Admission requirements

Applicants must fulfill the requirements of both the Graduate College and the College of Health Solutions.

Applicants are eligible to apply to the program if they have earned a bachelor's or master's degree in a related field from a regionally accredited institution. Students are expected to have the coursework and undergraduate credit for the basic courses required for a BS degree in exercise and wellness. Students who do not have these course competencies can be admitted with deficiencies. Deficiencies are determined upon admission, and these courses must be completed, usually by the end of the first year of study. These courses are not considered part of the graduate plan of study. A graduate course may be substituted for a deficiency but will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis.

Applicants must have a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.00 (scale is 4.00 = "A") in the last 60 hours of their first bachelor's degree program, or applicants must have a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.00 (scale is 4.00 = "A") in an applicable master's degree program.

All applicants must submit:

  1. graduate admission application and application fee
  2. official transcripts
  3. GRE scores
  4. statement of career or research interests
  5. three professional letters of recommendation
  6. proof of English proficiency

Additional Application Information
An applicant whose native language is not English must submit proof of English proficiency regardless of current residency.

BIO 201 and BIO 202 must be completed prior to admission to the master's degree program. Other deficiency courses may be taken prior to or during the master's degree program. The corresponding ASU course can be found in parentheses:

Human Anatomy and Laboratory (BIO 201 Human Anatomy and Physiology I)
Human Physiology and Laboratory (BIO 202 Human Anatomy and Physiology II)
Human Nutrition (NTR 241 Human Nutrition)
Exercise Physiology and Laboratory (SSP 315 Exercise and Sport Physiology)
Kinesiology and Laboratory (EXW 330 Kinesiological Foundations of Movement)
Exercise Testing and Laboratory (EXW 420 Exercise Testing)
Exercise Prescription (EXW 425 Exercise Prescription for Health and Wellness)

An undergraduate course in statistics is strongly recommended.

Students should see the program website for application deadlines.

GRE waivers

GRE waivers for this program are approved on a case-by-case basis. Our admissions committee takes a holistic approach to reviewing each applicant's background and relevant experience. To be considered for a GRE waiver, email CHSgrad@asu.edu.

Degree requirements

32 credit hours and a thesis, or
32 credit hours and a written comprehensive exam, or
32 credit hours and an applied project (EXW 593)

Required Core (9 credit hours)
EXW 501 Research Statistics (3)
EXW 536 Physiological Aspects of Physical Activity and Chronic Disease (3)
EXW 542 Health Promotion (3)

Research (5 credit hours)
EXW 500 Research Methods (3)
EXW 591 Exercise and Wellness Seminar (2)

Electives (12-18 credit hours)

Culminating Experience (0-6 credit hours)
EXW 599 Thesis (6) or
EXW 593 Applied Project (6) or
written comprehensive exam (0)

Additional Curriculum Information
All students must focus their plan of study in one of three areas: exercise science, physical activity and aging , or physical activity and health promotion. The focus determines the choice of electives available to students. For a list of approved elective courses, students should contact their academic unit.

Exercise science --- This is focused study in areas such as advanced exercise physiology, muscle physiology, fuel metabolism, exercise endocrinology, advanced exercise testing and prescription, physiology of physical activity and chronic disease, biomechanics and motor control. This focus area is a good option for students who are interested in pursuing further graduate study in the area of exercise science and chronic disease prevention and management.

Physical Activity and Aging --- This is focused study in areas such as advanced exercise physiology, advanced exercise testing and prescription, physiology of physical activity and chronic disease, physical activity and aging, biomechanics and motor control. This focus area is a good option for students who are interested in pursuing careers in gerontology, working with older adults in the fitness industry, or students who may be pursuing further graduate study in applied exercise science, physical therapy or the medical fields.

Physical activity and health promotion --- This is focused study in areas such as health promotion program planning; implementation and evaluation; physical activity policy in public health; health behavior change theory; motivational interviewing; physiology of physical activity and chronic disease; exercise for obesity; aging and sleep; and the role of mindfulness in stress, health and health behavior. This focus area is a good option for students who are interested in pursuing careers in health promotion, corporate wellness or public health and who may be pursuing further graduate study in health promotion or public health.

All students are admitted to the nonthesis option but may apply to the thesis option.

The nonthesis option requires an applied project or a written comprehensive exam as the culminating experience. The nonthesis option is an appropriate choice for those students who cannot devote full-time to their research endeavors or for students who are seeking to continue their education, advance their skill level as practitioners or advance their current careers. Students who take the written comprehensive exam are required to take six additional elective courses in the focus area.

In the thesis option, the thesis is considered the final integrative experience of the degree; it involves conducting research that is guided by a recognized research paradigm (e.g., scientific, interpretive) and producing a scholarly report of the process and results. The thesis option is a good choice for students who are interested in pursuing more advanced graduate study in the field.