The Physical Therapy department, within the School of Allied Health Sciences, offers a doctorate of physical therapy degree designed to prepare students for entry into the profession. The program comprises intense academic and clinical work spread out during six semesters and three summers as well as 112 credit hours of graduate course work divided among classroom, clinical, and research activities. Students are prepared as generalists but then have an opportunity to investigate the orthopedic, pediatric, and geriatric specializations of physical therapy through clinical exposures and student research opportunities.
The department, formed in 1998, originally was a master’s program. The master’s in physical therapy program transitioned to a doctorate program in 2007.
The curriculum provides a comprehensive background in the art and science of physical therapy and prepares graduates for state licensure examination eligibility.
The Doctor of Physical Therapy Degree at UNLV is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education.
The UNLV Physical Therapy data page contains exam pass rates, graduation rates, and employment rates from 2009 based on reports from the National Board Exam.
APTA Student Membership
The Physical Therapy department earned gold-level status during the American Physical Therapy Association’s (APTA) 2016 REACH100 Student Membership Challenge. The department successfully encouraged 90 percent of its students to become APTA members.
After successfully completing the program, students will be eligible to take the licensure exam. Graduating students must take and pass the examination to become licensed physical therapists.
The department has three dedicated laboratories on campus:
During the past few years, the demand for physical therapists has increased significantly. In Nevada, employment during 2016 is projected to grow 30 to 40 percent. Future demands will be most affected by population growth, economic growth, and the spread of managed care.