Mary S. Shall, PT, Ph.D.
Professor and chair
D.P.T. admissions coordinator
VCU’s Department of Physical Therapy offers a three-year degree program leading to a Doctor of Physical Therapy. The professional track prepares students for entry into the profession by teaching them to evaluate and manage patients with physical therapy problems effectively and in accordance with ethical principles. It also provides students with strategies to continually define and meet their own educational needs in order to keep skills and knowledge current throughout their professional careers.
Applicants must meet the following requirements for entry into the Doctor of Physical Therapy program:
- A Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science degree from an accredited college or university. A grade of "D" in any required prerequisite course is not acceptable.
- A minimum grade-point average of 2.7 (in a 4.0 system).
- The Graduate Record Examination. Scores should be reported directly to VCU.
- For nonnative English-speaking applicants, regardless of immigration status, a Test of English as a Foreign Language score of at least 600 (score of 250 on computerized exam). Scores should be reported directly to VCU.
- A minimum total of 100 volunteer hours in at least two physical therapy practice settings.
- Three recommendations, with at least one from a physical therapist.
Application deadline is Nov. 2. Visit the Department of Physical Therapy Web site for application instructions.
Student learning outcomes
- Examine, diagnose individuals with disabilities
- Effectively examine, evaluate, diagnose and determine the prognosis of individuals with impairments, functional limitations and disabilities.
- Apply health promotion principles and practices
- Apply health promotion principles and practices in primary, secondary and tertiary prevention.
- Manage PT problems in a safe, ethical manner
- Manage physical therapy problems in a safe, ethical, legal and professional manner.
- Use appropriate educational principles
- Use appropriate educational principles to design methods to teach patients/clients, caregivers, colleagues and other health care professionals.
- Manage changes in physical function
- Effectively manage changes in the physical function and health status of patients/clients.
- Select and implement safe PT interventions
- Select and implement safe and effective physical therapy interventions and assess the subsequent outcomes.
- Determine the need for further examination or consultation
- Determine the need for further examination or consultation by another physical therapist or for referral to another health care professional.
- Manage human and material resources
- Manage human and material resources and services to provide high quality and cost effective physical therapy services in diverse settings.
- Apply concepts and principles of management
- Apply concepts and principles of management to effectively supervise support personnel to whom tasks have been delegated.
- Effectively document patient information
- Effectively document patient information and physical therapy services to colleagues in an organized, logical and concise manner.
- Integrate principles of critical inquiry to evaluate, interpret and utilize professional literature in clinical practice
- Participate in clinical research activities, and critically analyze new concepts in the application of physical therapy practice.
- Effectively communicate with patients
- Effectively communicate, verbally and non-verbally, with patients and their caregivers, health care personnel and members of the community.
- Demonstrate awareness of social, economic factors
- Demonstrate an awareness of the influence of social, economic, legislative and demographic factors of the delivery of health care.
- Demonstrate understanding of lifelong learning
- Demonstrate an understanding of the importance of lifelong learning and a commitment to the physical therapy profession.