Admissions Standards

COVID-19 Application Exceptions

Prerequisites

The program will accept S/N, P/F grades for prerequisites taken during the Spring 2020 and Summer 2020 semesters. We will accept S/N, P/F grades for one prerequisite course taken Fall 2020 with approval from the Program. Please complete this form for that approval. Online labs are approved for prerequisites taken Spring 2020-Spring 2022. 

Please be aware that taking multiple prerequisites pass/fail has the potential to impact the competitiveness of the application. 

Letter grades will be required for all prerequisites taken Spring 2021. 

Observation Hours

We are waiving the 100-hour observation requirement for the 2021-2022 admissions cycle. Applicants are encouraged to detail any hours earned, or other experiences with the physical therapy profession, as part of the application. 

Letters of Recommendation

We are waiving the requirement to obtain a letter of recommendation from a physical therapist for the 2021-2022 admissions cycle. Two letters are still required. 

Admissions Information

Timeline

The Doctor in Physical Therapy program offers rolling admissions from July 1-March 31. Each application is considered as it is received, and decisions are made within 6-8 weeks. Enrollment is limited to 60 students each year, and the program typically fills before March. We encourage you to apply early. 

The application for the 2021-2022 application cycle will be available July 1, 2021. Please see the How to Apply page for application instructions. 

Selection Process

All applicants that meet the application requirements are considered, regardless of their state of residency, race, ethnicity, gender identity, gender expression, sexual orientation, disability, age, national origin, religious practice, and socioeconomic status. Selection is made on a competitive basis giving consideration to all of the applicant’s qualifications. 

Requirements

Please refer to the Covid-19 Application Exceptions in the above tab for exceptions applied to the current cycle.

Incomplete applications will not be reviewed. Applicants are responsible for ensuring all requirements have been met.

  • Baccalaureate degree or equivalent from an accredited university or college earned by June 1 of the year of admission. There is no preferred major.
  • Prerequisite coursework with a letter grade of C or above. Medical terminology is accepted pass/fail. Refer to the Prerequisite section below for detailed information on our required prerequisite courses. 
  • 100 observation hours in a clinical physical therapy setting (work, volunteer, or shadow). Exposure to multiple and varied areas of PT practice is recommended. This requirement is currently waived. 
  • Graduate Record Examination (GRE) scores. The University GRE code is 6874.
  • Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) scores for international students.
  • Two letters of recommendation. One must be from a physical therapist with whom the applicant has completed observation hours. The letter from a PT is currently waived, but two letters are still required. 
  • Ability to meet the Technical Standards with or without reasonable accommodations.
  • Applicants are also asked to provide answers to several narrative questions.
  • All accepted students must be able to submit complete immunization records and will have federal and state background studies before beginning the program. 

Prerequisites

All prerequisite courses must be completed with a letter grade of C or above by June 1 of the year of admission. Only two prerequisites may be incomplete when the application is submitted. Only two prerequisites may be met with AP (4 and above) or IB scores (6 and above). 

UMN DPT Planning Guide

  • Biology
  • Chemistry
  • Human Anatomy
  • Human Physiology
  • Physics
  • Statistics
  • Calculus
  • Psychology
  • Medical Terminology
  • Biology

    Two Semesters

    1) General Biology, lab required
    2) A second Biology course of the student's choice, lab required

    Biology courses must be cell-based. We do not accept Exercise Physiology courses to meet the Biology requirement. 

  • Chemistry

    Two Semesters

    1) General Chemistry I, lab required
    2) General Chemistry II, lab required

  • Human Anatomy

    One Semester

    1) Human Anatomy, lab required

    If taking Anatomy and Physiology, A&P I and II must be taken to meet the Anatomy and Physiology prerequisite requirements. 

  • Human Physiology

    One Semester

    1) Human Physiology, lab required

    If taking Anatomy and Physiology, A&P I and II must be taken to meet the Anatomy and Physiology prerequisite requirements. 

  • Physics

    Two Semesters

    1) Physics I, lab required
    2) Phyiscs II, lab required

    Content must include mechanics and electricity.

  • Statistics

    One Semester

    1) Statistics

    ANOVA and regression analysis content strongly recommended. 

  • Calculus

    One Semester

    1) Calculus

    Applied Calculus, Short Calculus, and Intro to Calculus courses are accepted. We do not accept Pre-Calculus. 

  • Psychology

    Two Semesters

    1) General Psychology
    2) Abnormal Psychology

    We specifically require Abnormal Psychology and do not accept Lifespan or Developmental Psychology to meet the prerequisite requirement. 

  • Medical Terminology

    One Semester

    1) Medical Terminology

    This course is accepted pass/fail. 

Admission Standards FAQs

Application instructions may be found on the How to Apply page. 

Do you accept AP or IB courses for prerequisite coursework?
Yes, applicants may meet two prerequisite requirements with AP scores of 4 or above or IB scores of 6 or above. An unofficial score report must be uploaded to the application.

How many prerequisites can be unfinished at the time of application?
Only two. If you have more that you are currently taking or planning to take, please wait until you have grades for those courses before submitting your application.

What if I repeat a prerequisite course? How will my grades for prerequisite courses be considered? 
List previous attempts of prerequisite courses in the prerequisite section. When prompted, choose "Yes" to indicate that the course was later retaken for a better grade. Courses marked “Yes” are listed as previous attempts and are not used to calculate the prerequisite GPA. 

My college/university grades on a A/B basis. How does that translate?
A/B = A-
B/C = B-

May I take Physiology and Anatomy I and II instead of separate courses to fulfill the Anatomy and Physiology prerequisite requirements? 
Yes, but both A&P I and II must be completed to meet both prerequisite requirements. 

How do I know if coursework meets the prerequisite requirements?
Follow the guidelines and compare the course syllabus to the UMN equivalent. Make sure that classes have labs (if required) and are at a level rigorous enough for entering a graduate health program. Applicants are encouraged to email umnptadmissions@umn.edu with any specific questions.

Will you accept courses from a community or technical college?
Yes, we accept coursework from any accredited college or university. 

Do you have a minimum GPA or GRE scores that you look for?
We have a preferred minimum GPA of 3.0. We do not have minimum GRE score requirements; however, you can view our class averages under Admissions Facts.

Do you have a cutoff date for completed coursework?
We strongly recommend that prerequisite courses be completed within the last five years, but it is not mandatory.

How can I make my application competitive?
We closely review all the admissions requirements equally. Additional items for a competitive application could possibly include:

  • Varied PT observation experiences
  • Research experience
  • Evidence of exceptional achievement, aptitude or personal accomplishment not reflected in the academic record or standardized test scores
  • A pattern of steady improvement in academic performance
  • A record of completion of upper-level or honors coursework
  • Extracurricular high school, college or post-college leadership and community involvement and activities
  • Evidence of exceptional motivation, maturity or responsibility
  • Work and volunteer experience in health care or related fields
  • Indication that enrollment would contribute to ethnic, cultural or linguistic diversity within the program
  • Evidence of having overcome social, economic or physical barriers to educational achievement