Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT)

If movement and function of the human body appeal to you, if helping people regain strength and reduce pain is rewarding to you, if developing fitness and wellness regimes for others excites you, then physical therapy may be the field for you.

PT student working with baby in pedi lab

TWU has been a pioneer in educating physical therapists since the 1960s, advancing the practice and science of physical therapy through education, research and service. Accredited by the Commission for Accreditation in Physical Therapy (CAPTE), the program prepares students to take the National PT Exam and licensure in the State of Texas.

Faculty members are leaders in the PT profession in research, teaching and service and the majority of full-time faculty hold Ph.D. or D.Sc. degrees. With the faculty-to-student ratio 1:12, expectations of TWU DPT graduates is high and the expected outcomes upon graduation include:

  • Provide effective and efficient patient/client management using evidence-based practice
  • Demonstrate fundamental practice management skills
  • Promote health and wellness in the community: locally, regionally and/or globally
  • Demonstrate leadership
  • Advocate for patients/clients and the profession

Graduation, licensure examination pass rate and the employment rate for our graduates can be found here.

Clinical education

Clinical Education is an important part of the DPT program. Students will have an opportunity to participate in five clinical education courses/rotations throughout the program. Currently, Texas Woman's University has approximately 400 sites across the United States under contract to provide clinical education to the School of Physical Therapy. That means DPT students have many choices when it comes to where they can complete their clinical education.

Program requirements

The DPT program requires eight semesters of full-time graduate study over 33 months (including summers). The degree requires 98 credit hours to complete including 32 weeks of clinical experiences/rotations. A full listing of required courses for graduation can be found in the course catalog

FAQ for Prospective Students

Please Note: There are new admission guidelines in place due to COVID-19.

What are the prerequisites?

Chemistry I & II with labs 
8 credits (for science majors)

Physics I & II 
8 credits (algebra or calculus based)

Anatomy & Physiology I & II with labs 
8 credits or 4 credits Anatomy and 4 credits of Physiology (each must have 1 hours labs)

Algebra or higher or AP credit 
3 credits

Intro or general Psychology
3 credits (NOT statistics)

2nd Psychology: Lifespan Developmental, Abnormal, or Physiological
3 credits

Medical Terminology
1-3 credits or Universal class online Med Term 201

Highly Recommended Coursework

  • Exercise Physiology
  • Advanced Physiology
  • Neuro anatomy/physiology
  • Statistics

If my school has a pass/fail and I take that option on a prerequisite course, how will that affect my application?

The prerequisite GPA is an important part of the admission decisions. Students who have the opportunity to choose a letter grade, should do so. During this COVID -19 crisis, we understand if a student may need to take a pass/fail grade during Spring and Summer 2020, however those applications with a grade of A or B will be at an advantage. If you take a pass/fail grade, you will need to replace the grade with a letter grade before beginning our DPT program. If you need to withdraw from your courses, it will not be held against you. The committee understands everyone is being impacted differently with this pandemic. We have added an optional question to the school specific questions on the PTCAS application if you wish to elaborate.

What if I am unable to complete observation hours due to closure of facilities or limits on visitation and volunteering?

We will accept an application with less than the required minimum of 80 observation hours. For applicants who do not have many observation hours, we highly recommend you visit www.APTA.org and choose the tabs "Careers & Education" and also "Prospective Students." It is very important for prospective students to research the profession before committing to a rigorous full time DPT program. We highly encourage students to continue to look for observation opportunities in the Fall and next Spring 2021 when it is deem safe. The additional hours can be emailed to PT@twu.edu after the application has been submitted. Try to complete at least 20 hours of inpatient observation.

I have been unable to schedule a time to take the GRE due to the closure of testing sites. Can I still apply?

Although the TWU Graduate School has waived the GRE requirement for this upcoming admission cycle, at this time, the School of Physical Therapy is still requiring the GRE. ETS now has an option to take the GRE from your home if you have the proper equipment as it will be monitored by a camera. You can submit the PTCAS application without GRE scores then you have until September 24 to take the exam for scores to arrive by our October 15 deadline. Please check back in September for an update as we will monitor the situation or email concerns to PT@twu.edu.

Does TWU's DPT program accept online courses?

The School of Physical Therapy will accept online courses, even online science courses and online labs. It is highly recommended to have dissection experience before cadaver lab.

Admission Requirements

Admission to the Doctor of Physical Therapy (Professional)

Program Contact

Mary Beth Daugherty
Admissions Coordinator
940-898-2460
PT@twu.edu / Mdaugherty@twu.edu

Application Deadlines

October 15 @ 11 CST  (9 months before the program begins). The Physical Therapist Centralized Application Service (PTCAS) application opens July 1st (one year in advance).  All materials must be received by TWU and PTCAS.  The DPT program only begins in the Fall semester.

