Frequently Asked Questions

1.

What is the deadline to submit application materials to PTCAS?

2.

What prerequisite courses are required for the program?

3.

Does the university accept online degrees and course work toward meeting prerequisite requirements?

4.

I took classes at a community college in Washington State. Which courses does University of Puget Sound accept?

5.

What if I have a B- in a prerequisite? Does that mean I can't apply?

6.

What happens if I am in the process of repeating a prerequisite course to raise my grade because it does not meet the minimum grade requirement, but the course is not completed by the November 1 deadline?

7.

Is there any way of being admitted if my GPA does not meet the minimum requirements?

8.

Which section of the GRE test do I take and is there a minimum score?

9.

Is there a preference to take the online or handwritten GRE exam?

10.

Is the GRE exam required to have been taken before the application deadline?

11.

When I apply, my GRE scores will be 5.5 years old; are they acceptable?

12.

I've taken the GRE multiple times, which GRE scores do you use?

13.

Can I have a health care professional other than a licensed physical therapist write my physical therapy recommendation?

14.

Can I submit more than three references with my application?

15.

How many hours of experience and exposure in the field of physical therapy are required for admission?

16.

Is a personal interview required as part of the application process?

17.

Can I transfer physical therapy courses I have taken at another institution in for credit at University of Puget Sound?

18.

What is the profile of students admitted to a recent Puget Sound PT Class?

19.

 What is the total tuition for the DPT? 

20.

Are any scholarships available?

21.

Is a background check required prior to entry in the program?

22.

When should I apply?

23.

How do I know if my application materials have been received?

24.

When will I be notified about admission decisions?

25.

Who is the best resource for me to contact about the PT program?

26.

What is a Doctor of Physical Therapy degree, and how does it differ from a Doctor of Philosophy degree (PhD) or Master of Physical Therapy degree?

27.

What immunizations are required prior to entry in the PT program?

28.

The admission page says the university is test optional. Am I still required to take the GRE?

INTERNATIONAL STUDENTS

1.

I obtained a degree from outside of the United States, but I need single courses to become licensed in the United States. Does your program offer single course completion for credit? 

2.

I obtained my undergraduate degree from outside of the United States. Does your program recognized international degrees?


1. What is the deadline to submit application materials to PTCAS?
November 1st is the firm deadline to e-submit your application to PTCAS. Do NOT wait for PTCAS to receive all of your materials (transcripts, references, etc.) before you submit your application. We suggest that you apply early as it can take up to 4-5 weeks for PTCAS to process your file once it is complete. Be sure to submit the $50 application fee to the Office of Admission. See Physical Therapy Admission Requirements for more information.
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2. What prerequisite courses are required for the program?
Human, comparative, or vertebrate Anatomy & Physiology (human preferred); one year series of physics; one year series of chemistry; statistics, and abnormal behavior or introduction to psychology, each with a minimum grade of "B (3.0). A lab experience is required for A & P, Physics, and Chemistry. We do not require a lab with each course in the series. 
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3. Does the university accept online degrees and course work toward meeting prerequisite requirements?
The program accepts Regionally Accredited Online Degree Programs (those accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities). We accept online or hybrid courses that you have taken as part of your undergraduate degree at your degree granting institution. When completing a prerequisite course outside of your undergraduate degree, you are cautioned that the program strongly recommends traditional, live, on campus, experience for lab requirements. Transcripts can be reviewed by the Office of Admission at admission@pugetsound.edu. Read more under Required Undergraduate Preparation
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4. I took classes at a community college in Washington State. Which courses does University of Puget Sound accept? 
Please use the Guide to Washington State Community College Courses to assist you.
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5. What if I have a B- or lower grade in a prerequisite? Does this mean I can’t apply?
If you have a B- (2.70) or lower grade in a prerequisite course, you have not fulfilled our requirement for this prerequisite. Assuming you have a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or better and you plan to repeat the course prior to enrolling in our program, you can apply. You must indicate on your application that you have a plan to complete the prerequisite before entering our program. It is best if the repeat course is work in progress during fall term. This is similar to degree in progress, in which case you can apply and you can be admitted, but it will be a contingent admission. This means that if you do not successfully fulfill all contingencies, you will not be allowed to enroll with the class.
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6. What happens if I am in the process of repeating a prerequisite course to raise my grade because it does not meet the minimum grade requirement, but the course is not completed by the November 1 deadline?
If you have submitted your PTCAS application by our deadline of November 1 and you included in your written plan course work for fall semester/quarter your file will be evaluated after the academic update deadline set by PTCAS for posting fall grades.
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7. Is there any way of being admitted if my cumulative undergraduate GPA does not meet the minimum requirements?
We require applicants to achieve a minimum cumulative undergraduate GPA of 3.0 or higher. If you do not meet this requirement, you will not be eligible for admission at this time. To be considered in a future admission cycle, you may improve an otherwise insufficient GPA in one of two ways:

