Areas of Study

Courses & Requirements

Summary of Requirements

Core Curriculum 43
Pre-Major Courses 10
Major and Related Courses 52-54
Free Elective Courses 13-15

Required pre-major courses 10 hours

To be taken during the freshman or sophomore year:

This course addresses human biology through the lens of evaluating scientific claims. Students will learn about select organ systems (reproductive, skeletal and muscular, immune and nervous systems) and about human genetics in a way that helps them make decisions relevant to their daily lives. The course focuses on developing skills that scientists use: basic experimental design, research methods, and scientific writing. It also teaches the language of biology and especially how to critique arguments related to human biology that we encounter in the media. Three hours of lecture and two hours of laboratory per week.

This course includes a study of quality of life components to assist students in realizing their maximal personal potential and taking responsibility for maintaining and improving the quality of life through their life span. The course emphasizes both the acquisition of knowledge and the practical application of the dimensions of wellness through participation in a program of planned activities for the development of a healthy lifestyle.

Students will study the historical and philosophical bases of physical education and recreation. The course will include the philosophies of well-known physical education and recreation professionals, and their implications and consequences for the individual and society. The course reflects the continuing growth of these fields within a variety of educational, sport, and recreational environments.

Required physical education and recreation major courses 51 hours

This comprehensive course covers major body systems including the musculoskeletal, nervous, digestive, cardiovascular and respiratory systems. One or more field trips that have direct applications may be arranged, dependent on availability. This course is designed to give Physical Education and Recreation majors a strong foundation for PER 341 Kinesiology. Biology majors should instead enroll in BIO 233 Human Anatomy & Physiology I and BIO 333 Human Anatomy & Physiology II. Three hours of lecture and one two-hour laboratory per week.

This course will focus on basic principles, concepts, and skills of leading physical and recreation activities for children, adolescents, and adults. The psychomotor, social, cognitive, affective, and learning domains will be addressed as students learn to utilize a task analysis model to choose, and then lead appropriate activities that contribute to an improved quality of life for the participants.

Students will study the theories of experiential learning, and education through experiencing new games, activities, outdoor initiatives, problem solving, physical activities, field experiences, creative development, leading groups, discussions, sharing quotes and stories, and written expression. Emphasis will be placed on developing skills through selected outdoor recreational activities.

A theoretical and practical course designed to prepare students to teach and lead fundamental motor skills as the foundation of all physical activity with an emphasis on dance and gymnastics. Students will apply teaching methodologies through a non-traditional approach of linking motor skill progressions into dance and gymnastics routines to enhance success for diverse participants in a variety of educational, fitness, and recreational settings.

This course will focus on the concepts, techniques, and skills inherent in various sports utilized in physical education and recreation programs such as soccer, softball, volleyball, and basketball. The course focuses on skills, strategies, and conceptual similarities and differences of the sports and their lead-up activities. Students will develop an intermediate skill level; and incorporate developmentally appropriate learning progressions, learning cues, and assessment techniques while leading activities for peers. Students will acquire knowledge of the value of participation and develop strategies for promoting lifespan health and fitness within various sports.

A study of the basic principles of physical fitness and weight training as applied to a school or community setting. This course will also provide the opportunity for fitness and weight training skill development. A focus on techniques for assessing and integrating physical fitness throughout a variety of activity programs will also be included.

A study of the concepts, techniques, and skills inherent in a variety of racket sports including tennis, badminton, pickleball, and table tennis. The course focuses on skills, strategies, and conceptual similarities and differences of racket sports. Students will develop an intermediate skills level, and will begin to utilize developmentally appropriate learning progressions, learning cues, and assessment techniques.

Students will study the central factors that make up the best approach to the acquisition of motor skills, while leading physical activities in a variety of settings. Topics include basic concepts of motor learning, development of motor responses, the nature of motor learning, feedback, timing, information processing, transfer of learning, perception, personality and performance, motivation, and practice conditions. The topics will focus on principles of human performance and principles of skill learning and how to integrate these principles in real life situations. For each major topic, guiding principles for the physical education and recreation leaders are presented.

