The Best Physical Therapy Schools in the US

Medical professions are challenging and hence require a great deal of concentration to study. So we have provided you with a comprehensive list of good physical therapy schools in the US, where you can get the best education experience. Because being a physical therapist is highly challenging and demanding, you need to ensure you are equipped with quality knowledge. Hence, Physical Therapy schools in the US are the perfect place to look out for.

Meanwhile, the physical therapy career is one of the valid growing occupations in the United States. Thus, following reports from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), there is expected job growth in Physical therapy by 21% between 2020 to 2030. Hence, this sums to over 49,000 new jobs for people.

So, if you are interested in getting into physical therapy school, then the right time is now. Yet, you may be seeking directions or asking some questions on how to go about it which include;

Why must it be physical therapy schools in the US? Are there good physical schools in the US? Are there scholarship programs for me if I decide to get a physical therapy degree in physical therapy schools in the US?

We want you to rest assured that these questions have carefully been sorted out in this article. Additionally, we have included the best 10 physical therapy schools you can resort to in the US. Knowing that there are numerous physiotherapist schools over there.

The Best Physical Therapy Schools in the US

What Is Physical Therapy?

Physical therapy is simply a term used to describe medical healing and diagnosing approach. This involves the treatment of injury, disease, or deformity by physical methods which can be in form of heat treatment, massage, and also exercise. Rather than using drugs of doing a surgery.

Furthermore, physical therapy is also known as ‘Physiotherapy ‘. Thus, It is an allied health profession where the physiotherapist maintains, promotes, or restores one’s health through physical examination, prognosis, and diagnosis. Also, this can be done through patient education, rehabilitation, physical intervention, health promotion, and disease prevention.

Besides clinical practice, physical therapists are also involved in consultation, research, education, and health administration. Most times, physiotherapy serves as primary care treatment alongside other medical services. So, in some jurisdictions, like in the UK, a physiotherapist can administer medication.

Additionally, the average annual salary for physiotherapists in 2020 was $91,010, according to the BLS (Bureau of Labor Statistics). So, it’s a very lucrative career path.

Where Is A Physical Therapy School?

A physical therapy school is simply an academic setting where you can obtain a DPT degree (Doctor of Physical Therapy). Hence, you will learn the methodology, and required precepts in the academic field on how to become a physiotherapist.

Furthermore, DPT programs may take three years to complete. You’d be engaged in different coursework relating to health and wellness, during this period

Why Attend Physical Therapy Schools in the US?

The forecast holds that the United States is in the middle of a physical therapist shortage. Therefore, there is currently a high demand for more physiotherapist practitioners in the US. Also, estimation holds that by 2025, there’s the possibility of having an additional 27,000 physical therapists will be required to meet increased demand. So this is a good time to undertake a program in physical therapy schools in the US. As there are so many opportunities and good career prospects over there.

Meanwhile, physical therapy schools in the US will give you the best education you need to become a good physiotherapist. Thus, they have the best doctors and professors from across the world. Even the most resourceful facilities and recent technologies ensure you become the best physiotherapist.

Furthermore, it is an opportunity to grow your connection and relate with dignitaries in your field of study. Apart from the aforementioned benefits desirable for attending physical therapy schools in the US, there are still many benefits attached to it. Including the food, explorations, and even the people.

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How Much Does It Cost To Enroll In Physical Therapy Schools in the US?

It is also vital we look into the cost of living and studying in physical therapy schools in the US. But considerably, know that physical therapy schools in the US want the best for students. Therefore give several opportunities to make the learning procedure easy for them.

However, as a student in the US, you are recommended to seek many financial support opportunities as many are available to students. Some scholarship programs are fully-funded while some are mere tuition fee waivers. Also, some scholarships are meant to help pupils that have proven to be from a low-income earning background. While some are for exceptional students who have proven their educational merits.

Meanwhile, as of 2019-2020 CAPTE aggregate datasheet reveals the average tuition fee of DPT programs in the United States. Thus, the tuition fee ranges around $18,989 every year for public schools and $37,448 every year for private.

Also read Physician Assistant Vs Physical Therapist: Differences, Similarities

How To Enroll In Physical Therapy Schools in the US

Conventionally to attend physical therapy schools in the US, you have to meet the requirements. Which includes getting a bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution and scoring high in your GPA or GRE. Thus, you’d have master’s areas such as neuroscience, biomechanics, anatomy, y, and exercise physiology. But to enroll in the undergraduate study you must have passed the secondary school education. Doing subjects like chemistry and biology.

Next, with your high GPA or GRE score you’d take the physical therapy school admission test. On passing the test, you can now enroll in any physical therapy school in the US of your choice.

