BS in Parks, Recreation and Sport

Degree Program Description

The field of parks, recreation and sport is a multi-billion dollar industry, which encompasses important environmental and social issues such as conservation, community building, human development, health and well-being, and the quality of life. The Parks, Recreation and Sport program provides students with opportunities to develop knowledge and skills for designing, managing, and evaluating various leisure services across a variety of user groups. The undergraduate degree program is comprehensive, yet tailored to meet the needs of students based on current job requirements and professional trends including leadership, communication. problem solving, accounting, and economics. All of our areas of emphasis are accredited with eligibility to sit for the Certified Park and Recreation Professional certification.  A wide range of careers in Parks, Recreation and Sport include: outdoor education, park management, park ranger, resource manager, back country guide, visitor relations, recreation supervisors, facility managers, health and fitness, golf course management, park planner, cultural arts, aquatics, account executives, customer relations, game-day operations, compliance, fund raising, sales, and marketing.

Major Program Requirements

Students earning a Bachelor of Science in Parks, Recreation and Sport are required to complete all University general educationUniversity graduation, and degree requirements, including selected foundational courses which fulfill University general education requirements.

Students majoring in Parks, Recreation and Sport may select one of the following emphasis areas:

A student may complete the B.S. in Parks, Recreation and Sport without selecting a specific emphasis area by completing an additional 30 credit hours beyond the major requirements (including 21 credit hours of PRST designated courses).  A student may also earn a second emphasis by using the emphasis core requirements of one towards professional electives in the other (see emphasis area pages for additional details).

Students in Parks, Recreation and Sport are required to earn a C- or better in all Parks, Recreation and Sport core, internship, and core emphasis area courses. 

Students are admissible to transfer into this program with a 2.0 term GPA and 2.0 cumulative GPA. You are directly admissible into the program when you meet the University admissions requirements.

If you are planning to transfer courses (including AP credit) and would like to information on how they apply to a degree program(s), you can email CAFNRadvising@missouri.edu for general recommendations.

Foundational Courses15
MATH 1050Quantitative Reasoning3
or MATH 1100 College Algebra
STAT 1200Introductory Statistical Reasoning3
or ABM 2123 Quantitative Applications in Agricultural and Natural Resource Sciences
or ESC_PS 4170 Introduction to Applied Statistics
PSYCH 1000General Psychology3
RU_SOC 1000Rural Sociology3
or SOCIOL 1000 Introduction to Sociology
AGSC_COM 2220Verbal Communication in Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources3
or COMMUN 1200 Public Speaking
Parks, Recreation and Sport Core (minimum grade of C- in PRST core)25
PRST 1010Introduction to Sport, Recreation, and Tourism3
PRST 1011Academic Planning and Career Orientation in Parks, Recreation, Sport and Tourism1
PRST 2281Business of Sport and Recreation3
PRST 2750Methods in Research and Evaluation3
PRST 3210WPersonnel Management and Leadership - Writing Intensive3
PRST 3215Program and Event Development4
PRST 4100Ethics and Diversity 3
PRST 4150Contemporary Issues in Sport3
or PRST 4250 Parks, Health and Wellness
PRST 4208Administration and Organizational Behavior3
Internship (minimum grade of C- in internship courses)13
PRST 3189Pre-Internship and Career Development Seminar1
PRST 4940Parks, Recreation, Sport and Tourism Internship12
Business and Communication Core15-16
ABM 1041Applied Microeconomics3
or ECONOM 1014 Principles of Microeconomics
or ECONOM 1051H General Economics - Honors
ABM 2183The Economics of the Food, Fiber and Fuel Supply Chain3
or ABM 3224 New Products Marketing
or MRKTNG 3000 Principles of Marketing
ACCTCY 2010Introduction to Accounting3
or ACCTCY 2026 Accounting I
or ACCTCY 2036 Accounting I
or ACCTCY 2136H Honors Accounting I
AGSC_COM 3240Communicating on the Web3
or COMMUN 2100 Media Communication in Society
or ENGLSH 2030 Professional Writing
or THEATR 1400 Acting for Non-Majors
Emphasis Area Requirements (minimum grade of C- in emphasis courses)30

Accelerated BS in Parks, Recreation and Sport to MS in Natural Resources with Emphasis in Parks, Recreation and Tourism

The accelerated option will allow students to earn a bachelors and masters degree within five years.  Eligible students must have completed 90 credit hours toward a BS degree in Parks, Recreation & Sport with a 3.5 GPA or higher  Accepted undergraduate students can take 15 hours of graduate level courses that will count toward both the undergraduate and the graduate degrees.  Once the student has completed 120 credit hours, the corresponding bachelor’s degree will be conferred and they will become graduate students in the MS program to complete the remaining 18 hours of graduate credit.  A minimum of 15 credit hours must be from courses at the 8000 level or above.

