Academic Catalog

School of Health Sciences and Human Performance

Christina Moylan, Dean

Julie Dorsey, Associate Dean

Jana Waller, Associate Dean

Our Mission

Programs in Health Sciences and Human Performance utilize experiential learning to integrate theory and scholarship with professional practice to foster life-long learners who demonstrate integrity and are committed to improving the quality of life for individuals, groups, and populations.

We meet this mission by:

  • fostering interdisciplinary collaboration within and between academic and professional settings.
  • using experiential learning as a means to integrate theory and scholarship with professional practice.
  • using scholarship, in all of its forms, to advance knowledge and practice.

Career Opportunities

Students who graduate from our degree programs have career opportunities including providing preventive or therapeutic interventions for people in clinical, employment, school, or home-based settings; coaching athletes; designing fitness or strength and conditioning programs for individuals, athletic teams, or within corporate settings; working within a sport organization, government health agency, or community setting; conducting clinical or health sciences research; managing hospitals and long term care facilities; and supporting public health activities in government, nonprofit, or global settings to improve population health.

Hallmarks for Student Success

Wide Choice of Programs

The School of Health Sciences and Human Performance (HSHP) currently enrolls more than 1,000 full-time students across both undergraduate and graduate programs. In addition, students can choose from a variety of minors and concentrations within some of the undergraduate majors. The wide breadth of programs ensures that students can find a major in HSHP that will meet their life goals. Upon graduation, students interested in developing further depth in an area can advance to graduate studies in many departments.

The HSHP Pre-Health Professions Program is available for first- and second-year students who are interested in health and human performance careers but are uncertain of the professional major they want to pursue. Students receive intensive guidance and academic advisement concerning program choices before declaring a major.

Faculty as Advisers, Mentors, and Research Partners

The strength of an HSHP degree emerges from a dedicated faculty who believe in and practice their areas of expertise and engage in scholarship and research with their students while fully supporting the integration of the liberal arts and health sciences into their professional programs.

National Academic Reputation

HSHP students consistently perform above national averages in all programs that require licensure or certification exams. We strive to produce highly prepared entry-level professionals.

Alpha Eta National Honor Society

Founded in 1975 at the University of Florida, the Alpha Eta Society (AES) is a national scholastic honor society for the allied health professions that was formed to promote and recognize significant scholarship in, leadership in, and contributions to the field. Ithaca College received its charter from the national organization in 2009. Active membership in the Ithaca chapter of the society consists of candidates for a baccalaureate or a graduate degree in an allied health program, candidates for postgraduate degree certificates in allied health programs, faculty in allied health programs, and alumni of such programs. For more information, visit the Alpha Eta National Honor Society website.

Hands-on Learning

Students in HSHP have myriad opportunities to apply the knowledge and skills developed in the classroom. The importance of experiential learning is demonstrated by our affiliation with over 1,200 sites and organizations, located throughout the United States and abroad, where our students complete fieldwork and internships. Each year more than 700 HSHP students complete field experiences as part of their academic program. Annual faculty-led short-term study abroad opportunities offer students an optional global experience.

In addition, HSHP operates the on campus Robert R. Colbert Sr. Wellness Clinic, an occupational therapy/physical therapy clinic, the Sir Alexander Ewing Speech and Hearing Clinic, and athletic training clinics. We operate an off campus interprofessional learning clinic, the Center for Life Skills, at Longview, a nearby assisted living facility.

Employment after Graduation

Over 90 percent of HSHP graduates find employment in their field or a related field or are accepted into graduate schools of their choice within one year of graduation. 

International Study

HSHP students are encouraged to pursue international study. One option is the Ithaca College London Center. Students should consult with their faculty advisers well in advance to ensure that study abroad is scheduled as compatibly as possible with their professional courses at Ithaca and that they have established an adequate foundation for it through their Ithaca work. Depending on the academic year, faculty in HSHP do offer short-term international study opportunities.  The availability of these opportunities is known well in advance for student planning.  Also, the staff of the Office of International Programs is available to assist students in their planning.

Internships and Experiential Learning

All of the programs in HSHP have degree requirements in which students must complete one or more field-based experiences. In all instances, students will work with a faculty member to select and arrange appropriate experiences. Students are responsible for the cost and arrangement of transportation and housing associated with their placement. The Office of Experiential Learning serves to coordinate contractual arrangements with sites. Specific departmental requirements can be found on the Office of Experiential Learning website.

Course Offerings

In addition to the courses listed in this catalog, others may be offered on an experimental basis. Details of such courses are given in the Undergraduate Course Offerings for the semester in which they are offered. Students should consult the registrar’s website for specific information on the schedule of all courses each semester. Unless otherwise designated, courses are open to all Ithaca College students on a space-available basis, provided that the prerequisites and restrictions for the course are met.

