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Health and Human Movement: MS

Health and Human Movement

The MS degree is designed to provide an advanced course of study and prepare graduates for roles in the disciplines of exercise science (biomechanics, exercise physiology, or wellness programming) or athletic training. Graduate studies in health and human movement 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. The MS degree also provides an excellent preparation for students pursuing admission into medical school, dental school, physical therapy, or other health professions.


Specialization(s):

Students must choose a specialization.

  • 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 and biomechanics.
  • Sports Medicine: Students in this specialization work as a certified athletic trainer serving the 16 Division I sports of USU Aggie Athletics. This experience will further develop clinical skills and provide opportunities to develop management skills with various sport teams while pursuing advanced studies and research toward a master’s degree.

Exercise Science Specialization

  • Advanced study in exercise physiology and biomechanics
  • Fitness specialist
  • Fitness instructor
  • Coaching

Sports Medicine Specialization

  • Athletic trainers for professional and collegiate sports teams
  • Trainers in sports medicine clinics
  • Athletic trainers for public school districts

Admissions Requirements

It is preferred that applicants have an undergraduate background in an area related to their proposed field of graduate study. If, however, they have relevant experience or undergraduate coursework, their applications will be considered on a case-by-case basis. Students applying for the sports medicine specialization must be a certified or certifiable athletic trainer.

Application Requirements:

  • Complete the online application
  • Pay the $55 application fee
  • Score at or above the 40th percentile on the GRE or MAT
  • Have a 3.0 or higher GPA on your last 60 semester or 90 quarter credits
  • Provide transcripts of all college/university credits
  • Provide three contacts for letters of recommendation
  • Include a statement of purpose in your online application

International students have additional admissions requirements.


Admissions Deadlines

The department has the following application deadline for students wishing to receive assistantships:

  • Fall semester – March 1

The deadline for admission without funding is:

  • Fall semester – July 1

Master's Degree Plan Option(s)

Students with a sports medicine or exercise science specialization can receive the MS by pursuing one of two options:

  • In the Plan A option, students complete graduate-level coursework and must write a thesis.
  • The Plan B option requires the production of a paper or creative work of art and is expected to reflect equivalent scholarship standards as a thesis.

Financial Assistance

The department awards graduate assistantships each year for qualified graduate students to teach in the KHS physical activity program, selected undergraduate academic courses and laboratory sections, and work with faculty with ongoing research projects. The number of graduate assistant positions available are determined by the needs of the department, typically the department awards 15-20 assistantships. Most assistantships are awarded in the spring semester for the upcoming school year, with preference given to students who are able to fill the responsibilities for the whole year. Applicants are evaluated based on previous academic success, experience and/or ability to teach a variety of activity classes and/or research potential or background in the KHS discipline.

In addition there are a limited number of assistantships available each year to students in the sports medicine specialization. Tuition and fees are covered for students with these assistantships, including out-of-state students. These assistantships are renewable; however, out-of-state students must obtain Utah residency for their second year or they must pay the out-of-state portion of their tuition themselves.

Additionally, the cost of living in Logan, Utah, is about 12% lower than the national average.

A variety of additional funding opportunities are available, including fellowships, scholarships, tuition awards, and travel support. Additionally, students may be eligible for subsidized health insurance through qualifying assistantships.


David Bolton, PhD, University of Alberta
Assistant Professor
Area: Neuroscience
Office: HPER 142
Phone: (435) 797-7329
Email: dave.bolton@usu.edu


Eadric Bressel, PhD, University of Northern Colorado
Professor
Area: Kinesiology
Office: HPER 148
Phone: 435-797-7216
Email: eadric.bressel@usu.edu


Chris Dakin, PhD, University of British Columbia
Assistant Professor
Area: Neuromechanical kinesiology
Office: HPER 132
Phone: (435) 797-7324
Email: chris.dakin@usu.edu


Edward Heath, PhD, Oregon State University
Professor
Area: Exercise physiology
Office: HPER 161
Phone: (435) 797-3306
Email: edward.heath@usu.edu


Breanna Studenka, PhD, Purdue University
Assistant Professor
Area: Sensory Motor Behavior and Motor Control
Office: HPER 144
Phone: 435-797-0109
Email: breanna.studenka@usu.edu


