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BS in Exercise and Wellness
(60.5 hours*)


The Discipline

Exercise and Wellness is a departure from the typical U.S. medical model in that the focus is on helping individuals achieve optimal health and fitness rather than on discovering and treating disease. Recent research findings, along with rising health-care costs, have spurred an interest in keeping people healthy to improve their quality of life and also to avoid unnecessary medical expenses.

Depending on electives completed, there are several excellent career and graduate school options to pursue. Earning a master's degree in exercise science, for example, can give the added knowledge and experience needed to direct a private, commercial, corporate, or clinical health/fitness program. Other graduate school opportunities include a master's in public health (MPH), business administration (MBA), recreational therapy (MS), nutritional science (MS), or a master's in physician assistant studies (MPAS), to name a few.

Career Opportunities

Exercise and wellness professionals find employment primarily in commercial or community fitness centers but may also work in hospital wellness programs or corporate health-promotion programs. Job responsibilities typically involve teaching clients how to achieve optimal wellness through effective exercise, wholesome nutrition, and successful stress-management strategies.

Exercise and wellness professionals may function at a staff or management level. Staff personnel often conduct one-on-one counseling sessions on a variety of health-related subjects as well as perform fitness testing and exercise prescription. They also may conduct workshops, conferences, or seminars on exercise, nutrition, stress management, weight control, and many other topics.

Program directors typically possess a master's degree with several years of experience working in a health promotion/wellness environment. As a program director, additional responsibilities typically include financial budgeting, marketing, program administration and evaluation, and personnel hiring and training.

Students pursuing a degree in exercise and wellness are usually more successful in their profession if they gain expertise in the following areas: counseling, public speaking, behavior change, business, first aid, gerontology, or aerobic dance teaching. It is also strongly recommended that students obtain a health/fitness certification through a reputable certifying organization.

Survey data indicate that personal trainers earn $51,000 annually in the U.S. Throughout the U.S. salaries range from $37,000 to $63,000. Health promotion program directors' salaries are similar to those of personal trainers, with more earning potential for individuals with graduate degrees and/or experience.

Program Requirements    |    View MAP   |    View Program Outcomes

  1. Complete the senior exit interview.
  2. Complete the following prerequisites to the exercise and wellness core:
  3. Complete the following required core:
      EXSC 302 : Philosophical and Ethical Issues in Exercise Sciences. (1:1:0)(Credit Hours:Lecture Hours:Lab Hours)
      EXSC 302 : Philosophical and Ethical Issues in Exercise Sciences. (1:1:0)(Credit Hours:Lecture Hours:Lab Hours)
      WHEN TAUGHT:Fall; Winter; Spring
      DESCRIPTION: Philosophical and ethical issues common to exercise sciences majors. Concept of mind, body, spirit.

      Course Outcomes


      EXSC 387 : Lifestyle and Chronic Disease Prevention. (3:3:0)(Credit Hours:Lecture Hours:Lab Hours)
      EXSC 387 : Lifestyle and Chronic Disease Prevention. (3:3:0)(Credit Hours:Lecture Hours:Lab Hours)
      WHEN TAUGHT:Fall; Winter; Spring
      DESCRIPTION: Current scientific evidence demonstrating how lifestyle affects disease processes. Healthy lifestyle concepts specifically needed by wellness professionals, health educators, and health promotion practitioners; influence of unhealthy lifestyle as basis for chronic diseases, i.e., cardiovascular disease, cancer, and diabetes.

      Course Outcomes


      EXSC 410 : Stress Management. (3:3:0)(Credit Hours:Lecture Hours:Lab Hours)
      EXSC 410 : Stress Management. (3:3:0)(Credit Hours:Lecture Hours:Lab Hours)
      WHEN TAUGHT:Fall; Winter
      DESCRIPTION: Teaches students the basic principles, theories, and relaxation techniques to effectively manage personal stress. Students gain a greater understanding of the mind-body relationship, learn to employ a holistic approach to stress, and adopt effective cognitive, coping, and relaxation techniques. Ultimately, students experience a more effective approach to optimal lifelong health.

      Course Outcomes


      EXSC 463 : Exercise Physiology. (3:3:0)(Credit Hours:Lecture Hours:Lab Hours)
      EXSC 463 : Exercise Physiology. (3:3:0)(Credit Hours:Lecture Hours:Lab Hours)
      WHEN TAUGHT:Fall; Winter; Spring; Summer
      PREREQUISITE: PDBIO 305; or PDBIO 362
      RECOMMENDED: Concurrent enrollment in ExSc 464.
      DESCRIPTION: The function of the physiological systems and their responses to acute and chronic exercise.

      Course Outcomes


      EXSC 464 : Exercise Physiology Lab. (.5:0:1)(Credit Hours:Lecture Hours:Lab Hours)
      EXSC 464 : Exercise Physiology Lab. (.5:0:1)(Credit Hours:Lecture Hours:Lab Hours)
      WHEN TAUGHT:Fall; Winter; Spring; Summer
      PREREQUISITE: ExSc 463 or concurrent enrollment.
      DESCRIPTION: Introduction of laboratory and field methods; applying principles of exercise physiology to assessing physical fitness and physiological responses to exercise.

      Course Outcomes


      EXSC 480 : Obesity and Weight Management. (3:3:0)(Credit Hours:Lecture Hours:Lab Hours)
      EXSC 480 : Obesity and Weight Management. (3:3:0)(Credit Hours:Lecture Hours:Lab Hours)
      WHEN TAUGHT:Fall; Winter
      PREREQUISITE: ExSc 463 or concurrent enrollment.
      DESCRIPTION: Review of the scientific literature surrounding obesity and weight management, primarily the causes and consequences of this growing epidemic.

      Course Outcomes


  4. Complete four hours from the following:
  5. Complete 24 hours from the following:

*Hours include courses that may fulfill university core requirements.



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