Bachelor of Arts in Human Performance

The Department of Kinesiology is pleased to offer a new degree objective for students pursuing careers in applied kinesiology, coaching, sports management, athletic training, sports law, sports communication, sports journalism, sport psychology, and many other sport-related professions. While this degree provides a rich scientific foundation in exercise physiology, anatomy, biomechanics, and nutrition, undergraduates pursuing a B.A. in human performance will concentrate their studies on the practical application of these disciplines within their personal field of interest (business, journalism, law, health sciences, etc.).

The specific degree requirements include 24 units of required core courses within kinesiology and 12 units of required collateral coursework within the sciences. Students must also complete 8 units from a list of electives restricted to kinesiology coursework. Ranging from injury prevention to exercise and metabolic diseases, these electives allow students to tailor the degree to their individual needs. Along with the required core and collateral courses, the elective units allow sufficient flexibility to complete course prerequisites for any of the graduate health-related fields. In addition to specific course work, human performance students have several opportunities to acquire practical experience (athletic training, exercise prescription, etc.) and/or participate in the ongoing research efforts of the Kinesiology faculty.

Additionally, this degree can easily be integrated with other disciplines of study within the University. For example, a student interested in sports management could combine the B.A. in human performance with a minor in business. Similarly, a student interested in becoming a sports journalist could double major in kinesiology and journalism. Our academic advisor can provide direction in planning course selections toward specific fields. Please see our website for details or email Laura Ames at:

Required Core Courses - 24 units

EXSC-202L* Principles of Nutrition and Exercise
EXSC-203L* Individualized Exercise Prescription
EXSC-250* Drugs and Ergogenic Aids in Sport and Weight Control
EXSC-301L* Human Anatomy
EXSC-310* Sociopsychological Aspects of Sport and Physical Activity
EXSC-400L* Principles of Perceptual-Motor Learning
EXSC-401L* Kinesiology

Required Collateral Courses - 12 units

BISC-220L General Biology: Cell Biology and Physiology
MATH-108 Precalculus
PSYC-274 Statistics I

Required Electives - 8 units

EXSC-200L* Nutrition: Macronutrients and Energy Metabolism
EXSC-300L* Physiology of Exercise
EXSC-350* Nutrition: Micronutrients and Homeostasis
EXSC-405L* Applied Systems Physiology
EXSC-406L* Exercise and Energy Homeostasis
EXSC-408L* Introduction to Biomechanics
EXSC-409* Metabolic Diseases
EXSC 439L* Human Performance and Bioenergetics (2 or 4 units)
EXSC-441L* Prevention of Athletic Injuries
EXSC-442L* Advanced Prevention of Athletic Injuries
EXSC-490L* Directed Research
EXSC-491L* Lab Experience in Exercise Science (2 or 4 units)
EXSC-499* Special Topics

*Current syllabi for all Kinesiology (EXSC) courses can be found in the USC Schedule of Classes.

Learning Objectives:

  • To cultivate the students’ development of a broad understanding of the central and applied concepts of the discipline of kinesiology, including awareness of its relationship to other disciplines in the life and social sciences.
  • To foster the students’ process of identifying, exploring, assessing and solving real world problems through independent study and self-directed group projects that solidify their understanding of the scientific method, and of the applied concepts of kinesiology.
  • To provide students with learning opportunities beyond the classroom using technical equipment and modern methodologies pertinent to research in applied kinesiology and its sub-disciplines.
  • To engage and mentor the formulation of critical thinking and problem solving skills which facilitate the application of knowledge in applied kinesiology as the individual interfaces with both supportive and opposing perspectives throughout society and the environment.
  • Department of Biological Sciences
  • University of Southern California
  • Allan Hancock Foundation Building
  • Los Angeles, CA 90089-0371