27 List of Physical Therapy Schools in the United States

By | December 22, 2023

Physical Therapy Schools in the United States – Do you have a passion for helping others? If so, you may be interested in a career in physical therapy. In fact, there are many opportunities for physical therapists to work in the United States. You could start by finding a school that offers a physical therapy program. Schools that offer physical therapy programs typically offer classes that cover a variety of topics related to the care of patients with various health conditions. You’ll also need to pass a licensing exam to be a physical therapist in the United States.

Top 27 Physical Therapy Schools in the United States

Physical therapy is one of the most essential health services a person can receive. It’s one of the few healthcare providers that can help you restore function to lost limbs, hips, and other body parts. In addition to helping people return to their former lives, physical therapy schools offer students a variety of programs that can help them in their professional life.


Are you ready to begin a career in Physical Therapy? When considering schools, remember to look at the following factors:

  • License Exam Pass Rate
  • Incoming GPA
  • Employment Rate
  • Graduation Rate
  • Student/Teacher Ratio

Our list of top Physical Therapy schools is based on the above criteria. The rankings are provided by

Physical therapy is a branch of medicine that helps people with physical problems. It can be used for treating a wide range of conditions, including chronic pain, dislocation, cramps, arthritis, and various types of psychiatric problems. In the United States, there are over 27 physical therapy schools that offer undergraduate degrees in physical therapy.


List of Physical Therapy Schools in Alabama

Alabama State University
Montgomery, AL

Alabama State University offers the Clinical Doctorate in Physical Therapy (DPT) degree.

This three-year degree prepares graduates as entry-level Physical Therapists eligible to sit for the National Physical Therapy Exam administered by the Federation of State Boards of Physical Therapy.

Related careers

The board passage rate for 2016-2018 is approximately 94% and 93% of those graduates seeking employment have been successful. It’s definitely one of the best PT schools.

The University of Alabama at Birmingham
Birmingham, AL

UAB’s Department of Physical Therapy has offered outstanding educational programs in Physical Therapy for 50 years.

Currently, they offer the Doctor of Physical Therapy program for students who choose to become physical therapists and an interdisciplinary Ph.D. in Rehabilitation Science program.

U.S. News Rank for best Physical Therapy schools: #182 Tie

List of Physical Therapy Schools in California

University of Southern California
Los Angeles, CA

USC has been a pioneer of the Physical Therapy profession and a leader in both Physical Therapy research and education.

Currently ranked as the #1 top Physical Therapy program in the nation by US News & World Report, the USC Division of Biokinesiology and Physical Therapy continues to be a prestigious center of excellence for the clinical practice, education, and research of Physical Therapy.

Related: 14 Best Physical Therapy Schools in the World

U.S. News Rank: #1 Tie

University of California – San Francisco State University
San Francisco, CA

This three year, entry-level Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) program is offered jointly with the University of California, San Francisco.

The DPT program is designed to prepare scholarly clinicians, educators, collaborative clinical researchers, administrative managers and community leaders. The program accepts 50 students each year.

Both the National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE) pass rate and employment rate are 100%.

U.S. News Rank for best PT programs: #20 Tie

List of Physical Therapy Schools in Colorado

Regis University
Denver, CO

The Regis University School of Physical Therapy integrates the latest evidence into their teaching, clinical practice, and research efforts.

They are at the forefront of evidence-based practice in Physical Therapy. Multiple programs within the school are intended to match students based on where they are in their career path; each is recognized for their unique style of excellence.

U.S. News Rank for top-rated Physical Therapy schools: #28 Tie

University of Colorado – Denver
Aurora, CO

The Anschutz Medical Campus at the University of Colorado – Denver offers:

  • Interprofessional Education
  • Innovative Curriculum with Global Health Initiatives
  • Partnerships and Research Opportunities

The average licensure pass rate is 93% and the employment rate is 100%.

U.S. News Rank: #15

List of Physical Therapy Schools in Delaware

University of Delaware
Newark, DE

The Doctor of Physical Therapy Program at the University of Delaware is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE).

The Department of Physical Therapy also offers qualifying DPT students the option to earn a Master of Science (MS) in Anatomy and Clinical Health Science.

What’s more, the University of Delaware offers credentialed residencies in sports, orthopedics, geriatrics, neurology, and acute care—just one of the reasons it makes our list of PT schools.

Their graduation rates and employment rates are 94.34% and 100% respectively.

U.S. News Rank #1 Tie

List of Physical Therapy Schools in Georgia

Emory University
Atlanta, GA

Emory University offers educational, clinical, research and community service opportunities available in the Doctor of Physical Therapy Program located on the main campus in the heart of Atlanta.

The program’s goal is to create an environment that nurtures:

  • Inquisitiveness
  • Knowledge
  • Expertise
  • Professionalism

U.S. News Rank for top Physical Therapy programs is #5

List of Top Physical Therapy Schools in Florida

University of Florida
Gainesville, FL

The University of Florida program embodies a strong foundational background in the biological, kinesiological, and behavioral sciences.

