Exercise Science

Are you fascinated with kinesiology and how the body’s muscle groups work together? Do you want to motivate and help transform people into better versions of themselves? Or do you want to help heal athletes from sports-related injuries? If you answered yes to any of these questions, consider joining the Exercise Science program.

We offer two different paths in the Exercise Science program — Pre-Physical Therapy and Health, Fitness, and Sports Performance. Pre-Physical Therapy prepares those who wish to specialize in exercise science and kinesiology — and can receive continued education to begin careers in exercise directing, exercise physiology, occupational therapy, and even sports medicine. The Health, Fitness, and Sports Performance path prepares students for entry-level personal training positions within health and fitness clubs, wellness centers, and public and private recreation facilities. Upon graduating with an associate in the Exercise Science: Health, Fitness, and Sports Performance program, you will be prepared for the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM), National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA), National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM), and the American Council on Exercise (ACE) personal trainer certifications.

Make it happen! Get in motion today and enroll in our Exercise Science program.

Students at any Maricopa Community College may need to complete courses at more than one of our colleges.

SCC Program Description

The Exercise Science and Personal Training programs at Scottsdale Community College are designed to prepare students for jobs in the fields of exercise science and fitness.

Students can complete our Associate of Applied Science in Exercise Science: Health, Fitness, & Sports Performance. This AAS degree includes the Personal Training Specialist Certificate.

The AAS degree in Exercise Science also prepares students for National Certification testing, which once complete, allows them to enter the Personal Training workforce. In addition, students have multiple options for University transfer if more education is desired.

SCC’s Exercise Science and Personal Training programs give students hands-on learning experience to prepare them to effectively apply the principles of exercise training to individuals. Our instructors have a minimum of a Master's degree in the Exercise Science field and Personal Training certifications from major organizations.

Nutrition Certification for Personal Trainers

SCC provides a balanced education to personal trainers by offering nutrition education to complement their Personal Training certificate and AAS degree. 

Clients often turn to their personal trainers to get nutrition advice. This means the best personal trainers not only get an education in exercise science and personal training but also nutrition.

The Nutrition for Fitness & Wellness certificate provides personal trainers with the well-rounded nutrition education required to answer client questions effectively.

Experiential Learning Opportunities

Students who choose SCC’s Exercise Science and Personal Training programs will have many unique opportunities to develop their professional potential and leadership skills, including:

  • Fitness & Nutrition Club: Students develop their leadership potential while positively impacting the SCC campus & local Scottsdale community.
  • Exercise Is Medicine (EIM): SCC is a Silver Level campus in the American College of Sports Medicine EIM program. We are going for Gold!
  • Forever Fit Project: Student interns provide one-on-one personal training and assist with Group exercise training to benefit Scottsdale seniors.
  • SCC Fitness Center: Student interns help to conduct fitness assessments, design exercise programs, and take clients through one-on-one training sessions.

The AAS degree in Exercise Science: Health, Fitness, & Sports Performance is a two-year degree with multiple University transfer options. Students who complete the AAS degree in Exercise Science will also earn the Personal Training Specialist certificate.

Course Format/Textbooks

Course Format/Textbooks

Classes are offered in various formats: in-person, online, hybrid, day, evening, full-time and part-time.


Most of our courses use low-cost textbooks or no-cost material your instructors provide. General education courses may have textbooks that cost more.