Health and Human Performance

Master of Science in Health and Human Performance


The Master of Science in Health and Human Performance (MSHHP) offers an in-depth curriculum that challenges students to explore those significant areas of health, human performance, and the exercise sciences; to develop evidence-based approaches to tasks and problem-solving in health, fitness, and wellness; and to prepare for success and advancement in technical careers or to pursue terminal studies in professional health, fitness, and wellness science and industries.

The MSHHP supports the mission of the university with an evidence-based, scientific program of study that encourages learners to develop the critical knowledge, skills, and abilities to be successful in the health and exercise science field. This approach is applied to the allied health and wellness industries but is applicable to a wide range of diverse occupations and settings in health and exercise science. Learners will explore the current body of evidence and best practices with respect to global human movement science, nutrition, and the promotion of health and wellness across various populations of the world.

The importance of preventative wellness, exercise prescription and assessment, and functional movement and quality of life issues are focused across the program curriculum. Modern scientific evidence-based approaches will be utilized for information search, problem-solving, and scholarly discourse. The MSHHP program embraces qualitative and quantitative approaches that support decision-making, leadership, and analysis. The program specializations are aligned with industry-recognized certification credentials, including National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA) Certified Strength and Conditioning, NSCA Certified Personal Trainer, and the National Association for Speed and Explosion (NASE).

The Master of Science in Health and Human Performance requires 21 credits in Core courses, and 15 credits in the specialization, for a total of 36 credits to earn the degree credential.


Strength and Conditioning – aligned with the standards for the National Strength and Conditioning Association’s Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist credential, this specialization focuses on strength, conditioning, and performance for athletes.

Health and Fitness – this specialization allows students interested in working with diverse populations the opportunity to be impactful in preventative health and fitness. The specialization is aligned with National Strength and Conditioning Association principles for Certified Personal Training.

Sports Coaching Administration – this specialization focuses on the coaching and administrative aspects of sport, concentrating on the principles of leadership, management, and overall athletic performance within sports teams and organizations.

Integrated Health Coaching – this specialization is aligned with industry best practices for students who wish to practice an integrated approach to health, wellness, and lifestyle, with significant emphasis on behavior change practices and principles. The specialization is aligned with health and wellness coaching industry certification principles and standards.


  • Fitness Trainers and Instructors
  • Fitness and Wellness Operations Managers
  • Medical and Health Services Managers
  • Fitness Professionals and Administrators
  • Fitness and Wellness Sales Managers
  • Strength and Conditioning Coaches
  • Health and Wellness Coaches


Dr.Scott Howell M.D, Ph.D, CSCS

Bio- Scott Howell, Ph.D., CSCS is the Academic Director and a faculty member of the Master of Science in Health and Human Performance Program (MSHPP) at Salem University. He is a sport scientist, epidemiologist, and mechanical engineer with research interests in pharmacotoxicology, the long-term effects of illicit and therapeutic androgen use, endocrine disrupting chemicals exposure, genetic determinants of androgen insensitivity, and preventative medicine. His personal interests include research methods, biostatistics, adaptations to physical training, illicit androgen abuse, and philosophy.

Dr. Howell is an author with expertise spanning many fields. His authorships include a recent sports science text, Integrated Periodization in Sports Training and Athletic Development, coauthored with Dr. Tudor Bompa, University of Toronto, and Dr. James Hoffmann, East Tennessee State University. He has also served as a subject matter expert on applied periodization of physical training and the risks involved with illicit doping in sports and bodybuilding. Recently he coauthored the Essentials of Next-Generation Sports-Speed Training for The National Association of Speed and Explosion and Chapter 13: Speed, Agility, and Quickness Training Concepts for Maximal Performance in the National Association of Sports Medicine (NASM) Essentials of Sports Performance Training.

Dr. Howell has published in several notable peer-review journals including the American Journal of Physiology-Endocrinology and Metabolism, Current Pharmaceutical Design, Clinical Therapeutics, Karger Cardiology, Journal of Ethnopharmacology, Journal of Pharmacological Research, Journal of Diabetes and Obesity, Progress in Cardiovascular Disease, Medical Principles and Practice, and the Yale Journal of Biology and Medicine.

Dr. Howell lectures on several aspects of sport and physical training including directed physiological adaptation, long-term planning, programming acute training variables, and integrated sports training through periodization of physical training, sport nutrition, and sport psychology. He also serves as a lecturer and consultation for various sport organizations and medical groups on the pharmacogenetic risk and harm of doping in sport.

Dr. Howell has received numerous acknowledgments for his contributions to academic scholarship and clinical research. He received the American Military University Academic Scholar Award in 2016 and has taken part in two major National Institutes of Health (NIH) and Department of Defense (DoD) funded studies at Wake Forest University: Strength Training for Arthritis Trial (START) and The Runners and Injury Longitudinal Study (TRAILS).

Dr. Howell holds a Ph.D. in Health Sciences from Trident University, a Master of Science in Sport and Health Science from American Military University, a Bachelor of Science in Sport and Health Science from American Military University, a Mechanical Engineering degree from Forsyth Technical College, and a medical degree from BMU School of Medicine.

  • Dr. Cameron Halfacre
  • Dr. Tiffany Halfacre
  • Dr. Ryan Barnhart