Kinesiology

Overview | Requirements | Courses | Faculty

Overview

Kinesiology encompasses the study of human development, anatomy, physiology, mechanics, and motor learning. Within each subdiscipline students study stressors, positive and negative, that govern human performance. In addition, discussions focus on numerous clinical conditions, and the exercise, nutritional, and medical techniques used to prevent and control these problems. The purpose of this major is to develop and integrate the concepts and principles from each subdiscipline to understand the complexity of the human mind and body. This major prepares students for advanced studies in medicine, physical therapy, dentistry, kinesiology, and other related life science programs.

Departmental Mission Statement: Our mission is to foster in a diverse group of students an understanding and appreciation of human functions and to encourage and develop learning skills that enhance their personal and professional growth.

Goals:

  1. Critical Thinking. Students should learn how to engage in critical, evidence-­based thinking.
  2. Integration Across Levels of Analysis. Students should understand and integrate different levels of analysis in their working model of human form and function.
  3. Mastery of Core Knowledge. Students are expected to master a significant proportion of the vocabulary and core body of knowledge in Kinesiology.
  4. Mastery of Discipline-Specific Conventions. Majors should be able to read and understand the primary source literature in Kinesiology (journals and books) and to integrate and present that information in prescribed, discipline-specific ways, including oral and written exposition.

Requirements

MAJOR: Eight courses (37 units) are required for the Kinesiology major. They include Kinesiology  300, 301, 302, 305, 307, 310, and 490 and one additional course from Kinesiology 306, 309, 311 or 312.  Kinesiology majors must also take Chemistry 120 or 130, 220, and 221; Mathematics 110 or 114, 120; Physics 110 or 115; Biology 110 or 115 and 130; and Psychology 101.

Pre-professional students are strongly encouraged to consult with the Health Professions Office and with their academic advisor early in their career. Students planning to apply to medical schools should take two semesters of Physics and four semesters of Chemistry.

Students planning to apply to physical therapy schools should take at least two upper-division Psychology courses.

MINOR: Five courses (22-24 units) are required for the Kinesiology minor. They include Kinesiology 104, 300, and 301, and two courses from the following: Kinesiology 201, 302, 305, 306, 307, 309, 310, 311, or 312. A student may replace Kinesiology 104 with any upper division Kinesiology course as long as he or she has completed the necessary prerequisites.

WRITING REQUIREMENT: Students majoring in Kinesiology will satisfy the final component of Occidental College's college-wide writing requirement by successfully completing the written research requirements with a letter grade of "B" or better for two of the following 300-level courses: Kinesiology 302, 305, 306, 309, 310, 311, 312 and 395. Students should familiarize themselves with the departmental requirement at the time of declaring the major. See the Writing Program and the department chair for additional information.

COMPREHENSIVE EXPERIENCE: The comprehensive experience is fulfilled by successfully completing Kinesiology 490 and passing a written two-part exam early in Spring of their senior year.

HONORS: Honors in Kinesiology may be awarded at graduation to qualified students. Students eligible for College honors are those who have 1) earned an overall College grade point average of 3.25 or better, 2) earned a grade point average in departmental courses of 3.5 or better, and 3) completed a research project of honors quality in either Kinesiology 499 or a summer research program. See the Honors Program for additional details.

Courses

104 - Introduction to Kinesiology

Survey of kinesiology subdisciplines: human anatomy, exercise physiology, nutrition, motor learning and sport and exercise psychology. Not open to Seniors.
CORE REQUIREMENT MET: MATH/SCI

196 - Internship in Kinesiology

Supervised participation in the work of a nutrition, exercise, or other health related company or agency. Prerequisite: permission of instructor. Graded on a credit/no credit basis only.
2 units

197 - Independent Study in Kinesiology

Research in a subdiscipline of kinesiology for students who do not have advanced competence in kinesiology (see Kinesiology 397). Prerequisite: permission of instructor. Graded on a Credit/No Credit basis only. 
2 units

