Stand Out With an Undergraduate Degree From Webster

Alumni from our Global Campuses

Health and science are evolving together, and exercise science is on the cutting edge of both. Webster students in this program study subjects from kinesiology to biology and develop the practical, specialized knowledge they need for professional success. The exercise science degree provides an excellent academic foundation for students choosing to pursue graduate and professional degrees in multiple health careers, such as exercise physiology, occupational therapy, physical therapy, medicine and athletic training.

Sidney Holtz
Pat Burnes Webster Society Annual Art and Sciences Scholarship Recipient

“I want to help people become the very best version of themselves. No one deserves to live their life in pain, so being able to help them feel better is what I strive to do.”

Sidney Holtz
Sidney Holtz

BS in Exercise Science, ‘24

Learning Outcomes

Upon completion of the exercise science program, students will be able to demonstrate:

  • Basic knowledge of biology, chemistry, physics and human movement.
  • Knowledge of effective analysis of kinesiology concepts.
  • Skill in applied kinesiology, effective use of problem-solving techniques, and intelligent decision-making skills in clinical settings.
  • Tolerance and understanding of diverse populations, responsible citizenship, a professional attitude and ethical behavior.

Webster's Exercise Science Program

  • Rigorous biology and chemistry course requirements give students a strong foundation in the physical sciences for continued education and/or licensure as a physical therapist, occupational therapist or athletic trainer.
  • Students gain valuable experience by completing an internship in the exercise science field, working alongside industry professionals at gyms, fitness centers, recovery centers, nursing homes and hospitals
  • Hands-on lab experience is built into the curriculum to give students the chance to practice what they learn.
  • Courses on working with special populations provide students with a global and culturally-sensitive perspective on practicing exercise science.

The 71 credit hours required for the exercise science major include the following:

  • BIOL 1550 Essentials of Biology I (4 hours)
    and BIOL 1551 Essentials of Biology I: Lab (1 hour)
  • BIOL 3150 Nutrition (3 hours)
  • BIOL 3010 Human Anatomy & Physiology I (3 hours)
    and BIOL 3011 Human Anatomy & Physiology I: Lab (1 hour)
  • BIOL 3020 Human Anatomy & Physiology II (3 hours)
    and BIOL 3021 Human Anatomy & Physiology II: Lab (1 hour)
  • BIOL 4400 Research Methods (3 hours)
  • BIOL 4430 Senior Thesis for BS in Biological Science (4 hours)
  • EXSC 1318 Careers in Exercise Science (1 hour)
  • EXSC 1400 Foundations of Exercise Science (3 hours)
  • EXSC 2100 Coaching Health and Human Performance (2 hours)
  • EXSC 2356 Principles of Athletic Training (3 hours)
  • EXSC 3050 Exercise Physiology (3 hours)
  • EXSC 3250 Kinesiology (3 hours)
    and EXSC 3251 Exercise Kinesiology: Lab (1 hour)
  • EXSC 4680 Exercise Prescription and Testing (3 hours)
    and EXSC 4681 Exercise Testing and Prescription: Lab (1 hour)
  • EXSC 4683 Exercise Prescription for Special Populations (3 hours)
  • EXSC 4875 Exercise Science Internship (3 hours)
  • CHEM 1100 General Chemistry I (3 hours)
    and CHEM 1101 General Chemistry I: Lab (1 hour)
  • CHEM 1110 General Chemistry II (3 hours)
    and CHEM 1111 General Chemistry II: Lab (1 hour)
  • PHYS 1710 College Physics I (3 hours)
    and PHYS 1711 College Physics I: Lab (1 hour)
  • PHYS 1720 College Physics II (3 hours)
    and PHYS 1721 College Physics II: Lab (1 hour)
  • PSYC 2300 Lifespan Development (3 hours)
  • STAT 3100 Inferential Statistics (3 hours)
    or MATH 2200 Statistics (3 hours)
    or PSYC 2750 Introduction to Measurement and Statistics (3 hours)

The 119 credit hours required for the psychological science/exercise science dual major include the exercise science core curriculum, except PSYC 2300, and the following courses.

