Division of Health &
Exercise Science

College of Education
Western Oregon University
Monmouth, OR 97361
Fax: 503-838-8228
Phone: 503-838-8908

Lindsay Gunther
Administrative Program Assistant
503-838-8908 | RWEC 239

Peggy Pedersen, Ph.D.
Division Chair
503-838-8269 | RWEC 238

Ask Us A Question

Hello future students!

The Division of Health and Exercise Science (HEXS) prepares graduates to be successful health and fitness professionals. Our students have many opportunities to gain valuable experiences, from internships with government agencies to research opportunities in our new Exercise Science Lab.

We offer the following degrees and programs.

Is HEXS right for me?

Consider a degree from HEXS if you…
  • Enjoy working with people
  • Value making a difference in your community
  • Are passionate about health and fitness
  • Want to be an advocate for health

How do I get started?

Step 1: Do some prep work in high school or community college
  1. Maintain a minimum GPA of 3.0 in high school and 2.25 in all college-level coursework.
  2. Explore your interests by taking classes in health and human sciences and pursuing job shadowing opportunities, volunteering, and summer internships.
  3. Take Advanced Placement (AP), International Baccalaureate (IB), or other college-level classes. View the current Course Catalog or use the Transfer Articulation Tool to see what exams and classes can be substituted for WOU courses. You can also check out these example community college course plans to see specific courses recommended for Chemeketa AAOT Degree to BS in EXS and Chemeketa AAOT Degree to BS in CHE.

Get ahead by taking college-level math and biology classes.

Both the Community Health Education and Exercise Science majors require math and biology courses.

Step 2: Become a WOU student
  1. Fill out the WOU application ($60 application fee). WOU accepts applications year-round, but those planning to enroll in the fall should complete the application by February 1. Visit the Office of Admissions for more detailed application instructions.


WOU accepts 88% of applicants.

  1. Send official transcript(s) from high school and any college or university you attended. If you are a transfer student with more than 36 college level credits, you do not need to submit your high school transcript. Please note that you will need to send transcripts twice – one set at the time you submit the WOU application and the second set showing all completed course work and high school graduation date (due September 1).
  2. Send test scores from any AP/IB exams you have taken. You do not need to submit SAT/ACT scores if your high school GPA is 3.0 or greater.

Send your transcripts and exam scores to the Office of Admissions

Admissions Office, Western Oregon University
345 Monmouth Ave. N.
Monmouth, OR 97361

  1. Submit your Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). WOU’s priority deadline to apply for financial aid is February 1. WOU’s FAFSA School Code is 003209.

What if I miss WOU’s FAFSA deadline?

If you miss WOU’s priority deadline, but submit your FAFSA by June 30th, you will still qualify for federal aid, but not for state-funded aid. In other words, still send it in!

  1. Apply for scholarships. Once you have been accepted to WOU and setup your WOU Portal account, you can access the scholarship application. WOU’s scholarship deadline is March 1. A list of scholarships and eligibility criteria is available from the Financial Aid Office’s Scholarships page.
Step 3: Choose your major

To choose your major, all you need to do is complete a degree plan with your advisor at least one year before you plan to graduate. Most students choose a major during their sophomore year.

What does it take to finish?

  1. 4 years (180 credits) for full-time students. A minimum of 54 credits will come from WOU’s general education requirements, also known as the Liberal Arts Core Curriculum (LACC). View the current LACC Guide to see which classes are required. The remaining classes you take will depend on your major/program.

Community Health Education program of study
Exercise Science program of study
Physical Education Teacher Education program of study
School Health Education program of study

  1. Maintaining a grade of C- or better in courses used to satisfy major requirements.
  2. Completing an internship or practicum during your final year. All HEXS students pursing a major will apply what they’ve learned in class to perform meaningful and interesting work. This also helps students explore potential job options.

How much does it cost?

Tuition for HEXS programs is approximately $8,000 per year. View the Financial Aid Office’s Cost of Attendance page for more details on cost estimate.

Worried about paying for college?

86% of WOU students receive a scholarship. The average award amount is $5,000 per year. You can check out more stats like this about WOU using College Navigator.

What can I do after I graduate?

  1. Start your career.
    Common jobs for Community Health Education majors

    • Patient Advocate
    • Health Policy Analyst
    • Health Resources Specialist
    • Worksite Health Educator
    • Prevention Program Director
    • Health Outreach Coordinator
    Common jobs for Exercise Science majors

    • Exercise Physiologist
    • Physical therapy aide
    • Corporate fitness instructor
    • Rehabilitation specialist
    • Outdoor educator
    • Recreation director
  1. Earn an advanced degree. Many students continue their education and go into physical therapy, occupational therapy, nursing, university instruction, or research.
  2. Get a specialized certification. Majors pursuing both health and athletic related fitness careers are well prepared to sit for certification exams offered by the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) and the National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA).

Jobs for professionals in health and exercise are growing.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment of health educators and exercise physiologists is projected to grow 16% and 13%, respectively, in the next ten years. The average for all occupations is 7%.