Physical Education K-12 Teaching Licensure (BA)

Why study Physical Education?

Physical Education graduates teach students to lead healthy, active lifestyles, inspiring them to embrace health and fitness. They serve as role models and committed educators to help students reach their goals.

Why study Physical Education at AU?

Aurora University’s Physical Education Teacher Education (PETE) program is well-known for preparing students to become successful educators for K-12 schools. Throughout the Physical Education program at Aurora University, you will work alongside expert faculty to acquire the critical thinking, communication, problem solving, creative planning, and leadership skills you need to be an effective teacher. You will also take courses that address particular elements of teaching Physical Education and Health Education, such as fitness, assessment, dance, motor development, and nutrition.

One of the unique strengths of our program is our positive partnerships with area schools. The art and science of teaching will be brought to life for you through interviews, observations, and work with high-quality teachers. Importantly, all of our Physical Education students have the opportunity to present at state education conferences.

With a Physical Education major, not only will you be prepared to teach K–12 Physical Education in Illinois, you will also earn an endorsement in Middle School and/or Secondary Health Education. You will find our graduates in public and private schools throughout the Fox Valley and beyond, teaching Physical Education, health education, and coaching a wide range of athletic teams.


Aurora University’s Physical Education program is accredited by the Illinois State Board of Education and prepares students to become licensed teachers in the state of Illinois. As part of the program, students complete the Teacher Performance Assessment (edTPA), a state certification requirement that prepares teachers for the classroom.


AU also offers endorsements that can be earned in addition to any education major, making you eligible for additional teaching opportunities. These include:

  • Early Childhood Education Endorsement
  • Elementary Education Endorsement
  • English/Language Arts Middle School Endorsement
  • Math Middle School Endorsement
  • Science Middle School Endorsement
  • Social Science Middle School Endorsement
  • Spanish Endorsement
  • Special Education Endorsement
Intelligence and skill can only function at the peak of their capacity when the body is healthy and strong. John F. Kennedy

2023 annual median salary for high school teachers


2022-2032 job openings projected each year

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
Curriculum Highlights
  • Exercise physiology
  • Kinesiology
  • Olympic weightlifting
  • Sport nutrition
  • Strength training
Campus Opportunities
  • Aurora University Human Performance Club
  • Aurora University Students’ Association
  • Educators Rising
  • Fellowship of Christian Athletes
  • Fitness, Physical Education, and Coaching
  • Kappa Delta Pi International Honor Society in Education
  • Wackerlin Center for Faith and Action
More on AU Education programs

To learn more about all of AU's Education programs, including scholarships, click here.

Experiential learning

Experiential learning

Through various field experiences at the elementary, middle, and high school-levels, as well as a culminating student-teaching experience, you will be immersed in all aspects of the classroom environment. You will work alongside dedicated professionals to see what it takes to develop a productive and challenging learning environment in Physical Education.

Career possibilities

  • Elementary physical education teacher
  • Middle school physical education teacher
  • High school physical education teacher
  • Fitness instructor or coach
  • High school health teacher
  • Middle school health teacher
  • Military base teacher
  • Regional Office of Education employee
  • Standardized test industry professional
  • Youth corrections teacher

Career options with additional education

  • Athletic director/Assistant athletic director
  • Curriculum specialist
  • Department head
  • Principal/Assistant principal
  • School counselor
  • Technology specialist