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Department of Kinesiology

The Kinesiology Department

Why Kinesiology?

The Department of Kinesiology supports the Missouri Southern State University mission to offer a liberal arts baccalaureate program that fosters the total education of each student. The department emphasizes quality teaching and academic advising, while promoting dedicated community and university service. The curriculum prepares future professionals to be successful at promoting healthy, active lifestyles in a global society.  Our majors are designed to help prepare students for teaching, healthy lifestyle promotion, health certification and a variety of other job tracks. 

About our Department

We offer a Physical Education major for students who desire certification as a teacher of physical education will become qualified at both the elementary and secondary level (K-12). Graduates with a degree in physical education may choose to teach or to pursue opportunities in coaching, athletic training, adapted physical education, or graduate school. Teacher education at Missouri Southern is recognized for its quality at the local, state, and national levels.  All Teacher Education Programs at MSSU are State approved by the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) and nationally accredited by the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation.  We are the FIRST Missouri Educator Preparation Program to receive CAEP Accrediation.

The program is fully accredited by the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP), is approved by the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE).

Health Promotion and Wellness graduates will be prepared to promote life-style strategies to prevent illness and improve quality of life. Students seeking the health promotion and wellness degree must choose a clinical or non-clinical track and will actively participate in an internship experience in their final semester. Students seeking this degree will actively participate in an internship experience in their final semester. Graduates may seek professional opportunities in a wide variety of areas including, but not limited to:

  • Athletic training
  • Cardiac rehabilitation
  • Community health/wellness
  • Corporate wellness
  • Exercise physiology
  • Fitness/wellness centers
  • Fitness/medical sales
  • Fitness & Sport Management
  • Group exercise/fitness
  • Personal trainer
  • Physical therapy
  • Public Health
  • Occupational therapy
  • Nursing home activities
  • Youth/sport camps
  • Public/Population Health

Note: Several career options require additional schooling and/or certifications.

Health Certification

The Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) identifies health as a certification area. To teach health in the state of Missouri, one must be certified. Courses required for such certification are offered at Missouri Southern. An alternative path to health certification is passing the Praxis Exam for Health Education.

Additional Interest Areas

Athletic Training

To become a certified athletic trainer, one must pass the National Athletic Training Examination. Only persons with a degree in Athletic Training are eligible to take the exam. Missouri Southern does not offer a degree in Athletic Training; however, for students who desire to pursue athletic training at the graduate school level, we do offer a number of related courses.


In the State of Missouri, head and assistant coaches in all sports must be certified teachers or administrators. For the coaching requirements of another state, you will need to contact the state's governing agency. For students with an interest in coaching, we do offer a number of related courses. These courses are not required and are considered electives.

Physical Therapy

List of accredited physical therapy programs and admission requirements.

Occupational Therapy

List of accredited occupational therapy programs and admission requirements.