Accounting program major

Doctor of Physical Therapy

Doctor of Physical Therapy

The Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) program at Southwest Baptist University, fully accredited by CAPTE, prepares you for your career as a physical therapist through the development of the knowledge and skills needed for patient management, education, consultation and clinical research.

You will become a dynamic healthcare professional serving to improve the lives of the people you touch. The program builds upon a strong liberal arts background and highlights Christian values and behavior to mold you into a well-rounded professional.

Coursework enables you to build critical and analytical thinking skills, encouraging independent thought, developing effective communication skills and promoting professional behaviors and an appreciation for the values of physical therapy in the healthcare environment.

Want to Learn More and Apply?

Doctoral Applicants

If you are finishing/have completed an undergraduate degree and are ready to take the next step toward your Doctor of Physical Therapy degree, use the link below to learn more about the admissions process, cost, and financial aid for SBU's DPT program.

DPT Admissions Information

MBA Dual Enrollment

Physical therapists often find that business skills are beneficial. With an Master of Business Administration, you will have the business skills you need to be successful in healthcare management positions or running a private practice. SBU has developed a course plan specifically for DPT students who want to simultaneously complete an MBA degree.

MBA Dual Enrollment Info

EMT Dual Enrollment

Prepare for a career in sports physical therapy, including the clinical specialist credentials, and pursue a specialized sports residency. By earning the Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) credential in addition to the DPT degree, you will establish an enhanced clinical skill set enabling you to readily enter the world of sports physical therapy.

EMT Dual Enrollment Info

High School Students

High school senior students with 24 ACT (or equivalent SAT) scores or higher are eligible to apply on a competitive basis for early conditional acceptance into the physical therapy program. High school students (or freshman with less than 30 credit hours completed), should contact the PT department for an application for early conditional acceptance.

Early Acceptance Information


(SBU DPT graduates have maintained a 99% employment rate within six months of graduation for those passing the licensure exam.)

SBU students

The SBU Advantage

  • Christian beliefs and values are incorporated in ways that enrich the program, including the Global Health Outreach initiative which allows you use physical therapy skills on international service learning opportunities.
  • State-of-the-art facility and a faculty practice clinic allow for you to gain hands-on experience in the first two years of the program prior to your clinical rotations.
  • SBU's DPT program can accept up to 80 new students each year
  • 99% graduation rate over the past two years
  • 96% ultimate licensure exam pass rate over the past two years

Faith Integration

International service learning opportunities are a unique component available through the physical therapy program at SBU. The Global Health Outreach initiative allows you the opportunity to utilize your physical therapy skills while making a difference around the world. Trips involve current DPT students from multiple years of the program, SBU DPT alumni and faculty.

As part of a Global Health Outreach trip, you will practice both your new professional skills and your Christian faith as you help meet the physical and spiritual needs of people in need around the world. Team members work to raise funds needed to cover travel and participation expenses for the trip. SBU DPT students have served around the world in resource-poor communities in places such as India, Venezuela, El Salvador, Brazil, Haiti and Peru.

Global Health Outreach Blog

Give online

As a traveling physical therapist, I am afforded the flexibility to work in various settings and locations and take time off between jobs to serve on international service learning trips. The professors at SBU have undoubtedly prepared me for any situation by teaching me to learn continuously, think critically and love wholeheartedly.

April Fajardo '15, Traveling Physical Therapist with Cariant Health Partners
April Fajardo, DPT alum

Program Mission and Student Outcomes

"Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters, since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving."
- Colossians 3:23-24

Mission Statement

Our Healing Mission: The physical therapy department at SBU is dedicated to providing society with physical therapists who engage in the art and science of physical therapy with a Christian worldview. The graduate will be a clinician generalist who is prepared to provide physical therapy services for a diverse population in an evolving society and healthcare environment.

Program Goals

An SBU Doctor of Physical Therapy graduate will be able to:

  1. Integrate the Christian worldview into the practice of physical therapy.
  2. Engage in the professional practice expectations on a diverse patient and client population throughout the lifespan.
  3. Educate and communicate with appropriate stakeholders in the healthcare environment.
  4. Serve the profession and society to promote and improve evolving healthcare delivery.
  5. Reflectively practice the art and science of physical therapy by critically evaluating, integrating and contributing to the expanding professional knowledge base.
  6. Formulate a plan for lifelong learning coupled with professional, personal and spiritual growth.


