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Physical Education


If you're passionate about sports and fitness and enjoy working with children, Hofstra's physical education degree is a way to combine those interests into a career that can make a lasting impact on lives of young people. This program will prepare you to become an elementary, middle or high school physical education teacher and/or coach.

Our program provides a broad, scientifically-based study of a dynamic field that has evolved from traditional games and sports to health and wellness activities that develop both mind and body for students of diverse backgrounds and abilities. Our faculty is highly diverse and well-recognized locally and nationally in their areas of expertise that consist of motor learning, sports psychology, and pedagogy.

Hofstra is the only local university with on-campus adventure facilities, including a ropes course, which means you'll have an opportunity to design and lead activities that encourage social and physical development through health and survival practices, critical thinking, conflict resolution and problem-solving.

We also have an Olympic size swimming pool, a large multi-purpose Physical Education Building, a weight room, a state-of-the-art fitness center, a Recreation Building with a wide variety of intramural and physical activities, and tennis courts. And Hofstra offers Division I sports with 17 men’s and women’s teams that compete in the Colonial Athletic Association. This provides physical education and health students the opportunity to join or work with a team, and obtain first-hand knowledge of sports performance and experience coaching top athletes. Many of our student-athletes have reached the highest level of their sport in professional leagues and on the international stage in the Olympics.

Through coursework and field experience, majors will gain opportunities to teach children how to live healthy lifestyles through competitive, non-competitive and recreational activities. Hofstra's highly credentialed faculty will guide your development, and our full-service career center provides additional chances to reach your post-graduation goals.

Job prospects for physical education majors are very positive. In the New York region, graduates with a bachelor’s degree in physical education teaching and coaching earned an average annual salary of $49,983, and job growth for this major is projected to increase 19.1 percent by 2026, according to New York area labor market data retrieved in July 2018 by Burning Glass Technologies.


Our program curriculum boasts a wide range of requisite and elective courses for individual, team and recreational sports to exercise and fitness programs that focus on cardiovascular, muscular development and flexibility through activities ranging from jogging to lifting weights to martial arts. All courses integrate theory and practice, learn different instructional methods of teaching elementary and secondary content in physical education, sports, anatomy, physiology, fitness for life, adventure, and adapted physical education.

You’ll complete two semesters of student teaching, as well as an internship coaching a middle or high school interscholastic team for at least one season.

Majors who successfully complete the program and pass all New York State requirements will qualify for initial certification in all grades.

Physical education students take a wide range of courses that address health and fitness from various perspectives. Among the classes you can choose from:

  • Structural and Mechanical Kinesiology
  • Sports and Physical Education in Cross-Cultural Context
  • Literacy, Health and Physical Education
  • Methods of Coaching
  • Adapted Physical Education
  • Tactical Concepts and Teaching Methods for Individual Sports
  • Fundamentals of Human Movement

We also offer Long Island’s only five-year dual BS/MS in physical and health education . All teachers need a Masters Degree for permanent teaching certification, and Hofstra’s program offers a fully integrated dual degree program designed to prepare highly qualified professionals.

Up-to-date information about required classes and more is available in the Hofstra Bulletin.

BSEd in Physical Education Requirements

Recent Alumni Outcomes

Graduates of our physical education program are working at school districts, private schools and academies, and educational organizations across the nation. They are also attending graduate school at prestigious institutions such as Bank Street College of Education, Teachers College at Columbia University, Cornell University, Rutgers University and New York University.

Among the organizations where our alumni are working:

  • Harlem Lacrosse and Leadership
  • Universal Cheerleaders Association
  • Lifetime Brands
  • East Meadow School District
  • Levittown School District

Among the institutions where our graduates are pursuing advanced degrees:

  • Teachers College, Columbia University
  • Harvard University
  • Cornell University
  • New York University
  • Drexel University
91% are employed, grad school or both
91% accept a position within six months
$54K median salary
Get More Info on Program Outcomes

What You'll Learn

Student in Class

You will learn the science behind sports, recreation and fitness activities, and how to create programs, curriculum and lesson plans to help children develop their motor, movement and social-emotional skills so they can live healthy lifestyles.

You'll gain an understanding of the physical education needs of students with diverse experiences, cultural backgrounds, disabilities and special abilities, and develop the skills and knowledge to tailor sports and recreational activities to meet those varied needs.


Gym Class

You'll acquire valuable hands-on experience in a variety of ways – through coursework, a required coaching internship and student teaching, which occurs in your senior year.  In addition, you'll also spend 100 hours observing physical education teachers and their classes.

Meet Ryan Fisk

Ryan Fisk, BSEd in Physical Education, MSEd in Health Education, Advanced Certification in Educational Leadership

Ryan Fisk was inspired by his experiences as a physical education and health major to pursue teaching and leadership that has helped change students’ lives. After earning certification through our BS/MS dual program, he secured a job directly after his student teaching program at a cooperating district. He taught physical education at the kindergarten and high school levels. Later, he earned his advanced certification in educational leadership, during which he scored three administrative and internship opportunities. Today, Ryan is a director of instructional technology in the Great Neck, NY school district and a visiting professor in educational leadership/physical education at Manhattanville College.

Meet More of Our Physical Education Students