Personal Training Specialist

Personal Training Specialist - CCL

The Exercise Science, Personal Training, & Nutrition program at Scottsdale Community College is designed to prepare students for jobs in the fields of exercise science, fitness, and nutrition. 

Students that complete our Personal Training Specialist Certificate are prepared for National Certification testing, which once complete, allows you to enter the Personal Training workforce. 

SCC’s Exercise Science, Personal Training, & Nutrition program gives 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 Masters degrees in the Exercise Science field as well as Personal Training certifications from major organizations.

SCC’s Exercise Science, Personal Training, & Nutrition program has the distinction of being a “Recognized Personal Training Education Program” by the National Strength & Conditioning Association (NSCA).

Program Code

5445 Certificate of Completion (CCL) in Personal Training Specialist

The Personal Training Specialist Certificate of Completion (CCL) is built into the AAS in Exercise Science: Health, Fitness and Sports Performance degree.

Course Format

Classes are offered in a variety of formats: in-person, online, day, evening, full-time and part-time.  

How long will it take?

It will take a minimum of 2 semesters (~9 months) as a full-time student to complete the Personal Training Specialist Certificate. The Certificate can also be pursued as a part-time student.

Tuition Cost

The estimated cost of tuition for the Personal Training Specialist Certificate is $2,677.50 for Maricopa County residents.  Course fees may also add to the total tuition cost. 

Financial aid is available for students who qualify.  Please contact the SCC financial aid office to determine the process to apply. 

Visit Financial Aid for more information.


The cost of Personal Training textbooks and supplies is approximately $1,932 and should be added to the tuition cost above.  

Program Curriculum

Semester 1

  • EXS 101 – Introduction to Exercise Science (3 credits)
  • HES 100 – Healthful Living (3 credits)
  • EXS 125 – Introduction to Exercise Physiology (3 credits)
  • FON 100 – Introduction to Nutrition OR FON 241 Principles of Nutrition (3 credits)
  • PED xxx – Physical Activity Classes (2 credits)
  • HES 106 – CPR / AED OR EMT 101 CPR / BSL (0.5 credits) *can show proof of CPR cert
  • Total credits: 14-14.5 credits

Semester 2

  • EXS 210 – Assessment & Program Design: Muscle Fitness (2 credits)
  • EXS 211 – Assessment & Program Design: Flexibility & Balance (2 credits)
  • EXS 212 – Assessment & Program Design: Cardiorespiratory Fitness (2 credits)
  • EXS 213 – Assessment & Program Design: Weight Management & Motivation (2 credits)
  • EXS 214 – Instructional Competency: Flexibility & Mind-Body Exercises (2 credits)
  • EXS 216 – Instructional Competency: Muscular Strength & Conditioning (2 credits)
  • EXS 218 – Instructional Competency: Cardiorespiratory Exercises & Activities (2 credits)
  • EXS 239 – Practical Applications of Personal Training Skills & Techniques Internship (3 credits)
  • Total Credits: 17 credits

MCCCD Program and Award Information
Effective term: 
2017 Spring
Final term: 
2019 Summer
Total credits required: 
CIP Code: 
Course sequence
Suggested Course Plan Sequenced by Semester: CG, GC, MC, PV, SC, SM

The Certificate of Completion (CCL) in Personal Training Specialist program is designed to help prepare students for employment in the fitness industry as a Personal Trainer. This curriculum provides students with a fundamental knowledge of human physiology and anatomy, introduction into career options in the field of Exercise Science, Kinesiology and Physical Education/Coaching, emergency response readiness, health appraisals and assessments; application of exercise fitness principles and strength and cardiorespiratory training techniques; a fundamental knowledge of nutrition, exercise physiology, and biomechanics; skills in exercise testing and fitness measures as well as writing exercise prescriptions and program designs for diverse populations.

Award notes

Students must earn a grade of "C" or better in all courses within the program.

Required courses
Course #Course TitleCredits
BIO160Introduction to Human Anatomy and Physiology (4) OR
BIO156Introductory Biology for Allied Health (4) OR
BIO181General Biology (Majors) I (4)4
EMT101Basic Life Support/Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) for Health Care Providers (0.50) OR
HES106Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR)/Automated External Defibrillator (AED) (0.50) OR
Current Basic Life Support (BLS) Health Care Provider/Professional Rescuer certification 0-0.50
EXS101Introduction to Exercise Science3
EXS112Professional Applications of Fitness Principles3
EXS125Introduction to Exercise Physiology3
EXS130Strength Fitness: Physiological Principles and Training Techniques3
EXS132Cardiovascular Fitness: Physiological Principles and Training Techniques3
EXS145Guidelines for Exercise Testing and Prescription3
FON100Introductory Nutrition (3) OR
FON105Nutrition Principles for Fitness Professionals (3) OR
FON241Principles of Human Nutrition (3)3
EXS239Practical Applications of Personal Training Skills and Techniques Internship (3) OR
EXS239AAPractical Applications of Personal Training Skills and Techniques Internship (1) AND
EXS239ABPractical Applications of Personal Training Skills and Techniques Internship (2)3
Restricted Electives
Course #Course TitleCredits
Choose a total of 4-6 credits from EXS, FON, HES, PED and/or WED courses except courses used to satisfy Required Courses area. Maximum of three (3) credits of PED courses may be counted toward the Restricted Electives.
EXS+++++Any EXS Exercise Science courses
FON+++++Any FON Food and Nutrition courses
HES+++++Any HES Health Science courses
PED+++++Any PED Physical Education courses (maximum of 3 credits)
WED+++++Any WED Wellness Education course
  • Identify the disciplines, professional careers, accredited certification and research organizations affiliated with the fields of Exercise Science, Kinesiology and Physical Education.(EXS101)
  • Describe the underlying structure and dynamics of the human body. (BIO156, BIO160, BIO181)
  • Create a complete exercise program that integrates all principles and components of fitness. (EXS112)
  • Categorize elements of anatomy, kinesiology, and exercise physiology as applied to teaching fitness. (EXS125)
  • Recommend training and design exercise program according to principles of strength training. (EXS130)
  • Describe the physiological mechanisms underlying improvement in aerobic capacity. (EXS132)
  • Conduct health appraisal and risk assessment to assure safety of exercise, exercise testing and exercise prescription. (EXS145)
  • Apply current nutrition guidelines to exercise, sports, vegetarian diets, and selected stages of the life cycle. (FON100, FON105, FON241)
  • Assess patient/victim following appropriate steps and demonstrating standard/personal safety techniques including cardiopulmonary resuscitation, opening airway obstructions and the use of an Autonomic External Defibrillator (AED). (EMT101, HES106)
  • Guide clients in determining their individual fitness goals to ensure that they are safe and effective in maintaining or increasing fitness status. (EXS239, EXS239AA, EXS239AB)