Physical Therapy (DPT)

Our Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) program emphasizes clinical experience. This 3-year, full-time program is designed for men and women who have a bachelor's degree and have completed the necessary prerequisites. Learn more about the DPT program, curriculum, faculty and more!

How to Apply

Application deadline for summer 2022 will be November 15, 2021.

Simmons subscribes to PTCAS. Please go to the PTCAS website for more information about the application process and application.

Application Requirements

Applicants to the Doctorate in Physical Therapy (DPT) program should hold a BS or BA degree from a regionally accredited college or university in the U.S. or university abroad which is recognized by the Ministry of Education in the home country. 

At minimum of 30 hours of physical therapy experience is required, which a licensed PT must verify hour using that PTCAS format. Students may be completing these required hours at the time of application but will need to provide written verification of remaining hours to the Office of Graduate Admission no later than May 1.

In light of current events surrounding COVID-19, the Physical Therapy department will be accepting virtual/telehealth observation hours for the Summer 2022 application cycle.

Additionally, for any student who is unable to document a minimum of 30 observation hours by May 1 can submit a brief essay addressing the below prompts. This should be no longer than 500 words and can be emailed to [email protected].

One of the reasons we require observation hours is for students to obtain a better understanding of the breadth of physical therapy. The following assignment will hopefully help you to gain some of this knowledge.

In lieu of observation hours, please:

  1. Reflect and write about why you desire to become a physical therapist;
  2. Research the various types of practice a physical therapist can engage in, and describe the similarities and differences between at least 3 different practice settings. (This does not mean 3 different outpatient clinics.) Please provide references and working links to Web sites for your research;
  3. Write a short paragraph about 2 things you didn't know about physical therapy or what physical therapists do.

Application Procedure

Simmons subscribes to PTCAS. Please go to the PTCAS website for our program description and information about the application process.

An applicant will be considered for review if the following requirements are submitted to PTCAS and completed by the deadline:

  1. Complete application
  2. Simmons essay and PTCAS essay
  3. Three letters of recommendation (should include a recommendation from an instructor, a practicing physical therapist and a professional)
  4. Official college transcripts from all institutions attended, whether or not a degree was earned
  5. Official GRE scores (the PTCAS GRE code for Simmons is 1610)
  6. Verified observation hours
  7. If applicable, additional requirements for international students

Please note that if you are currently taking prerequisites during the fall semester, the Office of Admission will also need an unofficial grade report for these courses. Applicants should send a copy of their grade report as soon as it is available directly to the office via email. The grade report can be a screenshot of your student portal page that includes your name and the institution attended.

Academic Records: Transcripts

All official transcripts should be sent to PTCAS, not the Office of Admission at Simmons University.

Official transcripts for all courses completed (undergraduate and graduate) at regionally accredited U.S. post-secondary institutions, whether or not a degree was awarded. This requirement includes courses which appear on another transcript as transfer or study abroad credit. If you attended a study abroad program and the grades appear on the transcript of your home institution, you do not need to submit a separate transcript. Check with the Registrar's Office of your undergraduate institution to confirm this. If there are no grades listed on your home institution's transcript, and a separate transcript exists, we require an official copy. 

Applicants who earned a degree abroad must submit an official (signed/sealed) transcript (marks sheet) in the original language and an official English translation, if needed, by someone other than the applicant, a family member or friend. An evaluation by a foreign credential agency may be required but such interpretations do not replace official academic records. Grades (marks) for each year are required not just end of year exam results or a copy of the degree earned.


Three recommendations are required, including a recommendation from an instructor, a practicing physical therapist and a professional. We cannot accept recommendations from family members, friends, religious personnel, coaches, politicians or people for whom you provided childcare since we need evaluations from individuals who can assess your academic ability to engage in graduate studies. 

Standardized Tests

Applicants must take the GRE within 5 years before the application deadline. The PTCAS GRE score code is: 1610. We look for minimum scores of 150 (verbal reasoning), 144 (quantitative reasoning), and 4.0 (analytical writing). Applicants can take the GRE multiple times and the highest score in each section will be used.

Enrollment Deposit

Accepted students who wish to enroll must submit a non-refundable $750 enrollment deposit by the date indicated in the letter offering admission. This deposit is applied to the first term bill. 

Re-application Procedure

An applicant who wishes to re-apply must do so via PTCAS. An updated resume, new recommendations and a statement about why you are re-applying must be included in your personal statement. Additionally, if courses were taken after the initial application, official transcripts must be submitted.

The following courses are required prior to beginning the program in the Summer:

  • Biology* (one semester)
  • Chemistry* (two semesters)
  • Exercise Physiology (one semester)
  • Human Anatomy* (one semester)
  • Human Physiology* (one semester)
  • Physics* (two semesters) (can be calculus-based or non-calculus based)
  • Psychology (two semesters)
  • Statistics (one semester)

*with labs

The expectation is that applicants have a minimum 3.0 GPA in both their overall undergraduate and overall prerequisite GPAs. All courses must have been completed within ten years prior to the application deadline. All courses should be equal to one semester in length. Thus, two quarters may be required to equal one semester

Courses completed on a pass/fail or audited basis, and CLEP and AP scores are not accepted in lieu of these courses.

