Exercise Science is the scientific study of human movement performed to maintain or improve physical fitness. Students of this program assess, design, and implement exercise and fitness programs for individuals who are healthy as well as those needing support to return to a healthier state. Exercise Science offers opportunities in a wide arena of vocational interests. Example career paths include opportunities in public or private education, professional sports training or performance coaching, clinical rehabilitation, corporate fitness, and exercise physiology.
The goal of the program is to educate students to achieve certification consistent with such organizations as the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) standards, National Strength and Conditioning Association, American Association of Cardio Vascular and Pulmonary Rehabilitation and Medical Fitness Association. Students graduating with a Bachelor of Science in Exercise Science degree may also pursue other professional and graduate level opportunities through additional coursework or credentialing, such as: Exercise Physiology, Physical Therapy, Biomechanics, Physician’s Assistant, Occupational Therapy, Respiratory Therapist, Medical School, Sport Psychology, Nutrition-Registered Dietitian, Nursing, and jobs in the Public Health sector.
Many degrees in the sciences require graduate study for students to successfully enter their desired fields in human health. Exercise Science is more vocational in its approach, so students have more options directly upon graduation in addition to the careers resulting from advanced study. The Bureau of Labor Statistics has forecast a need for 1500 additional jobs needed in this area between 2014 - 2024, an 11% growth. Average salaries in exercise physiology and related fields have improved from 2012 numbers by an average of 20%.
The Bachelor of Sciences degree program in Exercise Sciences addresses multiple roles in supporting the health and wellness of individuals and communities. As such, a student of Exercise Science can focus on specific career concentrations within the degree. The first concentration to begin being offered in Fall 2018 will be Sports Performance. The Sports Performance pathway is designed primarily for students who wish to pursue a career in secondary education, collegiate or professional sports training as well as performance coaching. Additional concentrations in Clinical Exercise Physiology, Organizational Health and Wellness, and Integrative Exercise Physiology will be added in subsequent years.
A total of 124 semester hours are required for the B.S. degree in Exercise Science.