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    University of the Sciences in Philadelphia
   
 
  Oct 22, 2017
 
 
    
2017-2018 University Catalog

Physical Therapy – DPT


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Physical therapists are health professionals who work with other members of the healthcare team to ensure optimal health and function of patients and clients. Physical therapists provide interventions to facilitate the recovery process of people of various ages with physical and functional limitations or disability resulting from injury or disease. Examples of individualized interventions include therapeutic exercise, manual techniques, patient and family education, electrotherapy, and functional training. Physical therapists also provide prevention and wellness services, including screening and health promotion. These activities include conducting prenatal exercise classes, analyzing work settings, recommending changes to reduce work-related injury, developing exercise programs for people with chronic conditions such as spinal cord injury, and screening of community-dwelling older adults for fall risk. Physical therapists interact with and practice in collaboration with a variety of professionals and engage in consultation, education, critical inquiry, and administration.

Statistics from the American Physical Therapy Association indicate that many physical therapists practice in acute care or subacute care hospitals, private physical therapy offices, community health centers, industrial health centers, sports facilities, rehabilitation centers, nursing homes, home health agencies, schools, or pediatric centers. Others work in research institutions or teach in colleges and universities.

There are three entry points for the DPT program. A student can be admitted into the program as a freshman, transfer into the undergraduate years, or enter the program after earning a bachelors degree. To maintain guaranteed admission into the professional phase of the Physical Therapy curriculum, DPT majors in catalog years 2016 and beyond must earn a combined required math and science courses GPA of 3.00 by the end of the fall semester of the U3 year and maintain that minimum GPA through the spring semester of the U3 year in addition to having an overall cumulative GPA of 3.00. For typical USciences students this includes: General Chemistry 1 and 2 and the corresponding labs (CH 101, 102, 103, 104); General Biology I and II with the corresponding labs (BS 109, 110, 119, 120), Introductory Physics I and II with lab (PY 201 and 202); Anatomy and Physiology I and II (BS 310 and 311); Human Structure and Function Lab (BS 208 and 207); Pre-calculus (MA 107); Trigonometry (MA 108) or Calculus (MA 110); Biostatistics (ST 310). Grades for courses taken off campus will not be used to calculate the math/science or overall GPA, consistent with Student Handbook policies on “Grade Point Average” and “Repetition of a Course.”

The undergraduate curriculum for the first through third years for DPT students in the program of physical therapy provides the broad foundation of natural science, social science, and the humanities that the professional courses build upon. The professional component of the curriculum is designed to prepare physical therapy practitioners to apply scientific principles to prevent, identify, assess, correct, or alleviate acute or prolonged movement dysfunction. For detailed information about the professional program, see the section “Professional Years (P1-P3)”  below.

All students must pass the state-administered National Physical Therapy Examination to become licensed to practice physical therapy. The physical therapy program is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education of the American Physical Therapy Association.

Transfer Students

Students may apply to transfer into the undergraduate phase of the DPT program (U1-U3). The level in the curriculum to which transfer students are accepted will depend on the prerequisite courses they have completed. All conditions regarding guaranteed admission into the professional program also apply to transfer students. Refer to the policy on Residency Requirements to earn the DPT at the University of the Sciences.

Residency Requirement

In order to earn the DPT degree from USciences, a student must complete all courses in the professional program (P1-P3) offered by the University of the Sciences.

Post-Baccalaureate Students

Students with a bachelor’s degree who meet the minimum course requirements (see table) may apply to the USciences DPT program. Accepted students will enter the program in the first professional year and will be held to the academic standards outlined in this catalog. For detailed information about the professional program, see the section “Professional Years (P1-P3)” below. Post-baccalaureate students admitted directly to the first professional year (P1) of the program will earn the DPT degree but will not be eligible to earn the BSHS in health science.

Minimum Course Requirements for Transfer Students with a Baccalaureate Degree

Subject Area Credits Required Comments
Chemistry w/lab 8 credits Coursework should be a 2-semester sequence.
Biology w/lab 8 credits Coursework should be a 2-semester sequence.
Physics w/lab 8 credits Coursework should be a 2-semester sequence.
Anatomy & Physiology 6 credits Coursework should be a 2-semester sequence.
Math 9 credits Precalculus and statistics.
Social Sciences 12 credits Include a mix of introductory and advanced coursework; minimum of 6 credits in psychology.
English 6 credits Inclusive of one writing intensive course.
Basic Nutrition 3 credits  
Medical Terminology 2 credits Recommended. Those who do not have an approved 2-credit medical terminology course will be required to pass an online proficiency.
Total: 59 required credits, 2 recommended credits 

Undergraduate Years (U1–U3)

The physical therapy program is an integrated undergraduate/professional graduate degree program leading to the BSHS in health science and doctor of physical therapy (DPT). Admission to the physical therapy program as a freshman student and maintenance of an acceptable academic and conduct record during the three undergraduate years guarantee the student a place in the professional phase of the physical therapy curriculum. Students admitted to the undergraduate years (U1, U2, or U3) of the program who are in good academic standing and who have met all the University requirements for the BSHS in health science will earn this degree after the completion of their first professional year (P1). The DPT will be awarded after the successful completion of the third professional year (P3).

