Exercise Science and Kinesiology FAQ

What are exercise science, kinesiology, and exercise physiology?

What is the primary difference between the study of exercise science and kinesiology? Or is there really a difference?

Does a bachelor’s degree in these fields open doors to good jobs, or do you really need to go on to graduate school?

Students who choose to work in the field immediately after majoring in exercise science or kinesiology most commonly find employment as a physical therapy aide, personal trainer or fitness instructor.

Graduate school will allow most of these students to become a physical therapist, occupational therapist, cardiac rehabilitation specialist, athletic trainer, chiropractor or PE teacher, to name a few.

Do most people with a bachelor’s degree in these fields go on to graduate school in a related field? If so, what are the most common graduate programs they go into?

Not necessarily. Those that do, though, typically go on to physical therapy school, occupational therapy school, or get a master’s degree in a more specific field of interest to them, such as:

If I want to go on to graduate school in a related field, does it matter which one of these three my degree is in?

No. Graduate schools do not require a specific major. They each require similar but different prerequisite courses for application into their programs.

What kind of salary can one expect to earn with a degree in professions related to exercise science and kinesiology?

Athletic Training

According to a 2018 National Athletic Trainers Association salary survey:

Physical Therapy

Occupational Therapy

Chiropractors earn a median annual salary of $67,520.

Where do graduates of exercise science programs work?

With a bachelor’s degree, you can find work at:

With a graduate degree, work is available in the following settings:

What are the benefits of a degree in exercise science or kinesiology?

Exercise science/kinesiology is a truly versatile degree that can provide a strong academic background for a variety of jobs, fitness-related careers, certifications and great preparation for entry into a graduate or professional healthcare degree program. It focuses on prescribing exercise for health and wellness, rehabilitation, and sports performance in various populations.

Health & Human Performance Programs at George Fox

If you're interested in a career in this field, check out George Fox University's related programs in Oregon:


View all academic programs at George Fox