Bachelor's in Sports and Entertainment Management Degree

Bachelor of Science in Sports and Entertainment Management

Offered By: Colangelo College of Business

Prepare for the Sports Business and Entertainment Management World

The Bachelor of Science (BS) in Sports and Entertainment Management degree at Grand Canyon University is offered by the Colangelo College of Business. The entertainment and sports management courses emphasize key skills specific to sports business, including sales, marketing, revenue generation, athlete and talent business and management, as well as event operations. The program’s business-based curriculum can prepare you to pursue an array of potential career path opportunities in the exciting sports and entertainment industry. This program aligns with GCU's Christian mission, aiming to develop graduates committed to upholding ethical and moral principles within the fields of entertainment and athletics. 

Pursue Your Sports and Entertainment Management Degree From GCU

Behind every star athlete and beloved team is a group of talented professionals managing and marketing their success. This type of management includes behind-the-scenes aspects of sports, such as event coordination, contract negotiation, community relations, influencer marketing and statistics. Whether you’re helping to fill stadium seats or negotiating your client a higher salary, sports and entertainment management may be a great way to turn your love of sports and live entertainment into a career. 

This Bachelor of Science in sports management degree program explores an interdisciplinary range of topics — from business competencies to relevant laws to analytics. The curriculum is designed to teach you a breadth of skills that are immediately applicable in the field. You can choose to earn your sports management degree online or on campus. With both options available, you can pursue your degree in whichever format works best for you, your life and your learning style.

This degree program has been optimized for the modern online learning format. You can access your coursework from virtually anywhere and engage in academic discussions with your peers and instructors. The online format can provide you with convenience and flexibility, so you can continue meeting other obligations while working toward your intended career in sports and entertainment management. 

As a traditional on-campus student, you’ll work toward your sports and entertainment management degree at our campus in Phoenix. You will have the opportunity to participate in intellectually stimulating discussions with your peers and instructors face to face as you explore the modern curriculum. Take advantage of all that GCU’s campus life has to offer — from our flexible housing arrangements to our popular dining options to the diverse range of clubs and activities. Immerse yourself within our Christian learning community and enjoy the company of likeminded souls who seek to strengthen their faith in Christ. 

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Sports and Entertainment Management Program Requirements

GCU values both classroom instruction and hands-on experiential learning opportunities. To better prepare you for life after college, you will be required to accumulate 300 hours of paid or unpaid experience in the sports or entertainment industry throughout your program of study. Experience may be in any aspect of the sports and entertainment industry, subject to the Colangelo College of Business approval. Industry hours can be accumulated through internships, part-time or full-time employment and volunteering. 

Sports and Entertainment Industry Skills and Concepts You Will Be Taught 

In GCU’s sports and entertainment management degree, you will have the opportunity to explore how accounting information assists business leaders in making financial decisions that increase profitability and contribute to competitive advantage. You will be prompted to consider the value of professional management in sports and entertainment organizations and examine the development and implementation of marketing mix strategies and tactics with an emphasis on integrated marketing communications. 

Additional skills and concepts covered in this program include:

  • How strategic, forward-thinking business plans are developed
  • How brands can engage with customers, prospects, suppliers and internal stakeholders
  • The process by which leaders guide organizations through change and development

In addition, you will be taught the basic concepts of microeconomics and macroeconomics, and discuss the role of ethics and values in business decision making. You will also address the fundamental concepts of scarcity, choice, opportunity cost and comparative advantage.

Entertainment and Sports Management Courses You Can Expect 

To complete the bachelor’s in sports and entertainment management degree program, you must complete a minimum of 120 credits. Courses for this major offer an interdisciplinary survey of the sports and entertainment world, exploring content areas such as:

  • Event planning for entertainment and athletic events, including a look at budgeting, site selection, venue/facility management and sponsorship
  • The application of data analytics to areas such as sports and entertainment marketing, talent impact, scouting and sponsorship
  • Models and practices used in modern marketing
  • The design, planning, operation and control of production systems within manufacturing and service environments

Career Paths for Sports and Entertainment Management Degree Graduates 

GCU strives to graduate industry-ready professionals who are prepared to work in many facets of the ever-evolving world of sports and entertainment. With a firm foundation in business and management competencies, you may be positioned to pursue potential careers such as:

