Copyright ©1997-2003 American Society of Exercise Physiologists. All Rights Reserved.

5th ASEP National Meeting
April 4-5, 2003

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Vol 7 No 2 February  2003 
ISSN 1097-9743
Letter from the Editor
2003 Dues Renewal Notice
Career Opportunities
Editorial Policy / Submitted Papers
Wisconsin Association of 
Exercise Physiologists

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This monthly newsletter is designed to update the members of the ASEP organization and the general public on the current events regarding ASEP.  The newsletter will contain actions recently taken by the Board of Directors as well as any recent information, decisions, and future goals of ASEP.  There will be featured updates from the chairpersons of the leading ASEP committees, news briefs regarding the recent advances in the professional development of exercise physiology and guest editorials.  If you would like to contribute to this newsletter or if you are just looking for general information regarding ASEP, feel free to contact me at the following e-mail address.  Also, don't forget to sign up for the "ASEP E-mail Updates" of this newsletter. 


Letter from the Editor
Jesse Pittsley

The Accreditation Document Fails 
To Require the Teaching of Professionalism

As a member of the ASEP Board of Accreditation, I have reviewed several applications compiled by institutions interested in being accredited by the American Society of Exercise Physiologists.  Both the institutions and the academic course work have been strong and, thus my job (as well as for the rest of the Board) has been rather easy.  The Accreditation standards established in the late 1990s by ASEP are a substantial step forward for exercise physiology. 

However, it is clear that not all exercise physiologists come from the same academic and hands-on background.  Our academic departments have not evolved with new programs of study for exercise physiologists.  Many of our students have questionable degrees, which have become part of the unfortunate and sparsely discussed predicament we find ourselves.  Anyone who does not understand this point is not listening to the students.  ASEP took the best step forward by addressing this issue at its origin by establishing strong undergraduate curriculum requirements.  Despite this bold move, the document creators left out a small detail that distracts markedly from the process.  The Board of Accreditation failed to require the teaching of many of the principles that ASEP is founded upon.  The accreditation document risks becoming just “another set of standards” and not the proper vehicle for guiding today’s exercise physiology students in valuing what it means to be part of a profession. 

In established professions, the curriculum requires an introductory course to the profession that actually includes very little “science” and “content/methods” of the field.  For example, licensed educators are required to take an “Introduction to Education” course that actually covers very little material about teaching.  Instead, the course covers issues such as licensure, ethics, standards, unions, state organizations, reciprocity, and current political issues related to the field.  It is imperative that all professions have such a course.  Unfortunately, this type of course is nearly nonexistent in the study of exercise physiology.  Most “introduction” to exercise physiology courses are actually courses in applied physiology.  Since the field is introduced as a science, students immediately begin on the wrong foot.  They view exercise physiology as a discipline and not as a profession and, of course, their teachers are generally not very helpful in helping the students understand the differences between the two. 

I was not part of the list of exercise physiologists who shared in the creation of the ASEP accreditation document.  Therefore, I have no knowledge of the discussions that transpired regarding its content.  I imagine that the failure to include this material was largely a political choice.  I assume it was predicted that it would be difficult to convince the faculty to embrace such a significant change.  Perhaps, it was believed that the best that can be done is to, first, accredit the institutions and, then, gradually modify the standards.  This line of thinking has its advantages.  It is very likely that many exercise physiologists, who have not studied the issues and concerns that surround the professionalization of exercise physiology, would not know how to teach professional development.  Furthermore, the pursuit of accreditation itself is a process that is always evolving.  And, yet the question could have been simply: “Can ASEP afford to include such a requirement?”  In contrast, the question I raise now is: “Can ASEP afford not to include it?” 

Exercise physiology will not change if the ASEP organization continues to only raise the academic standards of the profession without truly adjusting the content.  Without this shift in content, exercise physiology will evolve from being filled with students who do not have a clue to college graduates who still don’t have a clue.  In regards to a similar issue, I have said on several occasions that exercise physiologists should think of themselves as exercise physiologists and not as physiologists!  There is no reason for anyone to take this comment in a bad way.  I remember a professor saying similarly, “Just because I can read a 12-lead ECG, it doesn’t make me a cardiologist”. 

