University of Wisconsin-Madison

Information about Physical Therapist program at University of Wisconsin-Madison




University of Wisconsin-Madison (A4, D5, F1, PU)

Last Updated by Program: 08/15/2005
Address:   Physical Therapy Program
University of Wisconsin - Madison
5173 Medical Sciences Center
1300 University Avenue
Madison, WI 53706-1532
Phone:   (608)263-7131
Fax:   (608)262-7809
Admissions/Student Inquiry Phone:   (608)265-4815
Financial Aid Phone:   (608)262-3060
Web Address:
Program E-mail:
Lisa Steinkamp, PT, MS, MBA
Program Director
  Accreditor:   Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools
  Carnegie Classification:   Research Universities (very high research activity)
  Date of Initial Accreditation:   Bachelor's degree, November 1929 (no longer offered) Master's degree, October 1997
  Current Accreditation Status:   Accreditation
  Next Visit   2010
  Five Year History:   Accreditation
DEGREE CONFERRED: Master of Physical Therapy
The University of Wisconsin-Madison offers an entry-level masters degree in physical therapy. The Program’s administrative home is in the Department of Orthopedics and Rehabilitation Medicine in the Medical School. The UW-Madison Program is a 2.5-year full-time curriculum, with a class beginning each June. The curriculum is built on scientific inquiry and critical appraisal of published works, offering comprehensive evidence-based education and hands-on clinical experience. Graduates are committed to patient care, public service, and lifelong learning.
First-year students complete 2-week and 4-week clinical experiences. Second-year students have a 2-week clinical experience at the conclusion of the first semester. At the end of the second academic year, there are 24 weeks of clinical internships, for a total of 32 weeks of clinical rotations. Required clinical experiences include acute care, neurological, and orthopedic rehabilitation. There are a variety of other types of elective experiences as well. The Program affiliates with 200 clinical siites, most of which reside in Wisconsin, but also cover 35 states.
There are ten full-time faculty positions. Six hold post-professional doctoral degrees, six are certified as clinical specialists, and seven are engaged in clinical practice. The faculty to student ratio is 1:8.
The University has a total enrollment of 41,500 students, including 8,900 graduate students and 2,400 professional degree students. The Physical Therapy Program accepts a maximum of 40 students per year and currently has 113 students enrolled.
In order to be eligible for selection to the UW-Madison Physical Therapy Program, the following requirements must be met: a bachelor’s degree and a cumulative 3.0 grade point average based on the last 60 credits of course work attempted; the Graduate Record Examination; completion of prerequisite science courses with a minimum cumulative grade point average of 3.0 (science prerequisite courses include: 1 semester each of animal biology, human physiology, anatomy, exercise physiology, biomechanics, and statistics; 2 semesters each of general chemistry and physics); 6 credits of psychology (required with the class starting in 2007); patient care experience (a minimum of 20 hours of volunteer or paid patient care experience in each of two different physical therapy settings). Students who do not possess a bachelor’s degree from an institution where English is the principal language must submit Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) scores. The UW-Madison Physical Therapy Program offers three admission cycles, with applications accepted beginning September 1. Admission Committee meetings are held three times, with applications needing to be received by November 7, 2005, by January 9, 2006, or by February 20, 2006 for consideration to begin the Program in the summer of 2006.
90% of admitted students graduate from the program (3-year average). 100% of graduates passed the Federation of State Boards of Physical Therapy Licensure Examination (3-year average) and 100% of the program graduates responding to surveys are employed.
The 2005-2006 tuition and fees per semester is $4,369 for Wisconsin residents, $12,004 for nonresidents, and $4,707 for Minnesota residents. Total tuition costs for the entire 2 ½ year Program, using 2005-2006 tuition rates, are: $22,785 for Wisconsin residents, $62,868 for nonresidents, and $25,068 for Minnesota residents. Information on residence for tuition purposes is available at: The Office of Student Financial Services offers loans, grants, and student employment opportunities for graduate students. A limited number of scholarships are awarded through the program. Additional financial aid information is available at .
The University of Wisconsin-Madison is recognized as one of the nation’s great universities. In addition, the city of Madison is consistently ranked among the nation’s most livable cities, and is a rich source of recreational and entertainment opportunities. State Street, a one-mile stretch of shops, restaurants, galleries and theaters, connects the city and the university, linking Bascom Hill with the Wisconsin State Capitol. Spanning 933 acres along the southern shore of Lake Mendota, UW-Madison’s sprawling and diverse campus is considered one of the most picturesque settings for higher education in the United States. The Physical Therapy Program has a very active student service organization, Phi Theta, which performs service, social and fundraising activities. Phi Theta promotes physical therapy, wellness, and disease prevention to the campus and surrounding community.