Results over the past three years:

  • Graduation rate is 99% (2015=100%; 2016=99%)
  • Ultimate licensure exam pass rate is 96% (2015=97%; 2016=95%)
  • Employment rate within six months for those passing licensure examination is 100% (2015=100%; 2016=100%)
  • Acceptance rate into program is 19% (2015=15%; 2016=23%)
  • Average number of applications received per cycle is 485 (2015=525; 2016=444)

(This information was last updated November 2016.)

Accreditation status

The entry-level Doctor of Physical Therapy program at Southwest Baptist University is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE). Additionally, the program is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.


1111 North Fairfax Street
Alexandria, VA 22314
(703) 706-3245

Higher Learning Commission

30 North LaSalle Street, Suite 2400
Chicago, IL 60602-2504
(800) 621-7440
(312) 263-0456

The Texas Workforce Commission does not consider externships or clinicals involving unpaid preceptors as establishing a place of business in the state which would require regulation and is therefore not regulated in Texas under Chapter 132 of the Texas Education Code. The accrediting agencies that regulate SBU DPT are listed above on this page (CAPTE and HLC) with direct links to each agency. Within those agency websites are links on how to file a complain to that respective agency.

Current and former entry-level Doctor of Physical Therapy students who fall under the jurisdiction of the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board (THECB) by beginning and/or completing a required clinical education rotation in the state of Texas, may, after exhausting the institution's grievance/complaint process, initiate a complaint with THECB per Texas Administrative Code 1.110-1.120. Information about THECB complaint procedures can be found online or by contacting Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board/College Readiness and Success Division, PO Box 12788, Austin, Texas 78711-2788 or


Evidence-Based Practice

SBU's DPT program trains future physical therapists to critically evaluate data and evidence in preparation to provide the best treatments for their patients. As a DPT student at SBU, you will work alongside faculty and classmates asking evidence-based questions, researching, and presenting your findings. In 2016, SBU DPT students presented 17 posters across the country at national conventions.

Recent research Examples

Increasing Gait Velocity in Patients Following Stroke: Single vs. Multi-Intervention Approach. Layman, J; Emond, D; Ewing, D; Goff, K; Vu, D.
Download poster

Neurodynamic Mobilization in a College Long Jumper with Exercise-Induced Lateral Leg/Ankle Pain: A Case Report. Cox, T; Sneed, T; Hamann, H.
Download poster

The Impact of Constraint Induced Movement Therapy on Quality of Life in Children with Hemiplegic Cerebral Palsy: A Systematic Review. Jones, S; Behmer, R; Armanyous, A; Montgomery, B; Osborne, J.
Download poster

What Influence Does the Use of Neuroscience Pain Education Have on Pain and Function in Patients with Chronic Low Back Pain? A Systematic Review. Cox, T; DeWet, M; LaVoy, L; Nickolaus, K; Sanders, R.
Download poster

Does Orthotic Helmet Use Improve Neurodevelopmental or Cognitive Outcomes in the Treatment of Deformational Plagiocephaly? Jones, S; Cypher, K; Fisher, K; George, K; Schoonover, K.
Download poster

Safety and Effectiveness of Lowering Blood Pressure Using a Cardiovascular Exercise Program After Transient Ischmeic Attack or Minor Stroke: A Systematic Review. Layman, J; Albers, B; Boyle, S; Carr, L; Pontecorvo, N.
Download poster

The Effects of Elastic Taping on Pain in Patients with Shoulder Impingement Syndrome: A Systematic Review. Fritchey, O; Anjum, F; Allmoslecher, C; Sneed, T.
Download poster

Systematic Review: Vigorous Physical Activity for Posttraumatic Stress Disorder — Can It Help? McNeal, B; Crist, H; Jacobs, N; Perkins, J.
Download poster

Effectiveness of Neurodynamic Mobilization in the Treatment of Patients Presenting with Lower Extremity Pathologies: A Systematic Review. Cox, T; Bishof, T; Cassmeyer, D; Leuders, K; Pickett, M.
Download poster

A Systematic Review Comparing Physical Therapy Interventions for the Treatment of Cervical Spine Pain in Whiplash Associated Disorders. Cox, T; Gull, C; Lee, L. Townsend, B.
Download poster



Commencement Medal

Each graduating Doctor of Physical Therapy student is presented with a commencement medal by his/her advisor. The medal, which is worn around the neck adorning the traditional academic regalia during formal processionals, is minted in an antique gold finish (wisdom) acknowledging the intellectual achievement of entering the profession of physical therapy. The colors of purple (power) and white (light) accent the medal serving as a reminder that each student is empowered to be a witness for Jesus Christ, letting His light shine through in conduct and speech.

