Athletic Training Program

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To read alumnus Scott Allison's story, click here.


Program description

The athletic trainer is an allied healthcare professional that specializes in the prevention, diagnosis and immediate care of injuries as well as the rehabilitation and reconditioning of acute and chronic medical conditions and injuries. Western Michigan University's athletic training professional program in the Department of Human Performance and Health Education is dedicated to providing a quality education to the students that are enrolled in the athletic training education curriculum. The didactic courses provide a foundation of knowledge that is further developed during clinical practicum courses and clinical rotations. The program offers a diverse and cooperative clinical education environment that includes the University's Intercollegiate Athletics Department of Athletic Training as well as several off-campus clinical education sites. All components combine to prepare the student for the Board of Certification (BOC) examination and a professional career as an entry-level athletic trainer.

Policy and procedure manual

A special note to students:

As an student in the program, you are expected to be reliable, dependable, loyal, diligent, dedicated and honest in all your efforts. We also expect you to conduct yourself with the highest level of integrity, to be committed to your academics, and to represent yourself, our staff, our program, and the University with professionalism beyond reproach. Being an athletic training student at WMU is a significant responsibility. You are not only responsible for the health and welfare of the athletes in your care, but you represent the University and our program. Our students are to work together to 'bring each other along' by encouraging the best from each other and challenging each other to be their best. When issues arise, our students are to work respectfully and professionally to resolve the situation and to learn and grow from the situation. Students must also realize that to be a successful athletic training student you must be willing to step out of your comfort zone daily. Stretch yourself! We are creating students and future professionals who ask questions!


The athletic training professional program is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Athletic Training Education (CAATE).* Graduates of CAATE accredited programs are eligible to sit for the Board of Certification examination.


Application instructions

The following requirements should be completed:

  • Accepted to Western Michigan University.
  • Attainment of sophomore status—above twenty-six credits.
  • Completion of following athletic training pre-program courses (or enrolled in during semester of application) with a 2.5 overall grade point average, and a minimum “C” grade in each of the required courses:
    • BIOS 1120: Principles of Biology
    • BIOS 2110: Human Anatomy
    • BIOS 2400: Human Physiology
    • PSY 1000: General Psychology
    • HPHE 1530: Introduction to Athletic Training
    • HPHE 1100: Athletic Taping & Bracing
    • HPHE 1110: Healthy Living
      or HOL 1000: Choices in Living
    • HPHE 1490: Computer Applications for HPHE
    • HPHE 1810 or 3810: First Aid/CPR
    • HPHE 2530: Injury/Illness Survey & Management (taken while applying to the program)
  • Complete 75 hours of supervised observation verified by a preceptor in an environment that provides athletic training services. The preceptor must be an athletic trainer who has completed preceptor training with a CAATE accredited program. Those enrolled in HPHE 2530 will complete these hours as part of the course requirements.
  • Students who have transferred from other institutions will be reviewed on a per case basis and appropriate accommodations will be made. It is strongly encouraged that all potential transfer students contact the program director due to the unique aspects of each situation.
  • Technical standards
  • Applications are accepted mid-semester each fall term. Please contact the program director for the specific deadline.


High schools

Athletic trainers are used to prevent and treat athletic injuries, which may happen during practice or competition.

Colleges or universities

The athletic trainer covers practice sessions and competitions, supervises the clinical experiences of the undergraduate and graduate student athletic trainers, and may teach sports medicine courses.

Sports medicine clinics

Athletic trainers have a variety of responsibilities. They work with patient treatment and rehabilitation and provide coverage for high schools and small colleges on a daily basis or for game events.

Professional athletic teams

Football, baseball, basketball and ice hockey employ full time certified athletic trainers and most have one or two assistant athletic trainers who help provide athletic training health care year-round to athletes.


Prepares students for the Board of Certification examination in pursuit of a career as an entry level certified athletic trainer.


For class listings, program guides and other resources, visit the advising page for the athletic training major. 

Athletic training semester by semester guide


Students are provided with a diverse and cooperative clinical environment through clinical practicum courses and clinical rotations. Students are placed in the University's Intercollegiate Athletics Department of Athletic Training and various other clinical sites including area sports medicine clinics, Division III intercollegiate athletics and high schools.


Transfer students

Transfer students and any students planning to transfer in the future are strongly encouraged to contact Holly Sisson to discuss your specific needs for a smooth transition to WMU.


* The Athletic Training Program is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Athletic Training Education (CAATE). The program has been placed on Probation as of February 19, 2016 by CAATE.  We have fully acknowledged the situation. Our faculty is working diligently towards removal of the probationary status, which will be reviewed in February 2018.