Minor in Empowerment Self-Defense

The Empowerment Self-Defense (ESD) Minor is a dynamic and interdisciplinary program that explores evidence-based strategies to prevent violence, foster personal empowerment, and build safer communities. The program gives you the opportunity to develop the competencies needed to sit for the ESD national certification exam and teach an introductory ESD class to your community or workplace. Spanning 19 units, this program complements majors in departments, including but not limited to Kinesiology, Sociology, Psychology, Public Health, Criminology, Women and Gender Studies, and Ethnic Studies. 

Benefits for Students: 

By pursuing the Empowerment Self-Defense Minor, you will: 

  • Develop Essential Life Skills: Acquire skills in emotional intelligence, effective communication, and physical techniques that promote personal safety and empowerment. 

  • Explore Interdisciplinary Perspectives: Gain insights into how violence manifests across cultures, societies, and historical contexts, fostering a deeper understanding of societal issues. 

  • Prepare for Diverse Career Paths: Open doors to diverse career opportunities, including roles in advocacy, education, public health, community organizing, and more. 

  • Enhance Workplace Readiness: Acquire competencies highly sought after by employers, contributing to workplace culture, safety, and productivity. 

Interdisciplinary Nature: 

This minor program transcends disciplinary boundaries, allowing you to explore the multifaceted nature of violence and empowerment. You will engage with courses that intersect with various majors, providing a comprehensive understanding of interpersonal violence and its impact. Through the integration of fields such as Kinesiology, Sociology, Psychology, Public Health, Criminology, and Ethnic Studies, you will gain a holistic perspective essential for effecting positive societal change. 

Join Us in Empowering Change: 

The Minor in ESD invites you to become part of a community committed to personal growth, social responsibility, and creating safer environments. ESD instructors are situated on every continent creating a supportive worldwide network. Whether you aspire to work in healthcare, social services, education, or beyond, this program equips you with the tools to make a meaningful difference. 

Empower yourself to make a difference. Join the Empowerment Self-Defense Minor program and discover the power within you to create a safer, more empowered world. 

  • Required courses cannot be taken CR/NC 

  • All coursework used to satisfy the minor's requirements must be completed with a minimum grade point average of 2.0. 

  • Students must check in with the KIN advisor once per semester for academic advising.

Program Learning Outcomes

  1. Identify the physiological, psychological, and social aspects of violence and how systems of oppression perpetuate abuses of power in interpersonal relationships.
  2. Teach, demonstrate, and apply a wide range of mental, verbal, and physical strategies to avoid or interrupt violence.
  3. Apply trauma-informed pedagogy to an ESD class or workshop.

Minor in Empowerment Self-Defense — 19 units minimum

  • Required courses cannot be taken CR/NC
  • A minimum of 6 upper-division units are required to complete the minor.
  • All coursework used to satisfy the requirements of the minor must be completed with a minimum grade point average of 2.0.
  • Students must check in with the KIN advisor once per semester for academic advising

Core (16 units)

KIN 158Personal Defense2
KIN 331Peak Performance3
KIN 580Middle and High School Physical Education: Grades 6-123
KIN 620Advanced Practicum in Kinesiology2
KIN 690Internship in Fitness/Wellness3
WGS 511Women and Violence3

Elective (3-4 units)

Select One:

COMM 531Conflict Resolution4
KIN 240Introduction to Teaching Physical Education3
KIN 250Introduction to Kinesiology3
PH 210Personal and Social Determinants of Health3
PH/ETHS 241Health and Social Movements in the United States in the 20th Century3
PH 290Promoting Positive Health3
PH 414Women's Health3
SOC/RRS 330Comparative Race and Ethnicity in the U.S.: Class, Gender, and Nation3
SOC 469Gender and Society4
SXS 300Introduction to Human Sexuality3
SXS 455Sex, Power, and Politics3
SXS/SOC 601Sexuality, Ethnicity, and Health3
WGS 150Women and Gender in U.S. History and Society3
WGS 210Introduction to Feminism and the State3
WGS 220Introduction to Feminist Disability Studies3