Dec 04, 2023  
2023-2024 Springfield College Catalog 
2023-2024 Springfield College Catalog

Physical Therapy Home Page

Health Science - Pre-Physical Therapy, B.S.

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Program Description

The Health Science / Pre-Physical Therapy undergraduate program prepares undergraduate students for subsequent graduate study in Physical Therapy.  Students develop a strong foundation of knowledge and skills in biological, physical, and social sciences while also acquiring a breadth of knowledge in the Humanities through the General Education program.  In addition, students complete a Minor course of study in an area of their choosing for the purposes of developing depth in an enriching and complimentary discipline.

The program in physical therapy is a six and one-half year course of study in which students earn a bachelor’s degree in Health Science / Pre-Physical Therapy and a Doctor of Physical Therapy degree.  At the end of the third year of studies, students who satisfy all pre-requisite requirements enter the first year of doctoral work while completing remaining undergraduate credits.  After four years, the student earns a Bachelor of Science degree in Health Science / Pre-Physical Therapy while continuing with doctoral coursework.  Upon successful completion of all program requirements, the graduate is awarded a Doctor of Physical Therapy degree and is eligible to sit for the National Physical Therapy Exam and apply for state licensure.

Graduate level coursework includes content in anatomy, neuroanatomy, kinesiology, clinical sciences, organization and delivery of healthcare, research methodology, and statistics, as well as full-time clinical experiences in approved clinical education facilities.  The curriculum is subject to modification to ensure a comprehensive, integrated sequence of experiences leading to a physical therapy education of the highest quality.

The doctoral program is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education of the American Physical Therapy Association.  Coursework in physical therapy enables students to develop advanced problem-solving skills in examination, program planning, and treatment of those who need physical therapy services. Graduates possess a broad knowledge in the science and practice of physical therapy, as well as a clinically based understanding of administration, research, and evidence-based practice. In addition, students have the opportunity for advanced study in selected areas of physical therapy. The program integrates the humanics philosophy in total patient care, including the intellectual, physical, and spiritual aspects of treating the whole person within a social, political, and economic context.

Admission to the Program
Candidates applying for admission to the physical therapy program are required to have a strong background in the sciences and mathematics along with exposure to physical therapy practice in a healthcare setting. December 1 is the admissions deadline for all admissions materials for physical therapy applicants. Further details about the application procedure are available from the Admissions Office. Students already enrolled at Springfield College may apply to physical therapy as undergraduates via an application and review by the department.  Admission is dependent upon application quality and available space in the program. Applicants from other colleges and universities are considered for admission into the graduate program on a space-available basis only; such applicants must have completed a bachelor’s degree and satisfied all program prerequisites.

Program Highlights

Degree: Bachelor of Science

Required Credits: 120

School: School of Health Sciences

Department: Physical Therapy

Modality: On-Ground

Locations: Main Campus (Springfield)

Additional Information:

Program Standards

Students are required to follow the policies and procedures of the Department of Physical Therapy found in the Pre-Physical Therapy Student Handbook. Students are admitted to the Health Science / Pre-Physical Therapy program as first-year students. To advance into the final three and a half years of graduate/professional study, students must:

  1. Have a cumulative gpa of 3.000 or better
  2. Have successfully completed all Pre-Professional Studies Requirements (AEXS 313, BIOL 121/123, BIOL 122/124, BIOL 250/252, BIOL 251/253, CHEM 121/123, CHEM 122/124, MATH 125 or MATH 131 or MATH 140, HSCI 225 or MATH 215 or PSYC 211, PHTH 310, PHTH 480, PHTH 482, PHYS 210 or PHYS 310, PHYS 211 or PHYS 311, and PSYC 101 or PSYC 109 or PSYC 135) with a grade of ‘C’ or better and a combined gpa of 3.30 or greater
  3. Complete a 15-18 credit minor course of study
  4. Complete a minimum of 106 hours of coursework

The academic records of the students are reviewed by the Physical Therapy Review and Evaluation Committee at the end of the third year to determine if the students have satisfied the requirements to advance into the professional graduate studies in Physical Therapy. This is not a secondary application process, as students in the Health Science / Pre-Physical Therapy program who have satisfied all requirements advance into the professional program without re-application.

