Northeastern University

Page Content

Top Exercise Science Program | MS in Exercise Science

Exercise Science (MS)

The Master of Science in Exercise Science Program at Northeastern University offers a unique concentration in Physical Activity and Public Health that integrates key competencies for a degree in exercise science recommended by the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM).

The Exercise Science Program provides its students with a dedicated on-site laboratory that is equipped with state of the art technology that is ideal for applying coursework, honing practical skills, and conducting research.

Go to Lab

Hands-on, experiential learning in laboratory setting

Small student cohorts to ensure strong faculty mentorship

Robust curriculum with a public health emphasis

Interdisciplinary collaboration with faculty and community partners

Curriculum

The MS Program in Exercise Science is a professional (non-thesis) master’s degree program offered by the Bouvé College of Health Sciences Department of Health Sciences. Candidates must complete 36 credits of core and elective coursework to earn their degrees, which typically takes two years to complete.

The 5 required courses provide the foundation for understanding advanced principles of exercise physiology on acute and chronic responses to endurance and strength exercise in major body systems, including the cardiopulmonary and musculoskeletal systems (15 credits total).

  • Cardiopulmonary Physiology
  • Physical Activity and Exercise: Prescription, Measurement, and Testing
  • Advanced Exercise Physiology
  • Physical Activity and Exercise: Effects on Musculoskeletal Health and Disease
  • Electrocardiography

The 3 required courses provide the foundation for understanding the fundamental principles and concepts of conducting scientific research, including study design, biostatistics, and epidemiology. Students apply this knowledge through an experiential learning-based practicum, in which they design a research study and undergo peer evaluation (9 credits total).

  • Biostatistics in Public Health
  • Epidemiology
  • Applied Research Methods

The 2 required courses provide the foundation to plan, develop, and evaluate primary prevention programs. Students will be able to apply this knowledge to implement evidence-based physical activity wellness programs in real-world settings (6 credits).

  • Urban Community Health Assessment
  • Health Education and Program Planning

Students choose 2 courses within one of three concentration areas to deepen their knowledge and competency within that area (6 credits).

Public Health Clinical Research
Practicum Clinical Nutrition Applications in Health & Disease Thesis I&II
Urban Community Health Assessment Patient-Centered Health Informatics Directed Study
Global Health or Environmental Health Internship Applied Regression Analysis
Public Health Nutrition Advances in Measuring Behavior

Curriculum subject to change. For a sample curriculum, please click here.

Admissions

The Exercise Science Program accepts applications for Fall entry only.

Applicants accepted: Domestic and International
Delivery: Primarily on campus with one or two classes online
Student status: Full-time or part-time
Term Start: Fall only
Application deadline: Priority 3/1*, Final 6/1

*Recommended for those applicants interested in scholarships and assistantships.

Apply Here

Admissions Checklist

Click each required application item for more information.

Completed application

Completed application via Northeastern’s “Apply Yourself”

All applications must be submitted through Northeastern’s “Apply Yourself” application system. A fee of $75 by credit card or check is required for each submitted application. Current NU students and alumni do not need to pay this application fee. On application, select “physical activity/public health” for the concentration

Close
Degree requirements

Degree requirements

Bachelor’s degree in a science or health-related discipline

Close
Official transcripts

Official transcripts

For information on sending official transcripts, please review the instructions on the Bouvé Graduate Application website.

Close
Prerequisite coursework

Prerequisite coursework

Two undergraduate courses in anatomy and physiology, and one course in exercise physiology from any accredited university. Applicants may be accepted conditionally while completing these prerequisites.

Applicants who have completed the anatomy and physiology prerequisite but not the exercise physiology prerequisite may be conditionally admitted and take it concurrently during their first semester of study. Northeastern offers an undergraduate course that will fulfill this prerequisite.

Close
3 letters of recommendation

Three letters of recommendation

Only professional or academic recommendations from individuals familiar with the applicant’s academic and/or clinical experience will be accepted.

