The Department of Kinesiology and Sport Management

The Department of Kinesiology and Sport Management (KNSM) is one the largest academic department at Texas A&M University, generating over 90,000 credit hours and 200,000 (modified) weighted student credit hours each year.

As one of four departments in the College of Education and Human Development, KNSM is currently home to over 3,000 undergraduate students, 246 master’s students, 70 doctoral students (3,921 total), 179 minor students, 103 faculty members, 32 staff members and 90 funded graduate assistants.

Divisions of Kinesiology & Sport Management

The department is comprised of three divisions: KinesiologySport Management and the Physical Education Activity Program. Each division offers various degrees and outreach programs promoting continuing education for students and the community.

Former Student Highlight

Kourtney Martin

During her time as a Group Fitness Instructor at Texas A&M Rec Sports, she was presented with the opportunity to instruct WELLNESS WORKS! fitness sessions to faculty and staff at Texas A&M. She went on to complete her graduate internship with WELLNESS WORKS! before being named Employee Wellness Coordinator in 2017.

Watch her story

Kinesiology & Sport Management

Vision & History

Vision & History

Now the largest academic department at Texas A&M University, Kinesiology & Sport Management has a long, vibrant history. The department started as Physical Education in the Athletic Department at the Agricultural and Mechanical College of Texas, with the head football coach serving as the department head.

Since being separated from the Athletic Department in 1937, eleven individuals have served as Department Head:

  • W. L. Penberthy, 1937-1947
  • Carl E. Tishler, 1947-1967
  • Carl W Landiss, 1967-1979
  • Leonard D. Ponder, 1979-1992
  • Robert B. Armstrong, 1992-1997, 2000-2002 (interim), 2007 (interim)
  • Jack H. Wilmore, 1997-2000
  • Steve Dorman, 2002-2007
  • Jim Eddy, 2008 (interim)
  • Richard B. Kreider, 2008-2017
  • Melinda Sheffield-Moore, 2017-2021
  • Adam Barry, 2021-2022 (interim)
  • Marlene Dixon, 2022-present

From Army Air Force training units after WWII, to required courses in the core curriculum, KNSM’s physical education has always played a fundamental role in academics at Texas A&M. The department’s emphasis on research and scholarships has gained it national recognition, and by 1996 grand funding exceeded $1 million. KNSM was moved into the College of Education in 1969, and its programs and offerings have been significantly revised and expanded since.

KNSM transforms lives through the practice, study and promotion of physical activity, sport and health.


The mission of the Department of Kinesiology & Sport Management at Texas A&M University is to contribute to the quality of life of the citizens of the state, nation and world, through the creation and dissemination of knowledge, training of educators and professionals, and service to the community and profession, with attention to equity and inclusion.  Vital aspects of these efforts are to educate our students and the public about the science and benefits of health, human movement, sport, lifetime fitness activities, and wellness.

More specifically, the Department will:

  1. Prepare entry and advanced level professionals in the disciplines of health, kinesiology and sport management with specializations in teacher education, community health, applied and basic exercise physiology, sport organization dynamics, allied health, motor behavior/neuroscience, sport pedagogy, and physical activity/wellness;
  2. Prepare students for entry into health-related professional programs and/or advanced study in our fields;
  3. Develop applied and theoretical knowledge in our areas of specialization and disseminate our findings to the scientific community and public; and,
  4. Provide service and leadership to public and private organizations in clinical, community, corporate, and educational settings.


In the area of research and development, this department will generate and disseminate applied and theoretical knowledge in the areas of health education, exercise physiology, motor behavior/neuroscience, sports pedagogy, and sport management through:

  • Scholarly activity appropriate to the discipline;
  • External funding for research and development activities;
  • Collaboration with other scholars at the state, national, and international levels;
  • Development and maintenance of state-of-the-art research facilities;
  • Development and maintenance of a scholarly environment conducive to critical thinking and scientific inquiry; and,
  • Preparation of the next generation of scholars in our areas of specialization, which reflects a diverse and changing world.

In the areas of teaching, mentoring, and curriculum, this department will:

  • Recruit students from diverse backgrounds and prepare them for careers as educators and practitioners in clinical, community, corporate, and educational settings to work in a diverse and changing world;
  • Mentor advanced level professionals through research, teaching, and service competencies for careers in teacher education, community health, applied and basic exercise physiology, sport management, motor behavior/neuroscience, sport pedagogy, and physical activity/wellness;
  • Encourage engagement in domestic and global educational experiences in related specializations; and,
  • Encourage commitment to lifelong learning and adoption of an active lifestyle that promotes health and wellness throughout the lifespan.

In the area of service and outreach, the department will:

  • Promote interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary communication and collaboration;
  • Provide university students with a quality elective physical activity program;
  • Translate information about health, physical activity, and sport to the university and public through specialized lectures, publications, events, programs, and social media;
  • Support programs that benefit diverse and underserved populations; and,
  • Provide the public, educational, and professional organizations with leadership and expertise in health, kinesiology and sport management.

Mission Statement Implemented: Initial date unknown
Revised July 1993; Revisions Adopted by Executive Committee July 1993
Revised January 2003; Revisions Adopted by Executive Committee January 2003
Revised December 2007; Revisions Adopted by Executive Committee, March 2009
Revised by Executive Committee August 2014

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