Bachelor of Science in Education (B.S.Ed.)

Exercise Science

The nationally accredited bachelor’s degree program at BGSU prepares you for a career in exercise science. Guide people to better health and help them recover from injury. This is a great major if you plan to pursue graduate school and a career as an athletic trainer, exercise physiologist, biomechanist, physical therapist, occupational therapist, physician assistant or doctor. Our graduates have a high acceptance rate into these professional programs.

Choose to specialize in:

  • Exercise programming – Learn to test and prescribe exercise for careers in strength and conditioning, sport performance, cardiac rehabilitation and exercise physiology,
  • Sports medicine – Take the courses you need to prepare for professional graduate programs such as athletic training, medicine and the like.

Interested in both? Choose one as your primary specialization and complete coursework in the other.

Our program’s greatest strength – opportunities for undergraduate research, internships and the exercise testing of athletes and the community. These hands-on experiences help you gain the real-world skills you need to succeed.

Why study exercise science at BGSU in Ohio?

  • Small classes.
  • Faculty mentorship.
  • Flexible curriculum. Tailor your degree to your career goals.
  • Real-world field experiences and internships. Enter the workforce after graduation with skills and confidence. Our students regularly intern in professional exercise or health science settings focused on collegiate strength and conditioning, cardiac and pulmonary rehabilitation, athletic training, physical therapy and occupational therapy. They work with top-tier employers such as:
  • Research opportunities. Work as an undergraduate on research in our state-of-the-art laboratories. Collaborate with faculty who are renowned experts in their fields and publish in prominent journals. You'll gain marketable research skills.
  • Lab experiences. Put your classroom knowledge to work in our state-of-the-art exercise physiology lab. Our biomechanics and motor behavior laboratory is one of the premier biomechanics labs in the country. You’ll have the chance to work with collegiate athletes and community members as you learn to test, program, assess and evaluate, as well as participate in laboratory testing services or collect data for research studies.
  • Proven record of success. Our graduates have a high acceptance rate into graduate and health-related professional programs.
  • Residential living community. Live with and learn from other science and health students in our Natural and Health Science Residential Community. Faculty help you in and out of the classroom. Students say the academic support they receive gives them a significant advantage when applying to science- and health-related grad programs with competitive entrance requirements.
  • Active student organization. Network and help raise health awareness on campus by joining the Student Exercise Science Association.

100% of BGSU exercise science graduates report they're employed, in graduate school or starting a business within six months of graduation.

Career - what can you do with an exercise science degree?

100% of BGSU exercise science graduates report they're employed, in graduate school or starting a business within six months of graduation.

An exercise science degree can lead to dynamic careers in:

  • Health and wellness centers
  • Sport medicine clinics
  • Senior/retirement centers
  • Research laboratories
  • Sport and Olympic training facilities
  • Fitness and exercise facilities
  • Cardiac and pulmonary rehabilitation programs
  • Other health and wellness-related careers in corporate, private and public settings

An exercise science degree also is good preparation for graduate school. Many BGSU exercise science graduates pursue advanced degrees. They have high acceptance rates into professional programs and master’s and doctoral degree programs in:

  • Physical therapy
  • Occupational therapy
  • Athletic training
  • Orthotics and prosthetics
  • Chiropractic practice
  • Medicine or physician assistant studies
  • Kinesiology

Continue your studies at BGSU in our:

Career paths

  • Physical therapy
  • Occupational therapy
  • Cardiac and pulmonary rehabilitation
  • Athletic and elite sports training
  • Corporate or private fitness
  • Strength and conditioning
  • Personal training
  • Employee fitness director
  • Biomechanics

Quick Facts from the Bureau of Labor Statistics

View Average Salaries


Foundational and professional courses prepare you to:

  • Understand human movement
  • Recognize and treat injuries
  • Think critically and understand current topics and issues in the field
  • Appreciate human diversity

You’ll take classes in the following programs:

  • Exercise Science
  • Biology
  • Psychology
  • Nutrition

Knowledge of the subdisciplines  of exercise science is crucial. You will choose one of these specializations as your area of focus:

  • Take courses that give you the skills to prescribe:
    • Exercise programs of muscular strength and endurance
    • Cardiorespiratory training
    • Other physical fitness and lifestyle programs
  • Complete two field experiences, including a capstone internship where you will be mentored by professionals in the field.
  • Complete required prerequisite courses for admittance into graduate degree programs.
  • Learn how to provide assessments and diagnosis of orthopedic and musculoskeletal injuries.
  • Gain an understanding of therapeutic interventions and health-related emergencies.
  • Gain clinical decision-making skills for the sports medicine setting.
  • Complete a capstone internship and be mentored by a professional in the field.
  • Complete required prerequisite courses for admittance into graduate degree programs.

Our core curriculum has a strong focus on research. Evidence-based practice – applying that research to the way we practice and make care decisions – is a theme of all our courses.

You’re highly encouraged to consult with an exercise science faculty member if their area of research interests you:

Required courses

Exercise Science physiology

Sample courses

  • Biomechanics of Human Movement
  • Exercise Testing and Prescription
  • Care and Prevention of Sports Injuries
  • Exercise Physiology
  • Group Exercise Instruction
  • Therapeutic Exercise
  • Lifetime Fitness
  • Sport Conditioning

Updated: 06/06/2024 10:27AM