Physical Therapy School Category: Physical Therapy Programs
General Program Description
The VCU Department of Physical Therapy offers a three-year degree program leading to a professional Doctor of Physical Therapy degree. DPT students participate in five full-time clinical education experiences for a total of 34 weeks. Students also participate in approximately 80 hours of part time clinical experiences that occur during the first two academic years to practice basic evaluation and treatment skills. The faculty’s primary mission is to prepare individuals for general practice with a strong foundation in the sciences. The faculty believes that physical therapists entering the profession must have a thorough understanding of the evidence for treatment and skills in problem solving, evaluation, and communication. The program also provides students with strategies to continually define and meet their own educational needs in order to keep skills and knowledge current throughout their professional careers.
The first full-time clinical experience is an 80-hour integrated clinical experience at the end of the first academic year. The second full-time experience occurs during the summer after the second academic year and is eight weeks in duration. Three additional eight-week clinical internships occur during the third academic year. Full-time clinical placements are in hospitals, rehabilitation centers, outpatient facilities, home health agencies, wellness centers, private practices, etc..
There are 13 full-time faculty members. Ten of the full-time faculty hold post-professional doctoral degrees and three have post-professional masters degrees. Two faculty are APTA board certified clinical specialists. Seven faculty are engaged in clinical practice. Over the past 3 years, the faculty has published over 120 papers in peer-reviewed journals. The faculty to student ratio is 1:12.3. Average faculty to student ratio during laboratory experiences is 11.5.
More than 30,000 undergraduate, graduate, and health professional students attend VCU on its two campuses. The Department of Physical Therapy is located on the Medical College of Virginia (MCV) Campus of VCU and accepts 54 students a year.
The VCU Department of Physical Therapy participates in the Physical Therapy Common Application System (PTCAS). Applications for admission to the physical therapy program are due to PTCAS on November 1st though VCU also participates in the PTCAS early decision option. All students are notified of admissions decisions by April 1st. Students applying to the program are required to have a Bachelor of Arts or Science Degree from an accredited college or university. Requirements for admission include the GRE and a total of 100 volunteer hours in two physical therapy settings. The grade point average of the last three classes upon admission was 3.50. Prerequisite courses include 3 hours in each: mathematics and statistics; 6 hours in psychology; 8 hours in each: chemistry and physics; and 12 hours of biological sciences including anatomy and physiology. Interviews are not required. In 2014, 15% of the qualified applicants were offered admission to our DPT program.
The average graduation rate for the Classes of 2012–2014 was 98%. Overall licensure pass rate for the classes of 2012-2014 was 100%. All graduates that were actively seeking employment had positions within six months of graduation.
Tuition, fees and financial aid
In-state tuition and fees for 2013-2014 are $5,292 per semester. Out-of-state tuition and fees are $10,388 per semester. Room and board costs range from $4,000-$5,000 per semester. A $400 program fee is charged for the fall and spring semesters. More than half of the students at Virginia Commonwealth University, Medical College of Virginia Campus receive some form of financial assistance from state, federal, or university funds. For assistance in obtaining financial aid, contact: VMI Bldg, Room 334, 1000 E. Marshall St., P.O. Box 980244, Richmond, VA, 23298, Telephone (804) 828-2702.
VCU offers students a wide range of comfortable and convenient housing arrangements, including low-rise apartment buildings and high-rise residence halls. Off-campus housing is readily available at a reasonable cost. A variety of facilities, services, and programs designed to meet the leisure and health needs of the university community are available. Virginia Commonwealth University, Medical College of Virginia Campus is located in historic downtown Richmond, near the government, financial, and retail centers. The Monroe Park Campus is situated 2 miles west in Richmond’s historic Fan District.
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