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Pre-Physical Therapy

Physical Therapy

Students in physical therapy class

Physical Therapy Program Description

Physical Therapy is truly a hands-on career, and graduates have the opportunity to work in a variety of meaningful positions. Students gain experience while at OU to prepare them for jobs involving the restoration and maintenance of physical activities, health promotion and prevention of disability.

Students begin their studies at OU's Norman campus to pursue a bachelor's degree. After earning a bachelor's degree at the main campus, students may apply to the Doctor of Physical Therapy program in the Department of Rehabilitation Sciences, located at the vibrant University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center.

Do my interests fit?

Physical Therapy students typically have interests in:

  • Communication
  • Science
  • Wellness
  • Fitness and working with people. 

High school preparation should include studies in biology, mathematics and English. Prospective students are encouraged to volunteer at several different physical therapy sites in order to gain a greater understanding of the profession.

How can Physical Therapy help me?

OU students attend national conferences that offer real-world networking with professional physical therapists and other students. Graduates of the Physical Therapy program can become licensed therapists and work in many areas of health care to provide services to people of all ages. Students  in the Physical Therapy program share basic and rehabilitation science classes with students from the Occupational Therapy program in order to foster team skills and an appreciation of other disciplines. 

After the Physical Therapy Program where do students go?

Students have many options for employment, including the following:

  • Hospitals
  • Nursing homes
  • Home health agencies
  • School systems
  • Military
  • Private practices
  • Traveling health care companies
  • Colleges and universities
  • Early intervention programs
  • Adult day programs
  • Hospice facilities

Notable Achievements: 

The students and faculty of the Physical Therapy program have recently received numerous accolades over the years. In 2005, student Dale Boren was awarded the Mary McMillan Student Award from the American Physical Therapy Association. The same year, Professor Denise Bender attended the White House Conference on Aging as a delegate from Oklahoma, and 14 first- and second-year students participated in APTA's National Student Conclave in Denver. In 2006, Dr. Irene McEwen was selected as a Catherine Worthingham Fellow of the APTA.

Other alumni hold positions such as:

  • Director of Outpatient Rehab, Midwest Regional Medical Center
  • Staff Therapist, Integris Health
  • Clinical Supervisors
  • Private Practice Owners
  • College and University Faculty
  • Certified Clinical Specialists,
  • Researchers
  • Instructors of Continuing Education Clinical Courses
  • Managers, Directors and Consultants to industry or state/local/national government agencies

How much will I make?

Visit the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics website to explore the median pay for jobs you can pursue with this degree.

Program Accreditation

The Physical Therapy program is accredited by the American Physical Therapy Association and the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education awarded accreditation for a period of 10 years, 2013-2024.

Contact Us

College of Allied health Office of Academic and Student Affairs
Phone: (405) 271-6588