1) Complete a second baccalaureate degree or a graduate degree (masters or doctorate). Once a new degree is completed, the most recent degree’s GPA will be used to qualify instead of the initial undergraduate GPA.

2) Repeat lower-graded courses from your original baccalaureate degree. We will recalculate your GPA by replacing earlier courses with more recent repeats to bring up your original GPA accordingly. Repeats do not need to be taken at the original institution, but must cover comparable content to the original courses. Please note that repeating a semester-long course at a quarter-system institution may require completion of two quarter-long courses to cover the same material. Please indicate repeats in your PTCAS application as such.
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8. Which section of the GRE test do I take and is there a minimum score?
Take the general test. The committee looks at the scores from the verbal, quantitative and analytical essay sections of the general test. We do not require minimum scores. The committee will make a judgment on your writing ability based on considering the quality of writing on our application questions combined with your score on the GRE essay section. View the Profile of the Recently Admitted to see the average GPA, GRE scores, and hours of exposure to practice.
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9. Is there a preference to take the online or handwritten GRE exam?
University of Puget Sound accepts official scores from the ETS for the GRE without preference. However, please note that the paper-delivered GRE revised general test is not offered in areas of the world where computer-delivered testing is available. 
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10. Is the GRE exam required to have been taken before the application deadline?
Yes, GRE scores must be submitted before the application close date. On the PTCAS program page, we post a deadline for the application materials and the last accepted GRE test date which is before our submission deadline. 
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11. When I apply, my GRE scores will be 5 1/2 years old; are they acceptable?
No, the GRE must be taken within five years prior to enrollment in the program. You will need to retake the GRE.
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12. I've taken the GRE multiple times, which GRE scores do you use? 
All of your test scores are available in PTCAS. We consider the most recent test. 
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13. Can I have a health care professional other than a licensed physical therapist write my physical therapy recommendation?
No, the admission committee is looking for information specific to the physical therapy profession, therefore, the licensed physical therapist is the only acceptable professional for this reference.
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14. Can I submit more than three references with my application?
PTCAS allows you to submit a maximum of four references. The PT admissions committee requires a minimum of three references, one of which must be from a licensed physical therapist and one must be from an educator who has taught you in a college level course. 
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15. How many hours of experience and exposure in the field of physical therapy are required for admission?
The physical therapy admission committee does not have a specific hour requirement for experience and exposure in the field. The committee does encourage you to obtain experience in a volunteer or paid position, (which must be under the supervision of a licensed physical therapist) in many different physical therapy settings with different patient populations. A minimum of 100 contact hours is recommended. Most importantly, you should be able to communicate an understanding of physical therapy to the admission committee through answers to the physical therapy essay questions contained in the application which can be found on PTCAS. We do not require verification of hours completed.
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16. Is a personal interview required as part of the application process?
No, decisions for admission are made on the application materials submitted. You are strongly encouraged to visit the program and meet the faculty, but information from this visit is not recorded for admission decision purposes. To schedule a visit, register online
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17. Can I transfer physical therapy courses I have taken at another institution in for credit at University of Puget Sound?
No, University of Puget Sound does not accept physical therapy courses from other institutions for credit toward the physical therapy degree. Courses in the Puget Sound program are all designed specially to function as an integrated curriculum.
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18. What is the profile of students admitted to a recent Puget Sound PT class?
You can find the class profile for the most recent entering class online. In addition, successful applicants demonstrate strong writing skills in their application materials, and their recommenders must indicate that they possess excellent character traits.
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19. What is the total tuition for the DPT?
Puget Sound graduate students pay a "per/unit" tuition rate. You can find the most current information about tuition and expenses online. In general, you should plan for tuition rates to go up by some percentage every year at any school. Typical annual tuition increases at University of Puget Sound are two to three percent.
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20. Are any scholarships available? 
Please visit our PT Scholarships page to learn more. 
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21. Is a background check required prior to entry in the program?
No; specifically, you do not need to register or pay for the Certiphi Screening background check as detailed in PTCAS. After admission to the program, you are required to undergo annual local and national criminal background checks needed for clinical education. If your criminal background checks are deemed unsatisfactory you may be denied access to clinical experiences at certain clinical facilities. The PT program may also deny you access to the on-site clinic based on the results of a criminal background check. Failure to complete the clinical education component of the program will prevent you from graduating from the program.

