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Pre-Physical Therapy Major

Course Requirements

The Prephysical Therapy major is designed to meet the prerequisites of the Physical Therapy program at Ohio University and most other institutions, as well as nursing, physician assistant, and chiropractic programs. This major is also designed to provide students with a solid background in the life sciences. It should be noted that there are no uniform requirements for physical therapy schools. If you are interested in applying to a particular physical therapy program, you will need to consult the school's catalog or Web site for exact prerequisites.

Preparation for Physical Therapy

Ohio University offers a unique opportunity to the prospective physical therapist. Recognized for leadership in the development of preprofessional physical therapy curricula since the 1930s, the Department of Biological Sciences and the Department of Psychology, both in the College of Arts and Sciences, work cooperatively with the School of Physical Therapy in the College of Health and Human Services.

Physical therapy programs are offered at the graduate level only. As of January 1, 2002, undergraduate physical therapy programs are no longer accredited. To be eligible for admission to most accredited professional schools of physical therapy, you must first complete the baccalaureate-level preprofessional preparatory coursework and then apply on a competitive basis to a professional school of physical therapy. If you are accepted, the professional program extends for an additional two to three years, culminating in a degree in physical therapy. The optional plans of study available will prepare you to be highly qualified for admission to most schools of physical therapy. However, some professional programs require special prerequisites—either courses or practical experience as a volunteer—before you apply for admission. It is your responsibility to check the admission requirements for programs you wish to attend and, in consultation with your academic advisor, to fulfill any special prerequisites.

Ohio University has the first entry-level doctoral program in the state of Ohio. Although a master's degree is sufficient to sit for the national licensing examination, the profession has been making a rather rapid transition to the doctoral degree (DPT). At Ohio University, the entry-level doctoral program in the School of Physical Therapy admits students on a competitive basis. It is a three-year program with approximately 17 quarter hours per term. A baccalaureate degree is required for admission to the program. Although a baccalaureate degree in any field is acceptable, as long as the prerequisites have been attained, the most direct routes at Ohio University are the Biological Sciences - Prephysical Therapy and Psychology - Prephysical Therapy major programs in the College of Arts and Sciences. A major in exercise physiology in the College of Health and Human Services is also an option.

Application should be made in the senior year. The GRE should be taken at the beginning of the senior year in order to meet requirements for early admission status. Some volunteer experience is possible through Ohio University Therapy Associates, particularly in the course PT 259B.

For additional information, see the Biological Sciences Major or Psychology Pre-Physical Therapy majors, and the Physical Therapy section of the College of Health Sciences and Professions.