It appears to me that the faculty of most academic programs believes that the students need more chemistry and biology courses.  They raise the GPA requirements to enter the program, perhaps, in order to gain respect and quality.  Yet, they fail to see the problem directly in front of them.  The academics of exercise science (and its title) or whatever the title (such as kinesiology) is other than exercise physiology is still unchanged.  Title matters and no one seems to get this point.  Of course the reason is because there is literally no debate or discussion about professional development.  It is personally draining and professionally risky for the exercise physiology faculty to persuade others of the importance of title or a professional development course.  The active members of ASEP (myself included) understand, up to a point.  To help others get on board, to begin the process of thinking professionally as an exercise physiologist, the ASEP document should be modified to include a course on the professional development of exercise physiology.  Professionalism matters, particularly as we continue to evolve as a healthcare profession. 

Although I would agree that a good short-term compromise would be to include the “professionalism” material in other courses, I feel the ideal situation is a separate course since most instructors would regress and gradually eliminate the content on professionalism.  Fortunately, things have changed since the creation of this document.  There is at least one text written expressly for this purpose.  It is entitled, “Professional Development of Exercise Physiology”.  In time (and it shouldn’t be too long from now), it will be important for either ASEP or the Board of Accreditation to sponsor “Professional Development” workshops throughout the United States.  The workshops will help both students and faculty in understanding the issues, concerns, and concepts of professional development of exercise physiology.  This is not a new idea.  Just look around you.  Healthcare professionals from physical therapy, occupational therapy, nursing, and fields of study have courses on professionalism, leadership, ethics, and standards of practice.  We need to get with the program. 

It is time that members of this organization get together to debate topics such as this one.  I invite anyone interested to write a response or an e-mail to me.  I would be happy to post it on the ASEPNewsletter next month.  I am always energized by critical debate.  I welcome it. 

Wisconsin Association of Exercise Physiologists

The Wisconsin Association of Exercise Physiologists (WIAEP) will host their first state meeting on Saturday, March 22nd at ASEP accredited Marquette University in Milwaukee, WI.   The WIAEP was founded by Jason Young, MA, EPC, ATC in December of 2001.  Mr. Young is a graduate of the College of St Scholastica and has been an active member of ASEP for several years.  “This is one of the first significant steps towards beginning to unify the exercise physiologists of Wisconsin,” stated Mr. Young.  The meeting will address several issues including, the recruitment of members and establishing a more developed communication network for EP’s in Wisconsin, the possibility of offering the EPC exam,  and building a relationship with Universities in the state in order to expand WIAEP membership and increase interest pursuing ASEP accreditation.   For more information about this event, or WIAEP, please feel free to e-mail at or call (715) 736-2239.

American Society of Exercise Physiologists
2003 Dues Renewal Notice

ASEP membership is on a calendar year basis (Jan – Dec).  Renew now to continue your membership through December 31, 2003.  Remittance of the full amount of member dues for your category will serve as verification that you continue to be eligible for that membership status.

1. Professional Member ($70)
2. Certified Professional Member ($60) Note: this means EPC
3. Affiliate Member ($85)
4. International Member ($60)
5. Student Member ($40)
6. Sustaining Member ($160)
7. Fellow Member ($70)

Only U.S. funds will be accepted.  Make all checks payable to either ASEP or the American Society of Exercise Physiologists.  Please mail the check to the following address:

 ASEP National Office
 c/o Dr. Boone
 Department of Exercise Physiology
 The College of St. Scholastica
 1200 Kenwood Ave
 Duluth, MN 55811
The American Society of Exercise Physiologists is the professional organization of exercise physiologists.  If you need assistance or have questions about your membership, please call the ASEP National Office (218) 723-6297.

Please make any changes in name, address, email address, or membership information when sending your check to the National Office.  Be sure to renew as early as possible to continue all of your membership benefits.

Visit the new ASEP Web Site ( for the news about Board Certification of exercise physiologists. or academic accreditation of undergraduate programs.  Note: This website will remain active for an undetermined period of time. 


Editorial Policy
The ASEPNewsletter is not a refereed newsletter.  Newsletters are open-ended so as to present a diverse set of opinions.  The papers in the each issue are concerned with issues and topics that have a bearing on the professionalization of exercise physiology.  As Editor, I especially welcome articles that critically address specific features of ASEP and its efforts to develop exercise physiology.  Views that support ASEP's vision, goals, and objectives as well as views that do not provide valuable lessons for our readers. 

Submitted Papers
Submitted papers should be unpublished and non-copyrighted.  Submission of a paper will imply that it contains original unpublished work and is not submitted for publication elsewhere.  The Editor will pursue a policy of timely and meaningful review of each paper.  After the paper is accepted, the author(s) must provide the paper's final version in an electronic file on a diskette.  The paper should follow the example of published articles in the ASEPNewsletter.  The text format is flexible (regarding center headings, side flush headings, and so forth).  The reference style should conform to the style presently used in the JEPonline

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