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Admission Requirements



Applications must be submitted through the Physical Therapy Centralized Application Service (PTCAS).

 *** GRE scores must be sent to PTCAS using the UTHSC program code 7744 ***

Important Dates

*Applicants will NOT be able to submit applications to programs until the open date of June 15, nor will programs see or have access to applicant information until June 15.

Date Firm Decision
Application Deadline October 1, 2024
Interview Dates November 15 – 16, 2024 and December 13 – 14, 2024

 Applications are reviewed and candidates are accepted until all the class seats are filled.

Requirements for 2024 - 2025 application cycle:

 Requirements to Apply:

  • Degree: A baccalaureate degree must be completed prior to enrollment. There is no requirement on the undergraduate major/minor of study.
  • Prerequisite Courses: All prerequisite courses must be completed prior to enrollment with grades of "C" or better. Grades of "C-" or below in these courses are NOT acceptable. Any course not completed must be coded in PTCAS as "in progress" to identify compliance with pre-requisite coursework.
    • The following 19 of 44 hours of prerequisite courses must be completed and reported on official transcripts before an application for admission will be considered (with a grade of C or better): Biology including laboratory (4 cr), Chemistry I including laboratory (4 cr), Physics I including laboratory (4 cr), Anatomy and Physiology I including laboratory (4 crs), and Psychology (3 cr).
Required Prerequisite Courses Credit Hours
Biology  8
Chemistry  8
Physics 8
Anatomy and Physiology  8
Psychology (AP/CLEP credit accepted) 6
Math (AP/CLEP credit accepted) 3
Statistics (AP/CLEP credit accepted) 3
  • Bachelor’s degree
  •  25 hours of total observation (Multiple settings recommended)
  • One letter of recommendation is required. This letter can be from an academic advisor, professor in major or from other professional source. No personal recommendations please.
  • Meeting technical standards
  • Competitive GRE –  300 Average = 305 The score must be sent to PTCAS using UTHSC program code 7744.
  • Competitive GPA of pre-requisite courses 3.2 – Average = 3.5
  • Grade forgiveness up to 8 hours
  • Face-to-face prerequisite science courses recommended. Online courses accepted for prerequisites.

ALL application materials, including transcripts, GRE scores, PT observation hours, and recommendation letters, must be verified by PTCAS before the student can register for classes after acceptance to the program.


The University of Tennessee Health Science Center Doctor of Physical Therapy program receives a large number of applications each year, making acceptance into the program very competitive.

To be eligible for consideration for admission, applicants must fulfill the listed requirements. Meeting the minimum requirements does NOT assure admission to the Doctor of Physical Therapy program. Priority is given to residents of Tennessee when all else is equal.


Grade Forgiveness 

  • The UTHSC DPT program allows up to 8 hours of grade forgiveness. This means that if a course is repeated, the higher grade will be substituted (up to 8 hours). 


  • The UTHSC DPT program requires a mandatory interview on one of the dates listed previously. The interview day consists of a 20-30 minute interview that typically includes a PT faculty member, community PT, and current DPT student; a campus tour; and information session led by UTHSC faculty and students. 

Technical Standards

  • Applicants must demonstrate good physical and mental health consistent with the demands of the education program.
  • Applicants who accept a position in the program must declare the ability to fulfill the Technical Standards.

International Students

  • Transcripts from foreign institutions must be evaluated by World Education Service ( and submitted to PTCAS. 
  • Applicants whose native language is not English must submit results of TOEFL with a minimal score of 550.
Factors Considered in the Selection of Students:

We pride ourselves in a holistic admissions process, knowing that grades and test scores alone do not equate to a successful physical therapist. We heavily weigh other aspects of who you are, including life experiences, observation hours, and your potential to relate to patients during the interview process.

Factors utilized by the Admissions Committee include, but are not necessarily limited to:

Academic Record: Past academic performance is considered an indication of the probability of an applicant’s completing the academic portion of the program successfully. The average GPA of accepted students is 3.6.

Graduate Record Examination scores: Competitive applicants obtain a combined score of at least 300 (Verbal and Quantitative sections) on the GRE. The average GRE is 306.

Ability help meet the needs of a diverse population of patients/clients: The Admissions Committee also gives extra consideration to students from or have worked with the following: medically underserved areas or populations, and/or educationally disadvantaged groups. The Committee also gives extra consideration to second career students, first generation college students, and veterans of uniformed services.

Motivation and Knowledge of the Field: The Admissions Committee believes that students who are knowledgeable about what physical therapists do are most likely to take maximum advantage of the educational opportunities in the physical therapy education program. Interest in and knowledge of the field may be evidenced by an applicant’s having taken advantage of available opportunities for learning about physical therapy.

Potential for Positive Patient Interactions: The interview is weighted heavily in the decision process. Being able to develop rapport with patients is crucial. Besides the ability to answer questions, we look for the applicant’s ability use appropriate verbal and non-verbal language during the interview process.


Jul 16, 2024