Doctor of Physical Therapy (CUW)

Concordia University Wisconsin offers a professional (entry-level) Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) program. The program is based on a liberal arts foundation and encompasses three years of professional education beyond a Bachelor’s degree.

Mission Statement

The Concordia University Wisconsin Physical Therapy program is committed to developing physical therapists with a sound foundation in movement across the lifespan. Graduates will demonstrate excellence in collaborative , culturally competent, ethical, evidence based practice and leadership within a changing health care environment. The program seeks to foster personal and professional growth in knowledge, skills, and attitudes for Christ-centered service to Church, community, and the world.


The Physical Therapy Program at Concordia University Wisconsin is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE), 1111 North Fairfax Street, Alexandria, Virginia 22314; telephone: 703.706.3245; email:; website:

General Academic Information

The Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) program is designed to help students become thoughtful, skilled and caring therapists who are autonomous providers of physical therapy services. Concordia’s program emphasizes evidence-based practice and focuses on developing clinicians who will serve the community through excellence in clinical practice and understanding of the spiritual, economic, and psychological needs of the clients they serve. The program will help students develop skills to determine why an individual may have difficulty with movement, to determine whether those difficulties can be remediated by physical therapy, and to develop and implement a program which would address those concerns.

The Professional Physical Therapy Program at Concordia leads to a Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) degree. This entry-level professional degree program is three full years in duration, beginning in the summer. The program is full-time and encompasses nine terms. The curriculum combines classroom, laboratory, and supervised clinic-based instruction. No specific major is required or preferred for entry into the program provided the prerequisite classes have been met.

Program Learning Outcomes

The student/graduate will:

Goal 1: Demonstrate the knowledge and skills for entry-level practice of physical therapy (PT) as a generalist clinician

a. Demonstrate knowledge and skills for safe clinical practice

b. Possess entry-level knowledge and skills for patient/client  management (screening, examination, evaluation, diagnosis, prognosis, plan of care, interventions (procedural and educational), documentation, outcomes assessment)

c. Value and use evidence in practice

Goal 2: Embody the multiple facets of professionalism within the clinic

a. Follow legal and ethical standards of clinical practice

b. Demonstrate professional behavior

c. Demonstrate effective written, oral and non-verbal communication skills

d. Demonstrate cultural sensitivity in clinical practice

Goal 3: Value service to the church, community, and profession

a. Report a belief in service as a professional duty

b. Students/graduates will report participation in service activities

Goal 4: Demonstrate knowledge and skills for adapting to changes in healthcare delivery systems

a. Possess the ability to direct and supervise PT support personnel

b. Possess the ability to manage financial resources (reimbursement; equipment/supplies; productivity; time management; environmental resources) within the clinic

c. Be prepared to serve as a consultant within the healthcare system

d. Possess the knowledge and skills related to developing prevention/health promotion programs

e. Possess the knowledge and skills related to management of care delivery (i.e., providing patient care through direct access; collaboration with other healthcare practitioners; participation in case management)

f. Value the role of PT in social responsibility & advocacy


DPT 500Foundations of Physical Therapy3
DPT 501Human Anatomy I3
DPT 502Human Anatomy II3
DPT 505Kinesiology5
DPT 510Evidence Based Practice I2
DPT 540Clinical Decision Making2
DPT 550Pathophysiology/Pharmacology I4
DPT 555Movement Analysis I1
DPT 560Intro to Professional Practice2
DPT 565Therapeutic Exercise3
DPT 580Management of Pediatric Disorders4
DPT 584Neuroscience I1
DPT 585Neuroscience II2
DPT 586Neuroscience III2
DPT 602Community Clinic I1
DPT 609Exercise Science I3
DPT 610Management of Neuromuscular Disorders - Adult I (Management of Neuromuscular Disorders I - Adult)3
DPT 611Management of Neuromuscular Disorders - Adult II (Management of Neuromuscular Disorders II -Adult)3
DPT 612Community Clinic II1
DPT 615Movement Science4
DPT 625Therapeutic Modalities4
DPT 628Clinical Problem Solving I2
DPT 630Clinical Problem Solving II2
DPT 631Clinical Problem Solving III6
DPT 635Evidence Based Practice II3
DPT 650Pathophysiology/Pharmacology II4
DPT 655Movement Analysis II3
DPT 659Introduction to Management of Musculoskeletal Disorders2
DPT 660Management of Musculoskeletal Disorders I4
DPT 661Management of Musculoskeletal Disorders II4
DPT 665Management of Integumentary Disorders2
DPT 705Medical Imaging3
DPT 723Cardiopulmonary Systems/Acute Care4
DPT 736Tissue/Biomechanics/Histology3
DPT 742Psychosocial Dimensions of Rehabilitation I1
DPT 743Psychosocial Dimensions of Rehabilitation II1
DPT 744Practice Management2
DPT 745Health Promotion2
DPT 709Exercise Science II2
DPT 760Clinical Practice I6
DPT 761Clinical Practice II6
DPT 786Community Clinic III1
One of the following 3 credit electives:3
Topics in Orthopedic Manual PT (elective)
Topics in Sports Medicine PT (elective)
Selective Topics in Pediatric Physical Therapy (elective)
Total Hours122

Entrance Requirements

Admission to the entry-level Doctor of Physical Therapy program is competitive. Concordia University Wisconsin will admit one class of 28 full-time students in the summer of each academic year.