Additional Curriculum

  • WRIT 1010 The Craft of College Writing (3 hours)
  • MATH 1430 College Algebra (3 hours)
  • BIOL 1040 Human Genetics (3 hours)
  • PSYC 1100 Introduction to Psychology (3 hours)
  • PSYC 1800 Careers in Psychology (1 hour)
  • PSYC 2750 Introduction to Measurement and Statistics (3 hours)
  • PSYC 2825 Introduction to Research Methods (3 hours)
  • PSYC 2975 Sophomore Assessment (0 hours)
  • PSYC 3025 Psychology and Ethics (2 hours)
  • PSYC 4750 Advanced Statistics (3 hours)
  • PSYC 4825 Senior Thesis (3 hours)
  • PSYC 4925 Senior Capstone: History, Philosophy and Systems of Psychology (3 hours)
  • PSYC 4950 Senior Assessment (0 hours)
  • Psychology electives (at least 3 hours at the 4000-level) (6 hours)
  • Psychology content areas (15 hours)

Webster University offers a cooperative 3-2 program with the Washington University School of Medicine in Occupational Therapy. This dual degree program enables students to complete a BA in Biology, BS in Biological Sciences, BS in Exercise Science, BS in Psychological Science or BA in Psychology from Webster University and a Master of Science in Occupational Therapy from Washington University within a five-year period. Occupational therapy is a client-centered health profession concerned with promoting health and well-being through occupation. The primary goal of occupational therapy is to enable people to participate in the activities of everyday life.

To take advantage of this cooperative 3-2 program, students need to:

  • Complete a minimum of 90 credit hours toward the declared Webster undergraduate degree, with at least 30 of those credit hours taken in residence at Webster University, and two years at Washington University.
  • Complete the Webster University global citizenship program and the requirements for their undergraduate major at Webster prior to entering the Washington University program.
  • Apply to the Washington University School of Medicine Occupational Therapy Program. Most students apply in early fall of their junior year. Interested students should examine the materials on the Washington University site to make sure they have the most current set of admission requirements.
  • Submit a petition to graduate from Webster University upon earning a minimum of 120 credit hours (after year 1 or year 2 at Washington University).

Washington University in St. Louis 3-2 Program

MSOT Prerequisite Courses

  • BIOL 3010 Human Anatomy and Physiology I* (3 hours)
    and BIOL 3011 Human Anatomy and Physiology I: Lab* (1 hours) (Life Science, Physiology)
  • BIOL 3020 Human Anatomy and Physiology II (3 hours)
    and BIOL 3021 Human Anatomy and Physiology II: Lab (1 hour) (Physiology)
  • PSYC 2300 Lifespan Development* (3 hours) (Developmental Psychology)
  • PSYC 2750 Introduction Measurement and Statistics (3 hours)
    or MATH 2200 Statistics (3 hours)
    or STAT 3100 Inferential Statistics (3 hours) (Statistics)
  • PSYC 3125 Abnormal Psychology* (3 hours) (Abnormal Psychology)
  • Social Science Elective (ANSO, ECON, POLT, PSYC) (3 hours) (Social Science)

*Students must meet the required prerequisites for these courses at Webster.

Program Spotlight: Exercise Science (BS)




Text on screen: Program Spotlight: Exercise Science (BS)

[Footage of Browning Hall fades into an interview shot.]

Text on screen: David Reddy, Director, Instructor, Exercise Science

David Reddy

It’s the science of exercise, the science of movement, the science of fitness, the science of health. We are housed in the Department of Natural Sciences and Mathematics, so you're going to get a foundational level of many different sciences.

[A blue filter covers footage of students working in various labs and text scrolls up from the bottom of the screen.]

Text on screen: Biology, Physics, Chemistry, Anatomy and Physiology

Biology, physics, chemistry and then anatomy and physiology. And so it is the undergraduate experience is going to take them on to graduate school or a professional career in and of itself.

