Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) Degree Program

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1 SCHOOL OF PUBLIC HEALTH NEW YORK MEDICAL COLLEGE VALHALLA, NY Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) Degree Program The Department of Physical Therapy offers a professional Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) degree program that qualifies individuals to sit for the national licensure examination and begin a career in physical therapy. The primary purpose of the program is to prepare competent and caring physical therapists who will be able to practice in a variety of settings, operate under a system of direct access to physical therapy services, and who will be prepared to adapt to changes in the health care system. In addition, the program is dedicated to serving as a resource for individuals and institutions in the region, and to conducting research and scholarship activities that contribute to the knowledge and evidence upon which physical therapy is based. A predominant mission of the program is to instill within its graduates an appreciation of community service and the importance of addressing the health care needs of under-served populations. The program admits full-time students only, for an intensive three-year program, including summers. The next class will begin its studies June 2, School of Public Health at New York Medical College New York Medical College is chartered as a health sciences university, and its mission is carried out through three schools: the School of Medicine, the Graduate School of Basic Medical Sciences, and the School of Public Health. As a vital component of the School of Public Health, the Program in Physical Therapy enjoys collegial relationships with the school s other graduate degree programs, which cover fourteen disciplines. The disciplines most closely associated with physical therapy are disability and human development, biostatistics, epidemiology, and public health (including behavioral sciences and health promotion). The Department of Physical Therapy has six core faculty members. In addition to this faculty, over 30 scientists, physicians, therapists, and health care professionals serve as part-time instructors or clinical faculty. Basic science courses are taught by faculty members from the Graduate School of Basic Medical Sciences and the School of Medicine. Courses in research, health policy, and elective subjects are taught by faculty from the School of Public Health, and clinical skills in laboratories, tutors in the problem-based courses, and lectures in specialized areas are given by master clinicians from a wide variety of physical therapy clinics. Collaborative teaching and research capabilities are available to the students and faculty from departments of cell biology and anatomy, physiology, pathology, and clinical sciences such as orthopedics, neurology, gerontology, surgery, and cardiology. New York Medical College has geographic and administrative ties to a number of local facilities that offer clinical and educational opportunities for students, including Burke Rehabilitation Hospital, Helen Hayes Hospital, the Bronx VA Hospital, and Westchester Medical Center. Location The School of Public Health at New York Medical College is located on a beautiful 565-acre campus in the Hudson River Valley, just 20 miles north of New York City. The campus is centrally located in Westchester County, close to several major roadways, including the Cross Westchester Expressway (I-287), the Sprain Brook Parkway, the Taconic State Parkway, and the Saw Mill River Parkway. Downtown Manhattan can easily be reached by public transportation or within a 45-minute drive. General Program Description The Program in Physical Therapy involves nine semesters of full-time education offered over three years of study (see Curriculum on the next page). In the first two semesters of the program (Summer I and Fall I), students take courses that are presented in a conventional lecture/laboratory format. These first two semesters primarily focus on establishing a strong foundation in basic and medical sciences, with some additional course work to introduce students to the profession of physical therapy and basic assessment procedures. In the spring of the first year, students begin course work dealing with patient evaluation and treatment. These areas are taught through both a traditional method of education, as well as through a well-structured problem-based learning (PBL) format. Problem-based learning at New York Medical College occurs through three integrated processes. One component of the PBL process is small group tutorial sessions, the second is laboratory sessions, and the third is specialized lectures. In the tutorial sessions, students work in groups consisting of no more than six students and a single faculty