Brennan Thompson, PhD, Oklahoma State University

Area: Health and Human Performance
Office: CCE 491
Phone: (435) 797-5785
Email: brennan.thompson@usu.edu


Dale Wagner, PhD, University of New Mexico
Professor
Area: Exercise physiology
Office: HPER 155
Phone: (435) 797-8253
Email: dale.wagner@usu.edu


Professional Organizations, Honor Societies, and Clubs

American Alliance for Health, Physical Education, Recreation, and Dance: AAHPERD is the largest organization of professionals involved in physical education, recreation, fitness, sport and coaching, dance, health education and promotion, and all specialties related to achieving a healthy and active lifestyle.

American College of Sports Medicine: ACSM promotes and integrates scientific research, education, and practical applications of sports medicine and exercise science to maintain and enhance physical performance, fitness, health, and quality of life.

American Council on Exercise: ACE is a nonprofit organization committed to enriching quality of life through safe and effective exercise and physical activity. As America’s authority on fitness, ACE protects all segments of society against ineffective fitness products, programs, and trends through its ongoing public education, outreach, and research. ACE further protects the public by setting certification and continuing education standards for fitness professionals.

American Kinesiology Association: AKA promotes and enhances kinesiology as a unified field of study and advances its many applications. AKA does this by advocating for kinesiology at national and international levels as well as by supporting its member departments by providing resource materials and leadership and educational opportunities for university administrators in kinesiology.

American School Health Association: ASHA is a multidisciplinary organization of administrators, counselors, health educators, physical educators, psychologists, school health coordinators, school nurses, school physicians, and social workers. Its mission is to build the capacity of its members to plan, develop, coordinate, implement, evaluate, and advocate for effective school health strategies that contribute to optimal health and academic outcomes for all children and youth.

American Society of Exercise Physiologists: ASEP is a national nonprofit professional organization committed to the advancement of exercise physiologists. Founded in 1997, the society provides a forum for leadership and exchange of information to stimulate discussion and collaboration among exercise physiologists active in all aspects of the profession. The society works to set standards for exercise physiologists through ASEP-approved curricula in universities and colleges in the United States.

National Strength and Conditioning Association: NSCA is an international nonprofit educational association founded in 1978. NSCA develops and presents the most advanced information regarding strength training and conditioning practices, injury prevention, and research findings. Unlike any other organization, the NSCA brings together a diverse group of professionals from the sport science, athletic, allied health, and fitness industries. These individuals are all in pursuit of achieving a common goal: the utilization of proper strength training and conditioning to improve athletic performance and fitness.


Labs, Centers, Research

Biomechanics Laboratory: The biomechanics laboratory in the HPER building can be rooted back to the mid 1980’s when Steve Dunn began using a dedicated space in the HPER building to teach basic hands-on concepts related to biomechanics. By the early 1990’s Julianne Abendroth-Smith became the director of the laboratory and with her appointment basic kinetic and kinematic equipment was acquired. Eadric Bressel took over as director in 2000 and with the help of Gerry Smith and Chris Dakin have steadily advanced the laboratory with state of the art equipment. The biomechanics laboratories in the CCE building were conceived by Dennis Dolny in 2012. These laboratories will have their grand opening May 3rd 2018.

Body Composition Laboratory: This facility contains the Bod Pod air displacement plethysmography system for body composition analysis. It also has other body composition assessment devices, including a hydrostatic weighing, a RJL Quantum II bioelectrical impedance analyzer, an Omron HBF-500 full-body analyzer, several Omron HBF-306 hand-held BIA machines, several Lange skin fold calipers, a Harpenden skin fold caliper, anthropometers, anthropometric tape measures, and a wall-mounted stadiometer.

Exercise Physiology Laboratory: Numerous treadmills, cycle ergometers, elliptical trainers and select resistance exercise equipment provide a diverse exercise mode selection. Lactate analysis through fingertip sampling plus hypoxia simulation using an oxygen extraction system allows for monitoring simulated high altitude environments. Measurement of energy expenditure through the ParvoMedics True 2400 metabolic cart along with heart rate and blood pressure monitoring during rest and exercise.

