Sport Psychology

Help athletes achieve optimal results on the court, field or track.

With a minor in sport psychology, you will be equipped to work with athletes, teams and coaches to help focus on how mental and emotional factors influence athletic performance.

The sport psychology minor at Wilkes University, the only program of its kind in northeastern Pennsylvania, will provide you with a unique opportunity to learn psychological performance enhancement techniques while also exploring the scientific methodology of neuroscience to determine how individuals can perform at peak skill levels in athletics. 

Coursework will address common issues faced by athletes in all sports. These include anxiety, stress and anger management, as well as drug and alcohol abuse and relationship difficulties. 

Students majoring in psychology, education, sports management, communications, or physical and occupational therapy should consider the sport psychology minor, as the Association for Applied Sport Psychology anticipates a significant increase for trained professionals in this area of study.

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that growth for all types of psychologists will increase by 19 percent over the next 10 years; that’s faster than the average for all occupations. BLS statistics show that psychologists earn a median annual salary of $75,230.

As a sport psychology minor, you will take 18 credits, including these core courses: 

  • SM 201 – Intro to Sports Management
  • SM 261 – Sport Psychology
  • PSY 266 – Peak Performance Coaching
  • SOC 261/EC298 – The Economic and Social Aspects of Sports

Students graduating with the sport psychology minor will be prepared for careers or graduate education paths that include: 

  • physical or occupational therapy,
  • sports writing and sports analysis,
  • coaching, athletic training, and
  • performance enhancement consulting.

Dr. Megan Cannon
Sport Psychologist Mind of the Athlete, Allentown, PA

“At Wilkes I took a few psych classes as an undeclared student, and discovered what a strong Psychology department Wilkes had, so I made that my major. I’m so grateful to Dr. Bohlander and Dr. Tindell for working so closely with me during my undergrad years and helping me to get into a competitive grad school and doctoral program, which ultimately led to my current career. As a sport psychologist, I’ve been asked to be on ESPN three times and have traveled the obvious dictation dictation country to work with elite athletes, but it’s also wonderful to know that I can help high school students make it through a race and perform better. It’s an awesome and rewarding career.”

Nicolette Towlen ’20
Psychology major, sport psychology minor

“When I came to Wilkes I was initially interested in the pre-physical therapy track with my psychology major, but Dr. Megan Cannon came to speak to my soccer team and I thought it was so interesting that I changed my minor to sport psychology. I’m currently doing an internship in our neuroscience training center, and learning all about the mind-body connection and performance training. As a sport psychologist, I would love to work with high school athletes and help them to balance athletics, school and other obligations because busy students really need help learning how to deal with anxiety and stress.”