Prayer Challenge Coin

The program mints prayer challenge coins and presents these coins to mission-minded individuals associated with the program. The coin serves as a reminder to keep missionary service as a life priority. The coin should not be kept as a prize or token, but rather actively used and passed on, challenging others to join the mission-minded network of the Southwest Baptist University Doctor of Physical Therapy program. Those receiving a coin are challenged to pray for those in the mission field, and as each are so called, to serve others through missions service and support.

Alumni magazine

Browse the archives of the annual magazine, "A Healing Mission," sent to alumni of the SBU Doctor of Physical Therapy program. The magazine provides news and updates from the program, stories about Global Health Outreach trips, faculty and alumni spotlights, and more.

doctor of physical therapy course Plan

Year 1

Fall Semester (16 WEEKS)

PTH 5132 Critical Inquiry 2
PTH 5013 Psychosocial Issues of Healthcare 3
PTH 5047 Human Anatomy 7
PTH 5066 Clinical Kinesiology 6
PTH 5481 Christian Applications for Healthcare I 1
PTH 5631 ICE I 1
Total hours 20


PTH 5221 Teaching and Learning 1
PTH 5593 Neuroscience for the Physical Therapist 3
Total hours 4

Spring Semester (16 WEEKS)

PTH 6393 Motor Control and Learning 3
PTH 5423 Therapeutic Exercise 3
PTH 5093 Physical Therapy Science 3
PTH 6273 PT Management of Integumentary Disorders 3
PTH 5611 Professional Development Seminar I 1
PTH 5103 Therapeutic Modalities in Physical Therapy 3
PTH 5403 Physical Assessment 3
PTH 5641 ICE II 1
Total hours 20

Summer (11 WEEKS)

PTH 6293 Exercise Prescription in Physical Therapy 3
PTH 5233 Foundations of the Musculoskeletal System 3
PTH 6022 Today’s Health Care 2
PTH 6082 Human Life Sequences 2
Total hours 10


Fall Semester (16 weeks)

PTH 6245 PT Management of Musculoskeletal Disorders I 5
PTH 6263 Prosthetics and Orthotics 3
PTH 6472 Pathology for Physical Therapists 1 2
PTH 6501 Christian Applications for Healthcare II 1
PTH 6326 PT Management of Neurological Disorders I 6
PTH 5382 Pharmacology for Physical Therapists 2
PTH 6651 ICE III 1
Total hours 20


PTH 6332 Administration and Management 2
PTH 5412 Diagnostic Imaging for Physical Therapists 2
Total hours 4

Spring Semester (16 weeks)

PTH 6255 PT Management of Musculoskeletal Disorders II 5
PTH 7316 PT Management of Neurological Disorders II 6
PTH 6603 Pathology for Physical Therapists II 3
PTH 6621 Professional Development Seminar II 1
PTH 6583 Prevention, Health Promotion, Fitness, and Wellness 3
PTH 5151 Clinical Investigations I 1
PTH 6671 ICE IV 1
Total hours 20

Summer (11 WEEKS)

PTH 7283 PT Management of Cardiopulmonary Disorders 3
PTH 7353 Geriatric Physical Therapy 3
PTH 7343 Pediatric Physical Therapy 3
PTH 7362 Capstone 2
Total hours 11


Fall Semester (16 weeks)

PTH 7158 Clinical Education I (8 weeks) 8
PTH 7458 Clinical Education II (8 weeks) 8
Total hours 16

Spring Semester (18 weeks)

PTH 7459 Clinical Education III (9 weeks) 9
PTH 7469 Clinical Education IV (9 weeks) 9
Total hours 18

This is a proposed guideline. Please check the catalog and see your advisor for your final degree requirements.
Southwest Baptist University reserves the right to make changes to degree plans without advanced notice or obligation.
The student is responsible for understanding and completing all general education, degree, departmental and graduation requirements.

Download in PDF format:

Doctor of Physical Therapy Plan