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Best Online Degrees in: Kinesiology

Editor’s Picks: Online Schools for Kinesiology

Value
The best online kinesiology bachelor's degree for value is offered by the University of Florida, which is ranked by the Princeton Review as No. 7 out of the top 10 public colleges for value. In addition, PayScale.com lists the University of Florida's return on investment (ROI) for in-state students as 10.3% without financial aid and 11.8% with financial aid. For out-of-state students, the ROI is 7.6% without financial aid and 8.2% with financial aid. The high return on the initial tuition cost makes the university an excellent investment for students.

Career Support
The award for the best online kinesiology bachelor's degree for career support goes to the University of Florida, which is ranked by U.S. News & World Report as No. 34 for student services. It provides career placement assistance, help with career planning, job fairs, and resources specifically for online students, according to its website. The career resource center ensures that students can bridge the transition between school and work successfully.

Financial Support
The University of Florida awards 99% of its first-year, first-time students with some form of financial aid, the National Center for Education Statistics reports. A whopping 91% of all undergraduates receive scholarships or grants. Due to its dedication to providing tuition assistance to its students, the University of Florida is the winner of the best online kinesiology bachelor's degree for financial support.

Technology Support
The University of Florida wins the award for best technology support. Its computing help desk provides system alerts and resources to help students with common technological problems. In addition, the help desk can be contacted through phone, email, or online service tickets, and has extended evening and weekend hours of operation. This ensures that no matter when or how students experience a technical glitch, they can get it resolved immediately. The help desk can also be found through Facebook and Twitter, where it provides updates and tips.

Student Engagement
The University of Florida is ranked No. 26 on U.S. News & World Report's list of the best online schools for student engagement. To make sure that students participate in their online classes, University of Florida faculty members track sign-ins to the class portals and make themselves available during weekly office hours. The University of Florida is therefore our winner for best student engagement.

Disability Support
The University of Florida provides extensive accommodations for students with disabilities, according to its website. In addition to providing information and a resource center, the University of Florida also ensures that its websites are universally accessible. It is therefore our winner of the best online kinesiology degree for disability support.

Library and Research Support
The University of Florida wins the award for best library and research support. It is ranked No. 36 by student reviews on College Prowler's list of the best school libraries. The library website provides easily accessible databases and online journals, in addition to online news and updates. There are services for alumni, and librarians can also be contacted via chat, email, or phone.

Learning Support
The University of Florida is ranked No. 34 for its student services in U.S. News & World Report. It provides live tutoring, online resources for distance education students, and a smartphone app. The University of Florida is therefore our winner for best learning support.

Faculty Credentials
The University of Florida, which is ranked No. 17 on U.S. News & World Report's list of the best online schools for faculty training, is our winner of the best online kinesiology bachelor's degree for faculty credentials. At the University of Florida, 90% of online instructors have two or more years of online teaching experience. In addition, all online instructors receive training in teaching online classes prior to conducting their own classes.

Faculty Accessibility
The University of Florida wins the award for best faculty accessibility. According to U.S. News & World Report, University of Florida faculty members respond to emails within 24 hours. Class sizes are also kept small, according to the National Center for Education Statistics, which makes it easy for instructors to focus on individual students' needs. In addition, faculty members hold two office hours weekly.

Alumni Engagement
California Baptist University wins the award for the best online kinesiology bachelor's degree for faculty engagement. Its alumni website provides university graduates with the opportunity to connect with alumni in their regions. It also lists upcoming events and links to various social networking opportunities. Alumni members are given retail discounts, career assistance, and other member benefits as well.

Explore a Bachelor’s Degree in Kinesiology

Kinesiology is the study of human movement, and leads to careers that center on physical activity and fitness. Kinesiology uses medical principles to analyze, preserve, and enhance human movement. Kinesiology students may specialize in areas including exercise science, athletic training, and physical culture. They are required to be physically fit, to listen and communicate well, to set and determine fitness goals, and to evaluate problems in training and athletic technique to help clients avoid injury or enhance performance.

Class Curriculum

Kinesiology degree programs will require basic curriculum in human anatomy, strength and aerobic training, health and fitness, and some chemistry, biology, and statistics course work. Advanced classes may be required in biomechanics, therapeutic principles, exercise physiology, motor development, and motor control and learning. Here are a few descriptions of courses specific to kinesiology:

  • Exercise Physiology. Exercise physiology studies the body systems and their relationships during exercise. The course may involve study into current human movement research findings.
  • Biomechanics. Biomechanics examines the activities of organisms to understand the properties behind their physical behavior. Students study basic mechanics and current biological and anthropology research.
  • Motor Development. Motor development covers the motor skills and physical development that mark human growth throughout a person's life cycle. Students study neurological, physiological, social, and emotional factors that affect movement activity.

Kinesiology students will be required to conduct research projects related to their course work. Reading and corresponding assignments will usually discuss current research in the course topics. Kinesiology students may be required or encouraged to complete internships in healthcare or physical training facilities.

Building a Career

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), fitness trainers or instructors had a median annual wage of $31,090 in May 2010. Personal care and service employment is expected to grow by 27% between 2010 and 2020, and fitness trainers and instructors employment is expected to grow by 24% between 2010 and 2020.

The BLS also reports that healthcare practitioners and technical occupations had a median annual wage of $51,850, and athletic trainers had a median annual wage of $41,600 in May 2010. Athletic trainer employment is expected to increase by 30% between 2010 and 2020, and healthcare practioners and technical occupations employment is expected to increase by 16% between 2010 and 2020. Keep in mind that employment and salary vary between area, experience, employer, and other factors. Kinesiologists may advance from entry-level positions as athletic trainers to athletic directors, physicians, clinical practice administrators, or other health management positions, provided they have the appropriate education and training. They may also work as personal trainers and advance to management positions in health clubs or fitness centers.

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