Majors & Minors


As a field of study, kinesiology draws from an interdisciplinary body of knowledge grounded in the biological, physical, psychological, and social sciences.  Students in the program gain knowledge of anatomical, biomechanical, developmental, physiological, psychological and sociological aspects of human movement and physical activity.


Ed Merritt

Ed Merritt

Associate Professor of Kinesiology & Chair

Ed Merritt

Ed Merritt

Associate Professor of Kinesiology & Chair


Kinesiology, the study of human movement, can be traced to the ancient Chinese, Egyptian, Indian, and Greek civilizations. Kinesiology has evolved to become a discipline focusing on movement as it relates to physical activity, health and disease prevention, exercise, and sport.

The Kinesiology Department at Southwestern University is committed to developing students into active participants in their community and the world. We offer a selection of courses to fulfill requirements for Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Science degrees, with a major or a minor in Kinesiology.  The Kinesiology major includes courses that are pre-requisites for graduate study in the discipline and professional programs in clinical and health-related fields. These courses are also required for teaching certification.

The Kinesiology Department also offers Fitness and Recreational Activity classes in which students develop the knowledge, skills, and physical abilities that contribute to their enjoyment of various sports and activities throughout their lives.

A degree in Kinesiology can lead to a career in:

  • Research – clinical, applied, or basic
  • Rehabilitation and Sports Medicine
  • Health Promotion
  • Coaching and Teaching

“Positions are found in a variety of settings including schools, colleges and universities, public and private agencies, clinical environments, government, business and the military.” (American Academy of Kinesiology and Physical Education)

We seek to prepare students for life after college by developing their critical thinking and analytical skills, communicating abilities, and providing them with a depth of knowledge commiserate with professionals in the field of Kinesiology. 

To this end, the mission of the department focuses on:

  • Discovering and disseminating new knowledge about physical activity, exercise, and human movement and its relationship to human health and disease
  • Educating the public and the University community in the scientific aspects of physical activity and providing instruction in a variety of sport, exercise, and recreational activities which enhance the quality of the University experience for all students, with an emphasis on making decisions about personal lifetime physical activity, recreational participation, health, and wellness
  • Providing outstanding service and outreach to the field of Kinesiology and our community

The Kinesiology Department at Southwestern has clear goals:

  • To prepare students for successful careers related to the exercise sciences
  • To provide programs of study appropriate for pursuing graduate study, and for obtaining teacher certification
  • To develop student interest and appreciation for careers in the exercise sciences, sports medicine, and health and fitness industries


Kinesiology News

Meet Our World-Class Faculty: Tatiana Zhuravleva

A conversation with Assistant Professor of Kinesiology Tatiana Zhuravleva.

Fondren-Jones Science Center

Representative Carter and Southwestern University Announce $1.5 Million Grant from the National Science Foundation

The grant will help attract, retain, and graduate students with high financial need who are majoring in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) fields.


Getting to Know SU Staff: Doug Ross

The associate director of athletics for compliance reflects on his career as an athlete and coach . . . and what comes next.