Associate of Science In Exercise Science

The Associate of Science in Exercise Science degree program grounds you in the fundamentals of personal training by exposing you to both the theories and practices of this dynamic field. The program features courses on trainer-relevant topics, including anatomy and physiology, assessment, program design, special populations, entrepreneurship, management, interpersonal relations, and communication.

Graduates with an associate degree work as:

  • Trainers and Strength Coaches
  • Corporate Health and Wellness Managers
  • Nutrition Specialists
  • Sports Managers

No hidden costs or fees.




Associate degree graduates will be able to:

  • 01 Think critically and analyze real-world situations to create positive client outcomes
  • 02 Implement and apply current exercise and nutrition strategies to allow clients to effectively meet their goals
  • 03 Apply sound scientific and communication principles to the functions of assessment, program design, motivation, and coaching
  • 04 Build a foundation of knowledge and technical skills to support and facilitate lifelong professional development
  • 05 Pursue a bachelor's or other advanced degree



A University Education You Can Trust

Lionel is in the top 8% of Military Friendly® schools nationwide and 70% of our students are affiliated with the military.
Lionel is proud to be accredited by the Distance Education Accrediting Commission.
Lionel is recognized by the IHRSA, and independent and nationally recognized accreditation for personal training certification programs.
Lionel was rated as one of the best nationally accredited online colleges by EdSmart.




You’ll need 90 credits to complete your Associate of Science in Exercise Science. Your course schedule may vary based on transferable credits. Your academic counselor will help schedule your courses after you apply.

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General Education: 30 Credits

Core: 30 Credits

Elective: 30 Credits



Earn Fitness Certifications as You Progress.

Your coursework includes 6 individual personal training certification courses, earned through ISSA, and supported by industry-relevant general education and elective classes.

Depending on your degree plan, you could qualify for your first personal training certification within the first 10 weeks. As you progress in the degree program, your fitness qualifications grow, positioning you for pay raises and increased clientele.

Certified Fitness Trainer
Certified Fitness Trainer
Specialist In Fitness Nutrition
Specialist in Fitness Nutrition
Transformation Specialist
Transformation Specialist
Bodybuilding Specialist
Bodybuilding Specialist
Corrective Exercise Specialist
Corrective Exercise Specialist
Specialist In Exercise Therapy
Specialist in Exercise Therapy
Specialist In Group Fitness
Specialist in Group Fitness
Specialist In Strength And Conditioning
Specialist in Strength and Conditioning
Specialist In Senior Fitness
Specialist in Senior Fitness
Youth Fitness Trainer
Youth Fitness Trainer
Certifications Earned From ISSA

Tuition & Fees


Tuition & Fees

Pursue your passion without drowning in debt.

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Questions about Financial Aid?

Connect with a Lionel enrollment advisor!

Undergraduate Credits

Students residing in the U.S. (regardless of citizenship) and U.S. citizens residing abroad

$333 / credit

International students

$440 / credit

Certification Fee

Paid per certification


Technology Fee

Paid once per quarter


Proctor Fee

Exam Proctor


Textbook Costs

Digital textbooks are embedded into each course at no additional cost. Unrestricted access is available seven days prior to the start of class and throughout the quarter.


Admissions & Registration Fees

Apply at any time at no cost.


Transfer Credit Evaluation

Our staff will review your transfer documentation at no cost.


Faculty & Staff


Faculty & Staff

Every instructor at Lionel is as passionate about health and fitness as you are. Many of our instructors are trainers themselves, or have worked in the fitness industry for most of their careers. Not only will you benefit from their real-world experience, you will learn first-hand what it really takes to succeed in your chosen field.


Of faculty are working professionals in the field of exercise science

15+ years

Average professional experience


Of faculty have advanced degrees


Faculty to student ratio


Of faculty hold doctorates


Of students would recommend their instructors

Career Services


Career Services

Our goal is to support Lionel University students and alumni from all over the world with quality career coaching, tools and resources with our Career Connect For Life Program.


We have partnered with some of the top companies and organizations in Exercise Science to provide career and internship opportunities for our students and alumni. With Career Connect we also offer a wide variety of career coaching services and resources.

  • Career Coaching 
  • Resume & Cover Letter Critiques  
  • Interview Prep 
  • Job & Internship Searching 
  • Professional Etiquette & Networking 
  • Career Fair Prep 
  • Evaluating Career Opportunities
  • Career blogs and video content
  • Networking and mentorships
  • Personal brand development
  • Entrepreneurship Development

Job Prospects & Salary


Job prospects & salary

Your studies at Lionel will immerse you in science-backed principles of fitness, health and wellness for you, your family, your neighbors, and your community. Your degree in Exercise Science will give you the knowledge and skills needed to meet the country in the areas of its greatest need.

  • 50% of the adult US population is predicted to be clinically obese by 2030.*
  • The U.S. fitness and wellness industry is worth $30 billion annually, and it grows every year.**
  • 67,600 Projected job openings for fitness trainers and instructors through the year 2028.***

On average, trainers with an exercise science degree earn $65,640/year*

Lionel sets you up for success

Lionel has partnerships with many of othe largest fitness organizations in the country. If you graduate from Lionel we guarantee you an interview with our partners.

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Impact opportunities for graduates

  • Business Owner
  • Health club/Gym Manager
  • Community Wellness Advocate
  • Nutrition Coach
  • Health Coach
  • Master Trainer
  • Strength and Conditioning Coach
  • Corporate Wellness Expert
  • Exercise Physiologist
  • Clinical Exercise Specialist
  • Community Wellness Advocate



Frequently Asked Questions

How do I apply?

Is Lionel accredited?

Will I have support during my education?

What types of financial aid do you accept?

When do courses start?

How many hours of study time should I expect each week?

Do I need to pay for textbooks?

Do I have to take a minimum number of credits each quarter?

How do I transfer my prior college credits?