Note:  A previous criminal background may impact your ability to obtain licensure as a physical therapist despite successful completion of the Doctor of Physical Therapy program. For specific information as to whether a criminal record may limit a person’s ability to obtain licensure as a physical therapist in the state of Washington, contact the Washington State Department of Health at www.doh.wa.gov.
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22. When should I apply? 
The application cycle opens in July and ends during the first week of November each year. See our Application Requirements page for more information.
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23. How do I know if my application materials have been received?
You are automatically sent an email notifying you when we receive your PTCAS application. Please note, we only have one application and that is through the PTCAS website. 
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24. When will I be notified about admission decisions?
We begin contacting applicants in late February and continue until all spaces in the program are filled. Please wait for email notifications. 
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25. Who is the best resource for me to contact about the PT program?
You are encouraged to visit our program. A visit may include a campus tour, meeting with professors and current students, and even sitting in on classes. Please register online to schedule a visit. We have two prospective student advisors for this academic year, Dr. Karin Steere and Dr. Holly Roberts  who can  best  be reached via email for specific questions. NOTE: During summer months we do not have faculty on campus. Please email all questions to pt@pugetsound.edu or sign up for a scheduled group meeting online. Please review the FAQs before reaching out to an advisor.
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26. What is a Doctor of Physical Therapy degree, and how does it differ from a Doctor of Philosophy degree (PhD)?The Doctor of Physical Therapy degree is an entry level, clinical degree. All accredited PT programs must confer this degree. The Doctor of Physical Therapy qualifies a graduate to sit for the physical therapy licensure exam, and upon passing that exam, practice physical therapy. It is very different from a PhD, (which some may confuse with it because of the name "doctor" in the title,) because a PhD has a research emphasis rather than a clinical focus. A Doctor of Physical Therapy degree implies a mastery of the current knowledge of the clinical field of physical therapy. PhD training is about creating new knowledge in a field of study.
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27. What immunizations are required prior to entry in the PT program?
In order to register for classes, all newly-enrolling students at the university must have two (2) Measles, Mumps, and Rubella vaccinations; see
Mandatory Immunization for details. The following immunization series, titers, and/or tests are required prior to entering the PT program: Hepatitis B, Varicella, Poliomyelitis, Tetanus/Diphtheria including one Tdap, and a two-step TB test.
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28. The admission page says the university is test optional. Am I still required to take the GRE?
YES. The graduate program admissions are different from the undergraduate programs and the GRE is required.
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International Students

1. I obtained a degree from outside of the United States, but I need single courses to become licensed in the United States. Does University of Puget Sound, School of Physical Therapy offer single course completion for credit?
No, we are a full-time program only and cannot offer single course completion. 
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2. I obtained my undergraduate degree from outside of the United States. Does the School of Physical Therapy recognize international degrees?
Yes, you will need to follow instructions on the PTCAS website as it relates to foreign transcripts and courses.
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