Ph.D. in Education - Kinesiology: Exercise Physiology

With a personalized program focused on close student-faculty mentorships, the School of Education and Human Development's Ph.D. in Exercise Physiology program prepares graduates to pursue careers in university settings or at research institutions. This is a research-based, full-time program that is offered in Charlottesville only.

The Ph.D. degree in Exercise Physiology is typically a 3- (for students entering with a master's degree) to 5-year course of study that is highly mentor/student driven. At the Ph.D. level, the specialization in Exercise Physiology is designed to prepare students to conduct original research in aspects of Exercise Physiology and Physical Activity and Nutrition Intervention, and interpret and communicate the results of this research as authors, university faculty, and/or governmental or research agency officials.

The Ph.D. program allows students to develop unique, individualized areas of study under the direction of a major advisor in Exercise Physiology and a faculty Doctoral committee. The emphases of the program include aspects of human exercise physiology, measurement and etiology of physical activity, dietary intake and nutrition and clinical and community based interventions. Ph.D. students are expected to take an active role in a productive, comprehensive exercise physiology program.

Program Details

  • Application Due Date

    December 1

    Decisions will be released by February 15th.

    Applicants are responsible for ensuring that all required materials are submitted by the deadline. Incomplete applications will not be read and may be cancelled if left incomplete. Materials should be tracked using the checklist in the application.

  • Degree Requirements

    For the doctoral program, students plan their own curriculum with their advisor and program committee. Please note that this is a research degree. Therefore, all students will be required to complete coursework in statistics and research design.

  • Funding Opportunities

    All PhD students receive stipends and/or wages, full tuition and fees, and health insurance. Research assistantships are available from externally funded grants.

  • Typical Length of Study


    Full or Part Time:  Full Time.

  • Course Overview

    All students should be registered as full-time students during the length of their PhD program. This requires students to be registered for at least 12 credits per semester. During the first 4 semesters, students typically register for 9 didactic credits and 3 credits of supervised research (KINE 9998) under the direction of their advisor. During their third year, students typically register for 12 credits per semester of KINE 9998. During their 4th year, students should register for 12 credits per semester of KINE 9999 (Doctoral Dissertation).

    Students are typically not required to register for any credits during the summer term. If students must register for summer courses, they are responsible for paying for all tuition and fees on their own as the School of Education and Human Development’s financial aid packages for PhD students do not cover the summer term.

    The following courses are potential courses for Kinesiology-Exercise Physiology PhD students:

    KINE 5430 Advanced Exercise Physiology (3 credits)
    KINE 5440 Exercise Physiology Lab (3)
    KINE 5450 Exercise Principles Health/Fitness (practicum) (3)
    KINE 5455 Applied Research & Writing in Exercise (3)
    KINE 5470 Energy Metabolism (3)   
    KINE 5480 Exercise Intervention & Disease (3)
    KINE 5485 Life Cycle Nutrition
    KINE 5490 Metabolic Adaptations to Exercise (3)
    KINE 7440 Lifestyle Intervention & Comprehensive Care in Cardiopulmonary Rehab (3)  
    KINE 7410 Principles and Practice of Cardiopulmonary Rehabilitation (3)
    KINE 8480 Practicum (3)
    KINE 9995 Independent Research (1-12)
    KINE 9998 Doctoral Apprenticeship (1-12)
    KINE 9999 Doctoral Dissertation (3-12)

    12 credits of research methods and statistics. The typical sequence is:

    EDLF 5330 Educational Stats l (3)
    EDLF 7420 Experimental Design & Statistical Analysis: Stat ll (3)
    EDHS 8300 Correlations and Regression Analysis: Stats lll (3)
    EDHS 8350 Multivariate: Stats IV (3)

    -Electives should be determined in conjunction with the advisor. The following is a list of frequently selected electives (this list is not meant to be all-inclusive):

    BME 6103 Physiology I (3)
    BME 6104   Physiology and Pathophysiology (3)
    GNUR 5390 Introduction to U.S. Healthcare (3)
    GNUR 6010 Advanced Pathophysiology (3)
    PHS 8053 Clinical Trials Methodology
    PHY 8052 Vascular Biology A (2)
    PHY 8053 Vascular Biology B (2)
    EDLF 5310 Data Management and Social Science Research (3)
    EDLF 5490 Interventions in Physical Activity (3)
    GCNL 5020 Principles of Pharmacology (3)

  • Sample Jobs After Graduation

    The majority of graduates participate in post-doctoral training programs leading to faculty positions in a University setting.

The information contained on this website is for informational purposes only. The Undergraduate Record and Graduate Record represent the official repository for academic program requirements. These publications may be found at