ESCH - Physical Education Master's Specialization (M.S.)

Master of Science in Health, Leisure and Exercise Science Specialization Area: Physical Education Department of Exercise Science and Community Health College of Health, The University of West Florida

Prepare to be a Leader!

The Physical Education Master's degree is an advanced educational program designed to prepare you to lead individuals in areas of physical education, physical activity, fitness, wellness, and health. Each of these areas requires leaders who can successfully and effectively plan, motivate, communicate, explain, connect, demonstrate, and reflect. What do these professional behaviours have in common? They are all part of teaching or pedagogy.

Though the program specialization is called Physical Education - course instructors allow students to learn pedagogy through individualized instruction. In other words you will be allowed to shape course requirements and assignments around your interest or profession. If you are interested in enhancing your teaching skill, your coursework will revolve around curriculum, units, and lessons. Current or future coaches will align their coursework to season goals, sport-specific skill, and practices. Fitness, training, and health professionals will address prescription, instruction, and assessment.

Complete Coursework: 24 months

Credit Hours: 33

Tuition: *See current UWF tuition fees online

The Physical Education master's degree offers you a confident, convenient, and affordable degree in which to achieve your future plans:

Confident - UWF has been rated Best Southeastern College (Princeton Review, 2015), #22 in the Most Affordable Online Graduate Schools for Master's Degrees (Best Masters Programs, 2015), and named in America's Top Colleges (Forbes, 2014).

Convenient - Courses are available in an executive-style format and are fully online. You do not have to be at UWF to take courses, which allows you to balance work, life, and school.

Affordable - The 33 credit program currently costs you under $400 per credit hour, one of the most affordable programs available in the state and the country.

Career Opportunities:

  • Elementary Physical Education Teacher
  • Middle School Physical Education Teacher
  • High School Physical Education Teacher
  • Private school Physical Education Teacher
  • County or State Specialist/Curriculum specialist
  • Director of Physical Education
  • College Instructor for Physical Education
  • College Instructor for Physical Activity
  • Adjunct professor for Physical Education, physical activity
  • Recreation, K-12, collegiate and elite sport coaching
  • Athletic program leadership
  • Recreational settings (aquatics, beach, wellness, fitness, outdoor)
  • Government agencies/military employment (e.g. physical activity and recreation, sports/coaching, fitness and conditioning on military bases)
  • Consultants at non-profit centers (e.g. AHA, ALA)
  • Community-based strength and conditioning programs
  • College/university strength and conditioning programs
  • High School strength and conditioning programs
  • Professional strength and conditioning programs
  • Military strength and conditioning programs
  • Personal training
  • Exercise prescription
  • Fitness and Conditioning consultation
  • Fitness Instructor
  • Fitness Center Employee/Specialist 
  • Physical Activity and Fitness leaders
  • Private and Corporate Fitness and Wellness Centers
  • Physical Activity Specialist (e.g., CDC, NIH, and other government organizations)
  • Physical Activity Consultant
  • Performance and technique analysis
  • Sport optimization
  • Independent performance enhancement program
  • Private performance enhancement program
  • Fitness director (e.g., nursing home, private corporation)
  • Fitness screening
  • Wellness directors
  • Health promotion specialists (physical activity related)

What you will learn in the Physical Education Master's program:

Critical evaluation of performance to maximize successful participation in physical activity endeavors

Application of a variety of concepts from pedagogy, motor development, and exercise science when planning and implementing interventions

Knowledge-based expertise in multiple forms of physical activity

Connect disciplinary and pedagogical knowledge in the selection of physical activity content

Planning for responsibility, decision making, and problem solving

Application of research to work-related content

Technology resources to interact with other professionals

Knowledge and benefits of physical activity, cognitive, and affective assessment

Promotion of and advocacy work for physical activity policy that aligns to research, national and state standards, professional organizations, and educational philosophy


The Physical Education master's program is a part of the UWF Professional Education Unit. Programs within the PEU are all individually accredited by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE)

UWF has National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE) accreditation. University of West Florida is also accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS)

Project in Lieu of Thesis:

We consider a project in lieu of thesis as a project or activity that makes a significant contribution to the field(s) associated with this major

Project ideas will be conceptualized and organized by the student and a faculty member (who will serve as the project chairperson)

There is no set format for a project in lieu of thesis. The guidelines for each individual project will be determined by the nature of the project and the guidance of the project chairperson

Related Links and Documents


Dr. John Todorovich
Chair, HLES
Phone: (850) 474.2592
Office: Building 72, Room 250