The application review cycle begins in July.  Students will receive an email of acceptance or alternate notice no earlier than mid-December.

Admission Requirements

Applicants may be in the process of completing prerequisites and bachelor’s degree when applying. If accepted, the student must have successfully completed a bachelor’s degree and all outstanding prerequisites in order to enroll.

  • Baccalaureate degree in any major.
  • Required Prerequisites completed with a grade of C or higher before the program begins (recommended that no more than three are outstanding at the time of application).
  • Prerequisite Math & Science GPA above 3.0 using the latest grades in: Chemistry I & II with labs, Physics I & II with labs, Anatomy & Physiology I & II with labs, and Algebra (or higher, statistics not accepted)
  • Overall GPA above 3.0 (includes original and retake grades of all college courses) as calculated in PTCAS.
  • Last 60 semester credit hours above 3.0 as calculated in PTCAS. This will include all post-bachelors or masters credits before the bachelor’s degree. Calculation ends where 59-60 credits fall and includes whole semesters (range can be 59-73 hours.)
  • General Graduate Record Examination (GRE). Must be completed within the last 5 years.  Super scoring is utilized - the highest score in each area of all exams. 
  • A minimum of 80 hours observing two physical therapists from differently owned facilities (40 hours with each PT). Applicants must have both inpatient (Minimum 20 hours) and outpatient experiences. Documentation is through PTCAS.
  • Current BLS certifications in CPR and AED from the American Heart Association completed before entering the program.
  • Immunizations received before entering the program as required by the state of Texas, including 3-Hepatitis B, Tdap (within 9 years), 2-MMR, 2-varicella or titer, TB test (expires after 12 months), and Hepatitis C testing. In addition, a flu shot is required in the fall of every year while in the program .
  • Testing for drugs and a criminal background check.
  • International students or if your bachelor’s degree is from a country where the official language is other than English, you must take the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) and Test of Spoken English tests and achieve scores of at least 24-writing, 26-speaking, 21-reading comprehension, and 18-listening comprehension - Total 89. For a list of exempt countries and the TOEFL exemption form visit the TWU International Student Admission website.

How to Apply - 2 Part Process

Part 1: Apply to TWU

  1. Apply for admission to the TWU Graduate School. When completing the Apply Texas Application select:
    • Semester Applying: Fall (if Fall is not listed, choose Spring)
    • Campus: TWU Denton
    • Major: Physical Therapy Entry DPT (DAL) or Physical Therapy Entry DPT (HOU). Do not select Post Professional.
    • Degree-seeking and Ultimate Degree: Doctoral
  2. Create a TWU Portal account 48 hours after you submit your application (https://portal.twu.edu). Locate your TWU Colleague ID# at the top of the page when you log in (seven digits generally beginning with a 1). Record this ID # to be added later on the PTCAS application in the Supplemental area.
  3. Take the GRE General Test and submit your GRE scores using PTCAS Code 1673 (this will submit to PTCAS and TWU). Take the exam before September 24 for scores to arrive by the October 15 deadline. 
  4. Have official TOEFL scores sent to TWU using Code 6826 (if applicable).
  5. Send transcripts from all schools to both TWU and PTCAS.
    • TWU Admissions Processing; P.O. Box 425649; Denton, TX 76204 (or oap@twu.edu)
    • PTCAS; P.O. Box 9112; Watertown, MA 02471

Part II: Complete the PTCAS Application Process

  1. Complete the online Physical Therapist Centralized Application Service (PTCAS) application (opens July 1st - a year in advance)
  2. Include Additional Supplemental materials as outlined on PTCAS application:
    • Interest letter for TWU
    • Resume
    • Documentation of Observation Hours
    • Three letters of recommendation
    • Campus preference: Dallas or Houston
    • TWU Colleague ID#

Take the next step.

Attend an information session

Learn more about the DPT program at TWU at one of our monthly information sessions

Notification for out-of-state students

The Doctor of Physical Therapy prepares graduates to take the National Physical Therapy Exam required for licensure in every state. Individuals who wish to practice in Texas will apply for a license to practice through the Texas Board of Physical Therapy Examiners. Requirements for state licensure vary from state to state. If you are a resident of another state, contact the licensing board of your home state for other requirements. Contact our department for additional information.

Complaints

Complaints that fall outside of due process should be directed to Dr. Ann Medley, Program Director, School of Physical Therapy, or Dr. Christopher Ray, Dean of the College of Health Sciences.

Page last updated 4:15 PM, August 31, 2020