The Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) degree is a post-baccalaureate degree that indicates an individual’s successful completion of a doctoral-level physical therapy program, which fulfills the requirements to enter the professional field of physical therapy. The DPT degree was formulated by the American Physical Therapy Association (APTA) whose Vision Statement for the Physical Therapy Profession is as follows:
Transforming society by optimizing movement to improve the human experience.
The DPT Program is a 3-year, 118-credit hour graduate program that reflects Emory & Henry’s core values of addressing issues of public concern through professions that contribute to the public good and educating professionals who are critical thinkers prepared to meet the challenges of a changing healthcare environment. The coursework in the professional program is organized into curricular themes, with the emphasis in the first year on foundational clinical sciences, introductory clinical skills, and applied clinical sciences. The coursework in the second and third years emphasizes advanced clinical sciences and skills, and critical inquiry courses necessary to prepare knowledgeable and competent physical therapists.
Threaded throughout the curriculum are courses on various professional issues where learning experiences and community engagement, including service-learning, foster the development of a professional identity essential for a competent and caring physical therapist. The clinical education components of the program, including five part-time clinical immersions (semesters 2-6) and three full-time clinical internships (semesters 7-9), allow students to practice the profession at an entry level in various clinical settings under the supervision of licensed and experienced physical therapists.