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Exercise Science and Health Promotion

Master of Science Exercise Science and Health Promotion – Credits 36
     Performance Enhancement and Injury Prevention Concentration – Credits: 36 (program 
     code: 0954)
     Rehabilitation Science Concentration – Credits: 36 (program code: 0956)
     Sport Psychology Concentration – Credits: 36 (program code: 0958)
     Wellness and Fitness Concentration – Credits: 36 (program code: 0952)
     Wellness Coaching Concentration – Credits: 36  (program code: 0959)

Performance Enhancement and Injury Prevention Certificate – Credits: 12 (program code: 0994)
Rehabilitation Science Certificate – Credits: 12 (program code: 0996)
Sport Psychology Certificate – Credits: 12 (program code: 0998)
Wellness and Fitness Certificate – Credits: 12 (program code: 0992)
Wellness Coaching Letter of Completion – Credits: 12 (program code: 0982)

Program Description

The Master of Science in Exercise Science and Health Promotion is designed for working professionals and recent bachelor’s degree graduates in the health and fitness industry, including certified athletic trainers, physical therapists, health and physical education teachers, coaches, chiropractors, personal trainers, business owners, wellness counselors, military personnel, and other health/fitness professionals OR individuals looking to change careers and enter the broad field of fitness and wellness. The University has worked closely with the National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM) to develop outstanding course content. NASM was founded in 1987 by physicians, physical therapists and fitness professionals. Since its inception, the organization has expanded throughout the United States, Asia and Europe and has always focused on the development, refinement and implementation of superior educational programs for fitness, performance and sports medicine professionals.

Note: One of the concentrations listed above must be selected for the master's degree. Four concentrations are also available as certificates for applicants who possess a graduate degree (wellness and fitness, performance enhancement and injury prevention, rehabilitation science, and sport psychology). A letter of completion (LOC) in wellness coaching is also available for post-graduate students.

Detailed information about each concentration can be found on our website. Each concentration involves specific coursework preparing the student for one of three NASM certification examinations or the Wellness Coaches USA certification:

1. Certified Personal Trainer (CPT) (wellness and fitness concentration)
2. Performance Enhancement Specialist (PES) (performance enhancement concentration)
3. Corrective Exercise Specialist (CES) (rehabilitation science concentration)
4. Certified Wellness Coach (wellness coaching concentration)

Program length is 12 consecutive months with a summer or winter start. Thirty-five students per class work, learn, communicate online and function as a group of interactive peers. This virtual community, or cohort, creates a lively, dynamic educational experience that enriches the collaborative skills essential in the contemporary health care and fitness workplace.

Program Objectives

  • Our curriculum is oriented toward personal ethics, personal and professional development, leadership, management, and business development, evidence-based practice, applied practice, and an enhanced understanding of the structure and function of the human body.
  • Our focus is to prepare our students for exercise science and health promotion in management and leadership positions in sports medicine clinics, fitness and wellness centers, hospitals, health and wellness industries, corporate wellness, professional sports teams, colleges and universities, K-12 academic settings, military, law enforcement, fire service, emergency medical service, and self-owned business and private practice.
  • Our program is directed toward practical approaches for meeting the challenges of the dynamic and ever-evolving health, fitness and wellness marketplace.
  • Our program is composed of asynchronous graduate courses offered via the Internet that are rigorous and intellectually challenging, yet accommodating to busy lifestyles.
  • We recognize, value and embrace the broad diversity that our Global Online classroom facilitates.

Delivery Mode

Global Online (100 percent online delivery)

Admissions Criteria

Minimum overall undergraduate 2.50 GPA based on 4.00 scale verified by official transcripts from an accredited institution.

Graduate School Application plus $25 nonrefundable application fee

Applicants who do not have a minimum 3.00 undergraduate GPA will be admitted conditionally based on maintaining a 3.00 GPA in their first semester.

Candidates with a GPA below the required minimum 2.50 GPA will be considered if they submit two professional letters of recommendation and a current resume indicating at least five years’ experience in the field.

Applicants must be a fitness, health, exercise science or wellness professional, health educator, coach, or military personnel or be certified, licensed or registered in one of the following: athletic training, physical therapy, occupational therapy, nutrition, physician assistant, nursing, chiropractic or other similar health care profession. Applicants who do not have these credentials or degrees, or a career in health or fitness, may be considered for admission on a case-by-case basis.

Applicants may be contacted for a phone or email interview with the program coordinator to determine success in a Web-based learning environment.

Core Curriculum

PRF 700 Orientation in Exercise Science and Health Promotion 
PRF 701 Advanced Topics in SAQ and Endurance Training
PRF 720 Essentials of Human Movement Science 
PRF 705 Industrial, Clinical and Corporate Wellness 
PRF 715 Business and Entrepreneurship in the Fitness Industry 
PRF 760 Leadership and Professional Development

PRF 765 Nutrition for Peak Performance 
PRF 770 Exercise Physiology: Assessment and Exercise Prescription 

Note: One of the following concentrations must be selected. All concentrations are also available as letters of completion (LOC) for applicants who possess a graduate degree.

