Widener University

Information about Physical Therapist program at Widener University




Widener University (A4, D6, F1, PR)

Last Updated by Program: 08/24/2005
Address:   Physical Therapy Program
Widener University
Institute for Physical Therapy Education
School of Human Service Professions
One University Place
Chester, PA 19013
Phone:   (610)499-1277
Fax:   (610)499-1231
Admissions/Student Inquiry Phone:   (610)499-4272
Financial Aid Phone:   (610)499-4174
Web Address:   http://www.widener.edu/ipte
Program E-mail:   rldole@widener.edu
Robin L Dole, PT, EdD, PCS
Program Director
  Accreditor:   Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools
  Carnegie Classification:   Doctoral/Research Universities
  Date of Initial Accreditation:   Master's degree, May 1996 (no longer offered) DPT degree, April 2000
  Current Accreditation Status:   Accreditation
  Next Visit   2015
  Five Year History:   Accreditation
DEGREE CONFERRED: Doctor of Physical Therapy
The program is designed to prepare professionals attuned to the cultural, social, psychological and biological factors that contribute to the determinants of health, illness and disability. The mission of the program is to graduate clinically competent physical therapists who demonstrate exemplary character and assume the responsibilities of citizenship. Graduates are expected to demonstrate clinical excellence, compassion, and concern for others. The physical therapy program is designed as an entry-level clinical doctorate program based on the 4+3 curriculum model and requires eight semesters to complete the professional course work. Pre-physical therapy 3+3 curriculum students must inquire for detailed instructions on course distributions for the 6-year dual degree (BS/DPT) program (only those institutions with articulating agreements with Widener). There are eight full-time faculty members as well as additional adjunct faculty and lecturers. Students spend an average of 25 hours per week in class.
The curriculum offers integrated supervised clinical observations and experiences to present students with opportunities to devise an expanding base of solutions and plans based on realistic case models. First-year students are provided with limited fieldwork in local physical therapy clinics. Each student is also required to participate in a variety of formal clinical education experiences in outpatient/orthopedic, inpatient/acute care, and neurological/rehabilitation settings. The curriculum is affiliated with more than 500 clinics nationwide. Students should be prepared for the extra travel/housing costs when assigned to areas that are not local. Full-time clinical experiences are scheduled for 6-10 weeks at four intervals during the program.
Of the eight full-time faculty members, four hold post-professional doctoral degrees, four are in various stages of study toward the completion of a post-professional doctorate, four are certified as clinical specialists, and all are engaged in active clinical practice and/or community service, as well as clinical research. Over the past three years the faculty has garnered 11 publications in peer-reviewed journals and 40 peer-reviewed professional presentations. The faculty to student ratio for all laboratory experiences is maintained at 1:10, the core faculty to student ratio is 1:9.25.
Widener University has nearly 9,000 students on its four campuses in Chester, Exton, and Harrisburg in Pennsylvania, and Wilmington, Delaware. The Institute for Physical Therapy Education, located on Widener's main campus in Chester, offers a doctoral degree program (DPT) with an annual enrollment of 35 to 40 students per class.
Students may obtain an application in the beginning of the fall semester by contacting the physical therapy program in writing, by telephone, online, or by attending an open house. We have a rolling admission from November 1 to January 30. All application submissions are to be postmarked no later than January 30. Applications are reviewed as they are received. No interviews are required but a campus visit as a “Student for a Day” is highly recommended. Admission to the graduate program is restricted to students who demonstrate their capacity for graduate-level studies through performance on the GRE and a satisfactory grade point average (GPA). Students are required to submit GRE scores. We are looking for a combined score of 1000 or above on the verbal and quantitative segments. A prerequisite GPA is re-computed for all applicants. The science portion of the re-computed GPA is expected to be 3.0 or higher. Science prerequisites include 3 semester hours in each: biology, anatomy, and physiology; 6 semester hours of physics; 8 semester hours of chemistry. In the humanities, applicants must have 6 semester hours of psychology, 3 semester hours of social science (sociology or anthropology preferred), and 3 semester hours in statistics. It is assumed that applicants possessing a bachelor’s degree from the United States will have had 3 semester hours in English composition and 6 semester hours in general humanities (the most recent courses taken that meet these requirements will be used to calculate the applicants pre-requisite GPA). Students are expected to demonstrate computer literacy through either course work or documentation of experience. Evidence of observational (paid or volunteer) in physical therapy must also be provided (a minimum of 40 hours, preferably in two different types of settings – including inpatient and outpatient settings). To receive a copy of the current graduate catalogue, please contact the physical therapy office at 610/499-1277 or visit www.widener.edu. Approximately 68% of qualified applicants are admitted to the program (3-year average,)
96.5% of admitted students graduate from the program (3-year average). 92.5% of all students who took the licensing exam, passed it (3-year average). 100% of graduates were employed in physical therapy within 6 months of graduation and licensure (3-year average).
In 2005-06, full-time tuition was $21,625 per year (includes all fall, spring and summer courses). For tuition updates, call 610/499-1277. At least 90% of students receive financial aid in the form of federal loan programs and program scholarships. For more information, please contact the Office of Financial Aid at 610/499-4174. Outside employment while in the professional phase of the program is permitted, but students should seek counsel as to whether it is advisable given their course load for a given semester.