Program Overview

Prepare for fitness and health careers with the MS in Exercise Science online degree from Aurora University. Through coursework and an internship or capstone experience, the MS in Exercise Science online degree prepares you for the American College of Sports Medicine’s (ACSM) Clinical Exercise Physiologist (CEP) exam. Become a trained exercise science expert and complete your degree in 1-2 years with AU Online.

This graduate level program in Exercise Science is also offered on the Aurora University campus. The on campus, applied graduate program focuses on sport performance and prepares students to become specialists in strength training and conditioning.


AU’s MS in Exercise Science online program features coursework in exercise physiology, sports nutrition, sports psychology, research methods and program organization and administration. All courses are taught by expert instructors with extensive experience in their fields.

“The research methods class in AU’s Exercise Science graduate program paid off for me right away at my current job working with cardiac rehab patients. It inspired me to create a new process for successfully identifying and addressing the barriers that many of my patients face in making lifestyle changes.”

-Amanda Miner MSES ’22

The Exercise Science program is an Education Recognition Program by the National Strength and Conditioning Association.

National Strength and Conditioning Association Education Recognition Program logo

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Available Specialization

Clinical Exercise Physiology

Gain the skills to improve cardiovascular fitness, manage chronic illnesses and prepare for certification in this in-demand role.

Program Details

  • Next Start Date:March 7, 2022
  • Est. Program Length:1-2 years
  • Credit Hours:30
  • Course Length:8 - 16 Weeks
  • Cost Per Credit:$565

MSES Core Courses (18 semester hours):

  • PED6010 Research Methods – 3 hours
  • PED6020 Sports Nutrition – 3 hours
  • PED6030 Sports Psychology – 3 hours
  • PED6040 Organization/Administration – 3 hours
  • PED6100 Advanced Exercise Physiology – 3 hours
  • PED6110 Advanced Exercise Physiology Lab – 3 hours

Clinical Exercise Physiology Specialization (12 semester hours):

  • PED6350 Advanced Exercise Assessment and Prescription – 3 hours
  • PED6360 Advanced Cardiovascular Physiology and ECG Interpretation – 3 hours
  • PED6370 Advanced Clinical Exercise Physiology – 3 hours
  • PED6400 Capstone/Internship – 3 hours

Bridge Courses (for those not meeting program prerequisites):

  • BIO2650 Essentials of Anatomy and Physiology
  • PED3230 Physiology of Exercise
  • A completed admissions application
  • Baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited institution of higher learning with a major in exercise science, kinesiology or related area. Those without the appropriate major must complete the prerequisite courses as listed below.
  • Prerequisite required courses: Anatomy and Physiology and Exercise Physiology. Bridge courses are available for those without the prerequisite courses.
  • Current TB screen/test (within past 12 months). Cost incurred by student.
  • Criminal background check through the university. Cost incurred by student.
  • Transcripts (official, sealed in envelope) from all previously attended colleges or universities.

*Applicants with undergraduate GPAs below 3.0 will be considered on a case-by-case basis and must submit a personal statement. Additional letters of recommendation and/or an interview with the program director may be required.

Graduate-level course credit is transferable, allowing students to earn their degree faster than ever. Graduate-level credit earned at regionally accredited institutions of higher education graded “B” or better may be transferred to Aurora University and applied toward a master’s or other post-baccalaureate programs prior to enrollment into Aurora University.

Check your credits with our Transfer Evaluation System.

Learn more about Transfer Credits

Online Master of Science in Exercise Science Career Outcomes

  • Certified strength and conditioning specialist
  • Clinical lab coordinator
  • Registered clinical exercise physiologist
  • Cardiac Rehabilitation Specialist

Next Steps

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