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Doctor of Physical Therapy, DPT

About the Program

The Doctor of Physical Therapy Program at Georgia Southern University is a full-time, nine-semester program that is comprised of academic coursework and three full-time clinical affiliations (with a minimum of 31 weeks of full-time clinical practice), in addition to other smaller clinical experiences. Upon completion of the program, all students are awarded a Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) degree. All program graduates are eligible to take the National Physical Therapy Examination and apply for state licensure in all jurisdictions.  Admission is limited to 36 students per class.

The Doctor of Physical Therapy program is offered at the Armstrong Campus in Savannah.

Program Contact Information

Admissions Contact
pt_dept@georgiasouthern.edu
912-344-3220

View Information Session Schedule

Admission Requirements

The Georgia Southern University DPT Program participates in the Physical Therapist Centralized Application System (PTCAS). To learn more about the PTCAS application process and apply online, please visit the PTCAS website, ptcas.org. Applicants must review Georgia Southern University’s program page on PTCAS for program-specific prerequisites and application requirements.

Applicants must review Georgia Southern University’s program prerequisites and application requirements and directions on the PTCAS program page. The requirements are also available on the Georgia Southern University DPT Program page.

ALL application documents will be collected by PTCAS.

Prerequisite Courses

  1. Applicants must complete the requirements for a baccalaureate degree and any additional prerequisite coursework from a regionally accredited institution. While any major field of study is acceptable, the degree and all prerequisite courses must be completed prior to matriculation. 
  2. Prospective students must have earned a grade of C or higher in all the prerequisite courses. In the event that courses are taken more than once, grades will be averaged (see below for more information about GPA calculations). Online classes are accepted for fulfillment of prerequisite courses, including lab science courses. AP courses are accepted for fulfillment of prerequisite courses, but they will not be included in GPA calculations.
  3. Applicants must demonstrate an understanding of the social, biological and physical sciences and mathematics so that they can comprehend and integrate physiological, pharmacological, behavioral and biomechanical principles into physical therapy practice.  Applicants must also demonstrate effective oral and written communication skills. 
  4. At least 5 of the 8 prerequisite science courses listed below must be completed at the time of application. 
    1. A one-year sequence of basic (general, inorganic) chemistry with laboratories that is designed for science or health professions majors;
    2. A one-year sequence of general physics with laboratories (both calculus or non-calculus physics are acceptable) that is for science or health professions majors and which include mechanics, electricity, magnetism and light;
    3. A one-year sequence of anatomy and physiology with laboratories (either as two combined anatomy and physiology courses or with one course in physiology and one course in anatomy) which may be lower division human anatomy and physiology courses for health professions majors or upper division vertebrate or human physiology and comparative or developmental anatomy. Applicants are also encouraged to take advanced human physiology and anatomy courses such as exercise physiology, neurophysiology, advanced human physiology, kinesiology and/or biomechanics;
    4. One general biology course with laboratory (botany, ecology, and environmental science are not acceptable substitutes).
    5. One course in statistics (at a minimum, covering measures of central tendency, probability distributions, and linear regression).
  5. Two courses in the social sciences are also required. Abnormal psychology and human development are recommended to fulfill this requirement.
  6. Applicants are also encouraged to take advanced human physiology and anatomy courses such as exercise physiology, neurophysiology, advanced human physiology, kinesiology and/or biomechanics.

GPA

  1. GPA’s are calculated by PTCAS during the application process. Applicants must meet the following GPA requirements in order for their application to be considered.
    1. Minimum overall GPA of 3.0
    2. Minimum physical science GPA of 3.0
  2. Please refer to PTCAS for information about how GPA’s are calculated and which courses are included in the Science GPA. Any coursework completed after an application is submitted will not be considered in the GPA calculations, since it will not be verified by PTCAS.
  3. No grade of D or F will be acceptable for satisfaction of the prerequisite courses. If an applicant earns a grade of D or F in a prerequisite course, that applicant may retake that course only one time. No more than two prerequisite courses may be repeated with the goal of earning a passing grade. Applicants may repeat courses with grades of C or higher to improve their prerequisite course GPA, but repeated courses will be averaged in the calculation of the applicable GPA.

Graduate Record Exam (GRE)

  1. When requesting to have GRE scores sent to Georgia Southern University Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) Program, the appropriate codes to be used are: 
  • school code 7813
  • department code 0619. 
  • If you use any other school code, including 5253 (the general Georgia Southern University code), your GRE score will not be added to your PTCAS application.

2. Applicants must meet the following GRE requirements in order for their application to be considered:

  • Minimum score of 146 on the verbal reasoning section
  • Minimum score of 144 on the quantitative reasoning section
  • For students whose second language is English, a TOEFL score of at least 600 paper-based, 250 computer-based or 80 internet-web-based may be substituted for the minimal verbal GRE score. The TOEFL score is not used in calculating a final application score during review of the applications, as there is no mechanism for converting a TOEFL score into a GRE score. As a result, the applicant’s application score may be lower than those of applicants who took the entire GRE.

