Doctor of Physical Therapy

Frequently Asked Questions

Preparing to Apply for Admission to a Physical Therapy Program

When do classes for the DPT Program at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee (UWM) begin?
Classes begin at the start of the summer semester following your admission and run full-time in a tracked program for six consecutive semesters, including summers, on campus. During the third year of the program, the student will participate in 3, 12-week clinical experiences; one during each of the three final semesters in the program. The program only operates on a full-time student basis.

When do I apply for admission?
There are two application windows; the early admission application deadline is August 15 and the regular admission application deadline is November 1st for the upcoming summer admission. All application material will be submitted through PTCAS.  Please see our admissions website for additional information.

How do I decide which application window is best for me?
Strong applicants are encouraged to use the early admission window, as acceptance at this time will eliminate your need to apply to several programs during the regular admission window, in November.  Applicants will receive notice of early admission decision well in advance of the November application process.

If I apply in early admission and am not offered a position, do I need to reapply in November to be reconsidered?
If you received a denial notice in PTCAS during the early admissions window, then you go into the regular admissions window and can apply to any program.

What are the prerequisites required to apply and do they need to be within a certain time window from my time of application?
Prerequisites for application are listed separately and in detail on this website under the Prospective Students, Prerequisite link. Courses may be in progress at the time of application and acceptance is conditional, upon grades for those classes not completed. All coursework must be completed by the time the DPT program begins.  Students with prerequisites completed will be given preference on admissions.

What are the minimum requirements for application to the program?
The overall cumulative GPA and prerequisite GPA need to be a minimum of 3.0 in order for your application to be qualified for review by the selection committee. The Graduate Record Examination (GRE) must be taken and the score submitted to UWM by the application deadline. The GRE must be within the past 5 years, to reflect current student performance. For non-traditional students the coursework, including prerequisite science courses, are often more than 5 years old. This is accepted, but keep in mind that science is a dynamic field and if you feel that your knowledge is not current or the coursework content is dated, we encourage you to retake any prerequisite coursework. Time since completion of the prerequisite courses is considered by the selection committee in offering placements.

Academically, what does the average student who has been accepted to the program look like?
Over the past few years students who have successfully been admitted to the DPT program at UWM have had an average cumulative GPA of 3.50, average prerequisite GPA of 3.43, and average GRE score is 61% quantitative and 64% verbal, with the writing score 4.13.  Students should achieve a 3.30 cumulative GPA and prerequisites GPA to be competitive.

If I am not accepted at the time of application, what can I do to improve my chances to be reconsidered?
If you are being reconsidered in November, any additional coursework that is completed may be submitted. Retaking the GRE and improving your score is also an option. If you reapply the following year, an entire new application must be resubmitted. The DPT program will not pull letters of recommendation, GRE scores, or clinical observation forms from old application files.

What can I expect the typical costs of the program to be?
Wisconsin residents should assume books and tuition costs for the entire three years in the program will be approximately $45,000. For more details visit the tuition and fees website. Tuition is set by the Board of Regents every two years and should be expected to change.  All students will participate in clinical experiences located outside of southeast Wisconsin. Therefore, all students should plan for living and transportation expenses during the clinical experiences, in addition to their time on campus.

Can I work while attending the program?
Most students find the DPT program coursework very rigorous and time consuming. Therefore, we recommend that students do not attempt to be employed during the DPT program. This is particularly true during the first two semesters in the program.

Is there financial aid available?
Yes, visit UWM's Financial Aid website for more details.

Is there housing available on campus for graduate students?
Typically graduate students live off campus, but visit the University Housing website for more information.