University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.  Department of Kinesiology | University of Illinois Archives

Name: University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.  Department of Kinesiology


Historical Note:

An organized program for physical education for men has existed since 1893.1 The objectives of the Department were the preservation of the physical health of the students by careful examination and a rational prescription of exercises. Since the work of the Department was offered to all students, the Department was considered belonging to all colleges. On June 11, 1932, the Trustees adopted the University Senate's recommendations for the establishment of a School of Physical Education for Men, Physical Education for Women and Health Service. Its program included a professional curricula leading to a B.S. degree.2 In 1957, the School of Physical Education was changed to the College of Physical Education with Physical Education for Men being one of its subsidiary departments. In 1972, the name changed to the Department of Physical Education. As a public service, the Department operates two clinics:

--Physical Fitness Clinic: The Physical Fitness Clinic is open to all persons in good health who want to develop physical fitness through exercise.3

--Exercise Therapy Clinic: The Exercise Therapy Clinic is open to the convalescent or physically handicapped who want to reduce, correct or rehabilitate physical deficiencies.4

On April 9th, 1987 the Board of Trustees changed the name of the department from Department of Physical Education to the Department of Kinesiology. The name change reflected the fact that the department was no longer primarily concerned with instruction of teachers. Instead the primary concentration is the study of human motion - otherwise known as Kinesiology.5

1. Catalogs and Registers, 1893-94, p. 162.

2. Board of Trustees Transactions, 36th Report, June 11, 1932, p. 609.

3. Undergraduate Study Catalog, 1958-59, p. 293.

4. Ibid.

5. Board of Trustees Transactions Report, April 9, 1987.






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