The guarantee of admission into the physical therapy professional phase of the curriculum will be revoked if any of the following occurs:

  • A student receives a grade of “D+” or lower in a course and the grade for that course when repeated is not replaced with a grade of “C-” or higher.
  • The student is actively on probation during the spring semester of the U3 year as a result of the findings of the Committee on Student Conduct. This includes situations where the committee finds a student “responsible” for misconduct and/or infraction of the University regulations and takes one of the following disciplinary actions: disciplinary suspension, disciplinary expulsion, or disciplinary probation.
  • Failure to meet minimum GPA requirements.

Students in catalog years 2016 and beyond must achieve a cumulative GPA of 3.00 and a science/math GPA of 3.00 by the end of the fall semester of their third undergraduate year (U3) and maintain a 3.00 through the spring of the third undergraduate year (U3) to maintain guaranteed admission into the professional phase of the physical therapy curriculum.

Undergraduate Curriculum Requirements


General Education


  • General Education Elective Credits: 3
  • General Education Humanities Discipline Requirement Credits: 6
  • Multidisciplinary Inquiry Requirement Credits: 6

Physical Therapy BSHS/DPT Curriculum—Undergraduate Years 1–3


Students entering in Catalog Years 2017 and beyond - with general education. 

First Undergraduate Year (U1)


Credits/Semester: 14

Spring Semester


  • General Education Humanities Discipline Requirement Credits: 3
Credits/Semester: 15

Second Undergraduate Year (U2)


Fall Semester


  • General Education Humanities Discipline Requirement Credits: 3
  • Multidisciplinary Inquiry Requirement Credits: 3
Credits/Semester: 13

Spring Semester


  • General Education Elective Credits: 3
  • Multidisciplinary Inquiry Requirement Credits: 3
Credits/Semester: 13

Third Undergraduate Year (U3)


Professional Years (P1–P3)


The professional phase of the DPT program is designed to prepare physical therapy practitioners to apply scientific principles to prevent, identify, assess, correct, or alleviate acute or prolonged movement dysfunction. The first professional year contains foundational clinical courses; in the second year, the program concentrates on the four systems of the body treated by physical therapists: musculoskeletal, neuromuscular, cardiopulmonary, and integumentary. In the third year, the courses represent a synthesis of classroom knowledge and clinical application. Experiential learning is integrated throughout the curriculum. Students will participate in clinical rotations in a variety of settings that may include acute care, subacute care, orthopedics, sports medicine, pediatrics, rehabilitation, women’s health, industrial medicine, long-term care, or outpatient care.

At the end of the program, all students must pass the state-administered National Physical Therapy Examination to become licensed to practice physical therapy. Our program is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE) of the American Physical Therapy Association.

Students admitted to the undergraduate years (U1, U2 or U3) of the program who are in good academic standing and who have met all the University requirements for the BSHS in health science will earn this degree after the completion of their first professional year (P1). Post-baccalaureate students admitted directly to the first professional year (P1) of the program will earn the DPT degree but will not be eligible to earn the BSHS in health science. The DPT degree for all professional students will be awarded after the successful completion of their third professional year (P3).

The following pages contain an outline of the content in the professional curriculum. The University reserves the right to alter this curriculum based on student needs, curricular needs, and CAPTE guidelines. The curriculum for each cohort will be determined prior to the start of its first professional year (P1).

Students in catalog years 2016 and beyond must achieve a cumulative GPA of 3.00 and a science/math GPA of 3.00 by the end of the fall semester of their third undergraduate year (U3) and maintain a 3.00 through the spring of the third undergraduate year (U3) to maintain guaranteed admission into the PT professional phase. For minimal standards in clinical education or for more details about academic standards, repeating professional courses, and re-applying to the DPT program, refer to the departmental policy and procedure manuals. 

Students in the professional phase must earn a minimum grade of “B-” in all courses in the professional phase of the DPT program. Failure to earn a “B-” or above in any PT course will stop the student’s progression in the PT program. Students can opt to reapply to the program per departmental policies.

To qualify for the doctor of physical therapy, students must successfully complete all required courses.

Residency Requirement

In order to earn the DPT degree from USciences, a student must complete all courses in the professional program (P1-P3) offered by the University of the Sciences.

Physical Therapy BSHS/DPT Degree Requirements (P1–P3)


Physical Therapy BSHS/DPT Curriculum—Professional Years 1–3


Students entering in Catalog Years 2017 and beyond, unless otherwise noted.

First Professional Year (P1)


Summer Semester


Credits/Semester: 6

Credits/Semester: 19

Credits/Semester: 17

Total Credits to receive a BSHS degree: 127


Second Professional Year (P2)


Credits/Semester: 17

Intersession


Credits/Semester: 4

Credits/Semester: 19

Third Professional Year (P3)


Credits/Semester: 8

Credits/Semester: 18

Credits/Semester: 15

Total Credits: 210


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