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Physical Education Department

Our mission is to prepare physical educators who will make a difference in their communities and the lives of their students.

Our outstanding faculty and a wide range of challenging study options are just two of the reasons why SUNY Cortland’s Physical Education Department is one of the best and most highly regarded in the nation. If you’re interested in becoming a physical education teacher, a coach or both, Cortland just may be the perfect choice.

The major encompasses courses on effective teaching and curriculum planning along with as broad a spectrum of sports and fitness activities as you can imagine. You’ll integrate physical education theory with hands-on practice utilizing a range of teaching styles as you complete 100 hours of fieldwork in addition to student teaching. A highlight of your education will be a two week camp at Raquette Lake, Cortland’s historic and stunningly beautiful wilderness retreat in the Adirondacks.

Cortland has one of the largest and most highly respected physical education teacher-education programs in the country. You’ll gain the skills, experience and credentials that pave your way to a rewarding career.


Students help transform hallways into sensory pathways

Dec. 30, 2022
The Physical Education Department and two sport clubs teamed up with Racker, a local facility that provides inclusive childcare.

SUNY Cortland earns high marks for online programs

Dec. 14, 2022
The university ranked No. 14 in New York, according to a recent ranking based on cost, student success and reputation. 

Doing it all to help others 

Dec. 6, 2022
SUNY Cortland alum follows career paths as teacher, firefighter. 

SUNY Cortland student is world’s No. 2 powerlifter 

Oct. 25, 2022
Anthony McNaughton squatted, bench-pressed and deadlifted his way to second place in Istanbul, Turkey. 

Derek Lalonde ’95 named head coach of Detroit Red Wings

July 1, 2022
The former Cortland goaltender earned two Stanley Cup trophies as a top assistant with the Tampa Bay Lightning.


The Alliance of Physical Education Majors at SUNY Cortland promotes physical education as a vital discipline paramount to the total development of healthy individuals. APEM focuses on increasing knowledge, attitude and professionalism of the students and faculty within the major.  It helps provide networks between students, state and national professional organizations, and physical education professionals in the field, provides information workshops, conferences and various other activities and programs to create a stronger community for those involved in the major and promote the goals of SUNY Cortland's Physical Education Program.

Read More About Physical Education Department Clubs