The Master of Science in Horse Science at MTSU centers on a curriculum designed to prepare graduates for the multi-faceted equine industry. Programs are tailored to students’ interests and produce graduates able to adapt to and thrive in this dynamic field. Students may choose from Equine Education, Equine Physiology or Industry Management concentrations. Only the top qualified applicants are invited for an interview at the applicant’s expense, prior to final acceptance into the program. Faculty members mentor students in curriculum development and provide training in scientific methods, principles of equine student education and instruction, and general industry practices. All M.S. degree candidates share a common core of coursework in statistics, research methods, and multiple disciplines in horse science and animal science. A significant number of elective credit hours are available, permitting each student to customize the program with courses in other departments. A limited number of graduate teaching assistantships are available.
The Master of Science in Horse Science is offered with three concentrations:
Equine Education includes interdisciplinary courses in coaching and sports management to strengthen knowledge for careers as collegiate riding instructors, equestrian team coaches, horse judging team coaches, or agents for the Cooperative Extension Service.
Equine Physiology emphasizes an interdisciplinary, science-based curriculum structured to build knowledge of scientific principles and apply these principles to a thesis research project related to equine science. Students successfully completing the concentration are prepared for admission into an animal science or equine science Ph.D. program. Students entering this concentration must have a strong foundation in undergraduate biology and chemistry, including organic chemistry.
Industry Management allows students to complete interdisciplinary courses in business management, marketing, and/or sports management to tailor their curriculum for specific industry-related careers.
Equine Education or Industry Management students may choose a research-based thesis or a non-thesis equine experiential learning option. Equine Physiology students must complete a research-based thesis.
The selection procedure is a two-phase process. Based on a review of applications to the M.S. Horse Science program, qualified students are invited for an interview at their expense. Not all applicants are invited for the personal interview.
A wide variety of careers are associated with the horse industry. A student’s talent may pertain directly to horses or to science, education, marketing, management, or business. Some potential career options with advanced degrees in Horse Science follow:
Collegiate horsemanship instructor or equestrian team coach
Community college or technical school instructor
Equine exercise physiologist
Equine facilities manager
Equine nutritionist, equine feed specialist, or nutrition laboratory technician
Equine reproductive physiologist
Horse extension specialist or extension agent
Instructor or program coordinator of therapeutic riding and equine-assisted therapies
Journalist for major horse publications (breed or discipline-specific magazines)
Pasture management specialist
Pharmaceutical representative for equine products
University instructor or teaching professor specializing in horses