Two prerequisites may be outstanding for application eligibility, as long as they are completed in the spring semester before the start of the program in June.

A maximum of two prerequisites may have been retaken once, regardless of grades earned and whether or not the courses were re-taken at the same or different institution. Course titles may differ but if the content is the same, it is considered a repeat.

If you want to know if a particular course will meet our admission requirements, email the Office of Graduate Admission. Include the course name and number, when and where it was taken, if a lab is included and if it was an online or onsite course. A course syllabus may be requested for further review.

Simmons welcomes applications from international students for the DPT program.

Visa Requirements and Full-Time Academic Status

Due to immigration stipulations, international students requiring a student visa to study in the U.S. must be enrolled full-time in a degree-granting academic program. 

Additionally, if you are currently in the U.S. and have any visa other than an F-1, you must check with the Bureau of Citizenship and Immigration Services regarding procedures for changing your visa status. International students requiring an F-1 visa cannot enroll in non-degree courses nor can they be admitted provisionally pending completion of admission. 


If residing abroad when applicant earned a degree abroad, he/she must have completed all prerequisites before applying to the program. For more information on the prerequisites refer to the "Prerequisites" tab.

Required Academic Records

In the U.S. academic records or mark sheets are called "transcripts" (this is the term used throughout this website). All applicants who have studied abroad must submit official (signed in original ink and stamped with a seal) academic records for study completed at all universities (including schools where no degree or certificate was earned by the student). These documents should include end-of-year result sheets for each year of university study, national exam results, and a copy of degrees or certificates, both in the native language and English translations. Photocopies or facsimiles of mark sheets and exam results for the final year alone are not acceptable. Additionally, the academic records may need to be evaluated by an agency specified by the Office of Admission. Degrees earned abroad must be from an institution of higher learning which is officially recognized by the home country's Ministry of Education.

The Office of Admission may require an evaluation of an applicant's academic credentials from abroad. These evaluation reports do not replace the need for signed/sealed academic records. These reports are interpretations of a student's academic history and U.S. colleges and universities may accept all or partial information in these assessments. Our preferred provider is WES. Evaluations should include English translations and U.S. equivalencies of all transcripts including a course-by-course evaluation with grades.

A "college" abroad usually means a secondary institution whereas in the U.S., a college is an institution providing higher education. A college can be part of a larger university or represent a singular institution such as Simmons University. Academic records from overseas colleges which are actually secondary schools (high schools in the U.S.) are not required as part of the application process. Courses taken at the secondary level do not fulfill the prerequisite requirements for application and admission to a graduate program. A baccalaureate in the U.S. is a first university degree. Many overseas systems award baccalaureates which represent the completion of secondary education or a year beyond.

Required Standardized Test Results

Applicants whose first language is not English must submit official English language test scores taken within two years prior to the application deadline. These include the TOEFL, Duolingo English Test, Pearson Test of English and IELTS. Other English proficiency exams can be considered on a case by case basis. This requirement is based on native language, not citizenship.

This requirement is waived for applicants who have graduated at the bachelor's or master's level from a regionally accredited U.S. institution or a post -secondary institution abroad that is recognized by the Ministry of Education in the host country in English-speaking countries only.

Official scores are required; copies of student score reports are not acceptable. The TOEFL code is 3761. A minimum score of 570 (paper-based), 230 (computer-based,) or 88 (internet-based) is required. Further information about TOEFL can be obtained by contacting Educational Testing Service (ETS) by telephone at 609-771-7670 or by visiting their website.

Information about the Duolingo English Test can be found by visiting their website.

Applications cannot be reviewed without the receipt of these test scores. It is very important that applicants register for these exams well in advance of applying for admission.

Required Financial Documentation

All non-U.S. citizens who will require a student visa for study in the U.S. must provide accurate and current evidence of ability to pay for the cost of a Simmons education. These costs are variable (but include fixed and living costs beyond tuition) and outlined on the Certification of Finances Form. This form is available by calling the Office of Admission at 617-521-2605.

This form must be completed and returned directly to the Office of Admission. In addition, an original signed statement from the applicant's sponsor indicating a willingness to provide financial support and a statement from the sponsor's bank verifying the availability of sufficient funds must be received. All documents must be signed in original ink, written in English, and funds must be shown in U.S. dollars ($).

It is very important for the applicant to inquire about the regulations in the home country concerning transfer of funds. Applicants may submit these forms during the application process or after being admitted to the program. Please keep in mind that the documents cannot be older than six months. This information is required in order to process an I-20 to obtain an F-1 student visa.

Arrival at Simmons University

It is important that international students plan properly to arrive at the required time to commence their studies. Allow ample time for obtaining immigration documents, shipping personal items and adjustment due to time and climactic changes. Students will NOT be allowed to enroll in classes if they arrive after classes have officially started. It is imperative that students allow adequate time for moving, student orientation, and establishing contacts.


Tuition and fees

Tuition and fees at Simmons are updated annually each spring. They are assessed each semester based on the number of credits enrolled, the level of degree, and the particular program of study.

Health insurance

All students taking 9 or more credits are required by Massachusetts State law to enroll in the Student Health Insurance Plan or be covered by a health insurance plan with comparable coverage.

Contact us

Questions? Contact us via email or at 617-521-2605. We're happy to schedule visits and campus tours.

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