Department of Physical Education, Health & Kinesiology

Tangible health: We help people live well every day

Northwestern will get you ready to serve and lead people in developing healthful lifestyles through exercise, movement skill acquisition, nutrition and disease prevention.

Why get my degree at Northwestern?

  • You'll gain the knowledge, skills and guidance to be a sought after professional in the teaching, health, kinesiology and sports management fields.
  • You will get a diverse field experience and receive extensive interaction with current practitioners in the field.
  • You can join many of our graduates who pursue degrees at the master and doctorate levels in Physical Therapy, Echocardiology, Occupational Therapy, Athletic Training and Chiropractic Medicine.

Six tracks to find your passion

Students first enroll in the "Foundations of Physical Education and Kinesiology" course, designed to help you you choose which track that best fits your career goals and personal strengths. Our department offers the following tracks for each major:

  • Health and Fitness
  • K–12 Physical Education
  • K–12 Physical Education and 5–12 Health Education
  • Pre-Therapy
  • Sports Management
  • Health Management

What our grads are doing

Graduates of our department are out in the field finding success! Maybe you'll have one of these titles someday:

  • Physical Education/Health Teacher
  • Personal Trainer
  • Sports Retail Manager
  • Activities Director
  • Gymnastics Coach
  • Arthritis Foundation Spokesperson
  • Activities Camp Director
  • Executive Director at YMCA
  • High School or College Coach
  • Physical Therapist
  • Chiropractor
  • Osteopathic Technician
  • Geriatric Researcher
  • Pediatric Echocardiologist
  • Athletic Trainer for NBA

Coaches for life

The Northwestern Phy. Ed., Health & Kinesiology Department was a great, close-knit group of people. I still have close contact/friendships with several Alums' I was in class with. As far as the Professors go in this Department, I can't begin to explain how awesome they are! They truly want ALL students to succeed at their highest potential, but they also care for you as a person and most importantly as a Christian. They are all very approachable and very fair!  - Andy White – 2011, Physical Education & Health graduate

"Though the faculty and staff in the Kinesiology department are busy and work with numerous students daily, it felt to me as though I was the only student there. The individualized attention I received was second to none and they really went out of their way to take phone calls, respond to emails, and help me when it was needed. As a student in the department, you can genuinely feel how much they care and want to push you to be the best you can be both academically and spiritually." - Steven Holladay – 2012, Kinesiology graduate

Majors and Minors

Physical Education
Prepare to teach K–12 physical education in private and public schools, with the option of a licensure in health education (grades 5–12).

Study muscles and movement and develop your knowledge and abilities in the health and fitness field, training and coaching or prepare for further study in a clinical health-related field.

Don't want to major? Don't worry: tailor your education by adding one of these minors:

Now that's a promise...

"Our goal as professors is to nurture your development and help you create lifelong memories and friendships with your fellow students, staff and professors. We are excited to have you join us, and we will work hard to provide experiences that will support the career and calling that God has for your life."

–Kristine Smith, Ph.D. Professor of Physical Education
Chair, Department of Physical Education, Health & Kinesiology