Professional Eligibility

Many of the programs in HSHP provide the foundational coursework and fieldwork experience to prepare students to sit for professional licensure and/or certification exams. In most cases, licensure and/or certification is not awarded as part of the degree. Licensure and/or certification is typically required in addition to ​graduation from an appropriate degree-bearing program in order to practice. For many professions, students are not able to sit for professional licensure and/or certification exams until after graduation. Ithaca College will not certify degree completion until all final grades are issued and degree requirements are completed.

Because these credentialing processes are designed to protect the public from practitioners who are unqualified, unscrupulous, or unable to perform professional services adequately, credentialing agencies may bar individuals from subsequent credentials and/or practice. Activities that may exclude students from licensure and/or certification include, but are not limited to,

  1. conviction of, plea of guilty to, or plea of no contest (nolo contendere) to a felony or misdemeanor related to professional practice or public health or safety; or
  2. any physical, mental, or dependency condition that will or may interfere with the ability to practice the designated specialty.

It is the responsibility of the student to check with the relevant licensing or certifying agencies for requirements in this area early in their academic careers.

Graduate Programs

HSHP also offers graduate degrees in athletic training, exercise and sport sciences, occupational therapy, physical therapy, physician assistant studies, and speech-language pathology. For more information regarding these programs, consult the Ithaca College graduate catalog.

Physical Activity, Leisure, and Safety Program

The physical activity, leisure, and safety (PALS) program provides diverse, skill-oriented physical activities as part of a general education program promoting the physiological development of students, improving their fitness and motor skills, and enabling them to maintain a suitable recreation program of their choice during and after college. The PALS program offers a variety of activities in the areas of aquatics, individual and dual sports, team sports, and physical fitness. 

PALS courses are offered on a pass/fail basis only. A maximum of 6 credits in PALS courses, taken as open (free) electives, may be counted toward graduation. Certain degrees may further limit the number of PALS courses or credits that may be counted toward graduation. Some PALS courses require that students pay an extra fee to cover various instructor, equipment, and materials costs. The costs associated with these courses are noted in the course descriptions when students register.

Intercollegiate Athletic Course Registration Information

Students participating on an intercollegiate athletic team can register for intercollegiate athletic course credit during the course registration process. It is the student's responsibility to register for the course in the semester that the team sport occurs to receive credit. Students who do not make the team or who discontinue participation for any reason are responsible for dropping or withdrawing from the course to avoid receive a failing grade. Intercollegiate athletic courses are offered on a pass/fail basis only. Credit is granted either in the fall or the spring for any given sport.


Teacher Education Program


For more information, see the Ithaca College graduate catalog.

HSHP Pre-Health Professions Program — First- and Second-Year Students Only

As an alternative to being directly admitted to one of the School of Health Sciences and Human Performance (HSHP) professional majors, a student may be admitted to the HSHP Pre-Health Professions Program. The Pre-Health Professions Program is offered for students who are interested in allied health, medical, or nursing careers but are uncertain of the professional major they want to pursue. Students enrolled in the program must participate in mandatory advising prior to course registration each semester and complete a course in the Fall semester of the first year which provides an introduction to the health professions. The program is not degree bearing; it is a temporary classification only. After one semester in the program, students are free to apply for transfer to professional majors in HSHP or another school of the College. Transferring into any major is not guaranteed and depends upon capacity, student academic performance, and other department-specific transfer requirements. Students are expected to apply for transfer to a major by the conclusion of their fourth semester or by the time they have earned 60 credits. They must be admitted to a major at the College before their junior year. To ensure meeting these deadlines, students should begin their efforts to decide on a major by spring of their first year and no later than fall of sophomore year. For more information visit the HSHP Pre-Health Professions Program website.


Please note that space in minors may be limited 

Students in all undergraduate majors at Ithaca College may enroll in these minors, with the following exceptions:

Requests for the minors should be made through IC Workflow. Students should work closely with their adviser and department chair to ensure timely graduation. Students considering a minor or concentration must abide by College policies and regulations for these programs. Students may only select ONE minor in the Department of Health Sciences and Public Health. Departments reserve the right to limit enrollment in minors.

In accordance with College regulations that relate specifically to minors, all departments in HSHP have determined that a course that is a requirement in a student’s major and also a requirement in one of the above minors may count for credit to meet the requirements of both the major and the minor. However, departments do have the right to place limitations on how much overlap between major and minor coursework is permissible. Students should work with their faculty adviser or minor adviser to determine which courses can be counted as both major and minor courses.

Dean’s List

At the end of each semester, students who show outstanding academic achievement are placed on the dean’s list. To be included on the dean’s list in HSHP, a student must meet all of the following criteria:

  1. earn a minimum grade point average of 3.70,
  2. complete a minimum of 15 credits, of which at least 12 are graded (not pass/fail or Satisfactory/D/F option), and 
  3. have no final grades of D, F, or I (incomplete).

HSHP Undergraduate Course Grade Appeal Policy

HSHP follows the general Ithaca College policy on grade disputes and students’ right to petition, described in the “Academic Information” section of this catalog. See Course Credit and Grade Information and Processes for "Appealing College Policies and Academic Decisions". Each student assumes responsibility for presenting all the facts and circumstances concerning a grade appeal.