Incorporation of principles of logical and scientific reasoning throughout the curriculum is a cornerstone of this program and just one reason it makes our Physical Therapy schools list.

The curriculum is an eight (8)-semester plan of study, which incorporates 32 weeks of full-time clinical internship and several weeks of integrated part-time clinical experiences.

The students are awarded the DPT degree after completing 113 credit hours of professional coursework.

U.S. News Rank: #10 Tie

University of Miami
Coral Gables, FL

The UHealth Physical and Occupational Therapy Program are committed to serving the community and promoting the values of physical therapists.

The Department of Physical Therapy is an integral part of the Miller School of Medicine at the University of Miami.

The Department of Physical Therapy offers:

  • Two doctoral level degrees
  • A three year, entry level clinical doctoral degree the Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT), and
  • An academic doctoral degree, (PhD) in Physical Therapy

UM strives to expand evidence-based practice through cutting-edge research and educates students on the main campus in the heart of Miami.

U.S. News Rank for top PT schools: #10 Tie

List of Physical Therapy Schools in Illinois

Northwestern University
Chicago, IL

The Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine is dedicated to educating doctors of Physical Therapy in an academic medical environment that integrates:

  • Research
  • Education, and
  • Clinical care

Their goal is to promote optimal health outcomes for their patients as well as society through the advancement of rehabilitation science and practice.

In addition to encouraging lifelong learning, the department offers rich opportunities for continuing education, making it one of the best Physical Therapy schools in the U.S.

U.S. News Rank: #6 Tie

University of Illinois— Chicago
Chicago, IL

Located in the heart of the Illinois Medical District, the UIC Department of Physical Therapy provides students access to state-of-the-art educational, clinical and research facilities.

With proximity to major medical centers in a large urban setting, this program builds multiple national and international educational experiences into its curriculum.

The first-time pass rate for national licensure exam is consistently above 90% with a second-time pass rate consistently 100%.

U.S. News Rank: #15 Tie

List of Physical Therapy Schools in Iowa

University of Iowa
Iowa City, IA

UI offers a unique learning environment in a leading medical education center.

The Department of Physical Therapy and Rehabilitation Science consists of faculty members who are dedicated clinical educators and scientists who embrace the department’s mission to advance the health of humankind. Students are artfully mentored to meet the challenges facing healthcare today.

Students enjoy a 100% pass rate of the Federation of State Boards of Physical Therapy’s national licensure exam.

U.S. News Rank for best PT schools by state: #6 Tie

List of Physical Therapy Schools in Kansas

University of Kansas Medical Center
Kansas City, KS

In collaboration with The University of Kansas Hospital, students benefit from the opportunity to interact with a large number of healthcare professionals and leading researchers in real-world environments.

The Kansas University programs are nationally recognized for excellence and located in the heart of Kansas City.

Kansas offers two-degree programs:

  • Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT)
  • Doctor of Philosophy in Rehabilitation Science (Ph.D.)

U.S. News Rank: #20 Tie

List of Physical Therapy Schools in Massachusetts

Boston University
Boston, MA

Boston University has few equals in:

  • Providing opportunities for broad clinical experience
  • Pursuing your personal interests
  • Taking part in rewarding professional and volunteer activities

The Boston University Doctor of Physical Therapy degree includes five academic semesters and one summer semester of coursework, plus 44 weeks of full-time clinical education that includes a six-month internship.

The first-time passing rate for BU graduates is 100%.

U.S. News Rank for top schools for Physical Therapy: #14

MGH Institute of Health Professions
Boston, MA

Help people lead active, healthy, and fulfilling lives by earning your Doctor of Physical Therapy at MGH Institute of Health Professions in Boston.

Learn collaborative, patient-centered care from exceptional Physical Therapist faculty and discover why Physical Therapy is such a highly rewarding career field.

They are 1 of 2 academic institutions initially selected as exemplars of excellence and innovation in PT Education by PTE-21 Research Group funded by APTA.

U.S. News Rank: #8 Tie

List of Physical Therapy Schools in Minnesota

Mayo School of Health Related Sciences
Rochester, MN

The Mayo Clinic School of Health Sciences in Rochester, Minnesota offers a 33-month, entry-level Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) program.

By the numbers:

  • Graduation rate: 98.2%
  • Licensure exam pass rate: First time 100%; overall 100%
  • Job placement rate: 100%

The Physical Therapy Doctoral Program curriculum follows a traditional model that embraces evidence-based Physical Therapy practice. It includes a strong clinical education component to give students the necessary breadth and depth to achieve proficiency in professional skills.

