DPT Prerequisites

Physical Therapy Prerequisite Course Guidelines

Matriculation into the Doctor of Physical Therapy program requires: 

  • The successful completion of undergraduate prerequisite course work in Anatomy and Physiology, Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Statistics, Mathematics, Psychology (see descriptions below)
  • Completion of all prerequisites AND undergraduate courses prior to beginning the PT program
  • A GPA of a 3.2 or better in these prerequisites is considered competitive.

DPT Prerequisite Course Descriptions

1. BIOLOGY 8 credits. Two semesters of college biology with laboratories, to include: cell biology, energetics, genetics and evolution. Organismal functions should be studied, including active transport systems, nutrition, control of internal environment, hormonal and neural control and reproduction. (SHU equivalent: BI 111/113, BI 112/114)

2. GENERAL CHEMISTRY 8 credits. A two-semester college sequence with laboratories, to include: laws and theories of chemistry, atomic and molecular structure, chemical bonding, and acid/base theories. Principles of thermodynamics and electrochemistry, ionic relationships and basic concepts of biochemistry should be included. (SHU equivalent: CH 151/153, CH 152/154) A semester of inorganic and a semester of organic chemistry, each with laboratories, will also fulfill the requirement.

3. HUMAN ANATOMY AND PHYSIOLOGY 8 credits. A two-semester college sequence with laboratories, to include: (1) systemic human anatomy of cardiovascular, musculoskeletal, neurosensory/motor, respiratory, digestive, excretory and integumentary organ systems; and (2) systemic human physiology of cardiovascular, musculoskeletal, neurosensory/motor, respiratory, digestive, excretory and integumentary organ systems. (SHU equivalent: BI 131-132)

4. GENERAL PHYSICS 8 credits. A two-semester college sequence with laboratories, to include: vectors and forces; linear and angular acceleration; concepts of work and energy including such basic instruments as levers and pulleys; and mechanical and thermal properties of matter. Topics of vibration, light and sound wave forms, electricity, magnetism and properties of electromagnetic fields should also be included. (SHU equivalent: PY 111/113, PY 112/114)

5. MATH 3-4 credits. A one-semester course of pre-calculus level math or above to prepare students for the concepts of physics described above. Concepts should include at least set theory, symbolic logic, algebraic functions, polynomial and rational functions and analytic trigonometry. (SHU equivalent: MA 140)

6. STATISTICS 3-4 credits. A one-semester course in probability and elementary statistics to include: descriptive and inferential statistics such as concepts of distribution, central tendency, variation and consideration of both parametric and non-parametric tests. (SHU equivalent: MA 131)

7. PSYCHOLOGY 6-8 credits. Two semesters of psychology, to include: general or introductory psychology and a second course of the student's choice. (SHU equivalent: PS 101/PS 102)