Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT)
The Doctor of Physical Therapy curriculum includes 11 consecutive quarters of instruction with a new class beginning each autumn. Attendance is full-time during the day on Monday through Friday. Enrolled students complete over 150 required credits and the average load per quarter is 15 credits. Clinical internship assignments are full-time, requiring at least 35 hours per week attendance.
The first phase of the curriculum includes a clinical clerkship, a professional seminar, and the following courses:
- Functional Anatomy
- Gross Anatomy Lab
- Assessment Procedures
- Overview of Rehabilitation Diagnoses
- Exercise Physiology
- Therapeutic Exercise Procedures
- Physical Restoration
- Professional Seminar
- Clinical Clerkship
In addition to completion of a graduate project and three clinical internships, the second phase of the program includes the following courses:
- Management of Musculoskeletal Disorders
- Motor Control
- Physical Therapy Administration
- Rehabilitation Psychology
- Lifespan Issues
- Professional Practice Matters
- Differential Diagnosis
- Prosthetics & Orthotics
- Biomechanics of Exercise
- Capstone Project
- Clinical Internships
Clinical experiences begin between the first and second year of the program, with a four-week clinical clerkship. The final autumn, winter and spring quarters are spent entirely on clinical internships. During this time, students complete three 11-week assignments of supervised, full-time clinical work. The program culminates with the award of a Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) degree.
For more detail on the individual courses and curriculum requirements, please read the Division of Physical Therapy Curriculum Plan (pdf file12kb).
A more detailed listing of courses for the Department of Rehabilitation Medicine (including the physical therapy program) may be found in the University of Washington Course Catalog. The UW DPT Curriculum follows the standard academic calendar.
The final phase of the curriculum includes at least 33 weeks of full-time clinical internships in affiliated health care facilities located primarily in the western United States. Internships are also available in some other areas throughout the country. Because of class size and the number of internship positions available in the Seattle vicinity, students will relocate for a minimum of one internship.
Students will also be required to complete one clinical experience in a non-urban/rural setting. Availability of a car will give students access to the greatest number of facilities for possible placement. All travel and living expenses incurred during clerkships and internships are the responsibility of the student. Outside employment during internships is discouraged.
Student Achievement and Promotion
In order to graduate, students must maintain a 3.0 GPA on required courses (with a minimum of 2.7 in each course) during the professional phase of the program. A required course with a grade below 2.7 may need to be repeated. Students whose performance falls below this level will be placed on academic probation and allowed two quarters to raise their GPAs.
Students must demonstrate professional behavior and a very high rate of attendance throughout the program. In addition, they must receive acceptable grades in each required course, as well as credit for their clinical education experiences. Failure to meet minimum standards will result in dismissal from the program. Decisions regarding student achievement and promotion are made by the Physical Therapy faculty and the Advisory & Evaluation Committee.
To learn more about the Doctor of Physical Therapy Program at the University of Washington, please explore the links below: