Doctorate in Athletic Training (DAT)

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Advance your athletic training career and prepare to lead with an online clinical Doctorate in Athletic Training (DAT) from Indiana State University. 

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Program Availability

The online Doctorate in Athletic Training (DAT) is open to eligible students in the U.S. (including the District of Columbia and all U.S. territories). The program also is open to students in Canada (all provinces). Out-of-state students are not required to relocate to Indiana unless they are applying to become residential graduate assistants. The program is closed to students residing in countries other than the U.S. and Canada except for U.S. military and State Department personnel and their family members with APO/FPO addresses.

Why Earn a DAT at Indiana State?

Our Doctorate in Athletic Training is the first and only such Commission on Accreditation of Athletic Training Education (CAATE) accredited program in the nation. 

Become a Leader and Innovator

If you are a credentialed athletic trainer who is seeking advanced coursework and applied research, the online DAT program at Indiana State is designed for you.   

The program is delivered using a combination of online coursework 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. The program must be completed in 6 semesters (24 months) of continuous, full-time enrollment. Students come to campus for 4-5 consecutive days each semester for focused, intensive learning face-to-face. Currently, part-time options are not available.

As a graduate, you will be a clinical scholar with the advanced knowledge and skills needed to deliver patient care at the highest levels and to provide leadership and innovation in the advanced practice and instruction of athletic training.

Clinical Education and Graduate Assistantships

The program’s required clinical education experiences can be facilitated through full-time athletic training employment, residential and non-residential graduate assistantships, or paid internships/fellowships. All students, regardless of employment status or location, are required to have Affiliation and Supervisor Agreements with Indiana State University. 

Graduate assistantships are available. Clinical placements are based on certification status, past experiences, areas of needed growth, and student preference (when possible). For information about graduate assistantships, complete this Inquiry Form. You will receive a response in 24 to 48 hours.

Preferred Partnerships

Indiana State University has preferred partnership relationships with multiple companies. This partnership allows employees of those companies to apply to Indiana State University’s Online Graduate Degree programs, including the Doctorate in Athletic Training program. These employees receive a 15 percent discount off in-state tuition rates, waived application fees, and expedited transfer review of prior college-level credit.

Current Preferred Partners include:

  • Boston University
  • Go4 
  • Horizon Health
  • Union Health

Research

The DAT program seeks to develop clinical scholars and lifelong learners and achieves that aim through the completion of research. Students complete a clinically relevant quality improvement project and produce a traditional research project before completion of the program.​ A dissertation is not required.

Learn from Our Excellent Faculty

Our faculty’s mission is to develop clinical scholars with the knowledge, skills, leadership, and innovation needed for the delivery of advanced patient care and instruction of Athletic Training. We are proud of our tradition of excellence and are dedicated to inclusiveness, community engagement, and creating an engaging, challenging, and supportive learning environment. Our goal is to prepare graduates who are not only advocates for patients and the profession of Athletic Training but also productive citizens of the world.

What You’ll Learn in the DAT Program

The DAT curriculum is rooted in the program’s Points of Distinction, which are threaded throughout the courses and have associated measurable outcomes linked to course assignments and activities.

Points of Distinction

  • Advocacy, Education, and Leadership. Students will demonstrate advocacy, educational, and leadership skills for the advancement of the profession.​ 
  • Integrative and Inclusive 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. Students will also demonstrate inclusive, patient-centered health care for all. 
  • System-Level Outcomes and Improvement. 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 through practice-based research. 

Current and Prospective Student Resources

Explore our program materials. 

DAT Policy and Procedure Manual

Course Sequence

Career Possibilities for DAT Graduates

Graduates of Indiana State’s DAT program possess advanced knowledge and skills in athletic training, making them valuable assets in the sports medicine and healthcare industry. Our graduates maximize their career prospects by gaining relevant experience through their internships, research, and networking.

Potential career paths and opportunities include:

  • Professor, educator, or clinical instructor in athletic training programs at universities and colleges
  • Athletic training research in academic settings, research institutions, and private industry.
  • Clinical leadership roles in healthcare settings such as hospitals and sports medicine clinics
  • Leadership positions in athletic training organizations and committees that shape the future of the profession and sports medicine standards
  • Consulting
  • Advanced clinical practice

Assessment

The DAT has graduated more than 150 students since May 2017.  Aggregate data suggest the program is meeting its outcomes. ISU DAT Programmatic Information and Outcomes can also be accessed through the CAATE website.

Accreditation

Indiana State University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

Higher Learning Commission

Indiana State University offers the first and only Commission on Accreditation of Athletic Training Education (CAATE) -accredited DAT program in the nation.

Admission Requirements and Application Instructions

The DAT program is dedicated to making the application and interview process as efficient as possible. We are currently engaging in a rolling admissions process, up until the start of the Summer, 8-week term each year. A meeting to discuss any questions and connect with a faculty member will be scheduled within one week of receiving notification of your application.

Admission Requirements

The online Doctorate in Athletic Training (DAT) is open to eligible students in the U.S. (including the District of Columbia and all U.S. territories). The program also is open to students in Canada (all provinces). Out-of-state students are not required to relocate to Indiana unless they are applying to become residential graduate assistants. The program is closed to students residing in countries other than the U.S. and Canada except for U.S. military and State Department personnel and their family members with APO/FPO addresses.

Applicants must satisfy the following minimum requirements:

  • Present credentials that are the equivalent of a baccalaureate degree from a four-year accredited institution
  • Be certified as an Athletic Trainer credentialed by the Board of Certification or confirm eligibility to take the Board of Certification examination or be credentialed as a Certified Athletic Therapist
  • Provide a current resume that includes relevant clinical and research experiences. The resume should include a cover letter.
  • Provide Evidence of Program Readiness (labeled as the “Department Application” in the online application). This requires a written response to one of the following questions. Your response should not exceed 500 words. AMA guidelines should be used for formatting and citations if applicable.
    1. What does it look like to provide patient-centered care as an athletic trainer?
    2. How can athletic trainers better demonstrate the value of the care they provide?
    3. What does it mean to be an evidence-based practitioner in athletic training?

In addition to the minimum requirements, applicants should satisfy the following minimum preferences:

  • A cumulative grade point average (GPA) of 3.0 from most recent coursework.
    1. If the GPA is below 3.0, please provide a brief rationale for the grade and how it contributed to growth/maturity (200 words or less).

Provide a brief account of any extenuating circumstances you or your family endured that the application review committee should consider.

Application Instructions

Listed below are instructions for applying for admission to the DAT program. Students applying for an assistantship undergo the same application process as students who are simply applying to the program.

How to Apply

Complete the online application for admission to Indiana State University at apply.indstate.edu/apply.

Submit official transcripts from all colleges previously attended. To be official, transcripts must be sent directly from the college attended to: Graduate Admissions, Indiana State University, Welcome Center, 318 North Sixth Street, Terre Haute, IN, 47809. E-transcripts should be sent to admissions@indstate.edu

Submit a nonrefundable application fee of $45.00 (U.S. citizens and permanent residents) or $55.00 (international students) payable by Visa, MasterCard, or check or money order payable to Indiana State University. Submit payment to: Indiana State University, Graduate Admissions, Welcome Center, 318 North Sixth Street, Terre Haute, IN, 47809.

Submit the following as part of the online application process. In addition, email copies of the following directly to the program admission coordinator at jyoung85@sycamores.indstate.edu.

  • A cover letter addressing your leadership capacity and how you see yourself developing into an advanced practice leader.
  • A resume that includes a comprehensive outline of volunteer and professional work experiences, all honors and awards, and a list of professional references.
  • Evidence of Program Readiness (labeled as the “Department Application” in the online application). This requires a written response to one of the following questions. Your response should not exceed 500 words. AMA guidelines should be used for formatting and citations if applicable.
    1. What does it look like to provide patient-centered care as an athletic trainer? 
    2. How can athletic trainers better demonstrate the value of the care they provide? 

What does it mean to be an evidence-based practitioner in athletic training?

Additional Information and Next Steps

Upon our review of application materials, highly qualified candidates will be invited to conduct a personal interview via video conferencing software.

Please note:

  • Admission criteria have been evaluated by the Office of Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion and align with the University’s Advancing Inclusive Excellence Plan.
  • Returning ISU students must apply for re-admission if they have not attended ISU for more than two calendar years.