Program Essential Functions and Technical Standards

Each student admitted to the program is required to meet the Technical Standards and Essential Functions of the program with or without reasonable accommodation. Program essential functions include participation in classroom, laboratory, and clinical functions, as well as performance of professional functions such as examination, treatment, and education of individuals in a timely and safe manner. Minimum academic standards and technical standards necessary for completion of the program essential functions must be met for continuation in and graduation from the program. Technical standards define the individual physical, sensory, cognitive, behavioral, and social attributes or outcomes necessary to complete the program essential functions. Program Essential Functions and Technical Standards are available on the department web site and in the DPT Student Handbook.

Additional information regarding the Doctor of Physical Therapy program, including unique program policies and standards, may be found in the DPT Student Handbook.

Undergraduate Curriculum Overview

The Academic Advising Center provides the following repositories of sequencing and curriculum guides for all undergraduate majors and minors to assist with course planning:  

Additional Notes:

  • There may be circumstances where credit totals do not reflect coursework that is eligible to count towards Core Curriculum and Major Requirement sections of a major simultaneously.
  • Degree requirements are subject to change. 

I. Core Curriculum (40 credits)

This Core Curriculum is faithful to the Springfield College mission and further strengthens the Humanics philosophy of educating students in spirit, mind, and body. It is a cornerstone of a Springfield College education. Regardless of one’s major, it provides a strong, developmental, and holistic foundation for leaders in service to humanity. Upon completion, all graduates will be prepared to learn, lead, and serve in diverse, multicultural, and global contexts as well as in any career path they may choose. They will have the knowledge, habits of the mind, skills, and abilities to face unexpected situations and challenges, the values and attitudes for self-motivation and a vision of service that stems from hope, optimism and making a difference, as well as the self-determination to maintain a healthy and active lifestyle.

View the Core Curriculum Requirements (40 credits)  section for a complete list of the domains and courses therein.

II. Major Requirements (81-84 credits)

A. Pre-Professional Studies Requirements (51 credits)

b. Mathematics Selective (3 credits)

Select 3 credits from the following list:

c. Statistics Selective (3 credits)

Select 3 credits ​from the following list:

d. Psychology Selective (3 credits)

Select 3 credits from the following list:

C. Required Minor (15-18 credits)

Selecting a minor is required. Students may select a minor in any area of interest.  Minors that fit well with the Health Science / Pre-Physical Therapy Degree include:

Rehabilitation and Disability Studies Minor   (15 credits)
Health Science Minor   (15 credits)
               Includes the 3 credit HSRS 325 Biostatistics requirement
Health Promotion Minor  
Psychology Minor   (18 credits)
               Includes the 3 credit PSYC 101 Introduction to Psychology requirement
               Includes the 3 credit PSYC 211 Introduction to Statistics requirement
               Includes the 3 credit PSYC 135 Personality and Personal Adjustment requirement
Business Management Minor   (18 credits)
Communication Sciences and Disorders Minor   (15 credits)
Dance Minor   (18 credits)
Social Justice Minor   (15 credits)
Biology Minor   (15 credits) includes the BIOL 250, BIOL 251, BIOL 252, BIOL 253 eight credit sequence.

III. Electives (to complete a minimum of 120 credits)

IV. Additional Coursework

Students in the Health Science: Pre-Physical Therapy major will also take the following coursework during their senior year that will be transferred to their graduate record after conferral of their Bachelor’s degree. Specifically, these courses do not contribute to the 120-credit minimum required for the Bachelor’s degree but must be taken during the student’s senior year to maintain the accelerated timeline associated with the Health Science: Pre-Physical Therapy to Doctor of Physical Therapy program.  

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