What is a Doctor of Physical Therapy?


A physical therapist (PT) is an allied healthcare professional that provides therapy to people with injuries and physical disabilities, including impairments and mobility problems. Therapists use manual therapy techniques and exercise to help patients beat pain and restore function. Physical therapists work in numerous settings, including offices, hospitals, nursing homes, schools and fitness centers.

Online DPT Program Admissions Requirements.

Most physical therapy schools require students to have a bachelor’s degree (at minimum) before being admitted to an online DPT program. Some schools consider applicants with bachelor’s in other fields like biology, chemistry and exercise science. Some online course builder DPT programs also require that applicants have at least one year of experience (or are currently working) in a physical therapist assistant or another related field.

How  to Apply to an Online Physical Therapy Program?

A DPT program typically requires all students to begin the application process after completing their bachelor’s degree. First, students should submit an application and score report from the National Physical Therapy Exam, available through the National Board of Physical Therapy Examiners. The exam is a computer-based test that must be taken once a year. Once you have received your national board score results, you need to apply directly to a physical therapy school’s online DPT program.

Admission requirements vary by school, but all may require a bachelor’s degree, professional resume and personal statement. Some schools also have additional requirements like a minimum GPA or an applicant practicing as a PT assistant or in another related field.

How to  Prepare for a DPT Program?

To prepare for an online DPT program, students should take at least two years of biology and chemistry courses in addition to general education courses. Some schools may require a bachelor’s degree. Many PT programs also require that students have at least one year of experience working in a physical therapy assistant or related field. Students who do not meet the minimum level of coursework typically must take courses at the undergraduate level before being admitted to the DPT program.

How to  Earn a Doctor of Physical Therapy Degree Online?

Online DPT programs can be completed in less than three years, depending on your schedule, competency and previous coursework. At the start of each semester, students must complete a certain number of core courses and an internship requirement. Most online DPT programs also require that students complete an externship–a supervised set of clinical hours at a hospital or a clinic. A capstone course will typically follow all other requirements of the program.

What are the DPT Program Online courses  Curriculum?

The online DPT program curriculum includes anatomy, physiology, pathophysiology, and medical terminology classes. Students also take classes like research methods and the professional role of physical therapists. Other core courses may be focused on the latest rehabilitation techniques, exercise physiology and gait analysis. Other courses may focus on the evolution of physical therapy, gerontology and health promotion.

The most important courses of study for DPT programs include:

Each DPT program will have specific prerequisites and prerequisite courses. To enroll in an online DPT program, many students must have completed coursework that prepares them for their desired specialty area. The first year of an online DPT program may occur in a clinical setting or on-campus. 

Degree Requirements

All online DPT programs require that students complete the same number of credits as they would if they were completing their degree on campus–at least 120 credits before being awarded the doctorate. Students who complete the requirements in less time can receive a master’s degree.

Degree Accreditation

Most online DPT programs are accredited through the Commission on Accreditation of Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE). course selling will be taught by full-time faculty members who have advanced degrees and a minimum of three years of clinical experience. All online DPT programs are approved for students who may not fulfill the additional requirements needed for clinical experience.

Degree Prerequisites for DPT Programs

To earn an online DPT degree, students may need to complete specific coursework before starting their program. Advocacy and communication skills are required in most programs. Depending on your program, you may also need to take other prerequisites like a physical therapy assistant (PTA) certification exam or residency in another related field. 

What are the career prospects of a Doctor of Physical Therapy?

The career prospects of an online DPT program can be as diverse as the careers of physical therapists. Several schools offer graduate degrees in physical therapy, leading to a master’s degree and eventually a doctorate. These higher degrees could help physical therapists and others reach leadership positions in hospitals, clinics and other medical facilities. Other advancements may also include joining the college or university faculty to teach students at all levels. Physical therapists, who have obtained a doctorate, may pursue careers in research academia or administer special projects related to the profession. Several opportunities also exist in medical sales, consulting or management consulting.



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