When exercise meets expertise, anything is possible.

As an exercise and sport science (ESS) major at University of the Cumberlands, you’ll be learning from professors who are committed to helping you achieve your academic and career goals. In this bachelor's degree program, you can tailor your courses to your personal interests while building a strong academic foundation that’ll equip you to help others live their healthiest lives. From pursuing a strength-training career in the multi-billion sports industry to leading fitness classes in community centers, you will be prepared for any fitness job that comes your way. 

Anchor: Stats
Anchor: Programs & Requirements
Programs & Requirements

Programs & Requirements

* The credit hours listed on this page only reference the specific program requirements and is not reflective of the total hours necessary to receive your degree. Cumberlands requires all students obtain a minimum of 60 hours for an associate’s degree and a total of 120 hours for a bachelor’s degree. Transfer and prior learning credits may be counted toward those totals.

To learn more about our General Education Requirements, please visit the page referenced below or explore our Academic Catalog

General Education Requirements

Bachelor of Science in Exercise and Sport Science

Through a bachelor’s degree in exercise and sport science, you will gain a thorough, well-rounded education about all facets of the sport science field, giving you knowledge and professional skills that will help you succeed in almost any career. With your bachelor’s, you’ll also be likely to achieve better – and higher-paying – career opportunities down the line. As they say, “If you haven’t got your health, you haven’t got anything.” Learn how to improve your own health while receiving training to help improve the health of those around you. 

Course Requirements

HESS 233     Functional Human Anatomy and Physiology

HESS 234     First Aid and Safety

HESS 330     Influences on Contemporary Issues in Health & Performance

HESS 333     Nutrition

HESS 439     Facilities Development and Management

ESS 131       Introduction to Health Exercise and Sport Science

ESS 232       Physical Education for Middle School and Secondary School

ESS 330       Kinesiology   

ESS 337       History and Contemporary Influences on Health, Exercise and Sport

ESS 432       Physical Education for Middle and Secondary Schools

ESS 435       Physiology of Exercise

ESS 437       Tests and Measurements   

Elective courses must total 3 hours at the 300 or 400 level.

A Bachelor of Arts requires all the same courses as a Bachelor of Science with the addition of four classes (12 hours) in a foreign language.

Choose one foreign language sequence:

FREN 131        Elementary French I

FREN 132        Elementary French II

FREN 231        Intermediate French I

FREN 232        Intermediate French II

 

SPAN 131        Elementary Spanish I

SPAN 132        Elementary Spanish II

SPAN 231        Intermediate Spanish I

SPAN 232        Intermediate Spanish II

Minor in Exercise and Sport Science

Even a minor in exercise and sport science will give you valuable fitness knowledge and professional skills that will elevate your job performance and land you better – and higher-paying – careers in the future. Everyone benefits from improving their health. Why not learn the basics of how to do that?  

Course Requirements

HESS 233     Functional Human Anatomy and Physiology

HESS 234     First Aid and Safety

HESS 330     Influences on Contemporary Issues in Health & Performance

ESS 131       Introduction to Health Exercise and Sport Science   

ESS 330       Kinesiology

ESS 435       Physiology of Exercise

ESS 437       Tests and Measurements   

Three hours (one class) of upper-level ESS or HESS electives  

Associate of Applied Science in Exercise and Sport Science

With an Associate of Applied Science in Exercise and Sport Science, your courses will focus on specific industry skills. Taking less time to complete than a bachelor’s degree, an associate degree is an excellent way to start your professional career faster and more cost-effectively while still helping you gain the skills and experience necessary for a career in the field. And for those already working in the field of exercise and sport science, a degree program offers you extra information you may not have known you needed and a degree to prove your fitness knowledge to future employers. No matter your life circumstance, an associate degree could be the perfect step forward for you.  

