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Physical Therapy

"Physical therapists are highly-educated, licensed health care professionals who can help patients reduce pain and improve or restore mobility - in many cases without expensive surgery and often reducing the need for long-term use of prescription medications and their side effects.

Physical therapists examine each individual and develop a plan, using treatment techniques to promote the ability to move, reduce pain, restore function, and prevent disability. In addition, physical therapists work with individuals to prevent the loss of mobility before it occurs by developing fitness- and wellness-oriented programs for healthier and more active lifestyles.

Physical therapists provide care for people in a variety of settings, including hospitals, private practices, outpatient clinics, home health agencies, schools, sports and fitness facilities, work settings, and nursing homes. State licensure is required in each state in which a physical therapist practices.

All physical therapists must receive a graduate degree from an accredited physical therapist program before taking the national licensure examination that allows them to practice. The majority of programs offer the doctor of physical therapy (DPT) degree." (American Physical Therapy Association)

Programs

Admission Requirements

  • At least a 3.0 undergraduate GPA is required for most programs but the average for matriculants is about 3.5
  • The GRE is required.
  • The required courses typically include the following:
    • General Biology with lab - 2 semester
    • General (Inorganic) Chemistry with lab - 2 semester
    • Physics with lab - 2 semesters
    • Human Anatomy and Physiology with lab - 2 semesters
    • Psychology courses - 1-2 semesters
    • Statistics - 1 semester
    • Medical Terminology – 1 semester
    • English Composition and Writing – 1 semester
  • Letters of Evaluation
  • Experience (10-80 hours)
  • An application submitted via the Physical Therapist Centralized Application Service

Timeline

  • The PTCAS application becomes available in July and program deadlines are from October to April
  • The GRE must be completed by the time the PTCAS application is complete
  • Some programs also require a secondary application
  • Interviews generally take place in the spring after the application is complete

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