*Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, Athletic Trainers, on the Internet at https://www.bls.gov/ooh/healthcare/athletic-trainers.htm (visited March 24, 2022).
While this answer used to be four years to earn a B.S. Degree in Athletic Training, this was when most students attended their classes on-campus full time. Now, students have some additional choices, including the online option. Depending on how an individual university has this structured, an undergraduate student who takes at least 15 credit hours each semester can earn their degree in close to four years. However, most students decide to take only the minimum 12 credit hours per semester. This makes their program run close to five or even six years. Depending upon how flexible the university is with courses being offered (and how long a term or semester runs), students can anticipate graduating in five years, on average.
Before choosing a major there are some important facts you should know about.
We consider the choice of major to be an important decision for students when selecting Athletic Training schools or programs. Athletic Training is a broad field, and it has a wide potential for developing specializations and expertise. The student should pause and study the situation carefully. It is important to connect the choice of school with the career goals and employment objectives. Students should be sure that the school is well-equipped to provide high-quality Athletic Training education in the subject areas of greatest interest.
Students must look at the curriculum to determine if the subject will be covered thoroughly and in the areas of study that will be most beneficial.
Before you declare a major in Athletic Training, you should have an idea of what kind of timeframe you're looking at. If you are trying to achieve an associate degree, you will only need to finish about 60 credit hours over 2 years. However, if you are going for you bachelor's (B.S. or B.A.) degree in Athletic Training, you will need to complete 120 credit hours over four years. And, if you want to attain a master's degree as well, you will have to finish your bachelors first and then spend around 2 years completing 60 more credit hours. Some of the coursework you will find in typical Athletic Training degrees are:
Only 41% of students actually manage to finish their Athletic Training degree on time. There are a variety of factors that could potentially play a part in unexpectedly extending your college career, such as:
Work. Working over 25 hours per week can get in the way of academics.
Credit Hours. Most colleges will define a full course load as 12 credit hours per semester. If you do the math, you will see that you actually need to take 15 credit hours per semester in order to graduate on time.
Transferring. Many students end up transferring during their college career. Many times, there are hiccups with transferring credits. This can put you behind, or even cause you to end up losing your credits altogether.
Be aware of these common mistakes, so that you don't make them yourself.
The college or university itself should be accredited. Look for a regionally accredited school based on that school's location. The six regional accreditation agencies are The Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools, The New England Association of Schools and Colleges, The North Central Association of Schools and Colleges, The Northwest Association of Schools and Colleges, The Southern Association of Schools and Colleges, and The Western Association of Schools and Colleges.
Online-only schools should have accreditation from the Distance Education Accrediting Commission, the Distance Education and Training Council, or the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges but they should also hold regional accreditation.
Accreditation is an important part of the selection process. It adds value to a Bachelor of Science in Athletic Training degree by offering wider acceptance than degrees from non-accredited schools receive. Accreditation ensures employers and other reviewers of your educational background that you have a quality education in Athletic Training. It informs potential employers that the graduate has the expected level of education and knowledge to perform work in today's high-paced, technology-driven environments.
The Department of Education designates regional and national accreditation agencies. It is also through this department that educational loans and grants are provided to college students. The federal policy is to limit student loans to schools and colleges with acceptable accreditation. Which means that, if your school isn't accredited, you will likely not be eligible to receive any financial aid. For many students, accreditation is key to getting funds to pay for the substantial costs of a degree in Athletic Training.
It can cost $8,000 to $60,000 a year for a bachelor's in Athletic Training. This includes tuition, room and board, books, and supplies.
For a doctoral degree, the cost ranges from $7,000 to $40,000 per year.
Then there are license fees that range anywhere from $500 to over $1,000, which includes application and exam fees as well as the cost for the initial license.
If you attend a brick-and-mortar college in-state, it will cost you much less than it would for out-of-state attendees, while it usually doesn't matter what state you reside in when studying for a B.S in Athletic Training online.
Moreover, when attending a brick-and-mortar school you will have to pay for room-and-board or transportation, books, and other supplies, while online students don't require such things. However, they do have to pay technology fees usually on a per-credit-hour basis, but some may offer tiered rates. Technology fees include tech support, technology improvements, and online training management systems.
We recommend that students make a specific inquiry about job placement assistance programs at any school they consider for a Bachelor of Science in Athletic Training degree program. Advanced institutions incorporate career planning into the two or four-year course of study for a bachelor's or master's degree in Athletic Training. The school may host job fairs, business community awareness communications, and host interviews for employers from across the region.
The school of Athletic Training, college, or university is a broad community of alumni, business sponsors, and corporate partners. Both new and established schools often have extensive local, regional, and national networks. The overall resources of the Athletic Training school and the larger schools can potentially assist in producing high levels of job opportunities and hires for recent graduates.
Some schools pair students with advisers, career counselors, and job coaches at various stages of their academic careers. Observers can see the results in annual satisfaction surveys, and the numbers of students that get interviews and offers of employment.