Our new Physical Therapy program features state-of-the-art equipment and facilities and a contemporary curriculum to train compassionate physical therapists.

  • Enter our program as a freshman Health Science major

  • Guaranteed entry into the DPT curriculum in year 4 is contingent upon meeting all undergraduate progression standards

This 3+3 accelerated program allows an exceptionally qualified high school graduate to enter the University as a freshman student to pursue a bachelor of science in health science degree in the first 4 years of study, followed by completion of the remaining 2 years in the graduate phase of the DPT program.  The program is competitive and continuation beyond admission depends on each student’s academic progression.

The curriculum includes courses that will use DeSales’ new gross anatomy laboratory, medical simulation center, and standardize patient care suites.  

Important deadlines:
  • December 15 - Application
  • January 15 - Interview

In addition to the University's undergraduate admission requirements, qualified candidates to the freshman entry program must meet these additional DPT program admission requirements:

  • Enter the University from high school in the top 10% of the graduating class, with a strong mathematics and science background

  • Minimum GPA of 3.75 in all mathematics and science courses (on a 4.0 GPA scale)

  • 3 or 4 math courses, including algebra, geometry, trigonometry and pre-calculus

  • 3 or 4 science courses, including biology, chemistry and physics, with human anatomy and physiology strongly encouraged if available

  • Minimum combined critical reading and math score of 1270 on the SAT; minimum ACT score of 26, with no subsection score below 24

  • Demonstrate understanding of and ability to meet all Technical Standards and Essential Functions of physical therapy practice


Learn About Our Graduate Program

Physical Therapy News

Doctor of Physical Therapy Program Receives National Accreditation

by Janelle Hill | Jun 09, 2017


DeSales University’s Doctor of Physical Therapy program has received accreditation from the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE).

“Accreditation for a new DPT program is a really challenging, three-year process,” says Dr. Kay Malek, director of the DPT program. “It's not a slam dunk.”

Receiving accreditation was imperative since DPT students must graduate from an accredited program before they can sit for the national licensure exam. That meant making sure students in the University’s first DPT class, which began in September of 2014, knew the risks.

“DeSales has a great history of doing health care very well,” says Malek. “We have a strong physician assistant program and a strong nursing program. We're well known in the health-care industry. They [students] recognized that we had the support that we needed from the administration and the health-care community to build a quality program. And we've done exactly that.”

CAPTE viewed the program’s free physical therapy clinics ­— provided by students and faculty four times a year — and its integrated curriculum as strengths. “The design of our curriculum is very unique,” Malek says. “We integrate the basic science coursework alongside the clinical application. Our clinicians are finding that our students are better clinical thinkers because they learned in an integrated way.” 

The program also received a special commendation from CAPTE, which recognized DeSales for “the development and implementation of a strong, professional doctoral program in physical therapy and for the quality of its Self-Study Report.”

The accreditation took effect on April 26 and lasts until June 30, 2022. The program will graduate its first class of 24 students on September 1, 2017. Students will be honored before that during a recognition and awards ceremony on July 21.

Going forward more big things are in store for students and the program. Next spring, the first pair of DPT students will travel to Perugia, Italy, for an eight-week clinical rotation. Malek is also looking into expanding opportunities to the existing clinical community by offering continuing education in an annual symposium format. “Our goal is to contribute to the ongoing knowledge and educational foundation for our graduates and for clinicians in the region so that we can enhance the quality of physical therapy services in our community.”

The Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education is an accrediting agency that is nationally recognized by the U.S. Department of Education (USDE) and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA). CAPTE currently accredits more than 200 physical therapist education programs and more than 250 physical therapist assistant education programs in the United States.

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