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Professional Doctorate in Physical Therapy (D.P.T.)

Professional Doctorate in Physical Therapy (D.P.T.)

Post-bachelor's applications will be considered for entry each summer.

The Simmons Professional D.P.T. Program provides a strong foundation in evidence-based clinical practice and prepares students to become dynamic leaders in the profession. This three-year, full-time program is designed for men and women who have three years of undergraduate work at Simmons or a college degree in a field other than physical therapy from another institution.

Our real-world approach to teaching personally engages each student. Although many courses involve the traditional lecture approach, all of our clinical courses, starting with the fall semester of the first year, have 4 important components: lecture, skills laboratory, small group discussion and one day per week of clinical practice. The program also includes 45 weeks of full-time clinical education experiences, known as clinical internships, during the three years. Because doctoral-level practice requires an understanding of clinical research, students collaborate with faculty to either complete a research project or implement a systematic review, a comprehensive critical analysis of the evidence on a topic of their choice.

D.P.T. students attend classes both at Simmons and Harvard Medical School. In addition, more than 200 nationwide health care sites provide a wide of range of clinical education experience and valuable professional connections. All clinical sites are reviewed and approved by the Simmons Director of Clinical Education to insure a high level of mentorship, experienced clinical practitioners, consistent and appropriate patient availability and certified clinical instructors.

Men and women with a baccalaureate degree in a field other than physical therapy may apply to this program. Applicants must have successfully completed the prerequisites (please click here for more information about our prerequisites) prior to the beginning of the program at the end of June.

The Professional Doctorate Program

The professional program requires a full-time commitment of three years and culminates in the Doctor of Physical Therapy (D.P.T.) degree. Students begin the program in the summer session (the last week of June.) The summer semester consists of an intense seven week program in Advanced Human Anatomy at Harvard Medical School. The faculty use many different teaching styles to appeal to students who have different preferred styles of learning. This is another example of the individualized attention and assistance our students receive in the program. The class consists of cadaver dissection, lectures, and workshops in palpation and osteology. A computerized, three-dimensional program on-line provides student access to the human form whether they are on campus, at home or in a library...or coffee shop.

The curriculum is designed to educate women and men to serve patients in the areas of health promotion, disease prevention, and rehabilitation. The didactic and clinical course material in each semester is well integrated to allow students to synthesize and apply newly acquired knowledge and skills. More than 200 clinical sites, located across the country, are affiliated with Simmons College and provide students with the opportunity to participate in the practice of physical therapy under the mentorship of skilled clinicians.

The Physical Therapy Program at Simmons College is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Educations (CAPTE), 1111 North Fairfax Street, Alexandria, Virginia 22314; telephone: 703-706-3245; email:; website: