Physical Education and Kinesiology (PEK)

Physical educators make an impact on the health, well-being, and quality of life of future generations. The Physical Education and Kinesiology (PEK) program at WVU prepares students to teach, motivate, and shape the lives of Pre-K through adult learners in physical education, movement, wellness, and sport-based environments.

Students in the PEK program learn to use and integrate technology into their classwork, gain hands-on, real world experience, and learn how to design and deliver physical education programs. Upon program completion, graduates are eligible for certification in PreK-adult Physical Education and may pursue a certification in Health Education.

Program graduates are physical activity and wellness leaders in their school, communities, and states who promote healthy, active lifestyles for children and adults alike. WVU is fully accredited by the Higher Learning Commission. The Educator Preparation Provider (EPP) at WVU is currently accredited by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE) and is a Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP) eligible provider. The Physical Education specialty licensure area offered at our EPP has been approved by the Society for Health and Physical Educators.

What our alumni have to say:

  • Melissa B

    "The WVU PETE program involved us in all aspects of teaching from content knowledge to professional development. When you complete the program you are immediately ready to get out into the real world and will have no surprises."

    Melissa B.

    B.S. PETE, 2011
  •  Guy 2

    “The program also has an excellent student to professor ratio due to the small cohorts, which allows for a comfortable, family atmosphere. These small cohorts also allow you to build relationships, network, and collaborate with other future professional educators in your field of study.”

    Daniel L.

    B.S. PETE, 2011
  •  Justin Isberg

    "The PETE program provides numerous student teaching experiences, consist's of unique yet meaningful courses and includes a classroom health component, all of which made me more marketable and helped me to achieve my dream career!"

    Justin I.

    B.S. PETE, 2011
Coursework

What you'll study

Students are exposed to the core courses such as principles of effective teaching, school-based physical activity and fitness education, adapted physical education, curriculum, teaching team and individual sports, and technology in sport and physical education. PEK students also take general education courses (GEF) in communication, basic math and science, english, social sciences, and humanities.

Foundation courses

The PEK foundation courses provide an introductory understanding of human structure and movement, motor skills development across a lifespan, and characteristics of individuals with disabilities. These concepts and principles serve as the building blocks for designing and delivering developmentally appropriate movement-based learning experiences for individuals of any age and ability. 

Professional courses

Prepare for a career in physical education with a new perspective on what quality physical education entails. Students enjoy hands-on opportunities working with Pre-K through adult-aged learners in movement, physical activity, sport, and physical education settings. Through these experiences, students learn what it takes to be an effective teacher and instruct using research-based curricular and instructional models to motivate learners to be physically active and fit for a lifetime.

Student teaching internship

Students are required to complete a two 7-week student teaching internships at two developmental levels (elementary, middle school and/or high school). Placement support is available through the physical education faculty.

Accelerated Bachelor's to Master's program

The newly developed Accelerated Bachelor’s to Master’s program in PETE gives undergraduate students the opportunity to work toward both a B.S. and M.S. degree simultaneously. This accelerated approach makes graduate study more cost-effective. With the addition of two summer sessions, students can earn both degrees within four years. The benefits include tuition savings, improved marketability, enhanced networking opportunities and the potential for a higher starting salary.

Find out more
Program faculty

Who you'll learn from

  • Taliaferro

    Andrea Taliaferro

    Professional Highlights

    • Research interests include minimizing health disparities for individuals with disabilities through the improvement of inclusive physical activity opportunities in school- and community-based settings. 
    • West Virginia University 2019 Foundation Award for Outstanding Teaching 
    • APENS Certified Adapted Physical Educator, National Consortium for Physical Education for Individuals with Disabilities 
    • Vice President - National Consortium for Physical Education for Individuals with Disabilities (2019-2021) 
  • elliot 

    Eloise Elliott

    Professional Highlights

    • Ware Distinguished Professor in the WVU College of Physical Activity and Sport Sciences since 2009
    • Co-Author of the book, Teaching Children and Adolescents Physical Education (Graham, Elliott, Palmer, 2016) 
    • Recent Honors: Research Fellow, Society of Health and Physical Education (SHAPE) America (2017), Outstanding WVU CPASS Grantsperson Award (2019), Chair, U.S. President’s Council for Fitness, Sport, and Nutrition Science Board (2017) 
  • Emi Tsuda portrait