201 - Sport in American Society

This course examines the social and cultural factors that influence sport and physical activity. The positive and negative consequences of the way sport is organized in American society will be discussed. We will explore the unifying power of sport, as well as how sport serves to reproduce many of the inequalities present in our society. Topics include: violence, substance abuse, media, gender, race/ethnicity, and social class, and their role within sport and physical activity. Same as SOC 210
CORE REQUIREMENT MET: UNITED STATES and US DIVERSITY

295 - Directed Research in Kinesiology

Intense study in an area of kinesiology under the direct supervision of a faculty member. Prerequisite: permission of instructor. May be repeated for credit.
2 units

298 - Community Health and Fitness Research

This course examines the relative effectiveness of physical activity and nutrition resources/interventions in changing lifestyle behaviors of low-income Angelinos. Students will collaborate with community partners under the direct supervision of the instructor to create educational material, plan events, conduct informative workshops, and evaluate intervention strategies.  Students should expect to commit to a minimum of 8 hours of course work each week including a 1.5 hour course meeting, assigned group work, and community outreach.  Prior to enrollment, students are expected to have a basic background in Kinesiology and/or public health (e.g. KINE 104).  No previous research experience required.  Students are permitted to repeat KINE 298 for credit. Prerequisite: instructor approval.
2 units

300 - Human Anatomy I

This first semester covers musculoskeletal anatomy and provides an in depth study of bone composition and development; joint morphology; muscle structure, function, mechanics, and movement analysis. Includes one three-hour laboratory per week. Not Open to Frosh
CORE REQUIREMENT MET: LAB-SCI

301 - Human Anatomy II

A structural survey of the human body covering the nervous, endocrine, cardiovascular, lymphatic, respiratory, digestive, urinary, reproductive, and integumentary systems. Lecture will also include the special senses of vision, hearing and olfaction. Includes one three-hour laboratory per week. Not open to Frosh
CORE REQUIREMENT MET: LAB-SCI

302 - Biomechanics

The application of muscle mechanics and Newtonian mechanics to the documentation and analysis of human movement. Lecture will also focus on the application of static and dynamic problem solving to human performance. Laboratory work will be integrated with the lecture material and will emphasize the use of electromyography and video analysis to document and study human performance. Prerequisite: Kinesiology 300. Includes one three-hour laboratory per week.
CORE REQUIREMENT MET: LAB-SCI

305 - Exercise Physiology

The study of human functions and their physiological adaptation to, and specification for, the stress of exercise. Cardiovascular, and respiratory responses to exercise; use of calorimetry to study metabolism during exercise; effects of environmental stress on exercise performance; body composition; ergogenic aids and nutritional factors in exercise performance. Prerequisites: Chemistry 120 and Kinesiology 307.
CORE REQUIREMENT MET: MATH/SCI

306 - Biochemistry of Exercise and Energy

Energy sources for human movement; substrate and energy metabolism during exercise; liver, skeletal, and cardiac muscle adaptations to acute and chronic exercise training. Prerequisites: Chemistry 120 and Kinesiology 307.
CORE REQUIREMENT MET: MATH/SCI

307 - Human Physiology

Introduction of principles of human physiology, with special emphasis on a systems approach. Presentation of an integrative approach to basic physiology of major organs and organ systems, covering aspects of cell function, including membrane transport, excitability, metabolism and functions of organs from the nervous, muscular, respiratory, cardiovascular, gastrointestinal, renal, endocrine and reproductive systems. Includes one three-hour laboratory per week. Prerequisite: Kinesiology 301 or Biology 115
CORE REQUIREMENT MET: LAB-SCI

309 - Developmental Motor Behavior

Ontogenetic approach to human movement behavior and physical growth from conception to adulthood with emphasis on maturational and environmental factors. Prerequisite: Psychology 101 or permission of instructor.
CORE REQUIREMENT MET: MATH/SCI

