Physical Therapy School Category: Physical Therapy Programs
General Program Description
The physical therapy department at Southwest Baptist University is dedicated to providing society with physical therapists who engage in the art and science of physical therapy with a Christian worldview. The graduate will be a clinician generalist who is prepared to provide physical therapy services for a diverse population in an evolving society and health care environment. Students enter the Doctor of Physical Therapy program in August of each year and continue through the program for 33 months straight until graduation in May of the third year. The curriculum starts with and builds upon the foundational sciences progressing to clinical application in order to achieve the mission and goals of the program. The program generally follows the traditional semester calendar of the University with some deviations during the winter and summer months to accommodate for program needs. The sequencing of courses and clinical experiences are arranged to challenge and develop independent, critical thinkers who recognize the value of physical therapy and who can communicate effectively to a variety of stakeholders. Students engage in the professional practice expectations on a diverse patient and client population throughout the lifespan. The faculty nurture and mentor students promoting personal, professional and spiritual growth.
Students will complete four different clinical rotations totaling 34 weeks in the final year of their educational experience. Clinical rotations, at the minimum, will include one acute care hospital based experience, one outpatient orthopedic experience, and one adult neuro-rehabilitation experience. SBU mostly utilizes regional clinical facilities that are closer to our campus, but does pull from from across the entire United States and to a lesser degree international opportunities to meet the needs of the program and the student. While student input to the assignment process is valued and considered, we cannot guarantee these requests for clinical assignments will be met. The final decision rests with the Academic Coordinator of Clinical Education (ACCE) and the student should be readily prepared to attend a rotation that may not have been a top preferred position on the part of the student. Students should plan and prepare for extra expenses including: transportation, housing, food, health exam, immunizations, drug screens, professional liability insurance, criminal background checks, and current CPR.
There are twelve full-time faculty positions, with all twelve currently filled, and two regular part-time faculty members, again with all positions filled. Ten of the twelve core faculty members hold doctoral degrees beyond entry level. Seven of the core faculty are certified as clinical specialists by ABPTS (4 Orthopaedic, 1 Sports, 1 Neurology, 1 Geriatric) with one holding a prestigious fellow status by AAOMPT. Seven are engaged in clinical practice to some degree. Over the past 3 years, the faculty has averaged eight peer-reviewed scholarly products per year (journals, book chapters, poster/platform presentations). The full time faculty to student ratio is 1:20.
The program accepts up to 80 physical therapy students in each class for a maximum total of 240 students.
The department utilizes the PTCAS application system. Starting October 1 of each year, the program will begin considering applications on a rolling competitive basis for the class starting the following August. The following requirements must be met before being admitted to the physical therapy program (courses in progress during application process must be documented): 1) completion of a baccalaureate degree, 2) completion of all prerequisite courses with a minimum of a “C” grade and a 3.0 GPA in prerequisites (prerequisites should not be taken pass/fail, should be taken in sequence and include: a. general chemistry (2 semesters, each w/lab), b. general physics (2 semesters, each w/lab); c. human/animal-based biology (to include: general biology, anatomy and physiology (1 semester each or full year combined sequence w/ lab), d. statistics (1 course); e. psychology (two courses, excluding psychological statistics), and f. pathophysiology is highly recommended (but not required), (please note that it is possible there will be changes coming as related to prerequisite course work in Medical Terminology and Exercise Science. Please keep in close contact with the PT Department for potential changes) 3) Earn a minimum of 2.75 overall grade point average (for all previous course work or highest degree attained) OR a 3.0 overall grade point average (for last 60 hours of course work), 4) completion of an application packet, 5) documented experience or observation in the field of physical therapy, and 6) submit Graduate Record Exam scores. A well-balanced foundation in liberal arts at the undergraduate level is recommended. International students need to contact the department or SBU catalog for additional requirements including the TOEFL. Applicants not meeting the published minimum standards may be considered for conditional enrollment. 12% of applicants are enrolled to the program (3-year average).
Over the past three years (2012-2014) our: 1) Graduation rate is 96% (2012 = 100%; 2013 = 100%; 2014 = 91%); 2) Ultimate licensure exam pass rate is 95% (2012 = 100%; 2013 = 93%; 2014 = 93%); and 3) Employment rate within six months for those passing the licensure examination is 99% (2012 = 100%; 2013 = 100%; 2014 = 99%). This information was last updated November 2014.
Tuition, fees and financial aid
Tuition for the Doctor of physical therapy program, August through July, is $25,000 per year paid in two installments. Two non-refundable $500 deposits, applied toward tuition, are due upon acceptance into the program. Fees include a curriculum/lab fee of $500 per year, technology fee of $286 per year, health fee of $34 per year, and graduation fee of $240. Fees apply to the 2014-15 year. Please contact the Office of Student Financial Planning for assistance in applying for a Federal Stafford Student Loan and PLUS loans.
SBU is located in Bolivar, Missouri, a town of 10,500 people with a low crime rate, low cost of living and strong community values. Located in the heart of southwest Missouri, Bolivar is just 30 minutes north of Springfield, 2 1/2 hours south of Kansas City, and 3 1/2 hours west of St. Louis.
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