Close
Official test scores

Official test scores

GRE scores from the past five years are required. Use code #3629. The GRE is required and cannot be waived for applicants with undergraduate degrees. Applicants with advanced degrees should contact Dr. Rui Li, the Program Director, at r.li@neu.edu to determine if the GRE can be waived.

TOEFL scores are required from international applicants whose native language is not English. Use code #3629. The Exercise Science Program requires a minimum score of 100 on the TOEFL (official test scores from similar English-language tests may not be substituted in place of the TOEFL).

Close
Health-related working experience

Health-related working experience

At least one year of health-related work experience is recommended, but not required.

Close

Other Program Information

Collaborative Opportunities

Students can complement their didactic instruction through faculty, research, and/or interdisciplinary engagement. Example partners include:

Students are encouraged to explore other departmental offerings and opportunities to interface with faculty.

Close
Collaborative Opportunities

Collaborative Opportunities

Students can complement their didactic instruction through faculty, research, and/or interdisciplinary engagement. Example partners include:

Students are encouraged to explore other departmental offerings and opportunities to interface with faculty.

Close

Distinguished Faculty

Faculty in the department are exploring a range of research topics including:
  • acute/chronic effects of exercise
  • community-based exercise and nutrition interventions
  • nutrition epidemiology
  • health disparities
  • urban public health
  • application of technology for measuring and motivating behavior change
Close
Distinguished Faculty

Distinguished Faculty

Faculty in the department are exploring a range of research topics including:
  • acute/chronic effects of exercise
  • community-based exercise and nutrition interventions
  • nutrition epidemiology
  • health disparities
  • urban public health
  • application of technology for measuring and motivating behavior change
Close

Real-World Transferability

Our graduates leave our program with a solid foundation in exercise science, public health, and research. They are able to secure employment in the government, private, nonprofit, and health sectors, as well as continue their studies in doctoral programs in the health and exercise sciences.

“I was lucky enough to work under Dr. Dinesh John during my time at Northeastern, which offered me the opportunity to both learn and grow my research capabilities in ways I never could have imagined. Constantly in the lab, I surrounded myself with all that the program had to offer. Ideas were readily encouraged!

In my current role, I am responsible for coordinating multiple research studies from the ground up that involve looking at effective ways for people with type 2 diabetes to overcome barriers to exercise. Coordination includes recruitment, conducting research visits utilizing the metabolic cart and a number of other measurement tools, compiling and analyzing data collected, and regulatory compliance involving the Institutional Review Board.

I see myself focusing on behavioral health in the future, integrating exercise science as a way to implement behavior changes for the better. I aim to eventually become a tenured professor conducting research at the university level.”

– Ian M. Leavitt, class of 2014, Professional Research Assistant, University of Colorado Anschultz Medical Campus, Aurora, CO

“Northeastern is extensively networked, and the institution places high value on experiential learning. While Northeastern University provides the networks and resources of a large institution, the Exercise Science program is small and intimate.

Two experiences made my graduate school experience. I worked as a part of an interdisciplinary health informatics research team that partnered with a start-up tech company to study on-body physical activity sensors. I interned at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, where the physiology I learned in the classroom took on another dimension through clinical significance and patient interaction.

Clinical Exercise Physiologists contribute to the next wave of professionals in the field by training undergraduate and graduate interns. The patient population is diverse in age, race, language, and culture. I enjoy exposure to and learning from these differences, and being part of patients’ lives during a critical time.”

– Tricia Povilonis, class of 2014, Clinical Exercise Physiologist, Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Boston, MA

Close
Real-World Transferability

Real-World Transferability

Our graduates leave our program with a solid foundation in exercise science, public health, and research. They are able to secure employment in the government, private, nonprofit, and health sectors, as well as continue their studies in doctoral programs in the health and exercise sciences.

“I was lucky enough to work under Dr. Dinesh John during my time at Northeastern, which offered me the opportunity to both learn and grow my research capabilities in ways I never could have imagined. Constantly in the lab, I surrounded myself with all that the program had to offer. Ideas were readily encouraged!

