Pre-Physical Therapy Degree Program Information

This article discusses pre-physical therapy degree programs. Read on for information about educational prerequisites, program coursework and employment outlook statistics.

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Essential Information

A pre-physical therapy degree program is one that prepares undergraduate students to eventually enroll in a Master of Physical Therapy program at an accredited university. Though some students pursue an undergraduate degree in a general health subject, those who want a more focused program may choose one focusing on physical therapy.

Aspiring physical therapists can enroll in a pre-physical therapy program to learn the skills necessary to help restore mobility to patients suffering from serious physical injuries or disease. A pre-physical therapy program is an undergraduate program, and therefore much of the coursework involved focuses on basic concepts such as medical terminology, biology and chemistry. More advanced physical therapy courses and clinical rotations don't typically take place until graduate school.

A pre-physical therapy degree program can give students an edge when it comes to applying for a graduate program in physical therapy. These graduate programs are often highly competitive and only accept a small percentage of applicants each year. Those students who show high marks in a pre-physical therapy degree program may be given stronger consideration than students who complete a bachelor's degree program in health sciences or biology.

Education Prerequisites

All schools with pre-physical therapy programs require that students show proof of high school transcripts before being accepted. Many also require that students complete a certain amount of math, science and English courses before applying.

Program Coursework

  • Biology
  • Physiology
  • Anatomy
  • Chemistry
  • Physics
  • Psychology
  • Kinesiology

Employment Outlook and Salary Information

Physical therapist employment is expected to grow 39% from 2010 to 2020, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. This is a much faster than average rate of growth. The availability of physical therapist positions is expected to increase as technology and techniques in the field continue to evolve. The increasing amount of elderly citizens who require physical therapists is also increasing and will have an impact on the number of positions available. As of May 2012, the median annual wage for physical therapists was $79,860 (www.bls.gov).

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