School of Allied Health and Life Sciences

USF/UWF Partnership DPT

University of South Florida/University of West Florida Partnership Doctor of Physical Therapy


The Florida Panhandle is home to a health care industry that is impressive both in size and sophistication. Several other factors converge to make this geographic area an optimal one in which to establish a expansion campus for the University of South Florida School of Physical Therapy & Rehabilitation Sciences nationally ranked CAPTE accredited doctoral program in physical therapy: a significant military presence, a growing senior population, the presence of a set of quality programs in health sciences at the University of West Florida, and a clustering of several centers of excellence in physical rehabilitation.

The USF/UWF partnership Doctor of Physical Therapy program is accredited by theCommission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education as an expansion program of the USF School of Physical Therapy & Rehabilitation Sciences.

Why USF?

  • The USF program has demonstrated stable and stellar performance. It was reaccredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE) in 2008 with commendation.
  • The USF DPT program is ranked 63rd out of 211 DPT programs in the U.S. by U.S. News and World Report. The DPT agreement forged between USF and UWF creates a program in which UWF applicants will only be competing among themselves for the 12 slots (36 slots at year 3) dedicated to graduates of UWF.
  • All faculty at the PT program at USF are required to hold membership in the national PT professional organization (APTA) - important from the standpoint of keeping abreast of industry standards, promoting professional development of faculty and supporting scholarly activity in the PT.
  • Overall GPA for admits into the USF main campus DPT for the class of 2015 was 3.78.
  • A strong platform for clinical education supported by 47 current clinical affiliates for USF in the Panhandle region.
  • Commitment from Andrews Institute and other rehab facilities for clinical partnership with the USF/UWF DPT.
  • 100% overall pass rate on the National Physical Therapy Exam for every year between 2008 and 2010.

Why Doctorate of Physical Therapy?

The demand for Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) graduates at both the state and national level continues to be high with a projected 39 percent increase in job openings nationally by year 2020. In the Panhandle alone the need was reflected in 160 job ads requesting a DPT in Fall 2012. Th U.S. Department of Labor lists physical therapy as the second greatest need nationally in the health care workforce. Jobs for a DPT start between $80,000 and $90,000/yr.

Quote from one of our community supporters - The Andrews Institute

"We view the proposed DPT degree as one that is especially important in allowing us to maintain high quality health care services today and into the future. With the average growth across the U.S. for physical therapists over the next decade estimated to be at 39%, with the increasing elderly population that require many levels of physical rehab, with the federal Act mandating access to physical rehab services for disabled persons, and with the probability of a national health care system designed to include all persons under a federal health insurance umbrella, there will be a clear and immediate need for graduates of DPT programs. This need far exceeds the capacity of existing DPT programs in Florida and across the nation.

We stand ready to provide clinical sites, adjunct faculty and clinical preceptors for the USF/UWF partnership DPT. Moreover, we enthusiastically endorse this effort as one that has come after a thoughtful and careful analytical process that identified USF as the most desirable partner with the experience, accomplishments and status on the national stage that ensure the quality and success of DPT graduates."

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