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Arnold School of Public Health

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Graduate Degrees in Exercise Science

Our exercise science programs will help you expand and disseminate the body of knowledge concerning the relationships between exercise participation, physical activity and human health.

In Fall 2020, the Department of Exercise Science launched its redesigned Master of Science (MS) degree program [pdf]. The redesigned curriculum in Exercise Science provides students with foundational content in exercise physiology, research methods and statistics and offers flexibility to select coursework in specific areas of interest, including:

Applied Physiology | Neuro-rehabilitation | Sports Performance

MS application deadline for Fall 2022 is May 1, 2022 with a priority deadline of March 1, 2022. We offer competitive graduate fellowships and teaching assistantships.

Submission of GRE scores is optional for the 2022-2023 application cycle. 

A Master of Science or Doctor of Philosophy (ranked No. 1 in the U.S.) degree in Exercise Science will lead to careers in academia, research, clinical settings, rehabilitation/therapy facilities and more.


Master of Science in Exercise Science (MS)

The Master of Science (MS) degree in Exercise Science prepares students for careers in academia and multiple health-related specialties and professions within the broad scope of Exercise Physiology, such as exercise physiologist, fitness coordinator, rehabilitation coordinator, and many more.  Additionally, the curriculum and related research opportunities prepare students for pursuing additional graduate work (e.g., PhD, MD, DPT).  The curriculum includes coursework in exercise physiology, clinical exercise testing, research methods and statistics, physical activity and health, and motor control and development. Elective coursework is also embedded within this framework to allow for individual interests, examples include skeletal muscle physiology, endocrinology in exercise and health, neural repair and rehabilitation, and community-based interventions for physical activity. There are countless opportunities to participate in ongoing research through assistantships and independent study courses. Students have the option of completing a thesis (focus on research training) or a project (focus on clinical or applied skills training). For more information, view the Master of Science in Exercise Science Curriculum [pdf].

Ph.D. in Exercise Science

Ph.D. application deadline for Fall 2022 is May 1, 2022 with a priority deadline of Jan 10, 2022 for graduate fellowship consideration. Application deadline for Spring is Oct 1, 2022. Please see the link under Graduate Opportunities for announcements regarding some of the current open graduate positions across the Exercise Science Department.

Submission of GRE scores is optional for the 2022-2023 application cycle.

The purpose of the doctoral program is to prepare students for research and academic careers in the area of Applied Physiology. The Ph.D. curriculum includes coursework in advanced exercise science, statistics, research design and research seminar. The student will also be required to form a cognate of specialization, which can include electives from areas, such as biology, physiology, immunology and biochemistry as well as independent study and dissertation hours. For more information, view the Applied Physiology Program of Study [pdf].

Division Coordinator: Xuewen Wang,

Are you interested in a research and an academic career in the area of physical activity and health?  If this is your aspiration, then the Ph.D. degree in Exercise Science with an emphasis in Health Aspects of Physical Activity may be the degree program for you. Our flexible curriculum will be tailored to individual students, with courses selected from exercise physiology, exercise psychology, biostatistics, epidemiology and population health, nutrition, or other areas deemed to provide a solid foundation sufficient to understand and conduct research in this area. This approach will provide you with the essential knowledge, skills and experiences that will prepare you for scholarly research and teaching in this area.  

Our most recent graduates are in assistant professor positions either at a teaching-based university (e.g., Citadel) or at a research-based university (e.g., Iowa State University, Tennessee State University, Kentucky State University). Others continue on for post-doctoral work prior to establishing independent research programs at domestic and international institutions, such as Brown University and Curtin University. Still others have opportunities for employment in adult fitness, corporate fitness, military fitness, or sales and management in corporate fields (e.g., sports nutrition, athletic footwear, fitness equipment, sports clothing weight control programs). If you desire to be among those who are well prepared for research-focused careers in these areas, come join us. For more information, view the Health Aspects of Physical Activity Program of Study [pdf].

Division Coordinator: Mei Sui,

As the rates of chronic disability increase across the globe, the need to develop novel rehabilitation treatments that can reduce disability and increase engagement in physical activity is vital for improving the health and wellness of individuals with chronic disabilities. The Rehabilitation Sciences emphasis prepares students to examine how the development and delivery of rehabilitation therapies can be used to reduce disability, promote health and prevent further disease. A Ph.D. degree in Exercise Science with an emphasis on Rehabilitation Sciences will lead to careers in academia, research, clinical settings, rehabilitation/therapy facilities, and more. For more information, view the Rehabilitation Sciences Ph.D. Program of Study [pdf].

Division Coordinator: Jill Stewart,

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