Department of Health, Kinesiology and Sport

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Discover HKS

Welcome to the Department of Health, Kinesiology, and Sport where we offer Bachelors and Masters Degrees with majors / minors / concentrations in Health and Physical Education - Teacher Education, Exercise Science, Health, Therapeutic Recreation, Sport and Recreation Management, and a Sport Coaching Certificate.

Our mission is to help students acquire the knowledge and skills that are necessary for success in their chosen profession. This is accomplished by collecting, interpreting, and disseminating information representing the philosophical and empirical bases of the various fields in health, physical education, and leisure studies. We strive to help students develop critical thinking and problem solving skills which enable them to be effective practitioners who interpret and apply best practice and current research.


New Graduate Program in Sport Management

The online Master of Science in Sport Management Degree focuses on management aspects of the sports industry with a specific emphasis on sport event and organizational management. Under the guidance of Sport Management Program faculty Dr. Christopher Keshock, Dr. Brook Forester, and Dr. Mitchell Woltring students in the program utilize distance technology via USA’s online learning management system to identify current issues in the sport industry and develop strategies to problem solve social, cultural, political, economic, and environmental issues as they relate to sport event and organizational management. Graduates are equipped with translatable skills necessary to create pioneering, sustainable solutions to the challenges facing the sport industry today.


Academic Program Change

This past summer the Alabama Commission on Higher Education approved the undergraduate Exercise Science program as a major with concentrations in Health-Fitness and Pre-Professional with implementation Fall Semester 2016. Under the direction of Dr. Phillip Norrell, Dr. Neil Schwarz and Dr. Sarah McKinley Barnard, the Health-Fitness concentration provides the knowledge and skills related to practice associated with fitness and health/wellness promotion, sport and fitness conditioning, and clinical exercise science through the prevention and rehabilitation of chronic disease. The Pre-Professional Concentration provides the coursework and academic preparation necessary for graduate study in allied health programs such as physical therapy, occupational therapy, and athletic training; and applied kinesiology and clinical/research programs in exercise science.


Enhancement of Facilities

The Department has undergone various renovations to improve infrastructure and repurpose present space with a new faculty office suite for 8 faculty offices and classroom and lab areas for exercise science, first aid, and therapeutic recreation.

The Molecular and Biochemistry Exercise Research Laboratory is equipped with a number of biochemistry analyzers that can assay muscle tissue and various substrates, hormones, and gene expression (e.g., microplate reader, electrophoresis, real-time PCR, etc.). This lab has the capacity to conduct a vast array of biochemical and molecular biology techniques used in exercise physiology and nutrition research. The key faculty involved in the operation include Dr. Neil Schwarz and Dr. Sarah McKinley-Barnard.

 HKS Molecular and Biochemistry Lab