Master of Science

Students studying on campus.

The Kinesiology and Health Science department offers a Master of Science in Kinesiology with specialization in Exercise Science. This specialization provides a comprehensive background in the physical, biological, and mechanical sciences. It prepares students for professional applications or advanced study in exercise physiology, biomechanics, neuroscience or other related fields.

Graduate studies in kinesiology allow students a more in-depth course of study within their discipline, combining advanced coursework with research and practical experience to prepare graduates for employment opportunities in their field. These fields include biomechanics, exercise physiology, wellness programming, sport psychology, and neuroscience.

This degree also provides an excellent preparation for students pursuing admission into Medical school, School of Dentistry, Physical Therapy, or other health professions graduate education.

Through their studies at USU, KHS students are prepared to enter a competitive professional field by working closely with faculty on research and other projects. From researching neurological development to studying biological systems from a mechanical perspective, faculty and graduate students are continually discovering more about the human body.

For more information visit the USU Catalog or USU Degree Finder.

Graduate Program Coordinator

Melissa Johnson

Melissa Johnson

Coordinator of Programs III

Kinesiology and Health Science

Phone: 435-797-1495
Office Location: HPER 122J
Schedule an Appointment

Program Director

Dale Wagner

Dale Wagner


Kinesiology and Health Science

Phone: 435-797-8253
Office Location: HPER 155


Candidates for the exercise science specialization are preferred to have an undergraduate degree in a relevant discipline such as Kinesiology, Exercise or Sport Sciences. If a candidate has earned a degree in another field they could still be considered for admission in this program but may be required to complete prerequisite undergraduate courses such as Human Anatomy & Physiology, Exercise Physiology, Biomechanics, and Anatomical Kinesiology.

Application Requirements

Applicants desiring to enroll in the kinesiology program must be admitted to the Utah State University School of Graduate studies. The application requires the following:

  • Meet the prerequisite degree requirements listed above.
  • Official transcripts from all previously-attended colleges and universities
  • Overall GPA on the last 60 semester or 90 quarter credits taken must be 3.0 or above.
  • Three letters of recommendation.
    • All letters of recommendation should be professional references. Two letters should come from faculty members.
  • Statement of purpose responding to the following prompt:
    • In 500 words or less, please answer the following questions. Why do you want to pursue a graduate degree in Kinesiology? What are your career goals and how do you foresee a master’s degree in Kinesiology helping you toward that goal? There are literally over 200 graduate programs for Kinesiology in the United States alone. Why do you want to be part of the master’s program at USU (specifically), rather than another program? If you have any undergraduate research experience, please include that in this essay (e.g., what was your role, did you present the research at a conference, is the research published).
  • Submission of the Admissions Survey as a portfolio in the supplemental materials of the application.
  • International students must meet english proficiency requirements

Admission Deadlines

Fall semester

July 1

Spring Semester

December 1


The Kinesiology and Health Science Department offers graduate assistantship opportunities for Logan, Utah based students who are accepted into one of the graduate programs in the department. These positions are limited and are awarded on a competitive basis.

Students interested in a graduate assistantship positions with the KHS Department need to complete a separate application that is submitted to our department. The deadline for these applications is March 1 and positions are awarded for the coming Fall and Spring semesters.

More information: KHS Graduate Assistantships Right arrow

New Graduate Student Orientation

The department holds an orientation for new graduate students in the KHS Department at USU. The orientation was designed to meet the needs of students within the KHS department and to better prepare new students for their time at USU. The design of this orientation was based on student concerns brought to the department, observations from departmental personnel, and from current research. 

The orientation includes both an in-person and online portion that is held before the beginning of the Fall semester. Both portions (online and in-person) of the orientation are required for all new students.  Students accepted to start in the Spring, Summer, and Fall of that calendar year are expected to participate in the orientation of the Fall of that calendar year.

The online portion has much of the general information, processes, and resources available to graduate students and will be available to students for future reference throughout their graduate student experience. Students will receive an email with instructions for how to access this orientation during the summer (end of July, beginning of August).

The in-person portion is designed to provide an opportunity for students to begin building relationships with other students, faculty, and staff. Students will be expected to complete the online portion before attending the in-person portion as it is a time for students to ask questions and get clarification on any information they have received previously. The in-person orientation will be held the Monday, two weeks before the first day of the Fall semester, in August. Students should plan for the full day. Additional information is communicated with students as it is available.

Both portions are critical for students to build a foundation that will help them be successful and receive the most out of their experience as graduate students. By providing this orientation before the semester and allowing students time to work through the content, students have more time to process information, helping to prevent feelings of “information overload”. In addition, students have access to the orientation information throughout their academic program allowing students to refer back to information when it is needed.

Reach out to the Graduate Program Coordinator (GPC) with any questions.

Program Requirements

Tracking Sheet PDF

In addition to completing the required course work students will be expected to complete a research project for their culminating experience.

At USU, the Graduate School uses plan types to classify students who are on similar tracks and will have similar culminating projects, grouped as either a thesis, creative project, or internship. These are classified as a Plan A (Thesis), Plan B (Creative Project), or Plan C/Professional (Internships). In the MS degree students have the option of pursuing either a Plan A or a Plan B.

For both plan types students will complete a research project in collaboration with faculty members. The main difference between the two plan types is in the final written product. Plan A students are expected to complete a thesis. Plan B students will also write a paper, but their paper is written in the style and format of a journal article, with the goal of publishing. The Plan B product and experience is expected to reflect equivalent scholarship standards as a thesis.