The Department of Physical Therapy offers two avenues for admission into the Doctor of Physical Therapy Degree Program.
- Traditional Pathway
- Health Sciences Pathway
Regardless of the route of application, all applicants are held to the same standards and must apply through the Physical Therapist Centralized Application Service.
This pathway will require candidates to possess a baccalaureate degree from an accredited college or university (degree in any field) or be in the senior year of undergraduate study. A completed bachelor degree will be required prior to enrollment in the DPT Program, as evidenced by a final official college/university transcript. A minimum overall grade point average (for both undergraduate and, if applicable, graduate study) of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale will be required.
Traditional pathway applicants will be scored on admissions criteria as described in the admissions process.
Health Sciences Pathway
The Methodist University Health Sciences Pathway will provide academically qualified Methodist University undergraduate students the opportunity to enhance their undergraduate study through a unique connection to the University's clinical doctoral program in physical therapy. The pathway will challenge the Methodist University candidate academically in preparation for the exclusive opportunity of preferential consideration for admission into the DPT Program upon successful completion of a Methodist University bachelor degree.
This pathway is open to all traditional freshman students admitted to Methodist University who desire to pursue a bachelor degree in the following majors:
In addition to the courses that are required as part of the bachelor degrees in the candidate's chosen field of study, the student applying for admission through this pathway will also be required to complete the same prerequisite courses as candidates applying through the Traditional Pathway.
Applicants applying through the Health Sciences Pathway will be scored on the same admissions criteria as described in the admissions process. However, these candidates will be guaranteed an interview opportunity for a place in the program's entering class by meeting the minimum qualifications outlined.
With a solid interview and application file (as determined by DPT Program faculty), the Health Sciences Pathway students will be offered first opportunity to join the entering class for the doctoral program. While not a guarantee of admission, the Health Sciences Pathway provides preferred applicant status, which is extremely beneficial in competitive admissions environments.
Methodist University Department of Physical Therapy and six Universities have established articulation agreements. Articulation agreements provide a relationship between partnering Universities that ensures a streamlined admissions process for a limited number of undergraduate students.
Applicants who have completed the pre-requisites and receive a baccalaureate degree from Baptist Memorial College of Health Sciences, Bridgewater College, College of Saint Elizabeth, Lyndon State College, Waynesburg University, or Winthrop University should familiarize themselves with the information contained in the relevant articulation agreement.
In addition to the courses that are required as part of the bachelor degrees in the candidate's chosen field of study, the student applying for admission through this pathway are also be required to complete the same prerequisite courses as candidates applying through the Traditional Pathway.
Applicants applying through one of the six articulation agreements are scored on the same admissions criteria as described in the admissions process. However, these candidates are guaranteed an interview opportunity for a place in the program's entering class by meeting the minimum qualifications outlined. With a solid interview and application file (as determined by DPT Program faculty), the articulation agreement students will be offered first opportunity to join the entering class for the doctoral program.
Consistent with the University admission policy, admission to the Methodist University DPT Program is without regard or discrimination on the basis of race, religion, national origin, sex, age, marital status, or status with regard to public assistance or disability. However, becoming a physical therapist requires the completion of an education program which is intellectually as well as physically challenging, that the candidate should be able to perform in a reasonably independent manner, and that reasonable accommodation does not mean that students with disabilities are exempt from certain tasks inherent to the profession of physical therapist.
All Candidates for admission must submit the following:
- Apply through the Physical Therapist Centralized Application Service (PTCAS)
- Provide three references:
- Faculty member in the applicant's major, and
- Licensed physical therapist (not related to the applicant), and
- Another faculty member or licensed physical therapist (not related to the applicant)
- Applicants must submit to PTCAS official copies of all transcripts from institutions of higher education attended, even if the applicant did not receive a degree. Applicants will also be required to submit official Graduate Record Examination (GRE) scores.
Applications for the Fall 2018 admissions cycle will have a firm deadline of October 1, 2018.
Please submit all application materials through PTCAS at www.ptcas.org.
Applicant Review Process
Prior to being submitted to the Admissions Committee, all courses and grades entered by the applicant will be verified by the DPT Program Admissions Director. In addition, the DPT Program Admissions Director will verify that the applicant has completed all of the required prerequisite coursework and note outstanding courses, if any. Once the application has been verified, the information will be forwarded to the DPT Program Admissions Committee for the initial phase of the admissions process.
