Pre-Physical Therapy

Explore Pre-Physical Therapy

Help sick or injured people improve their mobility and manage pain. Rehabilitate someone who has been injured or be an advocate for those with chronic conditions. 

What jobs can you do with a
pre-physical therapy degree? 

Care for people at their most vulnerable times, with supportive, compassionate professionalism. As a physical therapist, you may find your passion in one of these challenging areas:

Neurological Physical Therapy 
Occupational Physical Therapy     
Geriatric Physical Therapy 
Pediatric Physical Therapy 
Rehabilitative Physical Therapy

Many DWU pre-health and athletic training students go on to attend physical therapy (PT) schools. The course prerequisites for admission vary significantly across PT educational programs, so plan your path early in your college career. 

To learn more, visit the American Physical Therapy Association website.

Pre-Physical Therapy Courses

Your path to PT school will include courses in anatomy, biology, chemistry, psychology
and statistics.

PSY 237 Developmental Psychology
3 Hours
This course is a sequential study of the individual from conception to death. Students will study research regarding human physical, cognitive and social-emotional development, along with implications for parents, teachers and counselors.
BIO 330 Anatomy and Physiology II
BIO 220 Anatomy and Physiology I
BIO 301 Biostatistics
4 Hours
This course covers the basic tools for the collection, analysis and presentation of biological data. Topics include the general principles of study design, hypothesis testing, basic descriptive statistics and specific statistical tests including t-test, correlation, chi-squared, contingency analysis, data transformations, analysis of variance, regression and some non-parametric methods. Prerequisites: BIO 120 and BIO 122, and MTH 125. Individuals without a major in the Department of Biological Sciences require instructor consent.
BIO 122 Principles of Biology II
BIO 120 Principles of Biology I
4 Hours
Students will examine concepts and theories in the following areas: the philosophy and methods of science; ecology; cell structure and function; genetics; and evolution. Three lectures, one laboratory. This course is intended to primarily serve those majoring in the Biological Sciences. Prerequisite or corequisite: BIO 120L.
PSY 443 Abnormal Psychology
CHM 331 Organic Chemistry I
CHM 332 Organic Chemistry II
PHS 260 University Physics I
4 Hours
This is an introductory calculus-based course in the fundamentals of physics as applied to mechanics. Topics included are kinematics, vectors, Newton’s laws, energy, momentum, rotational dynamics, gravitation, simple harmonic motion and waves. Three lectures, one laboratory. Prerequisite or Corequisite: MTH 135 or consent of instructor. Corequisite PHS 260L.
PHS 270 University Physics II
4 Hours
This a calculus-based course in the fundamentals of physics as applied to electricity and magnetism. Topics included are Coulomb’s law, electric fields, potential fields, capacitance, DC circuits, magnetic fields, induction, AC circuits and Maxwell’s laws. Three lectures, one laboratory. Prerequisite or Corequisite: PHS 260/206L. Corequisite: PHS270L.
PSY 131 General Psychology
3 Hours
This overview of the discipline explores human and animal behavior and consciousness. The diversity within the discipline is reflected in the range of subjects presented, including motivation, emotion, perception, sensation, learning, intelligence and personality.

Get to Know Your Professors

Learn how to care for those with injuries, pain or mobility issues from our highly qualified faculty! Our low student-to-teacher ratio offers valuable one-on-one interaction with professors.

Bethany Melroe Lehrman, Ph.D.

Professor of Chemistry | Dean of the Donna Starr Christen College of Healthcare, Fitness and Sciences

Dan Wagner, EdD

Director of Athletic Training | Athletic Training Preceptor | Professor in the Athletic Training Program

Matt McManus, M.Ed.

Associate Athletic Trainer | Instructor

Matthew Zens, DPT

Associate Professor of Athletic Training

Paula Mazzer, Ph.D.

Professor of Biochemistry

Randi Christensen, M.A.

Associate Professor | Director of Athletic Training Services

The Experience

During your time at DWU, you will take a variety of pre-physical therapy courses, plus you will have opportunities for field experience and internships. Chat with your DWU adviser to discuss internships that you can explore. 

Related Majors & Minors

Athletic Training

An exciting career in sports healthcare and rehabilitation, using hands-on learning experiences, is waiting for you in our Master’s in Athletic Training program.


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