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Doctor of Physical Therapy

Applications for Fall Term 2025 will open June 15

Enter a program known for clinical and academic excellence that emphasizes serving humanity through your profession. Whitworth University’s Doctor of Physical Therapy program (DPT program) fulfills Whitworth’s mission by educating students with a mind, heart and hands perspective.

Our holistic, interprofessional education creates graduates who are not only excellent clinicians but also excellent humans. We promote empathy in our program and seek students who are dedicated to addressing social injustice and health inequity. Here you will be prepared for the future of physical therapy. 

A Mission-Centered DPT Program

Our Doctor of Physical Therapy program goes beyond simply teaching proficiencies. We build compassionate practitioners ready to treat the whole person. DPT program features include:

  • Professional formation courses each semester that teach you how to look at issues – like social injustice and health inequity – and how to address them.
  • A faculty that provides more than expert instruction – they also care about their students.
  • Community involvement like our work at the Union Gospel Mission, a women’s crisis center, where students and faculty work together to serve a community in need.
Students learning

Benefits of the Whitworth Doctor of Physical Therapy Program

Beyond a vibrant campus where you will have access to services and amenities such as counseling, health services, student academic support, a chapel, coffee shops/cafes, a recreation center and a pool, you will also benefit from:

  • A state-of the art health sciences building that houses a motion analysis research lab, activities of daily living lab, exercise physiology labs, simulation labs and more
  • Collaboration with multiple disciplines
  • Exceptional clinical site placement partnerships
  • Hands-on clinical experience beginning your first semester

Student learning physical therapy

Diverse, Experienced DPT Faculty

Our team is made up of APTA-board-certified clinicians in cardiopulmonary, neurological, orthopedic, pediatric and geriatric rehabilitation. Our DPT program also includes fellowship-trained faculty in orthopedic rehabilitation and academic leadership.

Faculty have worked in various settings, from outpatient orthopedics, inpatient rehabilitation, inpatient acute care, home health, pediatric acute care and outpatient neurorehabilitation. Every day, faculty members are working on grant-supported research that students can learn from and participate in.


Student learning physical therapy

State-of-the-Art DPT Facilities

Our Doctor of Physical Therapy program students have access to state-of-the-art facilities, including:

  • An on-site teaching clinic and research space with Bioness Vector, HUMAC Norm and general physical therapy clinic equipment
  • A 12-camera motion capture lab with force plates and portable motion capture equipment
  • Classroom spaces dedicated to DPT classes
  • A well-ventilated, state-of-the-art cadaver lab

Student learning physical therapy

Hands-on Learning

Our Doctor of Physical Therapy program facilities and community partnerships – as well as our innovative curriculum – provide you with many opportunities for hands-on learning, including:

  • Integrative clinical experiences through which you can serve a community that lacks access to outpatient neurophysical therapy – for example, we offer a student-led, faculty-supported, on-site pro bono clinic
  • A volunteer program that allows students to help patients move in an inpatient setting at local hospitals
  • Parasport and adaptive climbing equipment that allows students to work with individuals with disabilities to help them participate in recreational activities, training and sports
  • A health systems course series where students are assigned a community partner to examine its policies and help with advocacy and strategies
  • Opportunities to work within a senior living facility and with other students across disciplines in interprofessional clinicals

Student learning physical therapy

Personalized Career Advising

At Whitworth, you’ll be assigned a faculty mentor who will help you navigate the DPT program and provide career advice. Prior to your final clinical experience, you’ll also participate in courses that will help you assess and compare job offers for pay and benefits.

Students learning

“[At Whitworth] I feel a complete sense of family and togetherness that I could not find at any other university. I have grown as an individual and have gained so many lifelong friends, network possibilities and colleagues.” 
– 
Chandler Roselli, Class of 2026

Explore Doctor of Physical Therapy Program Courses

Our intensive, full-time PT program is designed to be completed over eight consecutive semesters.

Our innovative, learner-centered curriculum design is rich in evidence-based practice, interprofessional learning experiences and community clinical partnerships.

Accreditation Status for the PT Program

Effective July 19, 2022, Whitworth University has been granted Candidate for Accreditation status by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE) (3030 Potomac Ave., Suite 100, Alexandria, Virginia 22305-3085; phone: 703.706.3245; email: accreditation@apta.org). To contact us directly, please call 509.777.4442 or email dpt@whitworth.edu.

Candidate for Accreditation is an accreditation status of affiliation with CAPTE that indicates the program may matriculate students in technical/professional courses. Achievement of Candidate for Accreditation status does not assure that the program will be granted Initial Accreditation.

Graduation from a physical therapist education program accredited by CAPTE (3030 Potomac Ave., Suite 100, Alexandria, VA 22305-3085; phone 703.706.3245; accreditation@apta.org) is necessary for eligibility to sit for the licensure examination, which is required in all states.

This program has been reviewed as a substantive change by our institutional accreditor, the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities, and is included in our institutional accreditation status.

CAPTE Timing and the Licensing Exam

The DPT program will be evaluated for full accreditation status in the third year of the first cohort (2024/2025). Accreditation is anticipated to be received in the spring of 2025 prior to graduation of the first cohort, which will be May 2025. Based on Rule 7.2 (see below), graduates of the first cohort will be able to take the National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE) as early as July 2025.

New Rule: 7.2 Definition of Candidate for Accreditation

Candidate for Accreditation is a pre-accreditation status, awarded prior to enrollment of students in the technical (PTA programs) or professional (PT programs) phase of the program, which indicates that the physical therapy education program is progressing toward accreditation. All credits and degrees earned and issued by a program holding candidacy are considered to be from an accredited program.

Complaints to the Commission on Accreditation of Physical Therapy Education

CAPTE is nationally recognized as an accrediting agency by the U.S. Department of Education and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation. CAPTE grants specialized accreditation status to qualified entry-level education programs for physical therapists and physical therapist assistants. The only mechanism through which CAPTE can act on an individual’s concerns is through a formal complaint process.

Admission Requirements for the Doctor of Physical Therapy Program

We review applications to our physical therapy program holistically. View our admission requirements for more information and DPT program costs.

For general questions about the DPT program, please call us at 509.777.4442 or email us.

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Get Started on Your Physical Therapy Degree

Join a program that embodies servant leadership, global citizenship, and integration of faith and learning. You will automatically be considered for scholarships when you apply.

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