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Doctorate in Athletic Training

Academic Experience

  • Indiana State University’s Post-Professional education has a long standing history of excellence in Athletic Training. As the profession has evolved over the years, we have worked to create a program that has adapted with the new age of medicine and that produces leaders in scholarly practice. 
  • Our program strengths include:
    • foci on evidence based medicine and clinical teaching
    • facilitation of professional growth through clinical course work
    • production of scholarship in the profession through our Points of Distinction
  • Indiana State University provides the first and only CAATE accredited Doctorate in Athletic Training (DAT) (57 credits) program in the nation. The program is delivered using a combination of online learning and intensive hands-on learning. Cohorts of up to 25 students engage in periods of both online and face-to-face faculty-student interactions to enhance knowledge, skills, and abilities. Campus requirements total approximately 12-15 days annually (4-5 days per semester). The program must be completed in 6 semesters (24 months) of continuous, full-time enrollment.  
  • DAT Policy and Procedure Manual
  • Course Sequence 


  • The mission of the clinical Doctorate in Athletic Training (DAT) Program is to develop an already credentialed athletic trainer who seeks post-professional coursework and applied research. The program develops clinical scholars with knowledge, skills, leadership, and innovation needed for the delivery of advanced patient care and instruction of Athletic Training.

Our program is intended to help students synthesize evidence and clinical expertise with a holistic approach to patient care. An integrative model will help our students assimilate information about prevention, diagnosis, intervention, and administration to help their patients’ progress from initial screening through return to participation.

Our intention is not to develop only classroom educators, but also skilled and effective clinical mentors and advocates for the Profession. While serving as a role model, our students will utilize effective teaching techniques to guide patients, peers, collaborators and supervisors toward an evidence-based and interprofessional approach to patient care.

Our responsibility to the Profession is to measure our successes and failures through clinical outcomes research. Our students aim to respond to clinical challenges facing Athletic Training practitioners through a structured thesis process. In this endeavor, our program contributes to the advancement of our Profession, not only through the production of scholarship but also through the cultivation of life-long learners.  

Points of Distinction

The points of distinction are threaded throughout the courses in the curriculum and have associated measurable outcomes linked to course assignments and activities.

Indiana State University’s Points of Distinction are:

  1. Advocacy, Education, and Leadership – Students will demonstrate advocacy, educational, and leadership skills for the advancement of the profession.​
  2. Integrative Health Care – Students will engage in a comprehensive, whole-body approach to the prevention, evaluation, and treatment of injuries and illnesses of the physically active.​
  3. Clinical and Patient Outcomes – Students will demonstrate the ability to measure and evaluate individual and systems level clinical practice with the aim of contributing to the professional body of knowledge.

Application Deadline

  • Assistantship Deadline: December 15
  • Priority Admission Deadline: February 15     
    Applications received after the deadline will be evaluated and admitted on a space available basis.


  • Admission Requirements
  • We recommend all students in the candidacy phase of certification attempt the Board of Certification Examination as early as the February testing window.

Frequently Asked Questions  


  • The clinical Doctorate in Athletic Training (DAT) Program is for a credentialed athletic trainer who seeks advanced coursework and applied research. Alumni of the program will become clinical scholars with advanced knowledge and skills needed for the delivery of patient care at the highest levels. Individuals with a clinical doctorate would be expected to provide leadership and innovation in the advanced practice and instruction of Athletic Training.  The Post-Professional DAT is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Athletic Training Education (CAATE).

Clinical Education

  • Professional clinical experiences are an integral part of Post-Professional athletic training education. All students engage in mentored clinical practice, regardless of geographic location, with guidance from experienced athletic trainers and faculty.  All students, regardless of employment status are required to have affiliation agreements with Indiana State University, including Supervisor Agreements. 
  • Clinical education experiences can be facilitated through residential and non-residential graduate assistantships, paid internships/fellowships, or traditional employment. 

Graduate Assistantships

  • DAT students may apply for residential and non-residential graduate assistantships in a variety of clinical settings.  Clinical placements are based on certification status, past experiences, areas of needed growth, and student preference (when possible). Assistantships provide financial aid including tuition waivers (9 credits for Fall and Spring semesters) and a $11,640 stipend. Students granted assistantships are also offered teaching assistantship experience, if desired. To apply for the assistantships, please complete the Admissions Process by December 15.  
  • All assistantship positions are for 1 year, are renewable, and are most often a 2-year placement.  Renewal of the graduate assistantship is dependent upon academic eligibility, certification status, and professional conduct.
  • Graduate Assistantship Options 


  • Students enrolled in the DAT will be required to complete clinical outcomes research and produce a research project before completion of the program. Residential students can also engage in further research opportunities with the faculty. 
  • NICER Lab
    • The Neuromechanics, Interventions, and Continuing Education Research Lab is a part of the Applied Medicine and Research Center. The NICER Lab facilitates collaborative undergraduate, graduate, and faculty research in Athletic Training and Sports Medicine.
  • Recent Projects 


The DAT currently has no aggregate data for program outcomes, but the following program outcomes and benchmarks drive the assessment of the program.

  • Graduation Rate – 100% students will graduate from the program
  • On-time completion – 100% students will graduate from the program within 24 months
  • Program Retention – 100% of students will be retained from semester to semester
  • Professional Advancement or Placement – 100% of students in full-time employment will meet their personal or professional goals stated at the onset of the program.  100% of students in part-time employment will gain full-time employment upon program completion.
  • Exit Surveys – Students will indicate that their experiences are overall positive, resulting in response means equal to or exceeding 3.5/5.  This is measured within 2 weeks of graduation.
  • Alumni Surveys – Graduates will indicate that their experiences were overall positive and had a positive influence on their new positions, resulting in response means equal to or exceeding 3.5/5.  This is measured approximately 12 months after graduation.
  • Employer Surveys – Employers of graduates will indicate that their students are positively demonstrating knowledge and skills related to core competencies and points of distinction resulting in response means equal to or exceeding 3.5/5.  This is measured approximately 15 months after graduation.
  • Research and Professional Publications – 50% of student research projects will result in publication and 30% of other papers related to coursework will result in publication
  • Presentations – 60% of student research projects will result in state, district, national, or international presentations

The former Post-Professional MS in Athletic Training has demonstrated positive program outcomes .

Want more information?

  • Contact Dr. Eberman, Program Director, with any questions