You don’t have to have a particular undergraduate degree to apply for the Doctor of Physical Therapy degree program. A degree in English is as acceptable as a degree in biology. But you do have to have a bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited college or university before you will be eligible to apply. Also, you will have to have fulfilled certain prerequisites.
Prerequisites, in this case, include specific college coursework, minimum GRE scores, and a minimum GPA.
Why are Prerequisites Required?
Your investment in earning the Doctor of Physical Therapy is significant, both financially and personally. We want you to succeed, and students who have completed the selected prerequisites for the DPT will be far better prepared to enter and finish the program than those who haven’t.
When it comes to the sciences, for example, an undergraduate degree in biology will have done a better job of preparing you to study human physiology than a degree in English. And if your bachelor’s degree is in English, you may lack the scientific foundation you’ll need to do well and keep up in courses that expect students to have a strong understanding of biological processes.
This doesn’t mean you won’t be a great physical therapist and a successful student; it only means you may need more preparation before you’re ready to enter the program.
In short, we want to make certain that you have a strong foundation in the subject matter you’ll need to know before you begin the program. The DPT is a rigorous degree program, and you won’t have time to catch up.
Other prerequisites, such as minimum GPA and GRE scores, serve as indicators that you’ve mastered the required subject matter with enough proficiency to meet the program objectives and expected student outcomes.
Prerequisite Course Work
The following courses (in semester credit-hours) or their equivalents are minimum prerequisites for entry into the Doctor of Physical Therapy program:
Special Admission Requirements
- General biology with lab (8) (BIOL 1500, 1501, 1510, 1511)
- General chemistry with lab (8) (CHEM 1141, 1142, 1143, 1144)
- One additional biology or chemistry course with lab (4). This must be a 2000-level or higher course, such as Organic Chemistry with lab (CHEM 3531/ CHEM 3514), Cell Biology with lab (BIOL 3370/ BIOL 3371)
- Anatomy with lab (4-8); two semester sequence of 1000-level Human Anatomy and Physiology with lab (8) (BIOL, 2200, 2201, 2210, 2211) OR one semester of 2000-level or higher with lab (4) such as Comparative Anatomy (BIOL 3360/3361)
- General Physics with lab (8) (PHYS 2141/2142 and PHYS 2143/2144)
- Statistics (3) (STAT 4219)
- Medical Terminology (1) (HLSC 2400) or Computer Application: Medical Terminology for the Health Professional (OCCT 2400)
- General Psychology (3) (PSYC 1101)
- Abnormal Psychology (3) (PSYC 3430)
- Orientation to Physical Therapy (2) (PHYT 2320)
- Developmental Psychology (3)(PSYCH 2201)
In addition to meeting university admissions criteria, applicants must: have a bachelor's degree, any major, with a minimum cumulative G.P.A. of 2.8 on a 4.0 scale; achieve a minimum of 1,000 points combined on the verbal reasoning and quantitative reasoning sections of the Graduate Record Examination; or 300 on the GRE revised General Test; and have appropriate prerequisite course work with a minimum prerequisite G.P.A. of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale.