Kinesiology refers to the study of movement and is a multifaceted field of study in which movement or physical activity is the intellectual focus. Physical activity includes exercising for improvement of health and fitness; learning movement skills; and engaging in activities of daily living, work, sport, dance, and play. It involves the general population as well as special groups such as children and older adults; people with disabilities, injuries, or disease; and athletes. Majoring in Kinesiology opens the door for a career in everything from fitness-related industries, to teaching, coaching, and health-related fields like medicine, public health, and physical or occupational therapy.
Curry is dedicated to providing hands-on experiences for students. That means students not only learn in the classroom, but on the field, in the lab, in the clinic, and with faculty. Faculty prepare students for what comes beyond college—graduate school, medical school or a career in a variety of areas. The blend of experiences students receive as a Kinesiology major, especially the field and clinical practice, prepare them in ways that other majors cannot. Kinesiology students work alongside some of the area’s finest in the wellness field.
The Kinesiology major leads to a B.S.Ed. degree. Students take courses both in the College of Arts and Sciences and in the Curry School of Education. Students are expected to meet all general education requirements in their first two years, so they can concentrate on Kinesiology courses in years three and four. In addition to coursework, students in the Kinesiology major have a practicum requirement. Students who enter with dual enrollment, AP and/or IB credits can opt to accelerate their studies, earning a B.S.Ed. and M.Ed in five years. Accelerated study is available in Exercise Physiology, Kinesiology for Individuals with Disabilities and Health and Physical Education Teaching. Interested students need to apply to one of the M.Ed. programs by October 15 of the fourth year. GRE scores are due before the end of fall semester. An admission decision is made before the beginning of spring semester.
A recipient of a B.S.Ed. degree from the Curry School must have completed at least four semesters of full-time (12 credits) study at the University of Virginia while enrolled in the Curry School of Education. Exceptions for emergency situations may only be granted with the advisor’s and dean’s permission. In addition, all students must be full-time (12 credits minimum) during all semesters, except the final one (9 credits minimum).
Though there are a number of required courses, students also have opportunities to shape coursework according to career goals, including adding a second major or a minor inside or outside of the Curry School. A faculty member from kinesiology will serve as the academic advisor, assisting students with the selection of classes. The advisor will also help students consider optimal settings for gaining hands-on experiences in clinical, athletic, or school setting.