Is the PPDPT program accredited?
A common question we receive is if our program is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE). It is important for prospective students to understand that CAPTE does not currently have an accreditation process for transitional D.P.T. programs. To determine if a program is “good”, look to the university as a whole and its entry-level program. According to the APTA, “In most cases, quality is assured by virtue of the fact that rigorous standards are applied by regional accrediting agencies to the higher education institutions and by CAPTE to the professional programs, which offer the transition D.P.T programs.” Des Moines University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools. Our entry-level D.P.T. program holds full CAPTE accreditation and our next site visit is in 2016. In addition, in April 2010, we underwent a peer-review process. By inviting a physical therapy colleague and educator from another institution to campus, we were given constructive feedback on our curriculum, faculty, processes and program in general.
What are the requirements for students applying to the PPDPT program?
Applicants must be a U.S. licensed physical therapist and must have graduated from an accredited physical therapy program. There are no specific course prerequisites. Applicants must also satisfy all admission requirements.
Do I need to have a master’s degree in physical therapy to be eligible for the program?
No. We accept licensed physical therapists with bachelor’s and/or master’s degrees.
How much physical therapy experience is required?
Six months of employment as a physical therapist in the U.S. is recommended prior to entering the program. Recent graduates with an M.S. degree who begin employment immediately may begin working on their D.P.T. right away.
How long does it take to complete the PPDPT program?
Students may choose how quickly they wish to complete the program. Most students complete the program in 18-24 months. Once enrolled, a student has five years to complete the degree requirements. Each course is offered at least once in a 12-month period.
How many students are enrolled in the PPDPT program at DMU? How many students are in each class?
We currently have approximately 160 active students in the program. Not all students take courses every module. We try to accommodate our students by adding course sections when the courses are full. Our class size is 40 students and in most cases we need 20 students on the wait list before we will add another section. Hence – it is very important for students to sign up for the wait list during the registration period, if you see that a wait list has been started. For most courses we have additional instructors who are willing to teach an extra section of the course. It is not unusual to offer two extra sections of a course at this point in time.
Do students have to come to campus for classes?
No. The manual therapy course (required for non-DMU alumni only) combines online and hands-on components. Students will complete the online component through DMU’s PPDPT 1609 course. There are several ways for students to meet the hands-on component: (1) documentation of certification in a manual therapy area; (2) 16 continuing education units in a manual therapy area within the last three years; (3) attendance at the DMU on-campus manual therapy lab (one weekend in length). All other courses are completely online. Learn more about taking classes online.
Is this a self-paced/independent study program?
No. Each course has a specific start and stop date, as well as specific due dates for assignments. However, students may start courses in any trimester.
Is financial aid available to students enrolling in the PPDPT program?
Yes, for students who are registered for at least five credit hours within a trimester. Visit the DMU financial aid website for more information.
What is the preceptor tuition fees policy in the PPDPT program?
What are the computer requirements for the PPDPT program?
What about continuing education credits?
To enroll in courses you will need to complete the application process and be accepted into the program. The orientation course (PPDPT 1600) is required for all students prior to taking any other courses.
According to rules adopted by the Iowa Board of Physical and Occupational Therapy Examiners, and effective January 3, 2001, one academic semester hour equals 15 continuing education credits. The licensee may obtain continuing education hours of credit by providing official transcripts to the Board indicating successful completion of academic courses which apply to the field of physical therapy. Physical therapists licensed in a state other than Iowa and required to complete continuing education for licensure, will need to check their state’s physical therapy licensure law and rules concerning continuing education credit for academic courses.