Wellness and Fitness Concentration

Course NameCredits
PRF 800 Research in Fitness and Wellness3
PRF 711 An Integrated Approach to Fitness and Wellness3
PRF 751 Program Design in Fitness and Wellness3
PRF 781 Current Topics in Fitness and Wellness3

Performance Enhancement and Injury Prevention Concentration

Course NameCredits
PRF 810 Research in Performance Enhancement3
PRF 710 Performance Enhancement in Physical Activity3
PRF 750 Performance Enhancement Program Design3
PRF 780 Current Topics in Performance Enhancement3

Rehabilitation Science Concentration

Course NameCredits
PRF 820 Research in Rehabilitation3
PRF 712 Corrective Exercise in Rehabilitation3
PRF 752 Corrective Exercise Program Design3
PRF 782 Current Topics in Rehabilitation3

Sport Psychology Concentration

Course NameCredits
PRF 713 Special Topics in Sport Psychology3
PRF 753 Psychological Aspects of Sport Injury and Rehabilitation3
PRF 783 Psychological Perspectives in Sport Performance Enhancement and Intervention3
PRF 830 Research in Sport Psychology3

Wellness Coaching Concentration

PRF 714 Health and Wellness Coaching Competencies3
PRF 754 Health and Wellness Coaching – Facilitating Change3
PRF 784 Current Topics in Wellness Coaching3
PRF 840 Research in Health and Wellness Coaching3


Students in the exercise science and health promotion program receive academic and professional advisement from the program coordinator and program faculty. Each student is assigned to an academic adviser from the time he/she is accepted into the program of study. Advisers work with students to discuss, monitor and provide advisement as it relates to their program of study.

Program Contact Information

Wellness and Fitness:
Sport Performance Enhancement:
Rehabilitation Science:
Sport Psychology:
Wellness Coaching:
Or call 1-866-595-6348 or visit

Application Questions

School of Graduate Studies and Research
California University of Pennsylvania
Eberly 202B
250 University Ave.
California, PA 15419

Program Coordinator

Barry E. McGlumphy, Ed.D. (University of Pittsburgh), M.S. (University of Arizona), B.S. (Lock Haven University), Professor, Full-Time Faculty
Specializations: online education, sports medicine, athletic training
Web Page:
Phone: 724-938-4356

Graduate Faculty

Carol M. Biddington, Ed.D., M.S., B.S. (West Virginia University), Associate Professor; Specializations: curriculum and instruction, health, physical education and safety, elementary education, gerontology; Research Interests: health promotion, diversity awareness, fitness

William B. Biddington, Ed.D., M.S., B.S.P.E. (West Virginia University), Professor, Faculty Athletics Representative; Specializations: athletic training, health and wellness, sport management, curriculum development

Marc S. Federico, D.P.T., M.P.T. (Slippery Rock University), B.S. (University of Pittsburgh), Associate Professor; Specializations: corrective exercise, postural awareness/correction, muscular imbalance; Research Interests: spine, hip, shoulder rehabilitation/function/stabilization

Jeffrey R. Hatton, O.T.D. (Chatham University), M.S. (California University), B.S.O.T. (College Misericordia), B.S.Ed. (Lock Haven University), Assistant Professor; Specializations: business of fitness, fitness for special populations; Research Interests: meaningful activity to increase health-related quality of life

Rebecca A. Hess, Ph.D. (University of Pittsburgh), M.S., B.S (West Virginia University), Professor, adjunct faculty; Specializations: movement science, physiology of exercise, sports nutrition, research; Research Interests: balance and postural/motor control, dance science, injury prevention

Linda P. Meyer, Ed.D. (Duquesne University), M.S. (West Virginia University), B.S. (Lock Haven State College), LAT (Licensed Athletic Trainer in Pennsylvania), ATC, Professor; Specializations: leadership, professional development, athletic training, exercise science; Research Interests: leadership, athletic training related subject matter, exercise science related subject matter

Laura L. Miller, Ph.D., M.S. (University of Southern Mississippi), B.S. (Pennsylvania State University – Behrend College), Associate Professor; Specializations: sport marketing, sport psychology, sport sales; Research Interests: consumer behavior in sport, marketing and sales techniques, disability in sport

Ben Reuter, Ph.D. (Auburn University), M.S.Ed. (Old Dominion University), B.A. (Gettysburg College), Associate Professor; Expertise and Research Interests: exercise science – training age group/masters athletes, injury prevention, strength and conditioning, endurance training

Joni Lee Cramer Roh, Ed.D., B.S. (West Virginia University), M.A.T. (University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill), Professor; Specializations: athletic training/sports medicine, sport psychology, psychophysiology of injury and rehabilitation; Research Interests: psychophysiology of injury and rehabilitation, psychology of injury, psychology of rehabilitation, sport psychology performance enhancement and interventions; Memberships: NATA, PATS, MAATA, APA, AASP, KON; Professional Services: Second Vice Chair of the KON Executive Committee, KON Adviser at Cal U (Nu Omicron chapter); Ad hoc CAATE PPE Annual Review Team

Christine Romani-Ruby, PT, MPT, ATC, PMA CPT; M.P.T. (Slippery Rock University), B.S. Exercise Science (Indiana University of Pennsylvania), B.S. Natural Science (Indiana University of Pennsylvania), Certificate in Athletic Training (West Chester University), Doctoral Candidate (Indiana University of Pennsylvania), Associate Professor; Licenses: Athletic Training, Physical Therapy and Direct Access Physical Therapy; Certifications: Certified Pilates Teacher by Pilates Method Alliance; Interests: wellness, injury prevention, posture, Pilates, body weight training, business

Ronald W. Wagner, Ph.D. (University of Arkansas), M.S. (Eastern Kentucky University), M.S. (Bloomsburg University), B.S. (Southeast Missouri State University), Associate Professor; Specializations: kinesiology, athletic training, instructional design, educational technology; Research Interests: sports performance training, cultural competence in athletic health care, functional movement screening

Ellen J. West, Ed.D., M.S. (West Virginia University), B.S. (California University of Pennsylvania), Associate Professor; Specializations: education leadership, chemical dependency counselor education, health education, athletic training, elementary education; Research Interests: acute care of injury and illness, wellness and fitness, worksite health programming, student-centered learning (constructivist approach), learning styles, psychology of sport, community-based approaches to promoting physical activity