The exercise science major embraces a strong science foundation and focuses on the scientific aspects of exercise related to healthy, injured, and high-risk populations to understand the consequences of physical activity. Exercise science is an applied discipline; therefore, the curriculum includes laboratory and laboratory-type activities in exercise physiology, biomechanics, and exercise testing and leadership. In addition, campus- and community-based projects are incorporated into the curriculum to provide exercise science students exposure to various populations similar to those they may encounter in their chosen professions.
A major in exercise science prepares students for graduate study in areas such as exercise physiology, biomechanics, wellness, health promotion, nutrition, and exercise and sport psychology. It also prepares students to enter professional schools such as physical therapy, physician assistant, or medical schools. At the baccalaureate level, students are prepared for careers in preventative exercise, wellness programs, and to work with populations to develop and maintain healthy lifestyles.
The exercise science major has two tracks that students may choose from to help them meet their personal and professional goals.
- Pre-professional Track
The pre-professional track prepares students for most health professional schools, such as physical therapy, physician assistant, podiatry, chiropractic, medical, and others. At UE, the pre-professional exercise science track can be coupled to the Doctor of Physical Therapy program. Students may choose the 3-year or 4-year undergraduate route, then enter the 3-year Doctor of Physical Therapy program.
Exercise science students may also choose the pre-AT track, then continue their education at UE with the Master of Science in Athletic Training program. Students may choose the 3-year or 4-year undergraduate route, then enter the 2-year Master of Science in Athletic Training program.
- Applied Track
The applied exercise science track has been designed to prepare a student to work at the baccalaureate level with relatively healthy populations or to continue on to graduate school. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics employment jobs for exercise scientists are predicted to grow 11 percent from 2014 to 2024.
Since the exercise science major is experientially based, all exercise science majors participate in a required internship experience. Internship opportunities exist in various areas under the umbrella of exercise science such as cardiac rehabilitation, corporate fitness, wellness and fitness centers, strength and conditioning programs, and sport-specific conditioning programs, as well as in other areas of interest to the student.
In addition to the required experiences, opportunities exist for students to engage in undergraduate research activities with faculty members in the School of Health Sciences.