This course offers practical field experience in developing recreation, physical education, and sport activity leadership skills and experience in a recreation, physical education, or sports agency. The student will receive one credit for the successful completion of a seminar, 40 hours of practical fieldwork, and the analysis of that experience. This course provides a supervised, guided learning experience.

Students will study the movement potential of the human body using anatomical and mechanical principles. Emphasis is given to the action of joints and muscles, the basic mechanics of human motion, analysis of motion, the major types of motor skills, and the application of kinesiology to sport and daily living activities.

This course includes concepts of event planning, management, leadership skills, and evaluation. This course is designed to develop students' familiarity with the special event program planning for recreation, physical education, and sports programming in diverse environments. Emphasis is placed on experiential learning through the actual planning and leadership of a community-based event within the Gallaudet or the greater deaf community, similar to a service-learning course.

Students will study the immediate and long-range effects of physical activity on the functions of the human body. Special attention is focused on physical fitness, metabolism, training and conditioning, nutrition, environment, athletic aids, and the sex of the participant.

This course will cover teaching and leading theories and techniques necessary for planning and delivering physical activities and wellness programs that foster health enhancing active participation, within a comprehensive school environment. Emphasis is given to the principles of motor development; assessment techniques; and the psychomotor, cognitive, psychological, and social developmental needs of children of various ages, diversity, and abilities. Also included is an overview of the many education, community, and government organizations that provide and advocate for health enhancing physical activity participation.

An application of educational philosophy and principles to class organization, techniques of teaching, and the preparation of lesson and unit plans. The course includes methods for teaching on the middle school and secondary levels. In addition to class participation and peer teaching, teaching high school and/or intermediate/middle school physical education class(es) are planned. Students will also have opportunities to evaluate their teaching and the teaching of others using various evaluative tools and measures.

This course will cover the knowledge and skills surrounding measurement and evaluation related to the delivery of wellness, physical education, and/or recreation services. This course will focus on how to conduct individual assessments and activity/program evaluation.

This course will include a study of administrative practices and their application to physical education, recreation, and sports in diverse environments. Students will gain an understanding of the underlying principles and practices of planning, organizing, leading, and evaluation of physical education, recreation, and sport programs in school and community settings. Upon completing the course the student will demonstrate human and technical skills to provide leadership and supervision for activity-based programs.

The course includes scientific principles, and teaching methodology necessary for the modification of physical education programs, sport, or recreational activities to meet the developmental needs and capabilities of students with diverse abilities. Emphasis is given to the principles of motor development; assessment techniques; developmental needs; psychomotor, cognitive, psychological, and social characteristics of individuals with various disabilities; legal requirements; resources for participation in community sport and recreation programs; and developing appropriate instructional and behavioral strategies for an inclusive or adapted activity learning environment.

Students will study how physical activity professionals can foster healthy active lifespan participation to meet the needs and preferences of diverse individuals. This course guides students to synthesize and apply what they have learned in physical education and recreation courses to understand changes within society that affect physical activity, fitness, and sport services provided in various segments of the community. The goal of the class is to facilitate an understanding of the impact that social and economic variables have on participation behavior, service, and program delivery.

The internship experience, of a minimum of 150 hours, is designed to provide a student with the opportunity to apply knowledge and skills gained from classes to professional practice. Students are encouraged to seek and select internship placements that provide students opportunities that correspond to their own professional goals. This formal, guided learning experience is supervised simultaneously by the agency supervisor and a university faculty member. This experience will better prepare a student to make the transition from the university to work in his/her profession.

Required physical education and recreation major elective course 1-3 hours

Choose one course:

Students will study basic water safety skills; develop intermediate level swimming and water safety skills; be able to analyze and modify swimming skills using movement principles for improved effectiveness; develop a swimming fitness and exercise program; and acquire knowledge and skills to be safe in water environments. Not more than six hours of credit in physical education activities may be counted toward the requirements for a bachelor's degree.

