University of Wisconsin-LaCrosse

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Physical Therapy School Category: Physical Therapy Programs

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  • General Program Description

    The DPT Program is 34 months long consisting of 112 credits. The UW-L Physical Therapy program is housed in the Health Science Center (virtual tour available at ) A variety of other health profession educational programs share the five-story facility allowing for integrated educational programming and research collaboration such as the La Crosse Institute of Movement Science. UW-L is located on the border between Wisconsin and Minnesota and is situated in the natural beauty along the Mississippi River. It is through the combined efforts of a resourceful, motivated and productive faculty, and a conscientious and aspiring student body that the goals of the UW-L Physical Therapy Program are achieved. The faculty, students and graduates of the program strive to generate lasting and significant advances in the sciences, education, and practice of the physical therapy profession.

    Clinical Experiences
    The clinical education portion of the curriculum totals 42 weeks. Students participate in an early clinical affiliation (2 weeks), an intermediate affiliation (4 weeks) and conclude with three 12 week clinical internships followed by an on campus debriefing immediately prior to graduation. Internships are offered in an impressive array of clinical sites located throughout the United States. Additionally the PT Program curriculum integrates community based PT services to adults with motor disorders and a wide variety of health and wellness initiatives.

    There are 11 full-time UW-L faculty members complemented by a diverse community of associated and adjunct faculty. Six of the full-time faculty members hold research doctorates (PhDs). Four additional faculty have clinical doctorates and a one faculty is completing a DPT. The faculty mix consists of basic scientists, clinical specialists and actively practicing clinicians. The faculty to student ratio is 1:12 for most lab based classes. The faculty are committed to the achievement of professional excellence and are dedicated to the development of clinical and academic scholarship of each student enrolled in the program. Students partner with faculty to perform research and present their research findings at state and national Physical Therapy meetings. Faculty include leaders in various professional organizations including the APTA, WPTA and FSBPT. Other faculty are active members in a variety of discipline specific professional organizations contribute to clinical specialist examination process and APTA sections task forces.

    Total enrollment for the University is 10,427 students (797 graduate students). The Physical Therapy Program currently accepts 45 students each year through the PTCAS (centralized application service).

    Students apply to the UW-L PT Program through PTCAS. Prerequisites include 4 credits in biology, 3 credits in each: statistics, psychology and sociology; and 8 credits in each: chemistry, physics, and human anatomy-physiology. Two clinical observational experiences of 20 hours of volunteer requirements are required. The student must have at least a 3.0 GPA overall, and the student must obtain an undergraduate degree before entering the professional program. Articulation agreements exist between UW-L Biology and Physics Departments enabling a dual degree student to complete their BS degree during the first year of the PT Program. Application procedures may be found at

    100% of program graduates have historically passed their NPTE. Recent sampling of alumni reflect that approximately 24% hold advanced degrees or are pursuing an advanced degree, approximately 2% have completed a residency or fellowship program, approximately 5% are ABPTS certified specialists, approximately 20% are certified clinical instructors and approximately 5% have published in a referred journal. Faculty members play active leadership roles in multiple discipline specific professional organizations, the WPTA, Wisconsin Physical Therapy Examining Board, Federation of State Boards for Physical Therapy, Clinical Education Special Interest Group and provide community based treatment within the PT curriculum and a local pro bono clinic.

    Tuition, fees and financial aid
    The cost for 2012-2013 academic year (including summer session tuition and all fees is approximately $16,160 for Wisconsin residents and $33,460 for out-of-state students. The UW-L PT Program annually awards approximately $75,000 in student scholarships. Paid student helper and research assistant positions are also available based on available funding.

    Student life
    There is an ample supply of off-campus rentals in a wide price range. Cars are admitted without restriction. Intercollegiate athletics (Division 3) include nationally ranked gymnastics, cross-country, track and wrestling teams as well as baseball, basketball, football, golf, gymnastics, swimming and tennis. La Crosse (pop. 53,000) is situated on the Mississippi River with a unique network of off road and trail bicycling and hiking trails and other year round outdoor activities including skiing and water sports. It is located between the larger cities of Madison, Milwaukee and Minneapolis-St Paul.

  • School Name: University of Wisconsin-LaCrosse
    Contact Name: Michele Thorman, PT, DPT, MBA
    School Specialties: Physiotherapy/Doctor of Physical Therapy/Medical/3 Year PT Program/Rehab Sciences/DPT Programs/Physical Therapy Education/Physical Therapy Assistant Program/Health Care Pathway Programs/General Ortho
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