[Another blue filter over student footage with text appearing from left to right.]

Text on screen: High-Impact Learning, Engaging Students with Hands-On Practices

[David Reddy demonstrates to students how to use various tools and techniques in the context of physical therapy and exercise training.]

In our labs, we do a lot of work with each other. So we'll assess movement, we'll assess health, we’ll be taking blood pressure, heart rates – there's a lot of high impact, hands-on experiences that are wonderful.

[The demonstrations end as another interview shot appears.]

Text on screen: Nysa G., Student

Nysa G.

My favorite part is the hands-on activities that we do.

[More footage of David Reddy working with students and teaching best practices.]

The exercises, getting to use your own body to kind of go through the movement to help me to better, like, learn things and apply it in real life.

David Reddy

Another important feature being housed in the science department is that our students all do a unique senior thesis project.

[Another interview shot of David Reddy changes to footage of students giving presentations on posterboard and in front of an auditorium.]

They put together the study. They do the entire study over the course of a year, and then they write up a paper, they do a presentation, and it's really great to see.

Text on screen: Customized Education, Preparing Students for a Wide Variety of Careers

By the end of almost their first semester – if not, their first year – not only do we know everyone by name, we are beginning to customize what their four-year experience looks like.

[David Reddy continues speaking as texts pops up on screen.]

Text on screen: Job Placement, Internship Opportunities, Graduate School Preparation

So what part-time job might serve them best? Are they going to intern somewhere in particular? If you're going to graduate school, what does that look like? So I think that's from a coaching standpoint, a mentoring standpoint – that's vital.

Text on screen: Tony T.

Tony T.

The internship that I did within this program helped me a lot. Kind of exposes me to a variety of careers and a variety of paths that I could take. Once we tell them, you know, our purpose and our goals and they are willing to kind of shape our path to pursue that.

[The interview footage of Tony T. fades into a Webster Student athlete pitching a baseball.]

Text on screen: Athletics and Academics, Individualized Education for the Student Athlete

David Reddy

A lot of our students, inevitably, are student athletes that they're also in athletics playing a variety of sports.

[Footage of Webster’s strength coach and athletic trainer interacting and engaging with student athletes]

Our strength coach, our athletic trainer, they work with the students, with their performance, with their injuries. But they're also adjuncts in the exercise science program. So it's great to see that, that they kind of see both the athletics angle and the academic angle.

Nysa G.

They make sure that we get what we need while we're here and that we can take things with us so that we can work while we're on the road.

[Footage of various Webster sports: women’s basketball, volleyball, men’s soccer and baseball.]

They work with us with exams, scheduling things. They're very understanding with that. So I've appreciated that.

[Various teachers work with students in Webster’s Department of Natural Sciences and Mathematics.]

I have a good relationship with my professors, which I know will benefit me in the future, and it already has.

[A close up of Nysa smiling at the camera slowly fades to blue.]

So I am happy that I chose Webster.

[Webster University logo animates on screen]

Text on screen: Webster University,


Complement Your Degree with a Natural Sciences and Mathematics Minor

These undergraduate minor programs are offered by the College of Science and Health Department of Natural Sciences and Mathematics and are only available at the St. Louis main campus.

Job Outlook

Exercise science majors are employed in a wide range of positions, including exercise physiologists, kinesiotherapists, fitness trainers and instructors, physical therapists, and athletic trainers. Most graduates will continue their education in a specialized post-baccalaureate program after graduation. However, students who complete the undergraduate degree are able to pursue careers as a personal trainers, wellness coordinators, and strength and conditioning coaches.

Jobs for exercise physiologists are predicted to increase by 13% through 2030. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor and Statistics, the median annual wage for exercise physiologists was $50,280 in May 2020. Jobs for athletic trainers are predicted to increase 23% through 2030. Also according to BLS, as of May 2020, the median annual wage for athletic trainers is $49,860. 

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