In my current role, I am responsible for coordinating multiple research studies from the ground up that involve looking at effective ways for people with type 2 diabetes to overcome barriers to exercise. Coordination includes recruitment, conducting research visits utilizing the metabolic cart and a number of other measurement tools, compiling and analyzing data collected, and regulatory compliance involving the Institutional Review Board.

I see myself focusing on behavioral health in the future, integrating exercise science as a way to implement behavior changes for the better. I aim to eventually become a tenured professor conducting research at the university level.”

– Ian M. Leavitt, class of 2014, Professional Research Assistant, University of Colorado Anschultz Medical Campus, Aurora, CO

“Northeastern is extensively networked, and the institution places high value on experiential learning. While Northeastern University provides the networks and resources of a large institution, the Exercise Science program is small and intimate.

Two experiences made my graduate school experience. I worked as a part of an interdisciplinary health informatics research team that partnered with a start-up tech company to study on-body physical activity sensors. I interned at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, where the physiology I learned in the classroom took on another dimension through clinical significance and patient interaction.

Clinical Exercise Physiologists contribute to the next wave of professionals in the field by training undergraduate and graduate interns. The patient population is diverse in age, race, language, and culture. I enjoy exposure to and learning from these differences, and being part of patients’ lives during a critical time.”

– Tricia Povilonis, class of 2014, Clinical Exercise Physiologist, Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Boston, MA

Close

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the tuition costs for the Exercise Science Program?

The program consists of 36 credits. For up-to-date information regarding Northeastern University tuition per credit, please refer to the University’s tuition page.

What kind of financial assistance is available?

The program offers a limited number of merit-based scholarships and graduate assistantships to qualified students. Nothing more than a completed application is required for consideration.

Federal financial aid and institutional scholarships may be available to qualified students. The Office of Student Financial Services provides the most up-to-date information and recommends that every student consider applying for financial aid, regardless of his/her income and assets. You may also call 617.373.5899 or email sfs@neu.edu.

Do I have to select an elective concentration right away?

No, once a student is accepted into to the program, he or she will work with a designated faculty advisor to choose one of the following pathways for the elective concentration: clinical, research, or public health.

Can the program be completed in less than two years?

Yes, it is possible to complete the program in less than two years, depending on whether or not certain required classes are available to be taken over the summer.

Can I take my prerequisite coursework online?

Yes, as long as the courses are offered by an accredited institution.

What is your average class size?

Our program offers small class sizes of about 10 to 15 students.

Do your students typically go on to be certified from the ACSM?

Yes, our students graduate from our program are well prepared and may be eligible for this certifications from organizations such as ACSM, NPAS,  NSCA and we encourage them to apply for certifications.

Can I work full time and attend the Master Program on a part-time basis?

Many courses in the Master Program meet in the early evenings, and some meet during the day. Most courses meet once a week or twice a week. With enough work flexibility, it is possible to work full time and attend school part-time.

Contact Information

We welcome any questions you might have about our program. Please feel free to send general program inquiries and admissions-related questions to Dr. Rui Li.

Rui Li, PhD

Education: PhD, Baylor University

Specializations: Exercise Physiology, Skeletal Muscle Function and nutritional intervention

Research: Exercise and nutritional interventions on metabolic diseases prevention; Training and nutritional strategies for health fitness and sport performance

Membership: ACSM, AAAS

Courses:

  • Exercise Physiology & Lab
  • Advanced Exercise Physiology
  • Advanced Cardiopulmonary Physiology
  • Intro Exercise/Fitness/Health
  • Research Design

Key Experiential Learning Opportunities for Students (undergraduate and graduate):

  • Directed studies
  • Capstone
  • Thesis
  • Service learning opportunities
Close

Rui Li, PhD
Program Director
617.373.2526
r.li@neu.edu

Assistive Options

Top of page


Assistive Options

Open the original version of this page.

Usablenet Assistive is a Usablenet product. Usablenet Assistive Main Page.