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Doctor of Physical Therapy

The University of Dayton's Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) program will prepare you to be a knowledgeable, service-oriented, self-assured, adaptable, reflective practitioner. Our faculty and graduates contribute to society and the physical therapy profession through practice, teaching, administration and research. The need for highly trained physical therapists continues to rise, and the DPT program will put you at the front of the curve.

Money Magazine has named physical therapy one of the "Best Jobs in America,” with PT ranked 4th out of 100. The U.S. Department of Labor Statistics predicts employment of physical therapists to increase 27% by 2016, much faster than the national average for all occupations. CNN Money has rated physical therapy 4 out of 10 under “Fastest Growing Jobs” and lists PT as 7th on their list of the “Top 50 Best Jobs in America.” Likewise, AOL.com notes that PT is “One of the Best Jobs in Hard Times,” and the Chicago Tribune reported that physical therapists have one of the highest job-satisfaction levels in the country (second only to clergy).

What's New?

Check out pictures of the Class of 2014 in the Gen Med I Lab >>

Earn your doctorate in physical therapy!

The American Physical Therapy Association has called on schools to raise the educational standards for practitioners, who will be expected to have doctorate degrees by 2020. The University of Dayton Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) program enrolls 35 students per year. Regarding program outcomes, the ultimate pass rate for the National Physical Therapy Exam at UD is 97%, and the first time pass rate is 84%. The graduation rate for the UD DPT program is 97%, and the employment rate is 100%.

The DPT program offers students the opportunity to earn a doctorate in physical therapy. Download the program brochure (pdf) >>

Program Requirements


  • The program is delivered over three years in eight consecutive semesters.
  • Students take 86 weeks of classes, including 38 weeks of four, full-time clinical rotations and a research capstone course leading to a professional presentation and/or publishable manuscript.
  • A total of 80 hours of observation is required from at least two distinctly different physical therapy patient care settings. A minimum of 20 observation hours must be in an inpatient setting.

Much of the DPT curriculum is delivered through problem-based learning, which emphasizes professional decision-making and the use of critical analysis in problem solving.

Candidates for the program are required to have a bachelor's degree. Commonly, this degree is in pre-physical therapy or other related fields, such as exercise science, exercise physiology, biology, psychology, dietetics or chemistry.



See what courses you will take, when.

The three-year DPT curriculum comprises 117 credits, including classroom, laboratory and clinical experiences.

View the course sequence for each year and term below, or download the full curriculum (pdf) >>

Year 1 Sequence


Fall Semester

Core Module I: Basic Science (16 weeks)

  • DPT 815 Human Gross Anatomy
  • DPT 840 Clinical Science
  • DPT 805 Functional Physiology I: Intro to Pathophysiology
  • DPT 820 Movement Science
  • DPT 810 Professional Seminar I: Health Care

Spring Semester (11 weeks)

Core Module I: Basic Science (16 weeks)

  • DPT 841 Clinical Science II: Intro to Medical Diagnostics
  • DPT 806 Functional Physiology II: Exercise Physiology
  • DPT 846 Maturation Science I
  • DPT 818 Neuroscience
  • DPT 825 Pharmacy Therapeutics
  • DPT 811 Professional Seminar II: Clinical Practice

General Medicine I (6 weeks)

  • DPT 961 Clinical Pathology
  • DPT 971 Clinical Skills Lab
  • DPT 981 Clinical Issues Seminar
  • DPT 842 Clinical Science III: Modalities I
  • DPT 991 Research I

Summer Term I

General Medicine II (6 weeks)

  • DPT 962 Clinical Pathology
  • DPT 972 Clinical Skills Lab
  • DPT 982 Clinical Issues Seminar
  • DPT 843 Clinical Science IV: Modalities II
  • DPT 847 Maturation Science II

Summer Term II

Clinical Module I: General Medicine (6 weeks)

  • DPT 951 Clinical Rotation I: General Medicine

Back to top >> 

Year 2 Sequence


Fall Semester

Neurology I (10 weeks)

  • DPT 963 Clinical Pathology
  • DPT 973 Clinical Skills Lab
  • DPT 983 Clinical Issues Seminar
  • DPT 992 Research II

Neurology II (6 weeks)

  • DPT 964 Clinical Pathology
  • DPT 974 Clinical Skills Lab
  • DPT 984 Clinical Issues Seminar
  • DPT 992 Research II (continued)

Spring Semester

  • DPT 952 Clinical Rotation II: Neurology (8 weeks)

Orthopedics (9 weeks)

  • DPT 965 Clinical Pathology
  • DPT 975 Clinical Skills Lab
  • DPT 985 Clinical Issues
  • DPT 993 Research III

Summer Term I

Clinical Module III: Orthopedics (12 weeks)

  • DPT 953 Clinical Rotation III: Orthopedics

Summer Term II

Clinical Module III: Orthopedics (12 weeks, continued)

  • DPT 953 Clinical Rotation III: Orthopedics (continued)

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Year 3 Sequence


Fall Semester

Orthopedics II (6 weeks)

