Biokinesiology and Physical Therapy

Doctor of Philosophy in Biokinesiology and Physical Therapy

The graduate program leading to the Doctor of Philosophy in Biokinesiology and Physical Therapy offers an opportunity for highly qualified students to prepare for careers in academic health care. The curriculum is designed for individuals who envision a career that combines training for physical therapy practice and scholarly research.

Admission Requirements

Applicants must have earned a bachelor’s degree with a superior grade point average as well as Graduate Record Examinations scores. A personal interview with program faculty is required. Prerequisite course work must include: four courses in the biological sciences with labs (including human anatomy, human physiology and cell or molecular biology); one year of college physics with lab; one year of college chemistry with lab; one semester of college mathematics; two courses in psychology; one course in composition and writing; one course in literature or history. Courses that are highly recommended include: biochemistry, calculus, kinesiology, exercise physiology, neuroscience, genetics and a cross-cultural course in sociology.

Application for admission to the Division of Biokinesiology and Physical Therapy requires submission of two sets of materials: special division application and university application forms. Students are admitted for study in the Ph.D. in Biokinesiology and Physical Therapy program beginning in the fall semester of each academic year. Both sets of applications must be submitted by December 1 of the previous year. At the time of admission to the program, the student must identify a faculty member who will serve as an adviser throughout every phase of study.

Degree Requirements

This degree is under the jurisdiction of the Graduate School. Refer to the Requirements for Graduation and the Graduate School for general regulations.

Years 1, 2 – required courses units
PM 510L Principles of Biostatistics 4
PM 511aL Data Analysis 4
PT 507 Professional Practice: Therapist Perspective 2
PT 509 Cellular and Systems Physiology 3
PT 514L Musculoskeletal Anatomy 4
PT 516 Principles of Disease 2
PT 521L Basics of Patient Management 4
PT 529 Life Span Motor Control 3
PT 534L Neuroanatomy 3
PT 536 Pathology of Cardiopulmonary Disease and General Medical Conditions 3
PT 539 Clinical Pharmacology 1
PT 546 Neuropathology 3
PT 547 Professional Practice: System Perspective 2
PT 549L Clinical Exercise Physiology 4
PT 551L Therapeutic Applications of Physical Agents 2
PT 554L Analytical Anatomy 3
PT 557 Professional Practice: Patient Perspective 2
PT 566 Disorders of the Musculoskeletal System 3
PT 569 Fundamentals of Neuroscience 4
PT 571L Clinical Management of Cardiopulmonary Dysfunction 4
PT 574 Clinical Biomechanics 3
PT 581L Clinical Management of the Patient with Neurological Dysfunction 5
PT 582 Mechanics of Human Gait 2
PT 583L Clinical Electrophysiology 3
PT 600abcdez Clinical Clerkship 1-3-1-1-3-0
PT 621L Clinical Management of the Patient with Musculoskeletal Dysfunction 5
Years 3, 4, 5 – required courses units
BKN 790 Research 1-12
BKN 794abcdz Dissertation 2-2-2-2-0
Year 6 – required courses units
PT 630 Integrated Management of the Upper and Lower Extremities 3
PT 631 Integrated Management of the Axial Skeletal System and Related Movement Disorders 3
PT 632 Integrated Patient Management Seminar 5
PT 660 Advanced Clerkship with Academic Integration 5
PT 665 Advanced Clinical Clerkship 8

A minimum of 116 units is required for completion of this program.

Estimated Calendar of Study

Basic and Clinical Science Foundation Courses (Years 1, 2)

The student will enroll in all required course work and clinical experiences excluding BKN 790, BKN 794abcdz, PT 630, PT 631, PT 632, PT 660, PT 665.

Qualifying Exam (Year 3)

The student will select a guidance committee and begin preparing a research proposal (register for BKN 790). During this time, the student is encouraged to enroll in key elective courses, both inside and outside the division, which will enhance research proposal development. The expectation is that the student will sit for the qualifying exam and achieve doctoral candidacy at the end of year three.

Research and Dissertation Preparation (Years 4, 5)

The student will complete the research project and prepare a dissertation (register for BKN 790 and BKN 794). The expectation is that the student will successfully defend the dissertation by the end of year five.

Completion of Internship Requirement (Year 6)

The student will complete the required internships to achieve clinical competency (register for PT 630, PT 631, PT 632, PT 660 and PT 665).