Ohio University

Exercise Physiology

Exercise Physiology is a program of study that is designed for individuals who have a strong interest in fitness and science. The coursework includes classes in basic science, such as chemistry, biology, anatomy, and physics and science-based classes that are specific to exercise, such as exercise prescription, resistance training, motor development and biomechanics.

This program prepares students to work in the fields of health and fitness, clinical diagnostics, rehabilitation, and fitness performance settings. This program also prepares students for graduate programs in exercise physiology and health related disciplines, such as physical therapy and occupational therapy. In efforts to enhance employment opportunities students who graduate from this program often pursue certifications through the American College of Sports Medicine and the National Strength and Conditioning Association. Most of the certifications offered from these organizations require a minimum of a bachelor's degree in exercise physiology (or a related field).


Contact Information:


Program Information

Ohio University Catalog for Exercise Physiology (BS8122)


Learning Outcomes

Upon completion of the program:

  1. Students will be able to describe the cardiovascular and musculoskeletal responses and adaptations to exercise/physical activity.
  2. Students will be able to interpret and analyze results of exercise tests for diverse populations.
  3. Students will be able to evaluate exercise for safety and effectiveness in a wide variety of populations.
  4. Students will be able to create evidence-based exercise programs for diverse populations.


Exercise Physiology Pre-Physical Therapy Concentration

The Exercise Physiology Pre-Physical Therapy concentration (BS8171) provides students a solid background in the life sciences as well as applied exercise sciences. This concentration requires three additional courses for a total of nine additional credit hours to the exercise physiology degree and is manageable with students enrolled in 13-18 credit hours over eight semesters. Students interested in this concentration must meet all the requirements for the exercise physiology major (BS8122) and the following courses: HLTH 2300; PSY 2710; PSY 2410 OR PSY 3420. The concentration is designed to meet the prerequisites of the physical therapy program at Ohio University and most other institutions (note: there are no uniform requirements for physical therapy schools). Students interested in applying to a specific physical therapy graduate program should consult that school's catalog or website for exact prerequisites and work with your academic advisor.


Admissions Information

Freshman/First-Year Admission

  • No requirements beyond university admission requirements.


Change of Program Policy

  • No selective or limited admission requirements.


External Transfer Admission

  • No requirements beyond University admission requirements.


Opportunities Upon Graduation

A degree in exercise physiology will prepare students for three different professional directions: pre-professional program preparation, exercise physiology research and exercise physiology applications.


Pre-professional Preparation

Many exercise physiology students use their degree in exercise physiology as a preparation for application to a graduate level professional program, such as: physician assistant, chiropractic school, occupational therapy, or medical school. The basic science background of this program helps to prepare students for application to these professional programs. Completion of the Pre-Physical Therapy concentration prepares students for the requirements needed to apply to physical therapy graduate programs.


Exercise Physiology Research

Some students are interested in pursuing a career in a research environment, such as academia. The research direction of exercise physiology requires an even greater emphasis on the basic sciences with more classes in biochemistry, genetics, and molecular biology. This can be accomplished by supplementing their degree with these courses.


Exercise Physiology Applications

Many exercise physiology students desire to use their knowledge to work with individuals or groups to promote physical fitness, health and/or performance. These individuals or groups include: health/fitness, clinical/rehabilitation, and athletic performance. The program prepares students to work in all three of these areas.


Admissions Information




Major Hours Requirement

  • The exercise physiology major requires a minimum of 120 hours.


University-wide Graduation Requirements

College-Level Requirements for the College of Health Sciences and Professions


Exercise Physiology Core Requirements

Complete the following courses with a grade of C (2.0) or better in each course (or CR for EXPH 2921):

  • EXPH 1490 - Introduction to Exercise Science, Credit Hours: 3

  • EXPH 2200 - Applied Kinesiology, Credit Hours: 3

  • EXPH 2921 - Practicum in Exercise Physiology, Credit Hours: 1 - 4

  • EXPH 2290 - Exercise Testing and Prescription, Credit Hours: 3

  • EXPH 2295 - Exercise Testing and Prescription Lab, Credit Hours: 2

  • EXPH 3200 - Biomechanics, Credit Hours: 3

  • EXPH 3205 - Biomechanics Laboratory, Credit Hours: 1

  • EXPH 4140 - Physiology of Exercise, Credit Hours: 3

  • EXPH 4145 - Physiology of Exercise Lab, Credit Hours: 2

  • EXPH 4160 - Resistance Training: Theory and Application, Credit Hours: 3

  • EXPH 4490 - Cardiovascular Assessments in Exercise Physiology, Credit Hours: 3

  • EXPH 4495 - Exercise Testing and Prescription for Special Populations, Credit Hours: 3

  • EXPH 4850 - Motor Development, Credit Hours: 2


Exercise Physiology Core Requirements II

Complete one of the following courses with a grade of C (2.0) or better:

  • EXPH 4610 - Advanced Topics in Exercise Performance, Credit Hours: 3

  • EXPH 4620 - Pediatric Exercise Physiology, Credit Hours: 3

  • EXPH 4900 - Special Topics in Exercise Physiology, Credit Hours: 3


Extradepartmental Core Requirements

Complete the following courses with a grade of C (2.0) or better in each course.

