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Exercise Science Masters Degree Summaries with Course Info

A master's degree program in exercise science will teach students how to promote physical wellness in areas such as performance enhancement, injury prevention, rehabilitation, sports and fitness. A specialty area may be selected in most programs, as well.

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Essential Information

Master's degree programs in exercise science will equip students with clinical knowledge in overall physical wellness and teach how those principles relate to performance enhancement, injury prevention, rehabilitation, sports and fitness. Programs are typically 1-3 years long and thesis and non-thesis programs are available. Students pursuing a non-thesis option typically must pass a comprehensive exam. Further studies in a doctoral program are typically necessary for those seeking academic careers at the collegiate level. Students may select an area of specialty to focus on throughout the program, and online courses and programs are available.

Applicants to master's degree programs in exercise science must have a bachelor's degree. Holding a bachelor's in exercise science or a related field such as health, chemistry, physics or biology is recommended, but not required. Applicants must also complete the GRE and submit transcripts and letters of recommendation.


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  • Kinesiology and Exercise Science
  • Physical Education and Health
  • Sport and Fitness Management
  • Sports Medicine

Master's Degree in Exercise Science

Once in the program, students will learn to apply physical wellness principles to other areas of health and fitness. Because graduates of master's degree programs typically enter into leadership positions, students can expect to combine science, exercise, business and management classes.

Typical classes may include:


Popular Career Options

Graduates with this degree are qualified to enter the workforce in a variety of different fields. Some careers might require state certification or licensing. Possible career titles include:

  • Exercise physiologist
  • Fitness instructor
  • Exercise science teacher
  • Physical education teacher
  • Fitness center project coordinator

Continuing Education

Graduates of master's degree programs can opt to pursue a doctoral degree in exercise science or a related field like applied physiology. Graduates of doctoral programs usually go on to teach at universities or take research positions.

A master's degree program in exercise science provides training in exercise science and management to prepare graduates for careers as teachers, instructors, or coordinators. Graduates can also pursue certification, licensing, or further education.

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