Additionally, for better chances to get admitted to the school, you may need to complete some hours of work in a physical therapy-related field. This will hence make you a competitive student by including your resume during your application. Also, participate in an interview and get references. Meanwhile, a background check will be done on you to ensure you have no case of conviction or drugs.

The 10 Best Physical Therapy Schools in the US

Below we have listed the top physical therapy schools in the US. Thus, this is with regards to the most affordable school to attend that still possess an incredible scheme to ensure student get the best.

#10. U.S. Army-Baylor Program at Baylor University

So, this is the cheapest Physical Therapy school in the US. The Army-Baylor DPT at San Antonio’s Baylor University and it’s free. How is this so? Hence, this is possible when you enlist in the army. Thus, you can obtain a Doctorate of Physical Therapy without incurring a single bill of tuition debt. Meanwhile, know that Baylor has a different DPT degree which would amount to you paying over $100.

However, Baylor instituted the Army-Baylor program in 1971. This was nearly after 50 years of training physiotherapists to aid injured US soldiers. But now it is a fully-accredited DPT, program. Hence, the Army-Baylor program provides you with both the training and employment opportunities you’d get from other schools on this list of physical therapy schools in the US. Without costing you many dollars. If you can persevere to basic training and a few years of army enlistment, the Amy-Baylor DPT is worth a look.

Furthermore, this 6-semester, 124-credit program costs the following:

Total Program TuitionADSO requirement
Free – with Army enlistment54 months of Active Duty after graduation

Founded: 1971

Acceptance Rate: NIL

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#9. Texas Women’s University

For better Texan education savings, take a look at the DPT program at TWU. TWU is also one of the best physical therapy schools in the US. Thus, it is located in Denton, the now co-educational Texas Women’s University is a wonderful option for future DPTs of different demographics and strengths.

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Therefore, students inquisitive about neurologic therapy can obtain their clinical residency at TWU’s Institute of Health Sciences. The school is located in nearby Dallas or further south in Houston. Thus, which is home to the nation’s biggest medical center. So, with TWU, you’ll be earning a Texas-sized quality at a deal price, out-of-state or in-state.

Meanwhile, below is how little you’d spend for 98 credits over 8 semesters,

ResidencyTuition/Credit HourTotal Program Tuition
Texas state$280$27,508

Founded: 1994

Acceptance Rate: 93.7%

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#8. University of Texas-El Paso

This school is one of the affordable physical therapy schools in the US. Sitting on the boundary with Mexico, the University of Texas-El Paso provides a remarkable setting for your DPT, thus, among students and patients of diverse backgrounds.

However, other bonuses include permits for a broad emphasis on interprofessional education, a substantial simulation center, and the opportunity to work in multi-lingual clinics. Hence, the programs offered at UTEP have equipped 100% of their DPT candidates to pass the National Physical Therapy Exam. Also, enable them to find a job within a year.

So, below is how much 3 years and 99 credits cost:

ResidencyTuition/YearTotal Program Tuition

Founded: 1913

Acceptance Rate: 100%

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#7. East Carolina University

If you live nearby North Carolinians, you should consider the DPT program at East Carolina University. Thus, here in-state tuition is just over 20k total, which is crazy cheap! However, saving so much money on tuition won’t cheat you on career preparation.

Meanwhile, 100% of ECU graduates pass the National Physical Therapy Exam and get employed within six months of graduation. Additionally to the DPT program, you are likely to fall in love with the environment. Hence, the coastal plain, and the tidewaters of the Carolinas. Besides, the DPT program at ECU is a top contender for quality schooling.

So, for 106 credits over 9 semesters, below is how much you’d pay:

ResidencyTuition/SemesterTotal Program Tuition
North Carolina$2,374$21,366

Founded: 1909

Acceptance Rate: 87.9%

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#6. University of Tennessee Chattanooga

Yet another wonderful school on our list of physical therapy schools in the US. Hence, at this school located in Tennessee, grads show a 100% 1st-time pass ranking on the National Physical Therapy exam. Therefore outcomes in a 100% employment rate within one year of graduation. However, before graduating, you can choose to obtain your clinical studies in one of the hundreds of UTC-contracted facilities. But considering the culture and elegance of Chattanooga, you just might choose to stay.

So, this low-cost and highly valuable DPT experience is a strong deal no matter where you reside. Even the out-of-state, and neighboring residents of preferred Alabama and Georgia provinces qualify for an additional discount. 