Academic Status Policy

HSHP adheres to the College policy for good standing, warning, suspension, and dismissal set out in the "Satisfactory Academic Progress" section of this catalog. In addition, HSHP degree programs may have additional academic policies and procedures in effect. Students should consult with their department or program chair and the relevant catalog page for their major regarding degree-specific academic policies and procedures. 

Attendance Policy

HSHP adheres to the College policy regarding attendance. For more information on the College’s attendance policy see the “Academic Information” section of the "Registration Information" section in this catalog. Students are advised to carefully review attendance policy requirements in course syllabi (including for internships, fieldwork, or clinical placements/rotations) along with program-specific policies and procedures.

Transfer into the School of Health Sciences and Human Performance

Both internal and external transfer applicants are admitted into undergraduate HSHP majors. All students intending to transfer should first contact the department in which their intended major is offered to meet with the appropriate HSHP department chair or designee. Students from external institutions are encouraged to call ahead to arrange for a similar meeting when they visit the College. Satisfactory academic performance is the major requirement for acceptance. On request, a list of courses recommended for potential transfer students is available from the chair of each department.

General Requirements for Internal and External Transfer

The following requirements must be met by students transferring from within Ithaca College. Students transferring from external institutions must satisfy these requirements in addition to the requirements for admission to Ithaca College.

  1. The professional requirements in most programs in HSHP demand a precise sequencing of courses. For this reason, early transfer into a program is encouraged. A late transfer may require a student to attend summer sessions or defer graduation. Ithaca College students who wish to transfer into any particular department may complete a change of major/concentration form on IC Workflow. Submitting a change of major/concentration form does not guarantee admission into a degree program.
  2. To be admitted to a degree program in HSHP, it is generally required that the student have a cumulative GPA of at least 2.00 and have completed at least 24 credit hours in the preceding 12 months. However, most HSHP degree programs require higher GPAs and may have other requirements that students must meet to be considered for admission.

Specific Departmental Transfer Requirements

Specific departmental transfer requirements for the following programs exceed the minimum college requirements. Transfer into any program is limited to available openings as determined by each departments:

Pre-Athletic training: A minimum GPA of 3.00 overall and a 3.00 GPA in the specific requirements of the major is required. Additionally, selected courses need to be completed within a certain timeframe, with no grade below C- in any of those courses. 

Occupational therapy: Internal and external transfer applicants are considered for entry after the first semester of the first year and as late as the end of the second semester of the sophomore year. Applicants should have a 3.0 minimum GPA and grades of C or better in all required prerequisite courses, including biology and chemistry. Early transfer is encouraged. Students transferring at the end of the sophomore year must have completed all coursework and be eligible to register for the required junior-level courses outlined in the program curriculum guidelines. Students interested in transferring into the department are encouraged to contact the department for an advising appointment as early as possible to receive a list of specific prerequisite courses and assistance in academic planning. Students interested in transferring should refer to the transfer application process outlined at "Transfer Opportunities".

Physical therapy: Internal transfer applicants are considered for entry after the first semester of the first year and as late as the end of the second semester of the junior year. Applicants seeking to transfer into the clinical health studies/physical therapy program (D.P.T.) should have a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.00 and a 3.00 or better in natural science coursework. If student is being considered for entry into the program during the junior year, student must achieve a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.2 or better by the end of the spring semester. Students must be in a position to complete all specified prerequisites by the end of the sixth semester. Applicants must also be in a position to complete all Integrative Core Curriculum (ICC) requirements and a minor before entering the professional phase of the program. Specific information on transfer admission requirements is available on the physical therapy department website.

Speech-language pathology and audiology: A minimum cumulative GPA of 2.50 and no grade below C- in any speech-language pathology and audiology course completed. It is recommended, but not required, that students transfer prior to beginning the sophomore year. Transferring after the second semester of the first year may extend the student’s program of study by at least one year.

External transfers for any of these degree programs should consult with the Office of Admissions

Transfer Credit for Occasional Study at Another Institution

HSHP students may take courses at another accredited college or university for transfer credit, provided prior written permission for the credit has been obtained. Petition forms for transfer credit are available on IC Workflow and must be fully completed, submitted, and approved to secure such credit. For regulations on transfer credit, see the "Course Credit and Grade Information" section of this catalog. Students who consider taking courses elsewhere should be mindful of the Academic Residency Requirement.

Additional Costs

The curricula of most degree programs in HSHP involve expenses not covered by academic year tuition. This may include, but is not limited to, tuition for summer or winter courses, malpractice/liability insurance, books, housing, living expenses, transportation, or specialized software or equipment. HSHP does not cover housing, transportation, or other costs associated with completing internships, fieldwork, or clinical placements/rotations. It is the student's responsibility to be aware of these additional costs which are available through each department or the Office of Student Financial Services. See “Expenses” in the “Financial Aid” section.