Physical Therapy Program Overview

White Coat Ceremony

Rockhurst University's Department of Physical Therapy Education is committed to preparing competent, caring professionals who can help optimize movement and improve the life experiences for persons whose abilities are threatened or impaired due to developmental deficits, aging, physical illness or injury. Emphasizing and integrating critical thinking, problem solving and professionalism throughout the curriculum, the Rockhurst Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) program prepares a student for licensure as a physical therapist and enhances the student's ability to clinically reason in a complex and changing health care system.

The Rockhurst DPT program is designed as an entry-level doctoral degree program. A new class of 48 students enters the program every June. The program consists of eight semester of coursework, including 34 weeks of fieldwork experience, presented throughout 2 1/2 academic years. Students participate in a wide variety of learning experiences including lectures, discussions, hands-on laboratories, service projects, independent study, group projects, research, integrated patient/client experiences and clinical internships.

In conjunction with Rockhurst University’s College of Business, Influence, and Information Analysis, physical therapy students have the opportunity to earn both a Doctor of Physical Therapy degree and a Master of Business Administration (MBA) or Master of Arts (MA) in Organizational Leadership degree. 

The MBA includes a measurable business curriculum while the MA in Organizational Leadership features a focus on management leadership. Both degrees provide the skills to practice as a physical therapist and effectively manage a department, your own clinic or corporation. Both degrees also include optional electives in health care leadership.