Become a Leader in the Growing field of Physical Therapy

Learn to diagnose and treat movement dysfunction to help people live healthier lives.

UMass Lowell has the only physical therapy degree program offered by a public institution of higher education in Massachusetts and has maintained accreditation since 1981. Annually, tuition and fees average half the cost of private higher education peers. 100% of DPT graduates are fully employed within six months.

Our graduates practice in hospitals, rehabilitation centers, schools, long-term care facilities and nursing homes, community and home health agencies and corporate sites. Some of our graduates work in prevention and wellness services, clinical research and leadership positions.

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Exercise Science to Doctor of Physical Therapy

Transition seamlessly from the B.S. in Exercise Science to the Doctor of Physical Therapy

Students who meet the qualifications as incoming first-year students may be notified in their letter of acceptance to the university from Admissions that they have been admitted into the ES to DPT cohort. Students must be enrolled in the Clinical Option to be eligible for this designation and must complete the BS in Exercise Science program with a cumulative Overall GPA of 3.4 (or higher) and a DPT Pre-Requisite Science GPA of 3.4 (or higher) to continue into the graduate Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) program.

  • Full TimeDuration: 3 years including summers

    The UMass Lowell Doctor of Physical Therapy program prepares students to diagnose and treat movement dysfunction to help people live healthier lives. Supporting the American Physical Therapy Association (APTA) core values as demonstrated throughout the curriculum, our program aligns with the vision of the APTA to transform society by optimizing movement to improve the human experience. 

    The curriculum includes 95 credits of coursework and 34 weeks of clinical education experience. It provides a comprehensive foundation in the art and science of physical therapy. Methods of instruction include classroom lecture and discussion, small group/problem-based learning, and skill development during laboratory and clinical experiences. Emphasis is placed on the development of clinical decision-making and critical inquiry skills across the curriculum.

    The clinical education program consists of three extended clinical education experiences, of 10, 12, and 12 weeks duration respectively, for a total of 34 weeks. Students experience a variety of practice settings, including acute care, sub-acute rehabilitation, outpatient orthopedic, as well as other more specialized settings, e.g. pediatric, geriatric, sports medicine, women's health, and home care.

    1. View the DPT Degree Pathway (curriculum)
    2. View the Program Outcomes
    3. View the course descriptions in the Academic Catalog

    Program Contact Information

    For general inquiries regarding the DPT program, contact:

    Marjorie King, Ph.D., ATC, PT, FACSM
    DPT Program Director
    Department of Physical Therapy and Kinesiology
    University of Massachusetts Lowell
    113 Wilder Street
    Lowell MA 01854
    Telephone: 978-934-3125 
    Email: Marjorie_King@uml.edu

  • APPLY ONLINE NOW

    Get ready for an exciting career as a physical therapist. UMass Lowell's fully accredited Doctor of Physical Therapy program requires a baccalaureate degree for admission and a three-year full-time commitment, including each summer. Matriculation begins the summer immediately subsequent to acceptance. The UMass Lowell DPT program does not offer deferred acceptance.

    Application Deadline

    • See more information in the UMass Lowell Graduate Catalog: Admission Requirements
    • Note: GRE requirements have NOT been waived for admission into the DPT Program. However, due to current public health concerns, the DPT Program is temporarily accepting the GRE General Test at home option.)
    • The completed application deadline is Nov. 1 for admission into the subsequent (summer) matriculating class.
    • Applications deemed incomplete at the application deadline will be ineligible for review.

    ApplicationDocumentsApplication Documents

    We admit qualified baccalaureate degree recipients directly into the doctoral program with a 2-Year Average of 39.3% of the applicants admitted into the program (2020-2021).

    Program Contact Information

    For additional information regarding specific admission requirements, contact:

    Keith W. Hallbourg, PT, D.P.T., M.S.
    Graduate Coordinator
    Department of Physical Therapy and Kinesiology
    University of Massachusetts Lowell
    113 Wilder Street
    Lowell MA 01854
    Telephone: 978-934-4402
    Fax: 978-934-3006
    Email: keith_hallbourg@uml.edu

    All application documents should be submitted directly to the Office of Graduate Admissions.

  • The Doctorate of Physical Therapy Program at the University of Massachusetts Lowell is accredited by the: 

    Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE)
    3030 Potomac Ave., Suite 100
    Alexandria, VA 22305-3085
    Telephone: 703-706-3245
    Email: accreditation@apta.org
    Website: www.capteonline.org

    If you need to contact the program/institution directly, please call 978-934-3125 or email: marjorie_king@uml.edu.

  • acapt-logo

    The Doctorate of Physical Therapy Program is also a member of the American Council of Academic Physical Therapy.

  • Community involvement is an integral component of the Physical Therapy Department's mission of preparing clinicians to practice in today's complex healthcare environment. The department has community-based outreach relationships with many organizations in the region to facilitate rehabilitation and solutions to prevention and wellness issues in the community. Additionally, the department is committed to providing community access to educational programs that promote clinical expertise among practicing clinicians in the region and the nation. 

    Department-sponsored yearly events include:

    Professional Organizations

    The Physical Therapy Department has been, and/or is currently, involved with the following local organizations:

    • Anne Sulllivan Center
    • Chelmsford Senior Center
    • D'Youville Rehabilitation
    • Elder Services of Merrimack Valley, Lawrence
    • Emerson Hospital, Westford
    • HEAD Start Program, Lowell
    • Ironstone Farm
    • Life Links
    • Littleton Council on Aging
    • Lowell Community Health Center
    • Lowell Council on Aging
    • Northeast Rehab
    • UMass Lowell Human Resources Department
    • UMass Lowell Demonstration School
    • UMass Lowell Recreation Center
    • Winchester Hospital/Orthopaedics Plus, Woburn

    Service Learning

    Service Learning in Physical Therapy is a new capstone course in the Doctoral Physical Therapy Program. This course will include relevant and meaningful service in the community with specific academic learning objectives. The students will use experiential learning to complement and enrich classroom and traditional pedagogies. Students will have opportunities to learn about particular populations and social issues in the community. This course will provide the students with an opportunity to design and implement educational and training programs in an effort to meet the needs in the populations that they are serving in the community. Students will learn about working collaboratively with others from different cultures and other diverse populations. Students will strengthen listening and communication skills that are essential to a practicing physical therapist.

Delivering Real-World Experiences

  • Patrice Olivar
    Exercise Physiology & Psychology

    While double-majoring in psychology and exercise physiology, Patrice Faith Olivar has gained both research and practical experience. UMass Lowell has opened more doors than she thought possible.

  • Terrie Enis
    Physical Therapy

    Terrie Enis’ college experience is quite different from most. She was married with a two-year old daughter when she decided to go back to college full time to earn her bachelor’s degree in physical therapy.

  • Sean Jordan
    Physical Therapy

    Sean Jordan is living his dream working for the New England Patriots as an assistant athletic trainer and physical therapist.

  • Akshay Alamuri
    Exercise Science

    Akshay Alamuri says UMass Lowell fit his family’s budget – and his own goal of becoming a physical therapist.