Master of Science in Applied Physical Activity and Health Promotion 

Blend the traditional role of an exercise professional with the expanding role of the health and wellness coach with the Master of Science in Applied Physical Activity and Health Promotion in Temple University’s College of Public Health. This 33 credit-hour program combines hands-on experience with practical education to prepare students for the clinical field. 

The Applied Physical Activity and Health Promotion MS program prepares students to become physical activity specialists proficient in 

  • basic physiological principles, disease risk factors and nutrient needs for the body;

  • evidence-based, tailored wellness programs and research to prevent primary and secondary disease; 

  • integrating behavior-change theories with core and supplemental techniques; and

  • telehealth technologies.

Expectations for exercise professionals have evolved as the relationship between mental and physical health has become more clear. The scope of work required for an exercise professional now includes large-scale public health objectives, such as treating sedentary clients, preventing chronic diseases, and working with underserved communities while becoming an expert in both exercise training and prescription and behavior change strategies.

Throughout the program, coursework will prepare students for the National Board for Health and Wellness (NBC-HWC) coaching certification exam. Graduates can expect to work with experts in the field as extended members of healthcare teams and help achieve sustainable, long-term changes that positively impact public health.  

An image of a student traversing a rock wall
Photo credit: Joseph V. Labolito

What sets apart our Applied Physical Activity MS? 

  • A unique curriculum: The Applied Physical Activity and Health Promotion MS is the only master’s program in the country to offer a combination of training in physical activity and health coaching. Graduates will leave the program with an expansive list of potential career pathways beyond the traditional positions of physical training and clinical exercise physiology, such as physical or occupational therapy. 

  • Opportunities for further certification: Temple is one of only three universities nationwide that has a master’s program in applied physical activity. Upon graduation, students will be prepared for certification as an NBC-HWC health coach.  

  • Real-world experience within our community: Our experiential learning courses place students in real-world settings in North Philadelphia such as community centers, senior homes and the YMCA, as well as in clinical settings at Temple Health. Students get firsthand experience working with diverse groups of people and develop skill sets that position them for success after graduation. 

Program Format 

This 33-credit program is designed to be completed in four semesters with classes held at Temple’s Main Campus. Both full- and part-time students are eligible and have a maximum of four years to complete the program. Students are required to take four foundational courses that explore the fundamentals of exercise. These courses include the following.

  • Fundamentals of Nutrition for Healthy Living 

  • Physical Activity Testing & Prescription 

  • Principles of Applied Behavior Change 

  • Translating Evidence Into Practice 

Students will complete several experiential learning courses, each of which highlights physical activity within a specific demographic. In your final semester, you’ll choose your culminating experience from one of three tracks: health coaching courses, a physical activity internship or a research opportunity. 

See the full list of program courses.

Tuition & Fees

In keeping with Temple’s commitment to access and affordability, this Master of Science offers a competitive level of tuition with multiple opportunities for financial support.

Tuition rates are set annually by the university and are affected by multiple factors, including program degree level (undergraduate or graduate), course load (full- or part-time), in-state or out-of-state residency, and more. These tuition costs apply to the 2022–2023 academic year.

Pennsylvania resident: $1,060.00 per credit
Out-of-state: $1,453.00 per credit

Learn more about our tuition and fees.


Additional Program Information