    Emi Tsuda

    Professional Highlights

    • Research emphasis on teachers' content knowledge, motor skills and physical activity engagement, and policy in physical education
    • Teaches classes in introductory of pedagogy and elementary and early childhood physical education methods
    • Has conducted 35 international and national presentations
  • James Wyant

    James Wyant

    Professional Highlights

    • Teacher of the Year Award, WVU, CPASS award for excellence in teaching for the 2018-2019 academic year. 
    • WV Department of Education Teacher Credentials: Physical Education PreK-Adult, Health Education grades 5-12. 
    • Coordinator of the physical education teacher education student teaching capstone experience. 
  • Portrait of Jeremy Yeats

    Jeremy Yeats

    Professional Highlights

    • Program Coordinator for Physical Education and Kinesiology, CPASS
    • Research emphases in education policy, the use of music in sport, physical activity breaks, and social justice
    • Seven years experience as a Teaching Assistant Professor or Assistant Professor
  • portrait of sean bulger

    Sean Bulger

    Professional Highlights

    • Received the 2016 Ray O. Duncan Award from the state HPERD association for outstanding service and leadership. 
    • Co-authored more than 60 books, chapters and journal articles on physical activity promotion and best teaching practices.
    • Collaborated on over $5 million in external funding to support physical activity in school, community, and family settings. 
    • Delivered over 130 presentations at state, regional and national conferences/conventions. 
Beyond The Classroom

Field Experiences and Research

Community

Students design movement education programming for early childhood and preschool age children from a local day care facility.

School-based Field Experiences

Watch and learn teaching theories and principles in the field. WVU’s PETE program partners with local schools to provide more than 100 hours of hands-on experience which students complete throughout their plan of study.

Diverse Learners

Children with various disabilities and special needs visit the WVU campus each Friday for 10 weeks to interact and engage in developmentally appropriate physical activities in the motor skill and aquatic settings. PETE students serve as teachers who plan and implement lessons and activities for these learners.

Technology Action Based Research Projects

During the BIP placement at the university, students integrate different educational technologies into their PE units and, with assistance from faculty, assess and report the impact of this technology on student learning.

Career Preparation

After Graduation

Commonly sought research focuses among alumni

  • Designing and implementing comprehensive school physical activity programs
  • Evidence based curricular and instructional models in physical education and sport
  • Physical activity programming for school-aged children with special needs
  • Instructional technology and its place in the gymnasium, classroom, and sports arena
  • Physical activity and youth sport

Example employers and job titles of graduates

  • Craig G. - Physical Education teacher, Washington, D.C.
  • Jack W. - Physical Education teacher, Arizona
  • Kelyn E. - Physical Education teacher, Delaware
  • Christopher R. - Physical Education teacher, West Virginia
  • Scott T. - College Professor, North Carolina
  • Jesse R. - Special Education teacher, West Virginia
  • Zach B. - Strength & Conditioning coach, Florida
  • Brooke S. - Health and Physical Education Curriculum Specialist, Texas
  • Tim S. - University-level Track and Field coach, North Carolina
  • Jordyn F. - Physical Education teacher, New Jersey
How To Apply

The Admission Process

How to apply

  • Apply to WVU: WVU Admissions Application
  • On your WVU Admissions materials indicate Physical Education Teacher Education (PETE) as your major of interest.

Prerequisites and requirements

  • Overall GPA 2.5 or higher
  • A grade of C or higher must be earned in all probationary PET courses (or currently enrolled in the class at time of admission): PET 124, PET 125, PET 167, PET 175, PET 244, PET 276
  • Fewer than 10 hours left in GEC requirements for first three semesters
  • Passing scores on PRAXIS I, now named Core Academic Skills for Educators, on all three sub-tests
    • Current test only available and WVDE accepted until August 31, 2020 
      • 5712 Reading 156 
      • 5722 Writing 162 
      • 5732 Math 150 
    • New test beginning September 1, 2019 
      • 5713 Reading 156 
      • 5723 Writing 162 
      • 5733 Math 150
NOTE: The Praxis I requirement is waived for individuals who have achieved one of the following scores: 25 or higher on the American College Testing (ACT), 26 or higher on the enhanced ACT, or 1170 or higher on the SAT combined Critical Reading and Math beginning March 2005

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Lindsay Augstine Portrait
Lindsay Augustine
Student Services Specialist
Taliaferro
Andrea Taliaferro
Associate Professor