The course will include appropriate surveillance techniques and prevention of injuries at aquatic facilities. The participants will become proficient at rescue skills and the use of first aid and CPR techniques. Students will develop the skills to recognize emergency situations and respond effectively. Students simultaneously complete Professional Rescuer CPR/AED and First Aid certificates.

This course will focus on strategies for planning, teaching, and assessing swimming and water safety skills. This is a comprehensive course designed to train water safety instructors to teach American Red Cross swimming and water safety courses.

Free elective courses 19-21 hours

Students choose courses offered by the Department of Physical Education and Recreation or by other academic departments in consultation with their major advisors.

The first part of a two-semester course sequence, this course will study the various systems of the body from a combined anatomical and physiological standpoint, with laboratory experiments which illustrate their structure and function. Students will develop their critical thinking skills by analyzing hypothetical problems relating to anatomy and physiology; many of these problems will have medical applications. The first semester will focus on the following organ systems: integumentary, skeletal, muscular, nervous and special sensory. Three hours of lecture and one two-hour laboratory per week.

We will study nutrition science, focusing on issues that currently affect Americans today including: the current obesity epidemic, fad diets, popular supplements, energy drinks, and fast food and their effects on our nutritional health. Our objective is to teach students the following lifelong skills: how to analyze popular diets and supplements, how to perform a nutrition self-analysis and analyze BMI and body fat percentage, how to lose weight effectively and safely, and how to develop a healthy, nutritious meal plan for yourself and your family.

This course surveys the fundamentals of business administration, including management, organizational behavior, marketing, economics, statistics, management information systems, accounting, finance, entrepreneurship, international business, and ethics & social responsibility. It is intended both for students who seek a one-time exposure to business as well as those planning to major in a Department of Business program.

This course will focus on the process of thinking and problem solving in committees and small groups; methods of leading and participating in discussions and conferences.

The course emphasizes the principles involved in the selection and organization of ideas and their effective presentation to a group.

An overview and study of contemporary trends, problems, and issues in general education in terms of educational philosophies, types of educational programs, the relation of education to the individual and society, and curriculum and instruction. Some consideration of the relevance of regular education to special education and education of deaf and hard of hearing students. Discussion of organizations and agencies related to education.

An introduction to the major features of languages and to the structure, use, and variation in the sign languages and sign systems commonly used in the United States. The course will cover four major topics: (1) Language: The nature and definition of languages, the uniqueness of language, and contrasts between language and other forms of communication; (2) Language and Culture: The role of language in human society, with special focus on language acquisition, language identity, and bilingualism; (3) American Sign Language Structure: A survey of the major features of the linguistic structure of ASL. Topics are: Phonology: the structure of the physical signals; Morphology: the basic structure and composition of meaningful units of ASL; Syntax: word order and nonmanual syntactic signals in ASL sentences; (4) Language Variation: Language variation and language contact in the deaf community, including discussions of contact varieties of signing and systems for representing English.

Activities offered include team sports and individual sports. Not more than six hours of credit in physical education activities may be counted toward the requirements for a bachelor's degree.

Classes offered focus on outdoor recreational activities. Not more than six hours of credit in physical education activities may be counted toward the requirements for a bachelor's degree.

Activities offered focus on physical activity and/or fitness activities. Not more than six hours of credit in physical education activities may be counted toward the requirements for a bachelor's degree.

A course designed to combine theoretical and practical knowledge related to the care and prevention of athletic injuries. The purposes of this course are to develop a safety- conscious attitude when participating in or conducting sports activities; to develop knowledge and basic skills related to the care and prevention of common sports-related injuries, including immediate and follow-up care and rehabilitative techniques; and to develop basic knowledge and skills related to the administration of a high school training room.

This course is designed to introduce the students to the theoretical and practical aspects of intramural programming and officiating.

This course will cover the full spectrum and experiences involved in athletic coaching. This course will focus on the techniques of coaching; the psychological aspects of coaching; the growth, development, and learning of athletes; and the medical and legal aspects of coaching. In addition, it will provide the students with the practical application of these components in simulated and actual coaching situations.

