Bachelor of Science in Kinesiology


If you're passionate about helping others improve their quality of life, check out NIU's experiential and researchinformed Kinesiology program. We prepare you to work in a variety of health, wellness and sport performance settings where you will use exercise as a form of medicine. Our curriculum also prepares you for graduate school in exercise physiology, physical therapy, occupational therapy, athletic training, sport and exercise psychology and sport management. You'll study scientific principles that regulate behavior change and performance, such as physiology, biomechanics, psychology, measurement, gerontology and nutrition. We are part of the National Strength and Conditioning Association's Education Recognition Program and a member of the American Kinesiology Association.

Students admitted to NIU to pursue the B.S. degree in Kinesiology enter directly into the major program. • Retention in this major requires a university GPA of 2.5 or above and to have satisfactorily completed all required course work prior to the culminating internship. • Grades of C or better are required in specific major courses.

The NIU College of Education embeds diverse, real-world learning opportunities in its programs, including Kinesiology.

  • You select internship sites (with faculty guidance) that align with your future career goals.
    • Common sites include cardiac rehabilitation centers, fitness centers, sport performance centers and corporations.
  • If you choose to live in Stevenson Towers' Sport, Recreation and Wellness Community, you can participate in intramural leagues, weekend trips and monthly workshops which will enhance your personal wellness as well as connect you with other students who share your interest in sport and recreation.
  • On-campus educational experiences also are available to you through our FitWell program. FitWell enhances the well-being of NIU students, employees and residents of the surrounding communities through exercise as well as scientifically based health and fitness education.

For more than two decades, our department has operated an outreach program with DeKalb's Oak Crest Retirement Center to give our students hands-on experience in a health and wellness setting. Our Oak Crest clinical experience is incorporated into the Kinesiology undergraduate program. While there, you'll work individually with one to three Oak Crest clients per semester under the supervision of a graduate assistant.

David Benner, director of the Gerontology Clinical Experience, observes: "At the beginning of the semester, students are nervous, and then their comfort level builds as they develop relationships and gain new perspectives and experiences with the clients while working in the Exercise Gerontology field. Some of our students have used this clinical experience to start a future career working with older adults."

  • KNPE 300 Field Experience in Kinesiology (1)
  • KNPE 301 Introduction to Kinesiology and Sport Professions (3)
  • KNPE 310 Psychological Aspects of Sport and Exercise (3)
  • KNPE 314 Applied Kinesiology (4)
  • KNPE 346 Methods of Group Fitness Instruction (3)
  • KNPE 350 Principles and Techniques of Resistance Training (3)
  • KNPE 443 Principles of Exercise for Acute and Chronic Conditions (3)
  • KNPE 445 Measurement and Evaluation in Exercise Science (3)
  • KNPE 452 Applied Physiology of Exercise (4)
  • KNPE 463 Exercise and Physical Activity across the Lifespan (3)
  • KNPE 493 Supervised Clinical Experience in Exercise Gerontology (2)
  • KNPE 494 Internship in Kinesiology (6)
  • LESM 438 Sport and Fitness Management Strategies (3) or
    • LESM 442 Promotion of Sport and Fitness Programs (3)
You'll also pursue coursework toward a focus area in Wellness, Performance or Sport Management.

Careers In Kinesiology

  • corporate wellness manager
  • coach
  • fitness instructor
  • intramural sports director
  • personal trainer
  • strength-and-conditioning coach
  • weight training instructor

"NIU’s Kinesiology program not only educated me on the basics of the human body in motion but also prepared me to use that knowledge in a professional setting, thanks to classes related to sport management. It’s a well-built program that will prepare you to succeed at the next level. If you want to be better than the rest, young need to work harder than the rest."by Nick Minogue, B.S., Kinesiology, General Manager, Throw It Deep


"The NIU College of Education has great professors and advisors, and it gives so many opportunities to its students. The professors are willing to help, and want to see you succeed."by Sara Schroeder, Current Kinesiology Student

Contact Us

Department of Kinesiology and Physical Education 
Anderson Hall 221
DeKalb, IL 60115
P: 815-753-1407 
F: 815-753-1413

Connect with us on


Learn More About

NIU majors and activities