Master of Science in Health: Exercise Science and Chronic Disease

Graduate Program Director & Advising Coordinator

Dr. James Churilla

Graduate Program Director

(904) 620-1735

Application Deadlines

Fall Term . . . . . . . . July 15

Applications are accepted for fall term only. The review process for admissions each fall term will begin June 1st. 

Applicants are encouraged to submit their applications and required documents before the July 15th  deadline to ensure full consideration for admittance pending application review by the Program Director.   


Admission Requirements

University requirements:


  • A baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited U.S. institution or its equivalent from a foreign institution with a GPA of 3.0 or higher in all work attempted in the last 60 credit hours of undergraduate study.


Additional program requirements:


  • Official transcripts from all attended institutions


  • Official GRE scores (Institutional Code: 5490)
    • Prior to July 1, 2011: 400 verbal, 500 quantitative
    • After July 1, 2011: 146 verbal, 144 quantitative


  • Prerequisites - the course numbers listed below are ones offered at the University of North Florida. Any substitutions to these requirements are made at the time of evaluation for admission into the MSH
    • BSC2085c - Human Anatomy & Physiology I with lab
    • BSC2086c - Human Anatomy & Physiology II with lab
    • CHM2045/2045L - General Chemistry with lab
    • STA2014 - Elementary Statistics
    • HSC4612 - Exercise Physiology (recommended)


  • Interview
    • A phone interview is available for applicants with extenuating circumstances


    Students should be aware that admission into any graduate program is granted on a competitive basis. Students meeting minimum requirements may be denied admission based on such factors as program capacity or academic discretion. Likewise, students may be considered for admission as an exception if stated admissions criteria are not met.



    For more information on how to apply click here.

    Additional requirements for International applicants can be found here.


    Program Overview

    The Master of Science in Health (MSH) in Exercise Science and Chronic Disease (ESCD) integrates an evidenced-based curriculum in an applied research environment. Students pursuing the MSH in ESCD are required to take ten core exercise science, epidemiology, and biostatistics courses for a total of 30 credit hours. The remaining credits will be will be satisfied with nine credits of elective course work and either a six credit internship, project, or thesis option. Students must declare a thesis or non-thesis option upon acceptance in to the program. The MSH in ESCD requires the completion of 45 graduate credit hours and should be completed in two years.


    Elective coursework is available in the areas of strength and conditioning, chronic disease epidemiology, nutrition epidemiology, and pharmacology. Students may choose any approved electives to satisfy the 45-credit MSH in ESCD requirement. The Exercise Physiology coursework will prepare students to work in leadership positions in the health and fitness industry inclusive of clinical settings. The Epidemiology and Biostatistics coursework will begin to prepare students to become independent investigators by providing them with the tools to conduct original research. Thesis students may be exposed to both secondary data analysis (existing data sets) and primary data collection (human subjects) when conducting their research. The MSH in ESCD curriculum provides students with the knowledge and skills necessary to work and provide leadership in the areas of health and fitness, preventive medicine, cardiopulmonary rehabilitation, diabetes education, lifestyle coaching, and research. Students planning on pursuing a thesis and terminal degree (e.g., Ph.D., M.D.) are strongly encouraged to pursue elective coursework in chronic disease and nutrition epidemiology. Thesis students will be accepted each fall on a competitive basis and contingent upon graduate assistantship funding.

    Special Notes about the Program The MSH program does not require a specific undergraduate major. Applicants who apply while still enrolled in an undergraduate degree program may be admitted contingent upon successful completion of the bachelor's degree prior to enrolling in graduate courses.
    Curriculum and Requirements Curriculum
    Total Program
    Credit Hours
    Approximate Enrollment 15-20