University of Iowa Department of Physical Therapy & Rehabilitation Science
Department of Physical Therapy & Rehabilitation Science Carver College of Medicine 1-252 Medical Education Building Iowa City IA 52242-1190 United States
+1 319.335.9791 +1 319.335.9792 +1 319.335.9707
Program Description

The nationally ranked University of Iowa Department of Physical Therapy and Rehabilitation Science (PTRS) is located in the Carver College of Medicine on the University of Iowa Health Sciences Campus. The PTRS department aims to advance the health of humankind by preparing physical therapists who commit to excellence in practice, who strive to discover new knowledge and who serve in leadership roles in healthcare and science. 

Innovative learning experiences are associated with a medical college environment which includes the University of Iowa Hospitals & Clinics, one of the nation's largest university-owned teaching hospitals. Students have access to a faculty which includes expert clinicians and internationally renowned scientists. The small class size (~48 students are enrolled per year) allows for an excellent student to faculty ratio; promoting students as valued colleagues and future leaders of the profession. 

The department is well equipped for classroom and laboratory instruction in a modern facility in the heart of the medical campus. While most courses in the curriculum are just for the DPT degree students, there are opportunities to study with medical and other health care students, specifically in pathology, neuroanatomy, and several interprofessional healthcare courses. The latter courses provide opportunities for collaborative teamwork among 9 disciplines (RN, PT, MD, PA, PH, DDS, PharmD, SLP, MSW). 

Clinical education is a very important part of our curriculum. Students begin integrated clinical experiences during their first semester and continue throughout the curriculum. Outstanding clinical education opportunities are available for students in a variety of settings and locations. Our students' clinical experiences cross all practice types and lifespan. From our 2021 cohort, 82% had experiences with patients from neonatal intensive care (NICU) to 10 years of age, 100% had experiences working with people from 11-80 years of age, 99% had experiences with people 81-90 years of age, and 65% had experiences with people from 91-100 years of age.  Each student was able to work across the continuum of patient care, including outpatient, acute care, subacute care, rehabilitation, home health and wellness. 

Our two-year average DPT student outcomes are:  

  • Employment rate:  100%
  • Graduation rate:  100%
  • Licensure examination pass rate:  100%
Program offers a guaranteed freshman admission pathway?
Dual Degrees
Dual-degree programs offered in conjunction with the PT degree
We offer the opportunity for highly qualified students to pursue studies in both clinical physical therapy (DPT) and rehabilitation research (PhD).  The DPT is the degree required to practice physical therapy, whereas the PhD provides the training to become an independent scientific investigator. The goal of combined studies is to train clinician-scientists who will generate new knowledge as physical therapy researchers at the university level.
Will the professional (entry-level) PT program offer a satellite or branch campus to applicants during the upcoming admissions cycle?
Admission Interviews
Program conducts interviews as part of the admissions process?
Additional information about interviews
The majority of our interviews will take place in late October and November.
Is a Deposit Required for Accepted Applicants?
Total cumulative deposit
Additional Information about Deposit
The $600 advance payment (deposit) is required if admitted into the DPT program to reserve a seat in the class. 
Deposit Refundable?
Additional Information about Refunds
The $600  advance payment (deposit) is applied directly to the student's summer tuition.
Deposits collected on a rolling basis after offer of admission made?
Additional information about rolling deposits
Deposits are due approximately three weeks after an admission offer is made.
Total Cost of Education for In-State Students
Total Cost of Education for out of State Students
Incoming Class Profile
Anticipated Size of the Next Entering Class
Size of Most Recent Entering Class
% of students from IN-STATE
% of students from OUT-OF-STATE
% Male
% Female 
% Hispanic 
% Asian
% African-American/Black (Non-Hispanic)
% White (Not of Hispanic Origin) 
% Two or More Races 
Additional information about the class profile
Admission is based on course work, grade-point averages, GRE scores, experience, rationale, recommendations, and interviews. 
Minority-Serving Institution (MSI) Status
Program housed at a Minority-Serving Institution No