BS in Parks, Recreation and Tourism

Degree Program Description

The public’s desire for quality of life, the pursuit of happiness and for well-organized leisure activities drives a $600 billion marketplace supporting parks, recreation, more than $152 billion in sport management, and a $1.3 trillion investment in tourism. Students interested in Parks Recreation and Tourism are individuals who are active, involved in sports and the great outdoors, enjoy travel.  The degree program can be individualized by choosing from four emphasis areas – tourism development, leisure service management, natural resource recreation management and sport management.  Some of the parks, recreation and tourism careers include: Recreation administrators;tourism development, marketing and event specialists; natural resources land and visitor management professionals; and sport management.  Recreation administrators are engaged within a wide variety of public and private entities including public parks and recreation systems, sports complexes, golf courses, resorts, recreation centers, aquatic theme parks and pools, and campus recreation facilities. They are responsible for management and operations, safety, education, marketing, staff supervision and community relations, as well as financial profitability.  Tourism development, marketing and event specialists grow in careers associated with tourism venues and enterprises; resorts; local, state and regional economic development agencies; and visitor and convention services. They are responsible for promoting their clients throughout the broadly defined tourism industry. This includes organizing promotional and profitable events for venues and communities, developing public relations materials or establishing relationships with various local interest groups.  Natural resource land and visitor management professionals are employed by local, state and federal agencies such as large metropolitan, state and federal park systems. Their responsibilities include managing park resources and facilities, the interpretation of resources, park operations, park planning and design, outdoor recreation programming, and environmental education.  In Sport management, the economics drives a wide variety of opportunities including professional and collegiate sport, professional management, sporting goods, media, administration and finance. This emphasis is preparatory for post-baccalaureate and graduate work in law, business or sport. Students are prepared through coursework and experience to succeed in the competitive sport environment.

Major Program Requirements

Satisfactory completion of 120 credits is required: a minimum of 108 credits in course work and a 12-credit internship with a cumulative GPA of 2.0. Professional preparation includes course work in a professional core, professional option requirements and electives, and an internship. Students must also complete all degree, department, college and university graduation requirements, including university general education.

Students transferring into Parks, Recreation and Tourism from other MU degree programs or from other institutions must have a 2.5 GPA (past term and cumulative) for all work attempted.

