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The Department of Kinesiology brings expertise to examine the complexity of physical activity and its role in human health. At a time when the nation is witnessing an obesity epidemic, enjoys watching sport more than playing sport, and has an aging population at risk for falls, kinesiology brings together individuals with backgrounds in physiology, psychology, sociology, communications, history, engineering, education, and neuroscience to work on these and many other important public health problems. Our faculty and graduate students study human physical activity from a variety of perspectives and at many levels of analysis. From the molecules, genes, neurons, and muscles of the individual performer, to sport in society and the study of groups that promote and educate others about physical activity, our department is unique in its depth and breadth.

We prepare our graduates to play important leadership roles in numerous fields associated with physical activity. Our academic programs strive to provide up-to-date, in-depth, interdisciplinary study of human movement at all levels of analysis. The faculty are committed to excellence in teaching, research, and service as we strive to understand human physical activity including individual motor behavior, exercise, and sport across the lifespan and its relation to society and to public health.

Our department has a long tradition of excellent education and research. Five of our faculty members are fellows of National Academy of Kinesiology (NAK) the top honorary society in the field. Over our history, the department has had 16 faculty members elected fellows in the NAK(formerly AAKPE).  Several faculty members are have affiliate appointments with the Neuroscience and Cognitive Sciences program (NACS), the Center on Aging, the Departments of PsychologyWomen’s Studies and Communication and the several departments in the School of Medicine at the University of Maryland, Baltimore. Our research is funded by a variety of agencies including the National Institutes of Health and the National Science Foundation.

Our students can pursue a BS in Kinesiology, the MCERT program in physical education, the MPH in Physical Activity, and a MA or a PhD degree in Kinesiology. Students gain knowledges and have a range of experiences in the anatomical, physiological, psychological, sociological, educational and managerial perspectives on physical activity, movement, exercise and sport.

Kinesiology is one of the top ten most popular majors at the University of Maryland. Many of our undergraduates will go on to further study in such professions as physical therapy, public health, and medicine, while others pursue a career in the sporting industry, wellness & fitness, teaching, or research. Our doctoral students will go on to post-doctoral fellowships and to faculty positions at many of the nation's leading colleges and universities.

Brad Hatfield, Ph.D.
Professor and Chair