Sport Psychology


Sport Psychology is an interdisciplinary program at Grace College that draws on knowledge from counseling psychology and sport management and Scripture. It involves the study of how psychological factors affect performance and how participation in sport and exercise affect psychological and physical factors. In addition to instruction and training of psychological skills for performance improvement, applied sport psychology may include work with athletes, coaches and parents regarding injury, communication and team building. This program encompasses a range of topics, including motivation to persist and achieve, psychological consideration in sport injury and rehabilitation, counseling techniques with athletes, assessing talent, self-perceptions related to achieving, expertise in sport, youth sport and performance enhancement—all from a Biblical perspective. A Sport Management minor is required with this major.

Course Requirements for B.A. or B.S. in Sport Psychology

Sport Psychology Minor


Examples of courses in this major:

PSY 3300 Sports Psychology

This course is designed to help students both learn and then apply practical as well as theoretical information as it relates to the psychology of sport. The class will work to provide an understanding of how personality, self-concept, self-esteem, self-efficacy and other psychological characteristics relate to participation and performance in sport and physical activities. The class will also investigate the impact of stress, motivation, goal-setting, leadership and imagery on performance. The student will also learn common struggles and intervention strategies in working with athletes and recreational exercisers to enhance performance and participation.

PSY 3440 Process and Techniques of Counseling

This course develops a theoretical base for evaluating human problems within a biblical framework. Once this has been accomplished, practical techniques will be discussed to help counselors structure the counseling session and implement change.

PSY 3550 Health Psychology

Students will develop an appreciation of the interaction and relationship between biological, psychological and social factors that influence one’s physical health and health behaviors. This course will examine lifestyle factors such as diet, exercise, stress, substance abuse and individual motivational factors. Additionally, this course will assess how psychological research, theories and principles apply to health promotion, health care issues and chronic illness.

PSY 3600 Motivation and Emotion

This course is a study of the process of motivation and emotion and how they impact behavior and choices that people make every day. This course will study the research on the psychological and physiological aspects of motivation and emotion and the impact that those aspects have on behavior. The course will provide the student with a framework to view motivation and emotion that can help process difficult questions about human behavior such as “why are some people more emotional than others?” and, “is it possible to create environments that increase the motivation of another human?”

BIO 2210 Nutrition

Functions and interrelationships of food nutrients throughout the life cycle of humans. Includes digestion, absorption and metabolism of nutrients as well as dietary evaluation and modification for physiological needs. Other areas of study include the role of social, psychological and cultural factors in food selection.