Course Requirements

HESS 233 Functional Human Anatomy and Physiology
HESS 330 Influences on Contemporary Issues in Health & Performance
ESS 131 Introduction to Health, Exercise and Sport Science
ESS 230 Growth and Movement Development
ESS 330 Kinesiology
ESS 435 Physiology Exercise

Anchor: Mission & Goals

Mission & Goals

The mission of the Department of Health, Exercise, and Sport Science (HESS) is to develop competent exercise science majors who integrate content knowledge and practical application skills appropriate to diverse situations.

Meet requirements for graduate school or professional positions within the field.
Communicate clearly and think critically.
Evaluate clients’ fitness and goals to create appropriate training plans.
Understand the impact of health, exercise, and sport science within society.
Effectively promote and support healthy lifestyles among diverse populations.
Anchor: Career Outcomes

Exercise and Sport Science Careers & Outcomes

*All statistics from the U.S. Bureau of Labor and Statistics

Fitness Trainer: $40,700

Fitness Trainer: $40,700

Fitness trainers and instructors lead, instruct, and motivate individuals or groups in exercise activities. 

Coach: $38,970

Coach: $38,970

Coaches teach amateur or professional athletes the skills they need to succeed at their sport. Scouts evaluate athletes as possible recruits.

Scout: $38,970

Scout: $38,970

Evaluate athletes as possible recruits.

Postsecondary Instructor: $79,640

Postsecondary Instructor: $79,640

Postsecondary teachers instruct students in a variety of academic subjects beyond the high school level. 

Fitness Equipment Sales Manager: $127,490

Fitness Equipment Sales Manager: $127,490

Sales managers direct organizations' sales teams.

Camp Activities Instructor/Director: $29,680

Camp Activities Instructor/Director: $29,680

Design and lead sports-related activities to help keep your camp attendants happy, active, and healthy.

Anchor: FAQs

Common Questions

Exercise and sport science is a degree focusing on the study of the human body and how it functions physically. An exercise and sport science degree will prepare you for careers that benefit from skills needed in exercising, personal training, and fitness activities.  

As an exercise and sport science major you’ll have a number of jobs awaiting you. Upon successful completion of your sport science degree coursework, you’ll be eligible to take a national certification examination from organizations such as the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM), the American Council on Exercise (ACE), the National Council of Strength and Fitness (NCSF), or the National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA). Some of the careers you could then pursue include fitness training, coaching, scouting, postsecondary teaching, and more! 

Whether it’s a bachelor’s or an associate, a degree in exercise and sport science will open doors to a number of job opportunities for you. The degree you choose will depend a lot on the specific jobs that interest you, as well as the time you are looking to put into it. An associate degree will be more focused on helping you develop specific industry skills and typically take two years to complete, while a bachelor's degree will cover a greater array of skills and take more time to complete.  

Your coursework as an exercise and sport science major will cover a broad range of topics, touching on essentials such as diet and nutrition, human anatomy and physiology, and first aid and safety. Lower-level classes will offer overviews of topics, and higher-level courses will give more depth into specialized areas.

There are a number of minors and other majors at UC that would complement the knowledge and skills you will gain as an exercise and sport science major. A few examples are biology, psychology, coaching, public health, business, applied physics, and human services. But don’t feel tied down to these choices; you have more than 40 other options to choose from!

Anchor: Faculty

Faculty Experts in Exercise, and Sport Science

Learn more about the professors you will interact with in the Department of Health, Exercise, and Sport Science (HESS)

Cody Durbin

Assistant Track and Field Coach | Adjunct Professor
Athletics
Health, Exercise and Sport Science

Cody Durbin

Contact Information

cody.durbin [at] ucumberlands.edu
Rollins Center

Kandace West

Adjunct Professor
Health, Exercise and Sport Science

Kandace West

Contact Information

kandace.west [at] ucumberlands.edu
Remote
Matthew Hill

Matthew Hill

Adjunct Faculty
Health, Exercise and Sport Science

Matthew Hill

Contact Information

matthew.hill [at] ucumberlands.edu
Luecker Building, RM 215

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