  • BIOS 1700 - Biological Sciences I: Molecules and Cells, Credit Hours: 3
  • BIOS 1705 - Biological Sciences I Laboratory, Credit Hours: 1
  • BIOS 1710 - Biological Sciences II: Ecology, Evolution, Animal Body Systems, Credit Hours: 3
  • BIOS 1715 - Biological Sciences II Laboratory, Credit Hours: 1
  • BIOS 3010 - Human Anatomy, Credit Hours: 3
  • BIOS 3015 - Human Anatomy Lab, Credit Hours: 1
  • BIOS 3450 - Human Physiology, Credit Hours: 3
  • BIOS 3455 - Human Physiology Laboratory, Credit Hours: 2
  • NUTR 1000 - Introduction to Nutrition, Credit Hours: 3
  • PHYS 2001 - Introduction to Physics, Credit Hours: 4
  • PHYS 2002 - Introduction to Physics, Credit Hours: 4
  • PSY 1010 - General Psychology, Credit Hours: 3


Mathematics Requirement

Complete one of the following courses with a grade of C or better.

  • MATH 1350 - Survey of Calculus, Credit Hours: 4
  • MATH 2301 - Calculus I, Credit Hours: 4


Chemistry Sequence

Complete one of the following chemistry options with a grade of C or better in each course.


Chemistry Option I

Complete the following courses:

  • CHEM 1210 - Principles of Chemistry I, Credit Hours: 4
  • CHEM 1220 - Principles of Chemistry II, Credit Hours: 4


Chemistry Option 2

Complete the following courses:

  • CHEM 1510 - Fundamentals of Chemistry I, Credit Hours: 4
  • CHEM 1520 - Fundamentals of Chemistry II, Credit Hours: 4


Related Requirements I

Complete both of the following courses:

  • EXPH 2280 - Community First Aid, and CPR/AED for the Professional Rescuer, Credit Hours: 2
  • PSY 2110 - Statistics for the Behavioral Sciences, Credit Hours: 4


Related Requirements II

Complete one of the following courses:

  • ANTH 1010 - Introduction to Cultural Anthropology, Credit Hours: 3
  • SOC 1000 - Introduction to Sociology, Credit Hours: 3


Related Requirements for Pre-Physical Therapy Concentration

Complete the following courses:

  • HLTH 2300 - Medical Terminology, Credit Hours: 3
  • PSY 2710 - Abnormal Psychology, Credit Hours: 3
  • PSY 2410 - Child and Adolescent Psychology, Credit Hours: 3


  • PSY 3420 - Psychology of Adulthood and Aging, Credit Hours: 3


Skill Development Related Requirements

Complete the following course:

  • EXPH 2590 - Physical Fitness, Credit Hours: 1I



Complete one of the following courses: These courses are not available on the Eastern Campus. Another PAW course may be substituted for the Aquatic requirement. However, permission must be obtained for this substitution.

PAW 1300 - Aqua Aerobics, Credit Hours: 1

  • PAW 1301 - Fundamentals of Swimming, Credit Hours: 1
  • PAW 1302 - Fundamentals Swim Conditioning, Credit Hours: 1
  • PAW 2301 - Intermediate Swimming, Credit Hours: 1
  • PAW 2302 - Intermediate Swim Conditioning, Credit Hours: 1
  • PAW 2801 - Advanced Swimming, Credit Hours: 1
  • PAW 2180 - Life Guard Training, Credit Hours: 2
  • PAW 2200 - Water Safety for Instructors, Credit Hours: 2


Sports Skills and Lifetime Activities
  • Complete any PAW course not listed under the Aquatics category above.


Interprofessional Education in Health Care

Complete a total of two credit hours from the following:

  • HLTH 4070 - Interprofessional Gerontology, Credit Hours: 3
  • IHS 2112 - Introduction to Interprofessional Education and Practice in Health Care, Credit Hours: 3
  • IHS 2220 - Cultural Competency in Interprofessional Health Care, Credit Hours: 3
  • IHS 3250 - Interprofessional Health Promotion, Credit Hours: 3
  • IHS 4430 - Working in an Interprofessional Healthcare Team, Credit Hours: 3
  • IHS 4510 - Interprofessional Health Care in Rural/Underserved Populations, Credit Hours: 1 - 3
  • IHS 4518 - Interprofessional Grand Rounds, Credit Hours: 1 - 3


Exercise Physiology at Ohio University