge, tools, and support needed to feel confident teaching students of varying abilities in your general classrooms.

In alignment with the current Adapted Physical Education National Standards, the goals of the program emphasize enabling you to successfully include students with disabilities in general classrooms and to maximize learning outcomes for all children, with and without disabilities, in all SHAPE America Grade-Level Outcomes.

You will not be on your own as you complete this program. You will have ongoing support from your faculty advisor and a dedicated student services staff in the College of Education. You will also connect and interact with your instructors and classmates from around the country through innovative instructional methods. Even though you may not be on campus, you will be part of a dynamic and connected learning community.


What kind of work will I be able to do?

This program will enable you to find jobs including general or itinerant adapted physical educators in elementary or secondary PK-12 settings. Furthermore, our graduates are well-prepared to coach general or adapted sporting teams/athletes and contribute to the holistic education of school-aged children, ensuring all students find personal meaning and enrichment.

If you amass 200 hours of contact time teaching physical education to children with disabilities, you can sit for the Certified Adapted Physical Educator exam (a requirement in certain states). Contact your states’ Department of Education to see if our course work qualifies for “add-on” endorsements or certificates. Students in South Carolina may take courses for continuing education as they see fit.


Special Tuition Rates

South Carolina certified teachers pay a reduced tuition rate
Out-of-state students admitted to this program pay regular South Carolina resident tuition rate.

Tuiton Rates South Carolina Certified Teachers All Other Applicants
Per Credit Hour $515* $572.25
Estimated Total Program Tuition including Fees $17,146* $18,863.50

*This rate applies for SC resident certified teachers completing fewer than 12 hours per semester.

These fees and rates are subject to change and are effective for the 2023-2024 Academic Year. See Specially Priced Online Degree Programs information on the fee schedule and the Graduate One Rate estimated cost to attend based on averages across all university programs.


Financial Aid

Most students in this program receive assistance through loans and other forms of aid. Complete your FAFSA to be considered for these aid programs. 


Sample Coursework

30 credit hours are required to complete the program.

Courses are offered online in a convenient 8-week or 3-week format.

PEDU 715 - Introduction to Adapted Physical Education, Activity, and Sport: Focuses on content knowledge foundational to adapted physical education, activity, and sport programs in self-contained and/or itinerant settings for children with moderate to severe disabilities.

PEDU 716 - Universal Design for Learning in General Physical Education: Focuses on knowledge and skills to design and implement an effective curriculum design, lesson planning and assessment for inclusive physical education settings.

PEDU 717 - Practicum in Adapted Physical Education: Focuses on the techniques, methodologies, and philosophies of adapted physical education teachers.

PEDU 720 - Theories and Principles of Motor Learning and Control: Applications for Adapted Physical Education: Focuses on the knowledge of principles/theories of learning and memory applied to motor skill acquisition with an emphasis on factors influencing and the development of successful instructional and training strategies among individuals with disabilities.

PEDU 771 - Theories and Principles of Growth and Motor Behavior: Applications to Adapted Physical Education: Focuses on knowledge of growth and motor development principles from theory and research with applications for teaching and coaching individuals with disabilities.

PEDU 788 - Action Research Project in Adapted Physical Education: Focuses on knowledge and skills to design and implement an action research project designed for self-reflective systematic inquiry and improvement of teaching in inclusive physical education settings.

PEDU 751  - Principles of Adapted Sport Coaching  (3 Credits) 
Prerequisites:  PEDU 715.

An overview of teaching and training athletes with different disabilities and challenges. Program management and preparing for coaching and competition.

PEDU 710 - Measurement and Research in Physical Education: The treatment of current theory and practice of testing, evaluation, and research in physical education, with emphasis on the methods and tools of research.

PEDU 730 - Psychological Aspects of Athletic Performance and Injury Rehabilitation: The application of psychological principles from motivation, arousal regulation, individual differences and psychological skills for enhancing athletic performance and injury rehabilitation

EDEX 710 - Legal Issues in Special Education (or other course approved by advisor): Analysis of legislation, litigation, and administrative rulings related to special education. Emphasis on the development of legally sound policies and procedures to ensure an appropriate education for students with disabilities.

Connect With Us

Challenge the conventional. Create the exceptional. No Limits.