Exercise and Health Science

The Exercise and Health Science program aims at developing those cognitive, affective and psychomotor skills that equip students to perform competently in the program's science based core and selected electives. The interdisciplinary academic structure of the program arises from the belief that critical thinking, effective writing, clear articulation, and strong analytical skills are crucial elements in the mastery of all subject matter. In this, and in its emphasis on developing the well-rounded person, the Exercise and Health Science program pursues goals and objectives that are congruent with those of the College of Liberal Arts curriculum.

The Exercise and Health Science program at Willamette University is designed to meet the needs of our student population, focusing on the development of the total person as it is expressed in the classical Greek emphasis on the interaction of mind, body, and spirit. The department achieves these ends by offering an Exercise and Health Science major and service classes.

The major provides students with the essential knowledge and training to pursue a wide variety of career opportunities. In the past decade, the majority of graduates from the program have continued on to graduate studies in fields such as allied health and medicine, teaching, research in Exercise and Health Science, and activity related business. Individual internship programs and field experiences are available to expand students' practical knowledge in their particular areas of interest.

The focus of the service activity offerings is the development of leisure and lifetime skills to accommodate the changing lifestyles of our society and increase the potential for personal fulfillment through physical activity.

The department is housed on the 4th floor of the Collins Science Center. Departmental teaching and research facilities include two wired classrooms in Sparks Center, a separate Integrated Exercise Science laboratory in Gatke Hall and a cadaver laboratory in Collins Science Center.

Requirements for the Exercise and Health Science Major (14 Credits)

8 credits in Exercise and Health Science, 6 other credits

Core Courses

Exercise and Health Science Core Total = Five and one-half (5.5). Outside Major Core Total = Three (3).

Required Electives: Three credits from the following (3)

  • EXHS 221 Epidemiology (1)
  • EXHS 230 The Science of Nutrition (1)
  • EXHS 241 Methods of Teaching Activities and Sports (1)
  • EXHS 248 Exercise Science for Special Populations (1)
  • EXHS 251 Sport Leadership and Management (1)
  • EXHS 357 Motor Learning & Control (1)
  • EXHS 358 Special Topics in Exercise Science (1)
  • EXHS 394 Junior Internship (.5-1.0)
  • EXHS 445 Advanced Injury Management (1)

Required Integrated Courses

Two credits from the following (2)

  • ANTH 344 Medical Anthropology (1)
  • BIOL 125 Ecology, Evolution and Diversity (1)
  • BIOL 130 Cell Biology and Genetics (1)
  • CHEM 115 General Chemistry I (1)
  • CHEM 116 General Chemistry II**
  • CS 125 Problem Solving with MATLAB (1)
  • CS 141 Introduction to Programming
  • PHYS 221 Introductory Physics I (1)
  • PHYS 222 Introductory Physics II (1)
  • PSYC 210 Introduction to Psychology (1)
  • Any 300 level PSYC course (1)**
  • SOC 132W Sports and Society (1)

* Prerequisite needed
** Prerequisite may be required


Course Listings

EXHS 135 Concepts and Contemporary Issues in Exercise Science and Sport (.5)

Historical, scientific, psychological and sociological studies related to Exercise and Health Science. Basic development of various philosophies related to ethics and moral values in Exercise and Health Science and sport will be discussed.

  • General Education Requirement Fulfillment: Natural Sciences, Social Sciences
  • Offering: Every semester
  • Instructor: Harmer

EXHS 221 Epidemiology (1)

The study of the causes and distribution of disease and injury. It focuses empirically on the identification and control of threats to health and well-being. The class covers historical cases, epidemiological techniques, and current applications.

  • General Education Requirement Fulfillment: Natural Sciences, Social Sciences
  • Offering: Spring, even years
  • Instructor: Harmer

EXHS 230 The Science of Nutrition (1)

The course will provide students with foundational knowledge about the scientific principles of human nutrition. The following topics will be discussed: classification of nutrients (carbohydrates, lipids, proteins), metabolism and energy balance, dietary supplements, diet planning, the role of nutrition in health. Students will analyze their own eating habits and design diet programs with the use of comprehensive nutrition software. The course will also examine choices people make about the foods they consume, the consequences that arise as a result of such choices, and the attitudes towards these consequences. Topics include the impact of global warming on food production in different parts of the world, the potential for global conflict as a result of scarcity of food resources, food safety and food security, the politics and economics of health care in the United States, and the tremendous social and economic costs associated with the current obesity epidemic. Students will use critical analysis of available data and will then be guided towards formulating appropriate solutions to address problems relating to the choices people make about food, and the consequences of these choices.

  • General Education Distribution Fulfillment: Natural Science, Social Science
  • Offering: Annually
  • Instructor: Stavrianeas

EXHS 241 Methods of Teaching Activities and Sports (1)

The study of effective teaching and coaching in physical education and sports with an emphasis on analysis of teaching; methodology; maximizing the learning environment; classroom management; and lesson, unit and program planning and implementation. Not open to freshmen.

  • General Education Requirement Fulfillment: Social Sciences
  • Offering: Spring, Odd Years
  • Instructor: Williams

EXHS 248 Exercise Science for Special Populations (1)

The analysis of functional and organic abnormalities, assessment methodology and federal regulations that apply to the exceptional individual and the role of physical activity.