Admission requirements include:

  • Bachelor’s degree in any field from a regionally accredited institution
  • Minimum 3.0 cumulative GPA
  • Minimum GPA of 3.0 in all required sciences
  • Ability to perform essential functions of a physical therapist listed at
  • Submit GRE scores

Science Prerequisites (See for additional details)

  • Chemistry- two semesters of sequenced courses with labs
  • Physics- two semesters of sequenced courses with labs
  • Human Anatomy and Physiology- two semesters offered through a Biology, Anatomy or Physiology department

Other prerequisites:

  • Statistics - one semester
  • Psychology - one semester

Students may apply to the program before all admission requirements and prerequisites are completed, but must be completed prior to matriculation.

Priority Admission for Concordia Undergraduate Students

Concordia offers priority admission to the Doctor of Physical Therapy program to students who:

  • Are current, full time student at CUW or CUAA who will graduate with a Bachelor’s degree from Mequon or Ann Arbor
  • At the time of submitting the application, are not missing more than one prerequisite science course
  • Have a cumulative GPA of at least 3.0
  • Have a grade point average of at least 3.30 in prerequisite science courses
  • Submit all application materials by the PTCAS  Decision deadline
  • Successfully complete a personal interview
  • Submit GRE scores

All prerequisite science courses must be completed at CUW/CUAA and can not be previously completed at another institution. If a CUW/CUAA prerequisite science course is repeated, the first, original grade will be considered when determining whether or not the student is eligible for priority admission. CUW/CUAA students who meet these requirements are required to take the GRE.

Fulltime students who will graduate from St Norbert College and Viterbo University who meet priority admission standards will also qualify for priority admission based on availability.

Concordia University Wisconsin also offers accelerated admission to the Doctor of Physical Therapy program to students who attend the Mequon campus. Please refer to the undergraduate catalog for accelerated admission requirements.

Note: The program does not accept physical therapy transfer credits.

Application Process

The Physical Therapy Department at Concordia University participates in the Physical Therapist Centralized Application Service, known as PTCAS. Applicants for the Doctor of Physical Therapy program should apply online using the PTCAS application. To learn more about the PTCAS application process, please visit the PTCAS web site at

Submit official GRE scores to code 7697 for the Concordia DPT program. GRE scores for code 7697 will automatically be sent to PTCAS.

Concordia does not require a supplemental application or application fee in addition to the PTCAS application and fee.

The Physical Therapy program values diversity. Applicants will not be negatively biased due to race, color, creed, national origin, gender, age, disabling conditions, or marital status.

The Physical Therapy Selection Committee shall make decisions regarding the status of an application after reviewing application materials and considering feedback from personal interviews. Decisions of the committee are final.


Students pay tuition twice a year.  Payments are due twice annually at the beginning of the Fall and Spring terms. Tuition for each cohort is posted on the Concordia University Wisconsin website. Tuition will not increase throughout the duration of the program.

APTA student membership is highly recommended for all students. Current student membership rates are available on the APTA website at

During the clinical education portion of the curriculum, students may be required to leave the Milwaukee area. It is difficult to estimate these expenses, as it cannot be predetermined where the students will complete their clinical internships. Additionally, during the academic work, students will need to have transportation available to leave campus for clinical experiences. Some of the off-campus educational experiences will require a fee.

Concordia University Wisconsin student malpractice insurance is included in the tuition.

Financial Aid

Federal student loans are available to graduate students seeking degrees who are U.S. citizens or permanent residents. Students may apply online at Concordia’s school code is 003842. Students are eligible for Federal Student loans and Graduate PLUS loans to cover the cost of tuition, books, fees, transportation, and living expenses.

Students are eligible to apply for loans and scholarships from the APTA, WPTA, and some local and national Physical Therapy agencies. The Physical Therapy Faculty and Financial Aid Office can help provide information on these programs.

The Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE) approved Concordia University DPT program's application for substantive change and continued accreditation for the addition of a Bridge DPT cohort. Effective date of this approval was November 2, 2021. Curriculum, program learning outcomes and program admission details can be found on the curriculum, outcomes, and program admission tab Doctor of Physical Therapy (CUW). Courses are offered online, and on campus one weekend per month (Fridays 12pm–9pm and Saturdays 8am–5pm central time). Bridge DPT applicants must be licensed physical therapist assistants who hold a bachelor's degree. 

Contact information:

David Hengst, Graduate Admissions Counselor, 262-243-4397 /

Dr. Halee Shepard, PT, DPT, MBA, EdD; Coordinator and Director of Clinical Education Bridge Cohort:

Dr. Dale Gerke, PT, MPT, ScD, Chair and Professor- Physical Therapy Program: 262-243-4485/