Major core requirements (minimum grade of C- in core)
ENGLSH 1000Exposition and Argumentation3
COMMUN 1200Public Speaking3
or AG_ED_LD 2220 Verbal Communication in Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources
Communication Elective3
Humanities and Fine Arts6
Biological, Physical, and Mathematical Sciences12
MATH 1100College Algebra3
STAT 1200Introductory Statistical Reasoning3
or STAT 1300 Elementary Statistics
or STAT 1400 Elementary Statistics for Life Sciences
or STAT 2500 Introduction to Probability and Statistics I
or ESC_PS 4170 Introduction to Applied Statistics
Biological, Physical, or Mathematical Science with at least 1 Lab6
Business Core9
ACCTCY 2010Introduction to Accounting3
or ACCTCY 2026 Accounting I
or ACCTCY 2036 Accounting I
or ACCTCY 2136H Honors Accounting I
ECONOM 1014Principles of Microeconomics3
or ECONOM 1015 Principles of Macroeconomics
or ECONOM 1051 General Economics
or AG_EC 1041 Applied Microeconomics
or AG_EC 1042 Applied Macroeconomics
MRKTNG 3000Principles of Marketing3
or AG_EC 2183 The Agricultural Marketing System
or AG_EC 3224 New Products Marketing
Social and Behavioral Science13
HIST 1100Survey of American History to 18653
or HIST 1100H Survey of American History to 1865 - Honors
or HIST 1200 Survey of American History Since 1865
or HIST 1200H Survey of American History Since 1865 - Honors
or HIST 2210 Twentieth Century America
or HIST 2440 History of Missouri
or HIST 4000 Age of Jefferson
or HIST 4220 U.S. Society Between the Wars 1918-1945
or HIST 4230 Our Times: United States Since 1945
or POL_SC 1100 American Government
or POL_SC 1100H American Government - Honors
or POL_SC 2100 State Government
PSYCH 1000General Psychology3
SOCIOL 1000Introduction to Sociology3
or RU_SOC 1000 Rural Sociology
H_D_FS 2400Principles of Human Development4
Professional core (required for all options, minimum grade of C- in core)22
P_R_TR 1010Introduction to Leisure Studies3
P_R_TR 1011Academic Planning and Career Orientation in Parks, Recreation and Tourism1
P_R_TR 2080Global Sport Environments3
or P_R_TR 2111 Introduction to Planning and Evaluating Leisure Environments
P_R_TR 2750Methods in Research and Evaluation3
P_R_TR 3210Personnel Management and Leadership in Leisure Services3
P_R_TR 3215Program Development in Leisure Services3
P_R_TR 3220Introduction to Recreation for Individuals with Disabilities3
P_R_TR 4208Administration of Leisure Services3
Professional emphasis requirements (minimum grade of C- in emphasis courses)9-12
Leisure Service Management emphasis9
AG_EC 3224New Products Marketing3
or AG_EC 3285 Problems in Agricultural Economics
or MANGMT 3540 Introduction to Business Law
or P_R_TR 3230 Introduction to Parks and Outdoor Recreation Services
or P_R_TR 4356 Tourism Management
or PUB_AF 4001 Topics in Public Affairs
or SOCIOL 2200 Social Inequalities
or SOCIOL 3255 Youth in Today's World
or SOCIOL 3430 The Sociology of Sport
P_R_TR 4333Park Management3
P_R_TR 2355Private and Commercial Recreation Principles and Practice3
Natural Resources Recreation Management emphasis9
P_R_TR 3230Introduction to Parks and Outdoor Recreation Services3
P_R_TR 3231Principles of Interpretive Outdoor Recreation3
P_R_TR 4340Advanced Recreation Land Management3
Tourism Development emphasis9
P_R_TR 2355Private and Commercial Recreation Principles and Practice3
P_R_TR 4356Tourism Management3
P_R_TR 4357Tourism Planning and Development3
Sport Management emphasis12
P_R_TR 2281The Business of Sport3
P_R_TR 3185Sports Economics and Finance3
P_R_TR 3282Governance and Policy in Sport and Leisure3
P_R_TR 4385Legal Aspects of Sport3
P_R_TR 3189Pre-Internship Seminar in Parks, Recreation and Tourism1
P_R_TR 4940Parks, Recreation and Tourism Internship12
Professional option electives18-21
Advisor-approved courses specific to the student's selected academic option
General Electives6-9

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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
ENGLSH 1000 or MATH 11003MATH 1100 or ENGLSH 10003
COMMUN 1200 or AG_ED_LD 22203ECONOM 1014, AG_EC 1041, or AG_EC 10423
P_R_TR 10103SOCIOL 1000 or RU_SOC 10003
P_R_TR 10111Humanities & Fine Arts3
Humanities & Fine Arts3Missouri State Law Requirement3
Biological, Physical, or Mathematical Science3 
 16 15
Second Year
PSYCH 10003ACCTCY 2010, 2026, 2036, or 2136H3
STAT 1200, 1300, 1400, 2500, or ESC_PS 41703MRKTNG 3000, AG_EC 2183, or AG_EC 32243
P_R_TR 2080 or 21113P_R_TR 27503
Communication Elective3Professional Elective3
Biological or Physical Science with Lab3Emphasis-Area Course3
 15 15
Third Year
H_D_FS 24004P_R_TR 32153
P_R_TR 32203Emphasis-Area Course3
Professional Elective6Professional Elective3
Emphasis-Area Course3General Elective6
 16 15
Fourth Year
P_R_TR 42083P_R_TR 494012
P_R_TR 32103 
P_R_TR 31891 
Emphasis-Area Course or Professional Elective3 
Professional Elective6 
 16 12
Total Credits: 120

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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 who have attended since August 2007 can request a degree audit by logging in to myZou and navigating to Self Service, then Student Center, and clicking on “Request Degree Audit.” The audit automatically pulls in the student’s MU course work, transfer courses and courses in progress.

MU students who have NOT attended since August 2007 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

For newly admitted or prospective students, MU degree audits can be created at 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

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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 would like to learn more about your career interests, abilities, values and talents, visit the MU Career Center in the lower level of the Student Success 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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