310 - Motor Learning and Control

Introduction to the processes of control and coordination in the performance of motor skills. Neurophysiological, mechanical, and cognitive bases of motor skill acquisition. Includes one three-hour laboratory per week. Prerequisite: Psychology 101 and Instructor permission required.
CORE REQUIREMENT MET: LAB-SCI

311 - Sports and Exercise Phychology

Analysis of psychological variables in sport and physical activity. Examinations of broad issues and studies in sport and exercise psychology with special emphasis on their practical application. Prerequisite: Psychology 101

312 - Diet, Disease, and Exercise

This advanced level course focuses on the etiology of the major degenerative diseases in our society and the role genetics, diet, and exercise play in their development and treatment. Diseases covered include heart disease, cancer, non-insulin dependent diabetes, osteoporosis, and hypertension. Focus of course will look into treatment and prevention of disease through diet, exercise, and lifestyle modifications. The current scientific research covering the metabolic, cellular and system changes involved in disease progression and treatment will be of particular focus. Prerequisites: Chemistry 120 and Kinesiology 307

395 - Directed Research in Kinesiology

Intense study in an area of kinesiology under the direct supervision of a faculty member. Prerequisite: permission of instructor. May be repeated for credit. 
2 units

396 - Internship in Kinesiology

Supervised participation in the work of a nutrition, exercise, or other health related company or agency. Prerequisite: permission of instructor. Graded on a Credit/No Credit basis only.
2 or 4 units

397 - Independent Study in Kinesiology

Individual study for students with advanced competence. Extensive study of a specialized topic, or broad study of an area not otherwise included in the curriculum. Prerequisite: permission of instructor.
2 or 4 units

398 - Community Health and Fitness Research

This course examines the relative effectiveness of physical activity and nutrition resources/interventions in changing lifestyle behaviors of low-income Angelinos. Students will collaborate with community partners under the direct supervision of the instructor to create educational material, plan events, conduct informative workshops, and evaluate intervention strategies.  Students should expect to commit to a minimum of 8 hours of course work each week including a 1.5 hour course meeting, assigned group work, and community outreach.  Enrolled students will assume leadership responsibilities in course projects (e.g. become course liaison with community partners, develop research proposals, manage course mini-projects, etc.).  KINE 398 can be repeated for credit. Prerequisites: KINE 298, KINE 307, and instructor approval.
2 units

490 - Senior Seminar in Kinesiology

This seminar course examines a selected area of current topics in kinesiology. It is the intent of this course to utilize an integrative approach to the advanced study of kinesiology. Students will develop and write a comprehensive research paper in a subdiscipline of kinesiology. Open to senior kinesiology majors with permission of instructor.

499 - Honors in Kinesiology

Data collection, analysis, write-up and presentation of Honors thesis. 2 units may be repeated both semesters of senior year
Prerequisite: permission of department.

Faculty

Regular Faculty

Stuart Rugg, chair

Professor, Kinesiology

B.S., UC Davis; Ph.D., UCLA

Lynn Mehl

Professor, Kinesiology and Psychology

B.S., M.S., Ph.D., USC

On Special Appointment

Melinda Houston

Adjunct Assistant Professor, Kinesiology

B.A., University of California, Los Angeles; M.S., California State University, Fullerton; Ph.D., University of Tennessee, Knoxville

Marcella Raney

Adjunct Assistant Professor, Kinesiology

B.A., Occidental College; Ph.D., USC

Eric Sternlicht

Adjunct Assistant Professor, Kinesiology

B.S., M.S., Ph.D., UCLA

Advisory Committee

Elizabeth Braker

Associate Professor, Biology; Advisory Committee, Kinesiology; Advisory Committee, Urban and Environmental Policy; Affiliated Faculty, Latino/a and Latin American Studies

B.A., Colorado College; Ph.D., UC Berkeley

Donald Deardorff

Carl F. Braun Professor, Chemistry;Advisory Committee, Kinesiology

B.S., Cal Poly San Luis Obispo; Ph.D., University of Arizona

Nancy Dess

Professor, Psychology; Advisory Committee, Kinesiology

B.A., UCLA Ph.D., University of Minnesota