Physical Activity Requirement in <40 Percent of College Programs

In 2010, 39.55 percent require physical education compared with 97 percent in 1920s and 1930s

FRIDAY, Jan. 18 (HealthDay News) -- Compared with historic levels, as of 2010, less than 40 percent of four-year universities and colleges in the United States have a physical education requirement for graduation with a baccalaureate degree, according to research published in the December issue of Research Quarterly for Exercise and Sport.

Bradley J. Cardinal, Ph.D., of the Oregon State University in Corvallis, and colleagues reviewed the history of required physical education in America's four-year colleges and universities, and compared it with current requirements. The Web sites of 354 randomly selected four-year universities and colleges were searched to determine whether physical education is a requirement to earn a baccalaureate degree.

The researchers found that 60.45 percent of institutions in the sample did not have any physical education requirements and that 39.55 percent had it as an exclusive requirement. Of those that did not require it exclusively, 9.81 percent allowed for it to contribute toward fulfilling a requirement in the general education curriculum. This marked a significant decrease from the 1920s and 1930s, when 97 percent of universities and colleges had a physical education requirement.

"Given society's ongoing health challenges and the important role of physical activity in maintaining health, this seems counterintuitive. It is also inconsistent with the National Physical Activity Plan (2010)," the authors write. "This study may help stimulate thoughtful discourse about these and related topics, as well as direct action toward appropriately addressing the health-related challenges confronting today's college and university students."

Abstract
Full Text (subscription or payment may be required)

Copyright © 2013 HealthDay. All rights reserved.

Powered by

jQuery UI Accordion - Default functionality

For life-long learning and continuing professional development, come to Lippincott's NursingCenter.

Nursing Jobs Plus
Featured Jobs
Recommended CE Articles Recommended Nursing Articles

What internal motivators drive RNs to pursue a BSN?
Nursing2014 , October 2014
Free access will expire on November 24, 2014.


Breast Cancer Risk Assessment in Primary Care
MCN, The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing, September/October 2014
Free access will expire on November 10, 2014.


Nurses spurring innovation
Nursing Management, October 2014
Free access will expire on November 10, 2014.


More Recommended Articles

Subscribe to Recommended Articles

Evidence Based Practice Skin Care Network NursingCenter Quick Links What’s Trending Events