Having 120 credit hours over 8 semesters you are required to pay the following;

ResidencyTuition/SemesterTotal Program Tuition
Tennessee state$5,135$41,080
AL/GA regions$7,151$57,208

Founded: 1886

Acceptance Rate: 83.1%

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#5. Arkansas State University

Another school in the midwest worth your money is Arkansas State in Jonesboro. Although ASU boasts over 14,000 students across 11 academic colleges. So, you’d be one of 30 students in the DPT program, working closely with internationally-recognized faculty and staff. Furthermore, ASU offers an international rate that is as affordable as out-of-state tuition; so whether you’re a continental neighbor or hail from farther abroad, you’ll feel at home at Arkansas State.

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For 106 credits over 3 years, here’s what you’d pay:

ResidencyTuition/Credit HourTotal Program Tuition
Arkansas state$333$35,298
Out-of-state / international$666$70,596

Founded: 1909

Acceptance Rate: 67.2%

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#4. Wichita State University

Several states allow for discounted tuition to Kansas’s Wichita State University. So making its DPT program affordable to pupils across the Midwest. The amazing significance you get from this surprising school goes beyond its price point, however. 100% of DPT grads are employed within six months. Likely due to the patient-centered technique they learned from WSU’s interprofessional education. 

Here’s what their 3-year, 124-credit program costs:

ResidencyTuition/Credit HourTotal Program Tuition
Kansas state$308$38,189
Plains or Midwest$462$57,288


Acceptance Rate: 76.9%

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#3. University of Rhode Island

What started up as an agricultural school on farm-owned possession in 1892 is now a major research university. Also, one of the most attractive coastal colleges nationwide. Thus, URI’s DPT program contains 3 years of definitive training as well as a good opportunity to practice therapy in an underserved country. To top it off, URI provided 3 affordable schooling rates, including a regional discount for New England residents.  

Here’s how much 3 years of 112 credit hours will cost;

ResidencyTuition/YearTotal Program Tuition
Rhode Island state$14,096$42,288
New England$21,144$63,432

Founded: 1892

Acceptance Rate: 75.5%

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#2. University of Iowa

The University of Iowa’s physical therapy program has been rated high by the US News and World Reports’. Therefore, the best Graduate School is tied with Northwestern and USC.

However, whether you hail from Iowa or not, you’ll get a discount on top-notch DPT training. Thus, in one of the biggest school-owned teaching hospitals in the nation.

For 124 credits over 8 semesters, you’d pay;

ResidencyTuition/YearTotal Program Tuition
Iowa State$17,304$43,260

Founded: 1847

Acceptance Rate: 84.3%

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#1. Northern Arizona University

The first school on the list of best physical therapy schools in the US is Northern Arizona University, which includes two campuses, Flagstaff and Phoenix. Hence, the application procedure is simplified for both campuses, so you don’t need to worry about applying to both. That is if you have no residential preference. So, wherever you study, you’ll profit from NAU’s award-winning physical therapy faculty. Also, their graduates’ are 100% employable.

For 98 credit hours over 7 semesters, you’d pay;

ResidencyTuition/SemesterTotal Program Tuition
Arizona state$5,084$35,594

Founded: 1899

Acceptance Rate: 81.6

Visit School Webpage

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On the endnote, physiotherapy is a very amazing medical approach that can easily help especially those who don’t like medication. But, to perfect the skills required and the art of science needed, you need to be trained rightfully. Therefore, it ill is a wise decision if you study Physical Therapy schools in the US.

So, carefully review the schools listed here to see which best interest you to apply for. Also, if you still have further questions regarding this article subject, feel free to reach out to us.

Frequently Asked Questions About Physical Therapy Schools in the US

What PT school has the highest acceptance rate?

The University of Iowa. The University of Iowa tops our list of easiest PT schools to get into. They have a very high acceptance rate of 82.55% in 2021, with over 21.000 admitted students out of almost 26.000 applicants.

What is a good GPA for physical therapy school?

Most students who are accepted to DPT programs have a GPA of 3.5 or better.

How do you get into PT school?

The association adds that PT school hopefuls may need to complete a certain number of hours of PT-related fieldwork to be competitive candidates; meet GPA and GRE requirements; get references and participate in interviews; disclose if they have any criminal convictions, and undergo criminal background checks and drug

Is Physical Therapy hard?

BS in Physical Therapy is really a difficult course. Every subject is a brain kill. There are a lot of techniques that you need to memorize. To study is the only tool to survive in this course.

How long is physical therapy school?

Becoming a physical therapist can take anywhere from three to eight years. Before you can enroll in a Doctor of Physical Therapy degree program or DPT program, you must first earn a bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution, ideally with a major in health science.

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