The CASPer Test

Altus Suite

All applicants applying to the DPT Program at Georgia Southern University are required to complete an online suite of assessments through Altus Suite (formerly called the CASPer Test), to assist with our selection process for the 2022-2023 Application Cycle.

Altus Suite consists of a two-part online assessment of non-cognitive skills, interpersonal characteristics, and personal values and priorities that we believe are important for successful students and graduates of our program. Altus Suite will complement the other tools that we use for applicant screening. Altus Suite consists of:

  • Casper: a 60-90 minute online situational judgment test (SJT)
  • Snapshot: a 10-minute one-way interview with standardized questions

You will register for Altus Suite for the US Professional Health Sciences test (CSP-10101).

Access www.TakeAltus.com to create an account and for more information on important dates and requirements, and the Altus Suite assessments. Altus Suite results are valid for one admissions cycle.

More information is available at this site.

Physical Therapy Observation Hours

Applicants should have an understanding of the scope of physical therapy practice. This understanding is best developed through observation of physical therapists in multiple types of clinical practice. For the 2022-23 admissions cycle, applicants are recommended to demonstrate a total of 75 hours of observation under a licensed physical therapist.

We acknowledge the impact of COVID-19 on healthcare systems and applicants’ ability to complete observation hours.  As a result, we have moved from requiring 75 observation hours to recommending them. These circumstances will be considered in the review of applications. PT observation hours that have been completed or are planned should be included in the PTCAS application but do not need to be verified by a physical therapist in order to be submitted.

Reference Forms

Applicants are required to submit 3 references, one of which must be written by a physical therapist who has observed and supervised the applicant in a clinical setting. All of the references must be included in the PTCAS application.

Supplemental Material

  1. All potential and enrolled students in the DPT Program must meet intellectual, physical, and social competencies in order to provide safe patient care and successfully complete the program. Applicants must review the Core Performance Standards posted on the DPT Program website (https://chp.georgiasouthern.edu/rehabilitation/graduate-programs/doctor-of-physical-therapy/core-performance-standards/). Applicants are required to review the Core Performance Standards and answer a question about this in the Supplemental Questions section of the PTCAS application.
  2. The following documents are required to apply for admission to the Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) program: Physical Therapist Centralized Application Service (PTCAS) application (www.ptcas.org)official transcripts from every college and university attended, official GRE score reports, three completed references, 75 verified observation hours, and CASPer Test results. ALL application documents, with the exception of CASPer Test results, will be collected by PTCAS.
  3. Meeting the minimum criteria for application does not guarantee admission to the Doctor of Physical Therapy program. It should be noted that the pool of applicants for the program includes many highly qualified persons, and the number of available positions is limited.
  4. All accepted students are required to submit evidence of current health insurance, CPR certification, immunizations, TB test, health appraisal, and GS liability insurance upon matriculation and prior to participation in clinical experiences. Students are also required to complete a background check and drug screening process upon matriculation and as required by clinical sites. Official final transcripts must be submitted upon matriculation.

Admission Process

  1. All applicants must also refer to the Program website information (https://chp.georgiasouthern.edu/rehabilitation/graduate-programs/doctor-of-physical-therapy/) for possible annual-cycle-specific modifications to requirements and processes.
  2. Program applications are available through the Physical Therapist Centralized Application Service website (www. ptcas.org). The Georgia Southern University Graduate Studies application is not used.
  3. Specific application deadlines are set annually and are posted at the PTCAS (www.ptcas.org) and program (https://chp.georgiasouthern.edu/rehabilitation/graduate-programs/doctor-of-physical-therapy/) websites. More information about the admissions timeline is also available at the program website.
  4. A half-day, in-person interview is required for admission. Interviews are scheduled by invitation only.
  5. Students selected for admission must formally accept the position and submit a non-refundable deposit. Students who matriculate in the DPT Program at Georgia Southern University will have their deposits refunded during the first week of classes.

*International transcripts must be evaluated by World Education Services (WES) through the PTCAS application. Select the WES ‘course by course’ option with grades. Please check the PTCAS website for specific instructions about transcripts.

Deadlines

Priority Application Deadline: September 2, 2022

If an applicant’s PTCAS application (including observation hours and references), official transcripts, and GRE scores are submitted by September 2, 2022, their application will be guaranteed full consideration.

GRE Deadline for Priority Applications: August 26, 2022

In order to receive priority consideration, applicants must take the GRE and request scores be submitted to School Code 7813 by August 26, 2022. Scores will be accepted from tests taken at testing centers and through GRE at Home.

CASPer Test for Priority Applications: September 13, 2022

This is the last test date for Priority Deadline applicants.

Final Application Deadline: October 17, 2022

This is the final deadline to submit your application in PTCAS. Applicants must request their official transcripts ahead of this deadline so that their application will be complete.

Final GRE Deadline: October 3, 2022

Applicants submitting their application by the Final Deadline must take the GRE and request scores to be submitted to School Code 7813 by October 3, 2022. Scores will be accepted from tests taken through GRE at Home.

Final CASPer Test: October 27, 2022

This is the last CASPer test date for applicants submitting their application by the Final Deadline.

Last updated: 4/19/2022