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Admission Requirements

Requirements to Apply for the Doctor of Physical Therapy Program

Frequently Asked Questions:

Please see the FAQ document, updated November 2020.

Degree requirement:

A bachelor's degree must be completed before entrance into the program.  Any bachelor's degree is acceptable, but it may be beneficial to pursue a degree that includes many or all of our prerequistes (below).

GPA requirement: 

A minimum 3.0 GPA in the last 60 credits of undergraduate/graduate course work is required; however to be competitive, a 3.5 GPA is recommended.

Prerequisite courses:

A minimum 3.0 GPA in each of the major categories and courses in the table below.  Note that the Idaho State University Physical Therapy Admissions do not accept pass/fail grades in required prerequisites.  For students at universities that are awarding pass/fail grades due to COVID-19, we suggest you alert administrators that graduate schools are requiring letter grades for graduate school applications.

Major CategoryCourses Required

Biology*   (not Introductory)

Each course must be four semester credits with lab

Human Anatomy AND Human Physiology OR   
Human Anatomy and Physiology I AND II

Exercise Physiology*

Three semester credits with lab

Exercise Physiology

Chemistry*   (not Introductory)

Each course must be four semester credits with lab

General Chemistry 1 AND

General Chemistry 2 OR Organic Chemistry OR Biochemistry

Physics*  (not Introductory)

Each course must be four semester credits with lab

Physics 1 AND
Physics 2


Statistics (not Research Methods)
Social Science

One Psychology or Sociology course AND

300/400 level Abnormal OR Developmental Psychology

Medical Terminology

Medical Terminology

This requirement can be waived by a statement from a professor or employer noting applicant's competency in medical terminology.  Statement should be emailed to


*These prerequisite courses must have been completed in the past seven years.

Graduate School Entrance Exam Requirements:

COVID UPDATE:  The GRE scores listed below are required minimum scores for the 2020-2021 application cycle.  If you are unable to test (or re-test) prior to the application deadline, please send a detailed email to with 'future GRE date' in the subject line.  Please include the date of your test to allow for your future scores to be considered for admission. Also, ETS has a "take at home" option for the GRE that can be taken thru December 31, 2020. This option should be considered if you are having difficulty finding a testing center seat.

Students must take the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) to fulfill the requirement. International Students also must submit a TOEFL examination. Minimum required scores for acceptance are:

Graduate Record Examination

Minimum combined score of 295 with at least 148 in verbal.

A minimum analytical writing score of 4.0.

All qualifying scores must be received on a single GRE occurrence.  For more information about the GRE or to schedule a test, visit their website  Please send your results to GRE code 4640 for PTCAS and 4355 for the ISU Graduate School.


International students must obtain the following scores in each section of the TOEFL on one attempt.   Exam date must be within 2 years of application.

TOEFL Section  Minimum Score 
Reading  22
Listening 21 
Writing 22 
Speaking 24

Written Essay:

Produce a well – written essay and submit it through the PTCAS system.

Observation Hours:

COVID UPDATE:  Applicants should complete as many observation hours as possible prior to the application deadline.  Although the preference is for at least 80 hours of observation in at least two practice settings, applicants with fewer than 80 observation hours or who are lacking at least two settings of physical therapy practice will not be automatically disqualified from consideration for admission. 

Complete a minimum of 80 directly clinical care observation hours at two different physical therapy settings (sports, peds, home health, acute care, geriatric, etc.) and document them in the PTCAS system.

Letters of Reference:

Request 3 letters of reference; at least one from a professor, instructor or academic advisor, and two from physical therapists that have directly observed you.  Letters must be submitted by the author into the PTCAS system.


Idaho State University Admissions offers an opportunity to complete an online asynchronous interview for qualified applicants. All interviews are conducted using a video-based platform where students record and upload their responses to a series of interview questions for review by program faculty and the Admissions Committee. Students must have a computer with webcam and internet service to complete this interview. Instructions for completing the interview will be emailed directly to qualifying applicants by the Admissions Committee.


Some exceptions to these admissions criteria may be made pending approval of the ISU DPT Program Admissions Committee and in accordance with Graduate School Policy. These exceptions must be petitioned/requested by the applicant in writing. For example: For individuals with advanced graduate work and/or field work directly related to program requirements exceptions may be made in the time frame of coursework and GRE scores.

NOTE: Upon Acceptance into the DPT Program
  • All students must show evidence of required immunizations. The Certification Form must be completed with documented evidence of vaccinations.
  • Students will be required to submit to a criminal background check.
  • Students must be certified in Health Professional CPR for adult, child and infant.
  • Students will be covered by general health insurance at all times while enrolled in the program; regardless of whether the academic schedule includes classroom instruction or participation in clinical rotations. Many clinical partners require proof of health insurance prior to placement on clinical rotations. This insurance is the responsibility of the student.