Health, Physical Education, and Recreation Building: The HPER building contains approximately 50,000 square feet of programming space. It houses the HPER Department and USU Campus Recreation advising and faculty offices, a number of classrooms, three gymnasiums, one dance studio, two swimming pools, a 1,500-square-foot weight room, six racquetball courts, and male and female locker rooms. Adjacent to the HPER building is a grass outdoor facility used for activity classes, club sports, and intramurals. Eight outdoor tennis courts complete the HPER complex.

Jim and Carol Laub Athletics-Academics Complex: At USU’s Romney Stadium, the Jim and Carol Laub Athletics-Academic Complex hosts an 11,000-square-foot sports medicine complex and a sports medicine research center. Faculty and students from KHS collaborate with USU sports medicine staff on research projects related to exercise evaluation, training, and rehabilitation. The complex houses two underwater treadmill systems, a cold plunge pool, and a number of other systems to aid in this research.

Motion Analysis Laboratory: This laboratory houses the Vicon motion analysis systemand, which is complete with seven 500Hz Vicon cameras, two Bertec 3-D force platforms, a Bassler 200Hz video camera, a BIOPAC MP150 data acquisition system with 8-channel telemetric electromyographic and pressure pad modules combined with motion analysis software.

Neuromechanics Laboratory: The Neuromechanics Lab investigates the neural control of movement and its relationship with the mechanics of the human body. Our aim is to better understand, how sensory information is used to guide our actions through the use of sensory probes, electrophysiological recording devices and psychophysics.

Neuromechanics Laboratory: The Neuromechanics Lab investigates the neural control of movement and its relationship with the mechanics of the human body. Our aim is to better understand, how sensory information is used to guide our actions through the use of sensory probes, electrophysiological recording devices and psychophysics.

Neuromuscular Research Lab: The Neuromuscular Research Lab is focused on the physiological- and performance-based aspects of neuromuscular function ranging from the characteristics of neuromuscular fatigue to adaptations and beneficial responses of strength training.

Neuromuscular Research Lab: The Neuromuscular Research Lab is focused on the physiological- and performance-based aspects of neuromuscular function ranging from the characteristics of neuromuscular fatigue to adaptations and beneficial responses of strength training.

Perception-Action Laboratory: The Perception-Action lab is focused on how higher brain processes adapt our movements in complex, choice-demanding environments. Specifically, this lab studies how sophisticated brain processes prevent us from falling in the cluttered environments we face every day. To accomplish this, techniques such as transcranial magnetic stimulation and electroencephalography are used to measures brain processes related to reactive balance control. These direct measures of brain function are combined with traditional biomechanics measures (e.g. external forces, motion capture and muscle activity) to provide a comprehensive picture of how we prevent falls in real-world environments.

Perception-Action Laboratory: The Perception-Action lab is focused on how higher brain processes adapt our movements in complex, choice-demanding environments. Specifically, this lab studies how sophisticated brain processes prevent us from falling in the cluttered environments we face every day. To accomplish this, techniques such as transcranial magnetic stimulation and electroencephalography are used to measures brain processes related to reactive balance control. These direct measures of brain function are combined with traditional biomechanics measures (e.g. external forces, motion capture and muscle activity) to provide a comprehensive picture of how we prevent falls in real-world environments.

Sensory Motor Behavior Laboratory: The general research of the Sensory Motor Behavior Laboratory concerns how we plan for and control movements that occur in sequence.

Sensory Motor Behavior Laboratory: The general research of the Sensory Motor Behavior Laboratory concerns how we plan for and control movements that occur in sequence.

Sport & Exercise Psychology Laboratory: The Sport Psychology Lab investigates the psychosocial factors that influence sport performance, participation, and personal development. We aim to optimize sport programming to enhance the development of athletic talent, while using sport as a vehicle for promoting positive personal development and a healthy active lifestyle.

Department:

Kinesiology and Health Science Department

College:

Emma Eccles Jones College of Education & Human Services

Academic Advising

Melissa Johnson
KHS Graduate Coordinator
Office: HPER 122
Phone: (435) 797-1495
Email: melissa.johnson@usu.edu



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