Special topics in the discipline, designed primarily for seniors who are majors or minors. Students may enroll in 495 Special Topics multiple times, as long as the topics differ.

This course provides an overview of the goals, functions, and methods of public health. After an introduction to the core concepts and tools used in public health research and practice, applications of these methodologies are considered in the context of five current controversies/problems in public health. Students work together to develop strategies for prevention and control that take into consideration different points of view, outside research, and impacts on individuals and communities.

This course provides an overview of health-related challenges facing individuals in today's connected and globalized world. Health issues will be approached from both individual and community perspectives with a focus on concepts of wellness and prevention. Emphasis will be placed on individual decision-making and understanding of biological, social, environmental, and other factors affecting health and wellness. We will also study the role of health behaviors and how they contribute to healthier lives.

An introduction to the scientific study of human behavior, providing an overview of the major issues, methods, and contributions of psychology. Content areas include development, language, learning, cognition, physiological psychology intelligence, and abnormal and social psychology.

This course discusses research into the ways behavior, mental states, culture, and physical health interact. Factors underlying health, disease, prevention and treatment occur within cultural contexts that affect our views, behaviors, lifestyles and approaches will be explored. This course will also examine how socio-cultural settings in America influences development, health beliefs, and health behaviors.

This course is designed to help students learn and apply practical as well as theoretical information as it relates to the psychology of sport. Some of the psychological principles that will be explored this semester include personality types, stress, motivation, goalsetting, leadership, and imagery. Various mental training skills that can enhance one's athletic performance will also be covered.

This course provides students an opportunity for examination of personal attitudes, stereotypes, biases, and misconceptions that affect ethnic-competent professional practice. Attention is given to increasing students' knowledge, understanding, appreciation, and sensitivity to diversity, oppression, and racism, and the implications of each for social work and other human services. While the course addresses the cognitive and conceptual aspects of learning, primary emphasis is on the affective process. In addition to learning about racism, discrimination, power/powerlessness, and ethnocentrism, students participate in experiential groups and role play. These exercises provide opportunities to explore new ways of thinking, feeling, and responding to people who experience discrimination or oppression because of their race, ethnic background, gender, age, disability, or sexual orientation, or because they are deaf or hard of hearing.

Activities offered include dance and fundamental movement. Not more than six hours of credit in dance activities may be counted toward the requirements for a bachelor's degree.

The study of the history of dance from antiquity to the 21st century. Emphasis will be placed on the relationships and influences of dance on civilizations and cultures. Students are expected to participate in both dance activities as well as in lectures and discussions.

Choreography is an introduction to techniques of choreography. This course will introduce students to both the exploration of the choreographic process and the basic tools used in choreography. Through creative improvisational exercises, students explore the fundamentals of movement including time, space, and energy and basic choreographic structure and forms. Students will be required to choreograph a major dance piece to be auditioned in the spring dance production.

A course designed for students to develop and apply a working knowledge of the organizational skills necessary to plan and produce a dance concert including: lighting, costuming, programming, audio, stage management, choreographing, marketing, fundraising, audition and performance skills. Additionally, students will develop the ability to define and describe, through visual and written modalities, the various areas of production and how they relate to the performer, the choreographer, and the overall visual aesthetics of a performance.

Program Outcomes

Students will demonstrate the knowledge and skills necessary for competent movement performance to attain and maintain an active lifestyle of fitness and wellness.


Students will demonstrate knowledge of the cultural and historical significance of sports, games, and play; and incorporate these into the framework of lifespan physical activity and wellness.


Students will design and lead physical and recreational activities that reflect cultural and social diversity to meet the needs of individuals/groups with varied physical, social, mental, and emotional abilities.


Students will apply discipline-specific, scientific and theoretical concepts, analytical methods and best practices to design, implement and evaluate Physical Education and Recreation activities in a variety of settings.


Students will exhibit personal and social behavior that demonstrates respect for themselves and others in an ethical and professionally responsible manner.


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B.S. in Physical Education and Recreation

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