  • General Education Requirement Fulfillment: Natural Sciences, Social Sciences
  • Offering: Fall, even years
  • Instructor: Harmer

EXHS 251 Sport Leadership and Management (1)

The class explores the nature of administration and management in fitness, sport, allied health and physical education settings at school and community level. Leadership styles, public relations skills, organizational and administrative skills along with topics of conflict resolution, legal aspects of negligence and liability, fiscal management/budgeting practices, and risk management are developed.

  • General Education Requirement Fulfillment: Social Sciences
  • Offering: Spring, Even Years
  • Instructor: Williams

EXHS 256W Research Design and Analysis (1)

An examination of the concepts and principles for conducting research and for evaluating the research literature in Exercise and Health Science. The course will cover the nature and purpose of research, research ethics, types of research and experimental designs, and technical writing in science, including library search methods and adherence to APA style. The laboratory component covers the relationship between design and statistical analyses, and includes descriptive statistics and exploratory data analysis, including graphical and computer-based statistical analysis, inferential statistics, including coverage of correlation/regression analysis, ANOVA, effect size and power analysis.

  • General Education Requirement Fulfillment: Writing-centered; Mathematical Sciences, Natural Sciences
  • Prerequisite: EXHS 135
  • Offering: Every semester
  • Instructor: Staff

EXHS 340 Clinical Healthcare: Theory and Application (1)

Introduction to the field of clinical assessment of injury and illness. This course will cover evaluation protocols, initial and progressive management, and principles of rehabilitation. The course includes a laboratory for skill acquisition in hands-on musculoskeletal function evaluation focusing on anatomical kinesiology and the use of special tests to augment evaluation.

  • General Education Requirement Fulfillment: Natural Sciences
  • Prerequisite: BIOL 246
  • Offering: Annually
  • Instructor: Harmer, Row Lazzarini

EXHS 347 Biomechanics (1)

The analysis of structural principles and mechanical application pertaining to human movement. Course will discuss concepts of human movement with investigation of biomechanics and structural kinesiology. Efficiency of movement, neuromuscular integration, proprioception, mechanical concepts related to muscular function, and analysis of human motion/motor skills will be extensive. Laboratory.

  • General Education Requirement Fulfillment:  Mathematical Science, Natural Science
  • Prerequisite: BIOL 246
  • Offering: Every semester
  • Instructor: Row

EXHS 357 Motor Learning and Control (1)

Study of the neural, physical and behavioral aspects of human movement, and the processes involved in acquiring and refining motor skills. The class will examine research that explains why certain behaviors manifest themselves, and provides the basis for assessing performance and designing optimal practice, rehabilitation and training experiences. Not open to freshmen.

  • General Education Requirement Fulfillment: Natural Sciences
  • Prerequisite: BIOL 246 required; BIOL 260 recommended; or consent of instructor
  • Offering: Spring
  • Instructor: Row Lazzarini, Ettinger

EXHS 358 Special Topics in Exercise Science (1)

An opportunity for semester-long study of specific advanced topics within the field of Exercise and Health Science. Topics and themes will vary by instructor. This class may be repeated for credit with different topics.

  • Prerequisite: Depending on topics offered or consent of instructor.
  • Offering: Annually
  • Instructor: Staff

EXHS 360 Physiology of Exercise (1)

This class examines the physiological systems of the human body as they are affected by different mode, intensity, and duration of exercise. Emphasis is placed on the interrelationship between the skeletal, muscular, nervous, respiratory, circulatory, endocrine, and digestive systems. The required laboratory will focus on measuring and analyzing various anthropometric, physiological and metabolic functions and performance parameters, using the data to predict and describe work capacity and training protocols.

  • General Education Requirement Fulfillment: Natural Sciences
  • Prerequisite: BIOL 260
  • Offering: Fall
  • Instructor: Lockard, Stavrianeas

EXHS 394 Junior Internship (.5-1.0)

Refer to the internships section for an explanation of internship requirements.

  • Prerequisite: Closed to seniors
  • Offering: Every semester
  • Instructor: Harmer

EXHS 445 Advanced Injury Management (1)

Advanced topics in injury recognition and management based upon stress-strain of tissue, structural-functional aspects, and pathomechanics. The phases of healing and rehabilitation are investigated and appropriate protocols of management and reconditioning are integrated during each phase. Includes concepts of pain, pharmacology, therapeutic principles, physical modalities, advanced skill acquisition in evaluation and reconditioning, and anatomical dissection.

  • General Education Requirement Fulfillment: Natural Sciences
  • Prerequisite: EXHS 340
  • Offering: Fall
  • Instructor: Staff

EXHS 496W Senior Seminar in Exercise Science (1)

A seminar course and capstone experience required of all Exercise and Health Science majors. Students may meet this requirement by completing one of the following four options: a) an original research study, b) a literature review, c) an internship with an associated service project, or d) a community outreach project. Topics are selected in consultation with Exercise and Health Science faculty. Regardless of the option chosen, students must present their work orally in an open meeting format and provide a final paper detailing the work to the department.

  • General Education Requirement Fulfillment: Writing-centered
  • Prerequisite: EXHS 256W
  • Offering: Fall
  • Instructor: Staff