Exercise Science Undergraduate Major with an Optional Minor in Biology

Shippensburg University began offering an undergraduate major in Exercise Science in the fall of 2004. Traditionally, Exercise Scientists have focused on enhancing athletic performance. Today however, Exercise Scientists also work and study in commercial, clinical, and workplace settings to improve the health, fitness, and quality of life of the general population.

Employment opportunities include work in: government agencies as wellness coordinators and program managers, medical settings as program coordinators and health/fitness specialists, corporate fitness centers as health promotion program directors, and fitness clubs as exercise programming directors. Students may also find employment in hospitals and health centers doing cardiac rehabilitation exercise testing and programming or in other rehabilitation settings after graduate study, such as physical therapy and occupational therapy.

Course Requirements

Students enrolled in the Exercise Science program will complete a minimum of 120 credits. The course requirements for the major include 51 hours in the general education core courses, plus 12 hours of basic science core courses, and at least 45 hours of exercise science courses with up to 12 hours of free electives.

The basic science core courses include:

  • Principles of Biology: Cell Structure and Function (BIO 161) OR Principles of Biology: Organismal Diversity (BIO 162)
  • Human Physiology (BIO 350)
  • Human Anatomy (BIO 371)

One additional Biology course, such as Genetics (BIO 260) or Microbiology (BIO 220), may be taken to complete the Biology Minor.

The Exercise Science Major requirements include:

  • Mechanical Analysis of Sport Skills (ESC 244)
  • Introduction to Kinesiology (ESC 250)
  • Exercise Physiology I (ESC 321)
  • Nutrition for Sport & Fitness (ESC 350)
  • Biomechanics (ESC 333)
  • Motor Behavior (ESC 336)
  • Prevention & Care of Athletic Injuries (ESC 340)
  • Psychology of Physical Activity (ESC 352)
  • Research Design and Statistics for Exercise Science (ESC 353)
  • Cardiac Rehabilitation & Special Populations (ESC 420)
  • Exercise Physiology II (ESC 421)
  • Exercise Testing & Prescription (ESC 422)
  • Internship (ESC 424)

Recommended electives to support the major include:

  • Stress Management (ESC 207)
  • Organization & Administration in Health, Fitness, and Sports Facilities (ESC 213)
  • Sociology of Sport & Leisure (SOC 275)
  • Introduction to Gerontology (GRN 100)
  • Any Exercise Science Seminar (ESC 339)
  • Any Exercise Science Selected Topics (ESC 393)

There are many minors on-campus that support the Exercise Science Major, including (but not limited to) biology, business, coaching, gerontology, and psychology.

Policy statement: Any student may enroll and complete any course in the Department of Exercise Science. Prerequisites for any course must be completed prior to enrollment. Students may complete no more than 3 Exercise Science major courses within the Department of Exercise Science without admission into the Exercise Science major.


EX maj p2
VO2 Test
EX maj p1
MARC Conference