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Movement Science and Education
Teachers College, Columbia University
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Specializations > Applied Exercise Physiology

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Applied Exercise Physiology

Program Coordinators: Carol Garber           Email: msnsprogram@tc.columbia.edu
Academic Secretary: Erynn Lowery              Phone: (212) 678-3325   Fax: (212) 678-3322


Degrees Offered 

Masters of Arts (MA)                 Masters of Education (M.Ed.)

Doctor of Education (Ed.D)       Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D).


The Applied Exercise Physiology concentration focuses on the physiological effects of exercise and disease and on the promotion of physical activity. The effects of exercise training on physiological processes, health, and physical well being are emphasized. Through a joint program with nutrition education, students can study  Nutrition and Exercise Physiology through the Department of Health and Behavior Studies (Program in Nutrition). Students in Applied Physiology can supplement their work in applied exercise physiology with nutrition classes.  Students can apply their academic work to improve health and physical fitness across both healthy and disabled populations.  Doctoral students conduct related research in laboratory and health care facilities, and in field settings designed to promote physical activity and health.

Students in the applied exercise physiology specialization have access to a variety of rich resources at Columbia University. Active collaborations exist between our faculty and faculty in the Columbia University School of Medicine, Mailman School of Public Health and the New York Center for Obesity Research. Students are welcome to participate in these ongoing projects and attend any of the frequent seminars at the Columbia University Medical Center and the New York Center for Obesity Research.

The Applied (Exercise) Physiology concentration focuses on the study of the physiological effects of acute and chronic exercise, how exercise and physical activity influences health, and on the promotion of physical activity in community, clinical, and public health settings. The effects of physical activity and exercise training on physiological processes, neuromuscular and biomechanical function, health, and physical well-being are emphasized. Students can apply their academic work to jobs that involve exercise testing and training, including programs designed to improve health and physical fitness in healthy individuals and in people with or at risk for chronic illness or disability, and in community, clinical, research, and public health settings.

Three degree programs are offered in Applied (Exercise) Physiology: Masters of Arts (M.A.), Masters of Education (Ed.M.), and Doctorate of Education (Ed.D.). In addition, students enrolled in the Doctor of Philosophy Program in Kinesiology may concentrate in Applied Physiology. A joint program in Exercise Physiology & Nutritionis offered through the Department of Health and Behavior Studies.

The Master and Advanced Masters Degrees may lead to employment opportunities such as:  

  • Clinical Specialist (hospital, clinic, school setting) 
  • Clinical Supervisor
  • Clinical Education Coordinator (site setting)
  • Hospital based research position
  • Laboratory Instructor (university setting)
  • Clinical Exercise Physiologist
  • Athletic Trainer
  • Personal Trainer
  • Strength and Conditioning Coach
  • Laboratory Technologist (hospital setting)
  • Research Assistant (hospital, clinic, school setting)
  • Instructor in Physical/Occupational Therapy Program
  • Research Coordinator (hospital, clinic, school setting)
  • Continuing Education Instructor (research area)
  • Supervisor / Manager / Administrator (hospital, clinic, school setting)
  • Academic Clinical Coordinator Education (ACCE) 
A number of Masters students have used their degree as a stepping stone to admission to graduate and professional schools.


The Doctorate of Education (Ed.D.) prepares leaders who are "scholars of practice," able to draw valid applications from research presently available in Movement Sciences and Education. Graduates of the Ed.D. program serve as educators in the professional training of clinicians and educators. The degree may lead to:

  • Tenure-track faculty position in a variety of disciplines, including  (Kinesiology, Physical Therapy, Occupational Therapy) with positions emphasizing teaching and field-based research.

  • Research Coordinator (university, hospital, clinic)

  • Director/Administrator (university, teaching hospital)

The Doctorate of Philosophy (Ph.D.) prepares researchers in the areas of Movement Sciences or Kinesiology for professorial positions at Research I Universities. Study is directed toward preparing the current and the next generation of researchers in the study of movement. Movement-based areas of education assume professorial roles in Universities and Colleges within departments of Movement Sciences/Kinesiology, Medicine and Public Health.