Students will still need to complete their 12 credit hour capstone internship as part of the 105 undergraduate credits; the internship cannot be used to fulfill the MS thesis or project requirement. 

Total credits required for graduation must be at least 138 total credit hours:

  • Total undergraduate credit hours: 105
  • Total dual enrollment credit hours: 15
  • Total graduate credit hours: 18
First Year (as Provisional Graduate Student)15
ESC_PS 7170Introduction to Applied Statistics3
PRST 7208Administration of Leisure Services3
PRST 7100Ethics and Diversity 3
Choose two courses from the following list6
PRST 7250Parks, Health and Wellness3
PRST 7260Sustainable Tourism3
PRST 7333Park and Sport Facility Operations3
PRST 7340Advanced Recreation Land Management3
PRST 7357Domestic and International Tourism: Resources, Market, and Impacts3
PRST 7150Contemporary Issues in Sport 3
Second Year (as Graduate Student)18
PRST 8400Constructs of Leisure3
PRST 8430Research Methods in Parks, Recreation and Tourism3
PRST 8089Research Project6
or PRST 8090 Thesis Research in Parks, Recreation, Sport and Tourism
8000-level course6

Thesis/Non-Thesis Option

All MS students are required to complete an original research thesis or professional project.  The thesis topic and general methods are approved by the student’s graduate committee.  The completed thesis is then defended in an oral exam administered by that committee.  The final oral exam also may address discipline-specific knowledge.

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Semester Plan

Below is a sample plan of study, semester by semester.  A student's actual plan may vary based on course choices where options are available.

First Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
ENGLSH 10003MATH 1050 or 11003
AGSC_COM 2220 or COMMUN 12003RU_SOC 1000 or SOCIOL 10003
PRST 10103Missouri State Law Requirement3
PRST 10111Emphasis Area Course3
Humanities & Fine Arts3PRST 22813
Biological, Physical, or Mathematical Science3 
 16 15
Second Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
PSYCH 10003PRST 32154
STAT 1200, ABM 2123, or ESC_PS 41703ABM 1041 or ECONOM 10143
AGSC_COM 3240, COMMUN 2100, ENGLSH 2030, or THEATR 14003General Elective3
PRST 27503Biological, Physical, or Mathematical Science with Lab3-4
PRST 3210W3Emphasis Area Course3
 15 16-17
Third Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
PRST 4150 or 42503ABM 2183, 3224, or MRKTNG 30003
ACCTCY 2010, 2026, or 20363Professional Elective3
Emphasis Area Course3Emphasis Area Course3
Professional Elective3Professional Elective3
Biological, Physical, or Mathematical Science3General Elective3
 15 15
Fourth Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
PRST 41003PRST 494012
PRST 42083 
PRST 31891 
Emphasis Area Course3 
Professional Elective3 
Professional Elective3 
 16 12
Total Credits: 120-121

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Degree Audit

The degree audit is an automated report reflecting a student’s academic progress toward the completion of a degree.  Degree Audits are not available for all programs; however, please consult with the appropriate college or school for audit information.

MU students can request a degree audit by logging in to myDegreePlanner.  Students may also access myDegreePlanner via myZou, in the Student Center, by clicking on the Request Degree Audit link. The audit automatically pulls in the student’s MU course work, transfer courses and courses in progress.  This is available to current students, admitted students, and those who last attended less than three terms ago.

Past MU students can request a degree audit by contacting the Academic Advising Unit of the division in which they were last enrolled at MU. For contact information, go to http://advising.missouri.edu/contact/.

Prospective students, can access a preliminary MU degree audit via https://www.transferology.com/index.htm. Information on the college credits already earned will have to be manually entered before it can be evaluated against current degree requirements.

For additional details on degree audits, go to http://registrar.missouri.edu/degree-audits/index.php.

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Major and Career Exploration

The University of Missouri has many resources to assist you in exploring majors and career possibilities.  For guidance, visit the Majors and Careers website or view specific resources below.

  • If you are considering a change of major or are exploring multiple majors, schedule an appointment with an advisor in the Discovery Center by calling (573)884-9700 or through MU Connect Discovery Center service in you success network.

  • If you have decided on a major, visit an academic advisor in the School or College that you are interested in to discuss the process of declaring the major

  • If you would like to learn more about your career interests, abilities, values and talents, visit the MU Career Center.  No Appointment is necessary to explore career options with one of our staff members.

For additional major and career exploration resources, visit Major & Career Exploration in the catalog.

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