Frequently Asked Questions

School of Physical Therapy Ph.D. Program

Q: Do I need a PT license to apply to your PhD program?

A: No, you just need to have an entry-level degree in PT. Also, internationally-trained PTs are allowed to apply to the program. 

Q: Do I need to take the GRE?

A: No, the GRE is not required. However, if you believe your GRE scores would be helpful to your admissions packet you are welcome to submit.

Q: Do I need to find a research faculty mentor before applying to the program?

A: No, if you are accepted into the program we will work with you to select a mentor.

Q: Can I apply for the DPT-PhD fast track?

A: We only accept fast track applications from our current entry-level DPT students. If you are interested in the fast track program, you should apply to the DPT program first.

Q: What is the residency requirement for your PhD program?

A: We don’t require any set amount of on-site time working with a mentor on campus. However, students are required to be full-time students for at least two semesters during the program. We define “full-time” as a minimum of 6-credit hours (e.g., two, 3-credit hour courses).

Q: Can I work full-time during the program?

A: Yes, most of our PhD students work full time as clinicians while completing their degree requirements.

Q: Can I complete the program as a distance student? 

A: Yes, but some of the required classes meet onsite (ex/ 1-3 times during a semester, typically Friday, Saturday, &/or Sunday) so there are some travel requirements. In addition, occasional meetings with your chair and committee members will require you to travel to campus (dates/time vary).

Q: What specialty areas are available?

A: There are no special tracks in the PhD program. One of the hallmark features of our PhD program is the freedom we give our students in selecting a dissertation topic. You have the option to include committee members from both the Dallas and Houston campuses, and we can add an external member to your committee to offer additional content expertise as needed.  However, academic certificate courses in women’s health, neurologic, or geriatric physical therapy may apply toward the PhD as electives. 

Q: How much does the program cost?

A: It depends on whether you have a DPT or MS degree in PT. But the required semester hours and cost per graduate hour can be found at

Q: How many units are required for the degree?

A: The number of units depends on your previous education. Additional program information related to this topic can be found in the Post-Professional Handbook which is online at:

Page last updated 4:35 PM, March 15, 2022