  • DPT 966 Clinical Pathology
  • DPT 976 Clinical Skills Lab
  • DPT 986 Clinical Issues Seminar
  • DPT 910 Professional Seminar III: Leadership & Management
  • DPT 994 Research IV
Advanced Therapy (10 weeks)
  • DPT 967 Clinical Pathology
  • DPT 977 Clinical Skills Lab
  • DPT 987 Clinical Issues Seminar
  • DPT 940 Clinical Science V: Current Technology
  • DPT 911 Professional Seminar IV: Business & Marketing

Program Comprehensive Exams

Spring Semester

Advanced Therapy II (5 weeks)

  • DPT 988 Contemporary Clinical Practice Electives

Core Module IV:  Contact Clinical (12 weeks)

  • DPT 954 Clinical Rotation IV: Contract Clinical

Summation Module (1 week)

  • DPT 912 Professional Seminar V: Professional Development
  • DPT 995 Research V

Back to top >>

Doctor of Physical Therapy Faculty & Staff

Our faculty and staff are committed to excellence in teaching, research and service on behalf of students, institution, professions and communities. Let us know how we can help you today.

For general questions about our program, visit our Contact Us page >>

Image for Philip A. Anloague

Anloague, Philip A.

Associate Professor and Director, Doctor of Physical Therapy ProgramFull-Time FacultySchool of Education and Health Sciences: Doctor of Physical Therapy
Image for Joaquin Alberto Barrios

Barrios, Joaquin Alberto

Assistant ProfessorFull-Time FacultySchool of Education and Health Sciences: Doctor of Physical Therapy
Image for C. Jayne Brahler, Ph.D.

Brahler, Ph.D., C. Jayne

Interim Associate Dean of Graduate Health Sciences and Director of Online LearningFull-Time FacultySchool of Education and Health Sciences: Office of the Dean, Doctor of Physical Therapy
Image for Trista Cathcart

Cathcart, Trista 

Admissions CoordinatorStaffSchool of Education and Health Sciences: Doctor of Physical Therapy
Image for James R. Cropper

Cropper, James R.

Assistant Academic Coordinator of Clinical EducationPart-Time FacultySchool of Education and Health Sciences: Doctor of Physical Therapy
Image for Betsy K. Donahoe-Fillmore

Donahoe-Fillmore, Betsy K.

Associate Professor and DPT Pediatrics CoordinatorFull-Time FacultySchool of Education and Health Sciences: Doctor of Physical Therapy
Image for Mary Insana Fisher

Fisher, Mary Insana

Assistant ProfessorFull-Time FacultySchool of Education and Health Sciences: Doctor of Physical Therapy
Image for Sean Gallivan

Gallivan, Sean 

Academic Coordinator of Clinical EducationFull-Time FacultySchool of Education and Health Sciences: Doctor of Physical Therapy
Image for Terri Glenn

Glenn, Terri 

Clinical Assistant ProfessorFull-Time FacultySchool of Education and Health Sciences: Doctor of Physical Therapy
Image for Vicki Hill

Hill, Vicki 

Senior SecretaryStaffSchool of Education and Health Sciences: Doctor of Physical Therapy
Image for Kurt Jackson

Jackson, Kurt 

Associate Professor and Neurology CoordinatorFull-Time FacultySchool of Education and Health Sciences: Doctor of Physical Therapy
Image for Lori Mann

Mann, Lori 

Office CoordinatorStaffSchool of Education and Health Sciences: Doctor of Physical Therapy
Image for Harold L. Merriman

Merriman, Harold L.

Associate ProfessorFull-Time FacultySchool of Education and Health Sciences: Doctor of Physical Therapy

Expanding opportunities for students

The University of Dayton Doctor of Physical Therapy Class of 2010 established a scholarship for a DPT second year student. The recipient is to be in good academic standing and must demonstrate a financial need as determined by the Office of Scholarships and Financial Aid.

A University scholarship is endowed when it reaches the $25,000 level. We are steadily working towards our goal and will award $500 to a deserving student with a financial need in the 2013-2014 academic year. We are blessed to have such a giving group of students, alumni, friends and colleagues in the health care field and appreciate your gifts to ensure the successful careers of our graduates.

If you would like to contribute to the “Department of Physical Therapy, Class of 2010 Scholarship” at the University of Dayton, please click the link below.

Give now >>

Apply to the DPT Program!

Choosing a university is an important step to your overall academic career. It's important to make sure that the institutions to which you apply have the programs and resources that meet your personal and academic needs.

We believe that the School of Education & Health Sciences offers some of the best academic and student-services programs. Our students are some of the most accomplished and motivated students anywhere. Explore the university for yourself. Use the links below to learn more about what it takes to be a Flyer.

Application Information


For 2013-2014, the University of Dayton will be using the Physical Therapy Common Application System (PTCAS). To learn more about the PTCAS application process, please visit www.ptcas.org.

