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Physical Education Major

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Why Study Physical Education?

Students who study physical education are enthusiastic, physically fit, patient and excellent communicators. They go on to make a difference in the lives of those around them, inspiring a lasting love of fitness and health. Physical educators teach basic motor skills, games, fitness activities and the social skills related to participating in sports. They positively influence their students both physically and mentally, and encourage competition and cooperation.

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Why Study Physical Education at Eastern?

The Physical Education major is designed for students who have a love of physical education and a special interest in working in sport and exercise activities. The program provides excellent preparation for careers in school physical education programs and other related agencies such as YMCAs, YWCAs, boys and girls clubs, and city or town public and private recreation programs and clubs. The major emphasizes studies in exercise science, instructional philosophy, and pedagogical analysis and techniques. The hallmark of this distinctive program is extensive clinical field experiences in public schools and professional agencies. A Physical Education minor is available to non-PE majors.

Student and child playing
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  • Students majoring in Physical Education can take the Pre-K12 concentration in teacher certification, which includes 30 credits required to meet Connecticut State Certification requirements. In addition to the senior year student teaching course, students in the certification concentration are also involved in at least two off-campus practicum/seminar courses taught by physical educators currently teaching in area public schools.

    View Certification Details

    View Physical Education Major: BS Degree Requirements Details

  • The Physical Education Studies Concentration is designed for students who have a love of physical education and a special interest in working in sport and exercise activities but who are not planning to become physical education teachers. In lieu of student teaching and clinical experiences, students in this Concetration take a minor and an internship.

    View Physical Education Major: BS Degree Requirements Details

Salary Potential


Median Salary High School PE teachers


Median Salary Health Educators

* U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Hands-on Learning

Winners of the National College Bowl

National Competitions

Eastern’s physical education majors are frequent recipients of state and regional awards for excellence, and many earn scholarships and special recognition at professional conferences.

Student posing for photo next to research presentation

Student Research

Faculty mentor students in professional activities such as presentations at state and regional workshops, symposia and conferences. 

Students encouraging a child going down a water slide

Working with Children

Students also perform extensive fieldwork as teachers in Connecticut public and private schools, or as interns with local park and recreation departments and teams at the collegiate and professional level.

Career Options

  • After-school youth programs
  • Camp counselor
  • Health educator
  • Physical education teacher
  • Special needs programs
  • Special Olympics

Successful Alumni

Recent Eastern students who earned a bachelor’s degree or a minor in physical education are employed in schools and sport-related businesses throughout the country.  Alumni have also earned doctoral degrees from many universities including Columbia University, Ohio State University, the University of North Carolina, West Virginia University and the University of Maryland.

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For more information, please contact

Dr. Darren Robert
(860) 465-5184

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Alumni Testimonials

Molly Rathbun ’12
Trinity Head Coach

Molly Rathbun ’12

A four-time Division III softball All-American, Molly is the new head softball coach at Trinity College. “Being a student-athlete has shaped me into the best version of myself and has made me realize my passion for helping others to do the same. I learned commitment and camaraderie and the importance of staying in the moment and focusing on the little things.”

Tyler Bridgewater ’16
Physical Education Teacher

Tyler Bridgewater ’16

Physical Education major Tyler Bridgewater is the health and physical education teacher at Eastford Elementary School. “Eastern prepared me for teaching by placing me in wide variety of classroom settings and with different teachers, all with their own styles and philosophies. It gave me a great hands-on experience and prepared me for the job interview process.”

Andrew Burns ’14
Health Teacher

Andrew Burns ’14

Physical Education major Andrew Burns is a health and physical education teacher at Windham High School. “Eastern’s physical education program provided the framework of knowledge and experience for my success as a teacher.”