The initial phase (Phase I) of the admissions process is designed to insure that students enrolled in the DPT Program possess the academic credentials to successfully complete the program of study. A number of criteria are used during this phase of the admissions process to score the applicants. The Admissions Committee will use the following criteria:
- Undergraduate Cumulative Grade Point Average (GPA): The applicant's total GPA for credit hours taken at the undergraduate level.
- GPA of Prerequisite Course Work: The applicant's GPA calculated on the prerequisite courses required for admission into the DPT Program.
- Science GPA: The applicant's GPA calculated on science courses including biology, physics, and chemistry including lower and upper level courses.
- Graduate Record Examination Scores: Quantitative, Verbal Reasoning, and Analytical Writing scores.
Additional factors that may affect the applicant's score during Phase I of the admissions process include:
- Assessment of the clinical experience (paid and volunteer) attained by the applicant prior to submitting the application. While clinical experience is not required, it is a desired qualification for admission into the DPT Program. Clinical experience will be evaluated on two different levels.
- Variety of clinical sites. The DPT Program Admissions Committee and faculty believe that if a student independently seeks clinical experience in one or more sites (orthopedic, acute care, rehabilitation center, skilled nursing center etc.), this demonstrates a desire to become a physical therapist. In addition, we (core faculty) also feel that seeking experiential learning opportunities speaks to the applicant's ability to seek out appropriate resources in his/her decision making process. As such, points may be awarded to the applicant's Phase I score.
- Quantity of hours. The DPT Program Admissions Committee and faculty also believe that if a student has spent an extended amount of time in the physical therapy practice setting, he/she will have a better understanding of the profession and relationships with various stakeholders including patients, other health professionals, staff, and third party payers. Therefore, the Admissions Committee may also award points for the number of hours an applicant has spent in the clinical environment prior to submitting an application for admission.
- Graduate level GPA. Students with graduate level experience earn additional points based on their cumulative GPA of all graduate level courses. The faculty values the skills and study habits that are inherently developed as part of graduate level education. Therefore, if an applicant has successfully completed at least one year of graduate level education, we will calculate a graduate level GPA and award points based on that GPA value to his/her Phase I application score.
Scoring rubrics for each of the criteria will be used to produce a Phase I admission score. This calculated score will be used by the DPT Program Admissions Committee to determine the top applicants who will then be moved into Phase II of the admissions process.
Phase II of the application process is an onsite interview. Applicants will be selected for an interview based on the Phase I admission score. The DPT Program will invite the top 100-120 applicants for an onsite interview with the DPT faculty and students. The interview process involves a series of program interactions and individual interviews. During this process applicants will be assessed on non-cognitive factors such as, but not limited to: expressed knowledge about the profession of physical therapy, compatibility with the program and profession, professionalism, communication (verbal and non-verbal), ethical decision making, problem solving, and critical thinking skills. Based on this process, an interview score (Phase II score) will be awarded to each candidate and added to his or her academic score (Phase I score) that was based on the application materials.
After the interviews are completed, core faculty will meet to rank order the applicants based on the total application score. However, faculty will also have the opportunity to advocate for applicants for whom they believe non-cognitive factors (Phase II) outweigh a lower academic score (Phase 1). Therefore, the core faculty of the DPT Program makes all final admissions decisions. Through this process the faculty will identify the top 40 applicants for acceptance and create a 40-80 person wait list for admission to the DPT Program.
Due to the highly competitive nature for recruiting the best students, the deadline for admissions occurs fairly early (October). Therefore, some students may have two pre-requisite courses that need to be completed in the spring prior to enrollment. To ensure that all of the prospective students have completed all of the required prerequisite courses, they are eligible to receive provisional acceptance to the program. For example, students who are accepted to the program but are completing final pre-requisite courses are provided with a provisional letter of acceptance. This letter is used by the program to communicate which of the programs pre-requisites courses need to be completed before they are allowed to matriculate into the program. In addition, the provisional letter delineates required levels of achievement for the outstanding coursework. Before being enrolled in the DPT program, students must submit their final transcripts to the Director of Admissions to demonstrate completion of the courses and ensure that they have satisfactorily met all obligations. The information is forwarded to the Admissions Chairman, who in consultation with the Program Director, provides the student permission to enroll in the DPT program.