U.S. News Rank for best PT schools: #20 Tie

University of Minnesota— Twin Cities
Minneapolis, MN

Graduates of the University of Minnesota Medical School Doctor of Physical Therapy program gain:

  • Didactic knowledge
  • Clinical skills
  • Translational abilities to bring prevailing best practices into the clinic

By the numbers:

  • Graduate Rate: 100%
  • National PT Exam Pass Rate: 100% (94% on the first attempt)
  • Employment Rate: 100% (2018)

U.S. News Rank: #20 Tie

List of Physical Therapy Schools in Missouri

Washington University in St. Louis
St. Louis, MO

The Washington University Program in Physical Therapy provides:

  • Leading in advancing human health through movement
  • Integrating interdisciplinary research
  • Provide outstanding clinical care
  • Education of tomorrow’s leaders to drive optimization of function across the lifespan

Their DPT and PhD programs prepare students to excel as a practitioner or researcher working to advance human health—a high-paying career choice.

U.S. News Rank for best Physical Therapy schools: #1 Tie

List of Physical Therapy Schools in Nebraska

Creighton University
Omaha, NE

Creighton’s Physical Therapy program offers students an ideal setting for innovative work with a focus on maintaining quality and dignity of life and enriching the human community.

Their program was the first in the nation to offer the clinical doctorate in entry-level Physical Therapy education.

In concert with the Jesuit tradition of Creighton University, the Physical Therapy department provides an environment that values human dignity across various styles of thinking and diverse social backgrounds.

U.S. News Rank: #15

List of Physical Therapy Schools in North Carolina

Duke University
Durham, NC

The Duke Doctor of Physical Therapy Program is consistently rated among the best PT programs in the nation and stands apart thanks to:

  • Team-Based Learning
  • Student Team Experience in Practice (STEPs®) Program
  • Global Health Programs
  • Innovative Research

By the numbers:

  • 100% Graduation Rate
  • 100% Licensure Pass Rate
  • 100% Employment Rate for Duke DPT Graduates

U.S. News Rank: #10 Tie

University of North Carolina— Chapel Hill
Chapel Hill, NC

The Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) program is designed for those individuals with an undergraduate degree in a field other than Physical Therapy.

There is no undergraduate major that you must have to apply to this program and no major is more advantageous or disadvantageous for your application.

The program requires:

  • Three full years of study (36 consecutive months) with 114 hours of didactic and clinical courses
  • 36 weeks of clinical rotations
  • Four mock clinical cases
  • A written comprehensive examination
  • A capstone project

They have a 100% graduation rate and 100% licensure pass rate.

U.S. News Rank for best Physical Therapy schools in the U.S.: #15 Tie

List of Physical Therapy Schools in Ohio

Ohio State University
Columbus, OH

With more than 50 years experience preparing students for successful careers in PT, Ohio State’s Doctor of Physical Therapy degree program is among the very best in the country.

Students can extend their entry-level education with graduate specializations in pediatrics, research, and global health.

A post-professional master of science degree can provide additional preparation for participation in scholarship, teaching, and leadership.

U.S. News Rank: #10 Tie

List of Physical Therapy Schools in Pennsylvania

University of Pittsburgh
Pittsburgh, PA

Whether you are seeking entry-level professional training, advanced training in Physical Therapy or doctoral research training, Pitt offers endless opportunities and one of the most prestigious Physical Therapy programs in the US.

With five Catherine Worthingham Fellows of the APTA, NIH-funded investigators and numerous clinical specialists, the faculty is top-notch.

U.S. News Rank for top schools for Physical Therapy: #1 Tie

Arcadia University
Glenside, PA

Arcadia University prepares physical therapists to excel in:

  • evidence-based practice
  • discover and disseminate new knowledge
  • assume leadership roles
  • work collaboratively with other professions
  • and optimize global health

U.S. News Rank: #20 Tie

Top Physical Therapy Schools in Texas

U.S. Army – Baylor University
Fort Sam Houston, TX

This top-ranked Physical Therapy doctoral program recruits highly-qualified individuals from the civilian sector to join the military and become officers in the US Army or the US Navy.

The program also selects applicants from within the active duty and reserve forces to transfer in from other military occupational specialties.

This military Physical Therapy program is located at the historic Fort Sam Houston in San Antonio, Texas and is the Home of Military Medicine.

U.S. News Rank: #8 Tie

List of Physical Therapy Schools in Wisconsin

Marquette University
Milwaukee, WI

The Doctor of Physical Therapy curriculum at MU is designed to develop the student completely as a person and as a professional.

A foundation of courses in the humanities and sciences challenges the students’ personally by focusing not only on the intellect but also on character development.

Students can complete 2 degrees in 6 years. Their 2018 first time Pass Rate is 100%.

U.S. News Rank for top-rated Physical Therapy schools: #15 Tie

A Variety of Schools for Ultimate Success

With so many schools to consider, you’re bound to find one that fits all of your requirements for the perfect physical therapy school.


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