Program Description


Kinesiology (Exercise Science Concentration), Physical Education Teaching

Kinesiology is the study of human movement and physical activity. The study of kinesiology employs an interdisciplinary focus that includes anatomy, physiology, psychology, nutrition, history, education, athletic training and more.

The Department of Kinesiology supports separate degree programs in exercise science and physical education teaching, as well as courses that lead to Iowa Department of Education coaching endorsements and authorizations.  

Exercise science concentration

The exercise science concentration is designed to provide students with a solid academic foundation in the psychological and physiological principles of human physical performance. This is a flexible, science-based curriculum that helps prepare students for careers in the health and fitness industry, or for graduate studies in health fields including medicine and physical therapy.


Our students are also prepared for graduate study in exercise science, sport and exercise psychology, occupational therapy, athletic training, nutrition, cardiac rehabilitation, and chiropractic medicine. Our new exercise science laboratory provides an excellent venue for faculty-student research, offering students valuable practical experience.

Physical education teaching

Those majoring in physical education teaching may apply for teaching licensure at the elementary and/or secondary level. Physical education teacher preparation majors complete courses in methodology, motor learning, anatomy, adapted physical education, and field experiences prior to student teaching.  

Coaching endorsement or authorization

Completion of KIN 205 (Coaching Endorsement or Authorization) and KIN 237 (Care and Prevention of Athletic Injuries) satisfy requirements for Iowa Department of Education coaching authorization and endorsement. A coaching endorsement is granted to those who complete these two courses, are majors in elementary or secondary education, and who receive an Iowa teaching license. A coaching authorization is available to those who do not hold an Iowa teaching license. Both the authorization and endorsement qualify an individual to serve as a head coach, assistant, or volunteer coach in any sport offered in Iowa public schools.

About Cornell College

Cornell College has been changing lives and changing educational norms since 1853. Located in Mount Vernon, Iowa, Cornell was the first college west of the Mississippi to grant women the same rights and privileges as men, and, in 1858, to award a degree to a woman. In 1978 Cornell faculty adopted the One Course At A Time curriculum, transforming the way teaching and learning happen at Cornell. With the 1996 publication of Loren Pope’s Colleges That Change Lives, Cornell’s life-changing education was formally recognized. Cornell continues to be recognized with each new edition.