  • Training and development managers
  • Facilities managers
  • Business operations specialists
  • Personal service managers
  • Entertainment and recreation managers (exclusion of gambling)
  • Business teachers (postsecondary) 

Individuals with an academic background in sports and entertainment management may be prepared to pursue work across a diverse range of settings, including:1, 2

  • High school and collegiate athletic departments
  • Amateur athletic associations
  • Player agencies
  • Event venues
  • Data analytics firms
  • Public relations firms
  • Brand promotion agencies

GCU Offers Institutional Accredited Business Degrees

As an aspiring sports or entertainment business professional, the quality of education you receive is important for establishing a solid foundation from which to pursue your career. This program is accredited by The Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP), an organization that supports, rewards and celebrates teaching excellence in business in all levels of postsecondary education, including associates, baccalaureate, master and doctorate. 

GCU is pleased to be an institutionally accredited university that has a mission of nurturing academic excellence and delivering comprehensive student support. Accredited by the Higher Learning Commission since 1968, we strive to provide our students with a quality educational experience that can help them achieve their professional and personal goals. To learn more, visit our accreditation page. 

Button to play video: Sports and Entertainment Management
Total Credits: 120
Campus: 15 weeks
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Online: 8 weeks
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Up to 90 credits, only 84 can be lower division
Campus: $8,250 per semester
[Tuition, Fees and Financial Aid]

Online: $485 per credit
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Cost of Attendance

Bachelor’s in Sports and Entertainment Management Degree FAQs

Review the following frequently asked questions and answers to become better informed about what pursuing a sports or entertainment management-related career entails.

This area of management covers a wide variety of disciplines. It encompasses everything from facility and event management to public relations to agent representation. If you choose to pursue a career on the business side of sports and entertainment, you’ll have a variety of career paths to choose from. Some of these career paths may involve working directly with the talent.1

A sports and entertainment career path could be ideal for those who not only enjoy sports and the industry, but who are also creative and have strong communication skills. There is a diverse range of opportunities in this field, which means you may decide to pursue the career path that aligns best with your passions. 

An entertainment management degree takes managerial and business concepts, including topics such as business statistics and organizational management, and teaches how they are executed in the entertainment industry. By analyzing topics such as entertainment event planning and management, you may experience how the role of a management position interacts in the entertainment industry, and you may be prepared to explore various careers and internships during and after graduation.

A sports management degree teaches a wide range of industry-specific skills and transferrable soft skills that may be applicable to a broad spectrum of career options. The competition to become a professional athlete is intense, but the work that goes on behind the scenes may be more accessible to those with the right qualifications. If you have your heart set on a career in sports, then a degree in sports management could be the right fit for you.

If you decide to declare a minor to complement your major in sports and entertainment management, there are lots of relevant choices available to you. Some examples of minors that may pair well with this degree program can include:

  • Communications
  • Marketing
  • Entrepreneurial studies
  • Performance and sport psychology
  • Pre-law
  • Spanish
  • Professional writing

Use your passion for sports and entertainment as the foundation for your future career path. Fill out the form on this page to request more information about GCU’s sports and entertainment management degree, available online or on campus.

1 BestColleges. (2023, May 17). Sports management careers. Retrieved Oct. 16, 2023. 

2 Indeed. (2022, June 24). 11 types of jobs for entertainment business majors. Retrieved Oct. 16, 2023. 

Course List

General Education Requirements:
34-40 credits
68 credits
Open Elective Credits:
12-18 credits
Degree Requirements:
120 credits

General Education Requirements

General Education coursework prepares Grand Canyon University graduates to think critically, communicate clearly, live responsibly in a diverse world, and thoughtfully integrate their faith and ethical convictions into all dimensions of life. These competencies, essential to an effective and satisfying life, are outlined in the General Education Learner Outcomes. General Education courses embody the breadth of human understanding and creativity contained in the liberal arts and sciences tradition. Students take an array of foundational knowledge courses that promote expanded knowledge, insight, and the outcomes identified in the University's General Education Competencies. The knowledge and skills students acquire through these courses serve as a foundation for successful careers and lifelong journeys of growing understanding and wisdom.