Application Deadlines


  • PTCAS Application Opens: July 2, 2013
  • Soft Deadline: October 1, 2013
  • Firm Deadline: December 2, 2013
  • Last Acceptable GRE Test Date: September 18, 2013

Only applicants who apply before the October 1, 2013, deadline will be given priority consideration for the first round of on-campus interviews held in December. Applicants applying after October 1 and prior to December 2, will be considered for the final round of interviews held in February.

Application Requirements


Applicants to the DPT program are required to submit the following information through the PTCAS application:

  • Official academic records of all previously attended colleges or universities.  These records must be submitted directly from the colleges or universities to PTCAS. Hand-carried transcripts, official copies marked Issued to Student, and unofficial copies are not acceptable. Applicants selected for admission will be required to submit all original and final transcripts directly to the program.
  • Three letters of recommendation are required. One letter must be from a licensed physical therapist. One letter must be from a professor. The other letter may be from a physical therapist, a physical therapist assistant, a professor, an advisor, or an employer. Evaluators must know applicants in a professional or academic capacity.
  • Official GRE results: Submit results directly to PTCAS GRE Code 0294.
  • Completion of prerequisite courses: Applicants that have outstanding prerequisite courses at the time of application must clearly indicate their plans for completion prior to the start of the program.
  • Program-specific questions
  • Clinical observation record: Eighty hours of observation under a licensed physical therapist in at least two distinctly different physical therapy patient care settings. A minimum of 20 hours must be completed in an inpatient setting. All hours must be verified by a licensed physical therapist.
  • Additional requirements for international students can be found online at http://www.udayton.edu/apply/international.php.

Academic Requirements


  • Bachelor's degree from an accredited college or university
  • Minimum 3.0 cumulative GPA across all schools attended
  • Minimum 3.0 GPA for all prerequisite science courses
  • Minimum 3.0 GPA for all general prerequisite courses
  • Grade of C or better in all prerequisite courses.  Grades of C- or lower will not be accepted.
  • Minimum of 64 semester credits and four or more prerequisite science courses with labs must be completed at the time of application.
  • Completion of all prerequisite science courses must be within the past ten years. Science coursework that is older than 10 years will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis.
  • College Level Examination Program (CLEP) and online courses may only be used to fulfill general prerequisites. Advanced Placement (AP) Credit will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis. CLEP, online, and AP credit must be indicated on a college transcript for consideration.

Prerequisite Course Requirements


You may wish to complete the Advising/Prerequisite Worksheet (pdf) to track your requirements. This worksheet is for your use and should not be submitted as part of the PTCAS application.

Science Prerequisites

All sciences must be general/college-level courses for science or pre-med majors. All sciences must be completed in a traditional classroom/lab format. Online courses are not accepted. All science courses must have been completed within the past 10 years.

  • Full sequence of Anatomy and Physiology with labs
  • Full sequence of General Biology with labs
  • Full sequence of General Chemistry with labs
  • Full sequence of General Physics with labs
  • Exercise Physiology with lab

General Prerequisites

  • General Psychology: General/Introductory Psychology
  • Human Development: A lifespan development course covering physical, social, and psychological development, beginning with conception and ending at death. Applicants may also fulfill this requirement by completing a combination of both: Child/Adolescent Psychology and Adult/Aging Psychology. 
  • Statistics: A basic statistics course covering statistical analysis up through and including ANOVA.
  • Research Methods: An introduction to research methodology.  The course should cover topics including design and evaluation of research using human subjects, accessing data banks, data collection, analysis, and interpretation. Senior, honors, and independent research project courses will be considered on a case by case basis.  Please provide a description of your project including your role/involvement with statistical test selection, data collection/analysis/interpretation, and project design/methodology, as well as publication/ presentation plans to tcathcart1@udayton.edu.
  • Oral Communication: A communications or speech course in which the primary focus of the course is public speaking.
  • Medical Terminology

Prerequisite Retake Policy


Applicants must indicate on the Prerequisite Worksheet when a course has been retaken; failure to do so may result in the disqualification of the applicant.  If a course has been retaken, the University of Dayton Doctor of Physical Therapy Program will permit an applicant to substitute the higher grade for a maximum of: one (1) biological science prerequisite, one (1) physical sciences prerequisite and one (1) general prerequisite course or lab. If additional courses have been retaken in the biological sciences, physical sciences or general prerequisite sections, then an average of all attempts will be calculated into the respective GPA.

Let us know how we can help you!

Doctor of Physical Therapy
School of Education & Health Sciences
300 College Park Ave.
Dayton, OH 45469-2925

Phone: 937-229-5600
Fax: 937-229-5601

Philip Anloague, PT, DHSc, OCS, MTC
Assistant Professor and Doctor of Physical Therapy Program Director
(937) 229-5600

Sean Gallivan, PT, MS, NCS
Assistant Academic Coordinator of Clinical Education
(937) 229-5606

Trista Cathcart
Admissions Coordinator
(937) 229-5611

Lori J. Mann
Office Coordinator
(937) 229-5603

Vicki Hill
Senior Administrative Secretary
(937) 229-5600