The primary focus of kinesiology is the study of human movement and behavior in physical activity. The Department of Kinesiology offers two major concentrations in exercise science and physical education teaching, as well as courses leading to the State of Iowa Coaching Endorsement and Authorization.

We support students interested in pursuing graduate studies in health fields including physical therapy in conjunction with Cornell's innovative Dimensions Program. And we also support students interested in graduate studies in sports medicine.

Department Goals

Students who are majoring in Kinesiology at Cornell are expected to:

  • Be able to access and utilize information and ideas from inter-related academic disciplines for the study of motor, cognitive, and affective aspects human physical activity.

  • Appreciate the role that a lifetime of physical activity plays in contributing to personal health and wellness and self-awareness.

  • Understand physiological concepts related to structure and functioning of the human body during physical activity.

  • Appreciate the various forms of physical activity as dynamic cultural and psycho-social phenomena.

  • Be able to apply basic principles and procedures for safe and healthy physical activity and the prevention and treatment of athletic injuries.

  • Understand principles of leadership and management as they apply to physical activity settings.

Curriculum Details

You may see a full list of major and minor requirements  with their course descriptions by connecting to the catalogue here

Undergraduate Research

We encourage our students to engage in undergraduate research projects, both on campus and at other institutions, as a way to prepare for graduate studies. Recent students have taken advantage of our new exercise science lab to conduct research on the effects of sleep deprivation on physiology and psychology, as well as the physiological response of wrestlers and non-wrestlers to high-temperature training environments.

Internships in Kinesiology

Department of Kinesiology offers opportunities for exciting internships in a broad range of fields and experiences including corporate fitness/wellness, physical therapy, athletic administration, and more. Cornell's One Course At A Time schedule makes it possible for students to fully engage in these experiences without scheduling conflicts.

Cornell Student Symposium 

Each year, Cornell students present the results of their research at the Cornell Student Symposium. Examples of recent kinesiology research abstracts can be found on the kinesiology symposium page under resources for current students.