Upon completion of the Grand Canyon University's University Foundation experience, students will be able to demonstrate competency in the areas of academic skills and self-leadership. They will be able to articulate the range of resources available to assist them, explore career options related to their area of study, and have knowledge of Grand Canyon's community. Students will be able to demonstrate foundational academic success skills, explore GCU resources (CLA, Library, Career Center, ADA office, etc), articulate strategies of self-leadership and management and recognize opportunities to engage in the GCU community.

Course Options

  • UNV-103, University Success: 4
  • UNV-303, University Success: 4
  • UNV-108, University Success in the College of Education: 4


Graduates of Grand Canyon University will be able to construct rhetorically effective communications appropriate to diverse audiences, purposes, and occasions (English composition, communication, critical reading, foreign language, sign language, etc.). Students are required to take 3 credits of English grammar or composition.

Course Options

  • UNV-104, 21st Century Skills: Communication and Information Literacy: 4
  • ENG-105, English Composition I: 4
  • ENG-106, English Composition II: 4


Graduates of Grand Canyon University will be able to express aspects of Christian heritage and worldview. Students are required to take CWV-101/CWV-301.

Course Options

  • CWV-101, Christian Worldview: 4
  • CWV-301, Christian Worldview: 4


Graduates of Grand Canyon University will be able to use various analytic and problem-solving skills to examine, evaluate, and/or challenge ideas and arguments (mathematics, biology, chemistry, physics, geology, astronomy, physical geography, ecology, economics, theology, logic, philosophy, technology, statistics, accounting, etc.). Students are required to take 3 credits of intermediate algebra or higher.

Course Options

  • MAT-154, Applications of College Algebra: 4
  • MAT-144, College Mathematics: 4
  • PHI-105, 21st Century Skills: Critical Thinking and Problem Solving: 4
  • BIO-220, Environmental Science: 4


Graduates of Grand Canyon University will be able to demonstrate awareness and appreciation of and empathy for differences in arts and culture, values, experiences, historical perspectives, and other aspects of life (psychology, sociology, government, Christian studies, Bible, geography, anthropology, economics, political science, child and family studies, law, ethics, cross-cultural studies, history, art, music, dance, theater, applied arts, literature, health, etc.). If the predefined course is a part of the major, students need to take an additional course.

Course Options

  • HIS-144, U.S. History Themes: 4
  • PSY-102, General Psychology: 4
  • SOC-100, Everyday Sociology: 4

Core Courses

Course Description

This course provides the foundation of core knowledge within the field of information technology. Topics include technology-centric organizations, the type and role of fundamental information technology systems, data management to include privacy and security, e-business and m-business, hardware, software, and computer networks.

Course Description

This course introduces models and practices used by contemporary marketers in fast-paced, dynamic, domestic and global markets, including the marketing concept and processes for developing, implementing, and assessing the effectiveness of marketing plans. Building from a foundational understanding of consumer behavior and marketing research, students examine the development and implementation of marketing mix strategies and tactics with an emphasis of how marketing integrates within all aspects of business.

Course Description

This course provides an overview of the business of sports and entertainment, including career opportunities, and a study of the value of professional management to sports and entertainment organizations.

Course Description

This course emphasizes the use of data analytics with a focus on teaching students how to obtain the data, insights, and intelligence needed in every area of sports and entertainment marketing, media, viewership, talent impact, scouting, and sponsorship to most effectively maximize value for brands, rights holders, agencies, and media.

Course Description

In this course, students examine basic accounting concepts and explore how accounting information assists business leaders in making financial decisions that increase profitability and contribute to competitive advantage. There is specific emphasis on the analysis of financial statements in the business decision-making process, budgeting, and factors businesses must consider when determining appropriate pricing of goods and services. Prerequisite: MAT-134, MAT-144, MAT-154, or higher subsequent math course.

Course Description

This course is a study of basic marketing concepts with applications to sports and entertainment organizations. Topics include advertising promotions and public relations, consumer behavior, market segmentation, fan loyalty, strategic market planning, brand communications, branding vs. marketing and sponsorship. Prerequisites: SPT-230 and MKT-315.

