May 17, 2006

Physical education department changes name

by Sun Min

CARBONDALE, Ill. -- Southern Illinois University Carbondale's Physical Education Department has a new name. It is now the Department of Kinesiology.

Kinesiology is the study of human movement. "The term kinesiology is a more encompassing term and it's a much more accurate descriptor of what we do. We do a lot of things besides preparing individuals to become physical education teachers," said Elaine M. Blinde, interim chair of the department. "We have students studying exercise science, athletic training, sport management, sport studies and other disciplines."

The Department of Kinesiology offers programs that qualify graduates for positions as teachers in elementary and secondary schools or for alternative careers in private, industrial and public settings. There are no changes in the requirements for the degree.

The change follows a trend at universities across the United States. "Many of our peer institutions have changed their department names to kinesiology. It's the recognized descriptor for the field of physical education nowadays," said Blinde.

Achieving excellence in undergraduate and graduate education is among the goals of Southern at 150: Building Excellence Through Commitment, the blueprint for the development of the University by the time it celebrates its 150th anniversary in 2019.