In the Department of Tourism, Recreation and Sport Management (TRSM), students and faculty study the role and impact of leisure services, including tourism and sports, on individuals, society, and the environment. TRSM improves the understanding of factors that lead individuals, families and industry to value and benefit from tourism, recreation, parks, and sport, and thus improves the quality of life.

The following Tourism, Recreation & Sport Managment concentrations are available for our Ph.D. students:

Areas of Research Interests

TRSM houses internationally recognized experts in the areas of sustainable tourism, athelete development, crisis management, risk management, tourism experience design, water-based recreation, hospitality marketing, social impacts of event sport tourism, sport consumer perceptions, social networks, data-mining, and economic impact related to sport.

Graduate Faculty

Recreation, Parks and Tourism

Sport Management

Admission Requirements

Applications are evaluated individually by the department faculty. Admission to the program will be based upon the following criteria:

  • A recognized baccalaureate, graduate or professional degree from a regionally accredited U.S. institution or a comparable degree from an international institution. 
  • A minimum grade point average of B (3.0), calculated from all grades and credits after the semester where the applicant reached 60 semester hours or 90 quarter hours.
  • Acceptable GRE and TOEFL scores (if applicable)
  • Three letters of recommendation
  • Statement of Purpose
  • Compatibility of applicant’s education, experience and research interest with the mission of the program
  • Compatibility of the applicant’s background and interests with those of an available advisor
  • Teaching, research and other departmental needs in cases where departmental financial support is requested

During the application process, please look through the research interests of individual faculty members and directly contact those who you would be interested in working with. An individual faculty member MUST accept Ph.D. applicants prior to admission. Any specific questions regarding the application process should be directed to the graduate coordinator:


Students will work closely with their mentor to determine course selection, an individual development plan, and timeline for academic milestones. Curriculum includes core Departmental, College, and University course requirements and recommended courses. In summary, doctoral students must pass a comprehensive written and oral qualifying examination upon completion of all coursework, maintain a satisfactory academic record, submit an approved dissertation topic, and receive the supervisory committee’s opinion of ability for advancement to candidacy.  Upon completion of the dissertation, the student must successfully complete an oral examination pertaining to the dissertation research.

Course requirements for doctoral degrees vary from field to field and from student to student. In all fields, the Ph.D. degree requires at least 90 credits beyond the bachelor’s degree.  All master degree credits that are counted towards the PhD must have been earned in the last 7 years.  The supervisory committee is responsible for using established criteria to ensure the academic integrity of coursework before accepting graduate transfer credits.  Acceptance of transfer of credit requires approval of the student’s supervisory committee and the Dean of the Graduate School.

SPM PhD Program Plan

RPT PhD Program Plan

Core: 15 credits

Research: 27 credits

Statistics: 9 credits

Outside Concentration: 9 credits

Core: 12 credits

Concentration: 18 credits

Research Methods: 21 credits

Data Analysis: 9 credits

Cognate: 15 credits

Qualifying Examinations

All Ph.D. candidates must pass a qualifying examination. Qualifying exams usually take place in the semester following the completion of PhD coursework, but before formal work on the dissertation proposal or data collection begins. The student must be registered during the term the qualifying examination is given.

The examination is prepared, evaluated and graded by the student’s full supervisory committee and covers major and minor subjects. Except for allowed substitutions, all members of the supervisory committee must be present with the student during the oral portion of the exam. At the completion of the exam, the supervisory committee is responsible for deciding whether the student is qualified to continue progress toward completing a Ph.D. degree by initiating the dissertation process.

Admission to Candidacy

A doctoral student becomes a candidate for the Ph.D. degree when the student is granted formal admission to candidacy. Such admission requires the approval of the student’s supervisory committee, the department chair, the college dean, and the dean of the Graduate School.  The approval must be based on:

  1. The academic record of the student (all grades B- or higher with a minimum 3.0 GPA)
  2. Passing a qualifying examination
  3. A supervisory committee approved dissertation topic
  4. The supervisory committee’s opinion on overall readiness of the candidacy

Dissertation Proposal

The dissertation proposal is not a formal University of Florida requirement, but is a requirement of the Applied Physiology Graduate Programs. The format of the proposal is determined by the student’s supervisory committee but generally takes the form of a presentation of the proposed content of the dissertation and the data collected thus far, at either a private meeting of the committee or more commonly at a formal public presentation. The proposal should be completed sometime between the admission to candidacy and the dissertation defense. A document summarizing the content of the proposed work is submitted to the graduate program administrator along with the appropriate form, approved and signed by the committee members.

Dissertation and Final Examination

Every candidate for a doctoral degree is required to prepare and present a dissertation that shows independent investigation and is acceptable in form and content to the supervisory committee and to the Graduate School. Dissertations must be written in English and must be acceptable in form and content to the supervisory committee and to the Graduate School. The work must be of publishable quality and must be in a form suitable for publication, using the Graduate Schools’ format requirements.

Dissertation First Submission: When first presented to the Graduate School Editorial Office, the dissertation should be near-final (not a draft), completely formatted, and printed on plain paper (do not print double-sided). The Graduate School Editorial Office reviews dissertations for acceptable format and to make recommendations as needed. Students should be completely familiar with the format requirements and should work with the ETD lab to troubleshoot their files before printing out their submission for the Graduate School Editorial Office.

After the submission of the dissertation and the completion of all other prescribed work for the degree, but in no case earlier than six months before the conferring of the degree, the candidate will be given a final oral examination by the supervisory committee through a meeting on campus. All supervisory committee members must be present with the candidate at the oral examination. The candidate and the entire supervisory committee must be present at the defense. The defense should be no more than six months before the degree is awarded.

Contact Info:

Kyriaki Kaplanidou, Ph.D.
Associate Professor
Graduate Coordinator

Amanda Cluxton
Graduate Program Assistant
(352) 294-1643