Course Description

This course introduces models and practices used for engagement with customers, prospects, suppliers, and internal stakeholders and the communications strategies and tactics needed to build and sustain long-term and mutually satisfying relationships that add value in today’s economy. Customer Relationship Management (CRM) technology will also be introduced. Prerequisite: MKT-315

Course Description

This course provides an introduction to the practical application of descriptive and inferential statistics in business. Topics include probability, probability distributions, the central limit theorem, confidence intervals, hypothesis testing, correlation, and regression. Prerequisite: MAT-134, MAT-144, MAT-154, or higher subsequent math course.

Course Description

This writing-intensive course is a comprehensive study of the legal and ethical issues of concern to business, including those areas of the U.S. legal system that are most relevant to business, such as the law of torts, strict liability, intellectual property, and contract law. It explores the role of ethics and values in business decision making and approaches these subjects from the perspective of the stakeholders as opposed to an economic interpretation of the firm and its responsibilities.

Course Description

This course provides an introduction to event planning for athletic, live entertainment, and special events. An emphasis is placed on budgeting, site selection, sponsorship, and facility/venue management. Prerequisites: SPT-230 and MKT-315.

Course Description

Drawing upon real-world management situations, this course is a study of individual and group behavior in organizations through detailed coverage of the functions of management, individual differences/diversity, leadership, motivation, decision making, organizational design, and organizational change and development. Emphasis is placed on how an understanding of organizational behavior leads to effective management practice.

Course Description

This course provides an in-depth overview of the legal side of the sports and entertainment industry, including contracts, endorsement deals, riders, unions, ASCAP, BMI, SPAC (standard player agent contract), agent agreements, and league collective bargaining agreements.

Course Description

This survey course covers the basic concepts of microeconomics and macroeconomics. The course begins by addressing the fundamental concepts of scarcity, choice, opportunity cost, and comparative advantage. The course builds on these fundamentals to explain the market forces of supply and demand, market efficiency, the economics of the public sector, and the firm's behavior under competitive market conditions. The second half of the course focuses on basic macroeconomic concepts, including measurement of national income, economic growth, and productivity. In addition, this course covers the monetary system and the classical theory of inflation.

Course Description

This course provides an introduction to designing, planning, operating, and controlling production systems. Emphasis is on managerial concepts and strategies relating to the management of operations in both manufacturing and service environments. Quantitative and qualitative methods and tools are introduced and applied. Prerequisite: BUS-352, MAT-274, MAT-374, or ESG-374.

Course Description

This course serves as a culmination of experience in the business and management of sports and entertainment, which includes the gradual development of strategic and forward thinking business plans, as well as focusing on your personal brand. The course is designed to assist students in their career development in the global world of sports and entertainment and to gain a better understanding of business operations and various departments involved in managing and maintaining sports and entertainment entities which lead to revenue generation. Prerequisite: SPT-230.

Course Description

This course is an introduction to managerial finance and the financial markets, analysis of financial statements, time value of money, interest rates, asset valuation, assessment of risk, cost of capital, and capital budgeting. Prerequisites: ECN-220, ECN-351, or ECN-361; and ACC-240 or ACC-250.

Course Description

This writing-intensive course serves as the capstone experience in business and management, introducing students to functional, business, and corporate strategy from the perspective of a strategy analyst. Tools and techniques are applied to the student’s previous knowledge of accounting, finance, management, analytics, marketing, economics, entrepreneurship, and leadership acquired through their individual programs of study. Students integrate strategic analysis to demonstrate mastery of a wide variety of business domains. Prerequisites: MGT-420 or MGT-422HN; FIN-210 or FIN-350; and MKT-245 or MKT-315.


GCU Campus Student

Join Grand Canyon University’s vibrant and growing campus community, with daytime classes designed for traditional students. Immerse yourself in a full undergraduate experience, complete with curriculum designed within the context of our Christian worldview.

GCU Online Student

Pursue a next-generation education with an online degree from Grand Canyon University. Earn your degree with convenience and flexibility with online courses that let you study anytime, anywhere.

* Please note that this list may contain programs and courses not presently offered, as availability may vary depending on class size, enrollment and other contributing factors. If you are interested in a program or course listed herein please first contact your University Counselor for the most current information regarding availability.

* Please refer to the Academic Catalog for more information. Programs or courses subject to change.