The program consists of classroom and laboratory courses designed to develop exercise physiologists as critical thinkers, healthcare professionals and researchers.
Students will be prepared to assist in the ongoing development of programs in health and wellness, cardiopulmonary rehabilitation, hospital-based clinical research and fitness programs that evaluate athletes and human performance activities. The program also prepares the students for advanced graduate work.
The full-time Exercise Physiology graduate program is a 32-credit concentrated one-year academic degree. Students begin the program in the fall semester and are scheduled to complete the degree at the end of the summer session.
Upon completion of the Master's degree in Exercise Physiology at The College of St. Scholastica, the graduate will be able to:
Following completion of the academic component of the program (24 credits), the student chooses either the internship track or the thesis track (8 credits each). Internship experiences will be arranged through the program's clinical coordinator at places of interest throughout the United States.
Credit toward the degree will be given for courses with a grade of "C" or better; students are expected to maintain a minimum cumulative grade point average of 3.0 during both semesters.
An advanced, regional, musculoskeletal anatomy course that emphasizes the study of functional relationships between musculature, nervous tissue, vascular, and skeletal components for the extremities and axial skeleton. Cadaver dissection laboratory experience is used to enhance understanding of three dimensional anatomical relationships for specific body regions.
Principles of biochemistry and metabolic processes in relation to nutrition and exercise. Basic elements of carbohydrate, lipid and protein metabolism and their role providing energy, building/repairing tissues and regulating metabolic processes during physical activity. Impact of nutrition on health, fitness and athletic performance. Regulation of cellular metabolism at the level of DNA replication through transcription to RNA and translation for protein synthesis. Effectiveness, ethical considerations, and the proposed biochemical/physiologic mechanisms of the most prevalent ergogenic aids used to enhance athletic performance.
The human body's adaptation to acute and chronic exercise, including hormonal responses, under standard and nonstandard environmental conditions. Physiological variables are contrasted based on age and gender. Laboratory sessions are used to collect data to physiologically profile the human response to selected stressors.
Normal functioning of the cardiovascular system especially the integrative aspects of cardiovascular control and regulation in humans; cardiovascular responses to physiological (e.g., orthostasis, exercise) and pathological (e.g., hypertension, cardiac failure) situations.
Pathophysiology of common chronic diseases for which exercise has been shown to be a therapeutic benefit including diseases associated with the cardiovascular, pulmonary, musculoskeletal, metabolic, neurological, and immune systems. Focus is on preparing students to work with clinical and special populations in medical and nonmedical settings.
Graded exercise testing using different test modes and protocols; preparticipation screening procedures; contraindications and termination criteria for exercise testing; emergency procedures and risk management; and use of metabolic analyzing systems for the identification of disease risk in addition to the assessment of cardiorespiratory function. Emphasis is also placed on the importance of resting and exercise electrocardiogram interpretation for the identification of arrhythmias and other heart-related abnormalities.
The psychophysiological factors thought to be involved in the development and maintenance of health and fitness. The nature, physiology and psychology of stress. Effects of stress on the immune system and disease. Management of stress through various cognitive, psychological and behavioral techniques. Use of empirical evidence and critical thought in determining the effectiveness of alternative medications and treatments. Effects of stress on the mind/body complex and the biobehavioral interventions used to elicit relaxation at rest and during exercise.
Scientific theory and practical application of strength training and aerobic exercise to enhance the function and capacity of the musculoskeletal and cardiovascular systems. Laboratory sessions focus on a variety of physical/physiological measurement and evaluation techniques related to the practice of exercise physiology.
A semester internship in an off-campus setting, including but not limited to cardiac rehabilitation, pulmonary rehabilitation, adult fitness and training, corporate fitness or a clinical research institution. While off-campus, the student is supervised by an exercise physiologist or a practicing clinician. All internship activities are monitored by the clinical coordinator in the Department of Exercise Physiology.
The student writes and submits a research proposal to an advisor and/or the chair of the department of Exercise Physiology and the College's Institutional Review Board. If accepted, the first three chapters of the thesis (introduction, review of related literature, and methods) are written. The student collects, analyzes and interprets the data, then writes the final thesis chapters (e.g., results, discussion, and conclusions).