Program: M.S., Tourism, Hospitality, and Recreation Management

Program Description

The master’s degree program is intended for persons interested in developing and/or improving their knowledge of recreation management, hospitality management or tourism management. It is designed for those seeking advancement in their career settings or a change in career settings. The selection of courses allows students to “specialize” in one of two specializations: (a) Recreational Sport Management/Recreation Management or (b) Tourism, Hospitality, and Travel Management.

The specialization in Recreational Sport Management/Recreation Management is designed to prepare graduate students for leadership roles in the recreational sport management industry. The program provides students the background in leadership for organizations that provide recreation and leisure services in a wide variety of venues. Career interest in managing campus recreational sport, outdoor adventure organizations, fitness clubs, and other recreational facilities and sport organizations fit well with this concentration. Taught by faculty with professional experience and academic expertise creates the right blend of theory and practice.

The specialization in Tourism, Hospitality, and Travel Management is designed to prepare graduate students for leadership roles in the global tourism travel and hospitality industry. The program provides students the background in tourism planning, sustainability, global tourism issues, cultural tourism and how these relate to the supporting travel and hospitality industries. The program provides leaders a combination of theory with practical applications for the diverse tourism field.

Program Requirements

A. General Requirements for Admission to the Master’s Program

In addition to University requirements, the Department of Recreation and Tourism Management requires:

  1. Bachelor’s degree in Recreation, Hospitality, Travel and Tourism Studies or allied field. Students not so qualified remain eligible to apply and may be admitted, but must successfully complete approved foundation courses with a minimum 3.0 GPA in addition to their graduate coursework.
  2. Completion of the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) for all applicants with a GPA less than 3.0. Applicants may be conditionally admitted pending scores but must meet the GRE standard prior to enrollment.
  3. Submission of the following, addressed to the department’s graduate coordinator:
    1. Two letters of recommendation.
    2. Statement of purpose discussing the applicant’s interests and goals as they relate to his or her selected specialization in the Master of Science in Tourism, Hospitality and Recreation Management.

New graduate students are accepted to begin in the Fall semester only.

B. Advancement to Classified Status

Applicants may be admitted as a classified graduate or conditionally classified graduate. Those admitted as a conditionally classified graduate must be advanced to classified status prior to the completion of 12 units of graduate coursework. Advancement to classified graduate status in the program requires:

  1. Completion of any required foundation courses with a grade of “B” or higher.
  2. Passing score (8 or above) on the Upper Division Writing Proficiency Exam.
  3. A score at or above the 50th percentile on at least one of the three sections of the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) for students admitted to the program with a GPA below 3.0.

C. Degree Requirements

Students pursuing the M.S. degree must maintain a minimum 3.0 (B) average in the formal program and the cumulative grade point average. No grade below a “C” can be counted in the formal program. Any grade of “C-” or below in the formal program must be repeated after an approved course repeat form has been filed. If the student does not receive a “C” or better on the second attempt, the student will be disqualified from the program.

D. Course Requirements

1. Required Core Courses (12 units)

RTM 540 Human Resources in Tourism, Hospitality and Recreation (3)
RTM 550 Marketing and Promotion in Tourism, Hospitality and Recreation (3)
RTM 684 Research Methods and Design (3)
RTM 693B Supervised Internship II (3)

2. Required Specialization Courses (12 units)

Select (a) Recreational Sport Management/Recreation Management or (b) Tourism, Hospitality, and Travel Management.

a. Recreational Sport Management/Recreation Management

RTM 520 Trends and Issues in Recreational Sport (3)
RTM 560 Facility Design in Recreational Sport (3)
RTM 600 Law, Risk Management and Ethics in Recreational Sport (3)
RTM 620 Effective Teams and Leaders in Tourism, Hospitality, and Recreation Organizations (3)

b. Tourism, Hospitality, and Travel Management

RTM 510 Trends and Issues in Tourism, Hospitality and Recreation (3)
RTM 530 Cultural Aspects and Global Perspectives in Tourism (3)
RTM 580 Seminar in Tourism Planning: A Cultural and International Perspective (3)
RTM 610 Sustainability in Hospitality and Tourism (3)

3. Additional Elective (3 units)

Select 3 units from graduate catalog listings according to career specialization and in consultation with an academic advisor.

4. Culminating Experience (3 units)

RTM 697 Directed Comprehensive Studies (3)
or RTM 698D Graduate Culminating Project (3)

Total Units Required for the M.S. Degree: 30

More information

If you would like more information about this program, please contact


Chair: Mechelle Best
Staff: Lora Hnat, Jessica Rodarte
Redwood Hall (RE) 262
(818) 677-3202

Graduate Coordinator: Joong-won Lee
(818) 677-3250

Student Learning Outcomes

Students will:

  1. Demonstrate critical thinking, including analysis, synthesis, and evaluation within the recreation, hospitality and/or tourism industry(ies) through a variety of pedagogies.
  2. Apply knowledge of the economic, environmental, cultural and social impacts of hospitality, tourism and/or recreation experience to real world settings or problems.
  3. Obtain theoretical knowledge and practical skills in preparation for a career in the tourism, hospitality and/or recreation industry(ies) as demonstrated by satisfactory completion of research projects, coursework and internships.