TTU health and physical education gets a new name, new concentrations

“It’s not just your grandfather’s health and physical education program.”

That’s how Pat Jordan, interim chairperson of Tennessee Tech University’s health and P.E. program, describes proposed changes that, if approved, would give the department a new name and increase its number of academic concentrations.

The Tennessee Board of Regents will consider the proposal this spring, and university officials say they anticipate the board’s approval, with proposed changes to go into effect this coming fall.

“Right now, a health and physical education degree from TTU enables graduates to teach in that field, but we saw a significant need to increase the academic concentrations we offer in order to better meet student demand,” Jordan said.

The new concentrations that are proposed include athletic training, coaching, fitness and wellness, pre-occupational therapy and pre-physical therapy, in addition to the pedagogy concentration already in place for training health and P.E. teachers.

Exercise Science, Physical Education and Wellness will replace the department’s current name.

Implementing the proposed changes will require the addition of only 16 new classes within a four-year time period, Jordan said.

“Although each new concentration requires that we add a few new courses to our curriculum, all the concentrations are built on the same set of core course requirements, and all meet the university’s 120-hour undergraduate program requirements,” she said.

The university already offers concentrations in pre-occupational therapy and pre-physical therapy through its pre-professional program in the College of Arts and Sciences, but offering them also through Jordan’s department will provide students with a greater number of academic options, she said.

“The expanded program offerings increase recruiting potential for the department,” Jordan said.