Degree Programs

Bachelor of Science in Exercise Science - FAQs

What do exercise physiologists do?

  • sports and wellness program instructors and directors
  • strength coaches for college, university and professional sports programs
  • teachers at institutions of higher learning (i.e., if they have an M.S. or Ph.D.)
  • researchers in sports medicine and adult fitness programs
  • managers and exercise leaders in corporate wellness programs
  • instructors in health and fitness clubs
  • supervisors of specialized health, fitness, wellness, or lifestyle programs in correctional services, police, fire, and emergency response organizations
  • fitness instructors in YMCAs, spa and resort centers
  • exercise specialists in cardiopulmonary rehabilitation programs
  • fitness directors and managers in the military (such as the air force and army)
  • exercise technologists in cardiology suites
  • fitness instructors and supervisors at the state, regional, and national levels in sports and athletic programs including
  • sports management
  • sports psychology
  • sports biomechanics
  • nutritional consultation

How do I obtain an advisor? 

  • You will be assigned one of the three full-time Exercise Science faculty members as your advisor.  You will meet with your advisor at least twice a semester and discuss your progression through the major as well as options for grad school or career choices.   Contact program coordinator Dr. Jesse Pittsley ( and he will put you in touch with your advisor and enroll you in the blackboard course shell “Exercise Science 1000” which will provide all the information needed to obtain a degree in Exercise Science at WSSU.

I want to do Physical Therapy, is Exercise Science a good undergraduate degree to obtain? 

  • Exercise Science is an excellent entry degree into most Physical Therapy programs.  Meeting with your academic advisor early will help you to decide which elective courses are needed to meet Physical Therapy requirements.

What other graduate schools do Exercise science undergraduates apply for?

  • In the past, students have gone on to graduate programs in Physical Therapy, Occupational Therapy, Public Health, and Nutrition & Sports Medicine. 

How many hours do I need to graduate?

  • A minimum of 120 hours is needed to graduate with the Exercise Science degree.  This includes a 200-hour 9-credit internship.

Can I do my internship before completing my course work in Exercise Science?

  • The 200-hour 9-credit internship is completed during the second semester of their senior year, after the majority of all coursework has been completed at a satisfactory level. 

Are summer classes in Exercise Science offered? 

  • Yes, traditionally 1-3 Exercise Science courses are offered during the summer depending on the number of students in need of taking additional workloads.

Can I take summer credits at another institution to satisfy Exercise Science/general education course requirements?

  • Yes, however you should speak with your advisor prior to taking a course at another institution.  In addition, your last 30 credits towards graduation MUST be completed at WSSU. 

How do I find my internship?

  • You will eventually make your own choice for placement, although there is competition for most sites in North Carolina.  Students are encouraged to meet with their internship coordinator the semester prior to doing their internship.  A checklist will be provided and your internship coordinator will help you find an internship that suits you best.

Can I do my internship in anything I want? 

  • You must complete your internship in an exercise science related field.  This would include a worksite derived from the “careers” question above.  Physical and/or Occupational Therapy will not satisfy the internship course; however, practicum hours may be completed in either of these fields.

Should I speak with an advisor prior to signing up for classes? 

  • Meeting with your academic advisor can save you time and money by taking the correct courses in the right order.

Can I make a “D” in a major course and still pass?

  • No, only courses in which you receive a “C” or better will count towards your 120 credits to obtain the Exercise Science degree.  All courses in the major in which you obtain a “C” or lower must be retaken.

Can I minor in Exercise Science? 

  • No, Exercise Science is a major program only.  However, many students obtain a minor in Sports Medicine and some past students have minored in others.  Speak with your advisor if obtaining a minor is of interest to you.

Will I be eligible for a certification when I graduate?

  • You may obtain several certifications without an undergraduate degree in Exercise Science; however, our program will prepare to you sit for advanced national certification exams that are highly respected within your field (i.e., CSCS and ACSM) and will dramatically increase your career opportunities.

Winston-Salem State University

601 S. Martin Luther King Jr. Drive

Winston-Salem, NC 27110

Phone: (336) 750-2000

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