2 tutor whose role is that of facilitator. The tutorial groups meet two times per week for two and one-half hours each time. Tutorial groups work through clinical problems carefully designed to assist students in meeting unit objectives in basic and clinical sciences, psychosocial aspects of care, professionalism, scientific inquiry, and evidence-based practice. The clinical problems are selected and developed to provide students with exposure to common clinical conditions and physical therapy interventions. Groups work through each problem using previously gained knowledge, and then identify areas for further study. The group facilitators assist the students in identifying pertinent objectives and learning outcomes. Weekly specialized lectures and resource sessions serve as the second component of the PBL process. The purpose of these is to enhance students exposure to the art and science of physical therapy. Lectures and demonstrations are provided by physical therapists, physicians, and other health professionals who work with patients similar to those described in the tutorial cases. The third component of the PBL process is laboratory sessions, which occur four times each week in three-hour sessions. Within these laboratories, students learn skills in patient screening, diagnosis, goal planning, intervention, referral to other professionals, and outcome assessment. The laboratories are designed to complement the cases being discussed in the tutorial sessions each week and to bring in additional cases. Thus, discussions of patient problems and the acquisition of skills in physical therapy evaluation and intervention are experienced simultaneously. In addition to problem-based learning, students continue to have traditional lecture and laboratory courses in research processes, public health, administration, and health and wellness. Two separate electives allow students to expand their knowledge-base in selected areas. This allows for the full integration of didactic study, research, discussion, and practice in the clinical skills of physical therapy. The Doctoral Thesis: An Opportunity for Professional Specialization The Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) degree at New York Medical College is a clinical doctorate. As such, students are expected to carry out a culminating doctoral thesis. However, this need not be restricted to clinical research. Students may also choose to complete a thesis in one of two other areas commonly associated with the professional service of physical therapists: education and public health. The model for the doctoral thesis process is one of apprenticeship and mentorship. In the spring of the first year, students choose from a wide variety of faculty sponsored research and public health projects, or select a teaching practicum in one of several program courses. Over the second and third years, students work with faculty advisors to develop, expand, and carry out unique aspects of the faculty sponsored project as their own. All students must complete a group or individual manuscript by the end of the spring semester of the third year that demonstrates an in-depth analysis and execution of a doctoral project. The expectation is for publication and/or presentation of many of these projects in a professional forum. Clinical education enables students to integrate academic knowledge and clinical skills Students develop their skills by evaluating and treating patients in clinical settings while receiving supervision and feedback from practicing physical therapists. The learning experience is an active process involving close interaction between the student and the assigned clinical instructor. In addition to direct patient care skills, clinical education provides students with the opportunity to develop professional skills and working knowledge of the current health care environment. The clinical education component of the physical therapy program consists of five full-time work experiences, the first two being six weeks long and the last three eight weeks each. The first occurs in the summer after the first academic year (Summer II); the second and third in the spring of the second year, and the fourth and fifth in the fall and spring of the final year of study. To provide these experiences, the Department of Physical Therapy at NYMC has arranged a wide variety of clinical affiliations. While many of these are in the tri-state area, clinical affiliations are available across the entire United States. The clinical sites include acute-care hospitals, out-patient clinics, sports medicine clinics, rehabilitation hospitals, nursing homes and other types of health care institutions, and various types of pediatric facilities. There are also specialty affiliations at burn centers, dance injury practices, and aquatic centers. Accreditation The Doctor of Physical Therapy program in the School of Public Health at New York Medical College is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education of the American Physical Therapy Association, and is approved by the New York State Department of Education. Curriculum SUMMER I Credits

3 Human Anatomy and Histology... 6 Kinesiology Professional Practice I... 3 FALL I Neuroscience. 4 Human Physiology Introduction to Clinical Science in Physical Therapy... 4 Exercise Science SPRING I Clinical Science in Physical Therapy I: Acute Medical and Orthopedic Conditions.. 10 Fundamentals of Health Science Research Clinical Medicine for Physical Therapists... 3 SUMMER II Clinical Education I Clinical Applications of Research FALL II Clinical Science in Physical Therapy II: Neurologic Conditions and Conditions of the Spine Health Care in the United States... 3 Elective SPRING II Clinical Education II Clinical Education III... 6 SUMMER III Clinical Science in Physical Therapy III: Pediatric Conditions 5 Professional Practice II.. 3 Biomechanical Analysis of Human Gait... 3 PT in Preventive Healthcare & Wellness... 3 FALL III Professional Practice III Clinical Education IV Selected Topics.. 3 Public Health and Physical Therapy.. 2 SPRING III Clinical Education V.. 6 Advanced Seminar Doctoral Thesis.. 4 Comprehensive Written Examination TOTAL CURRICULUM Credits

4 Student Housing On-campus housing is available for students on a limited basis. Priority is given to first-year students. Information regarding campus housing as well as off-campus housing in furnished rooms, apartment shares, and full apartments is available through the Student Housing Office. Financial Planning Tuition for the academic year is $25,500. (Fees for health services, network and voice mail access, and student activities are separate.) This is subject to change for , and subsequent academic years. Advisement of how to pay the cost of education is available to students and their families through the Student Financial Planning Office. Generally, most students are eligible for loan programs that will be sufficient to cover the cost of tuition, fees, books, and living expenses. There are some additional sources of financial aid. In particular, government agencies and private institutions offer scholarships to students in exchange for service with pay after graduation. Students must generally apply for these scholarships on their own. Admission Requirements Applications will be reviewed from November 3, 2008 until March 6, Within this period, as soon as a completed file is received, applicants may be invited to an Orientation/Interview Day on campus to sit in on a problem-based learning tutorial session and laboratory session, to meet with students and representatives from the financial aid and housing departments, to tour the campus, and to have a formal interview. Admission decisions will generally be made one to two weeks following the campus visit. For applicants not able to visit the campus, alternate arrangements may be possible. The review of applications will be terminated once the class is filled. For applicants accepted into the program, a non-refundable $ deposit must be submitted to guarantee a place in the class. The deposit will be applied towards the first year tuition. Specific requirements for admission to the program are: 1) Applicants must have a Bachelor of Science or Bachelor of Arts degree from an accredited college. 2) Applicants should have an academic record that includes a balance of course work in the humanities, social sciences, and natural sciences, including competency in English writing. Although no strict GPA cut-off is used for admission decisions, competitive applicants will generally have a GPA of at least 3.0. The following specific prerequisite courses should have been completed, preferably within the last 10 years (exceptions may be made for individuals working in a health field): One semester in General Biology Two semesters of Anatomy and Physiology with laboratories (one course in Anatomy and a second course in Physiology, or a two-semester sequence in combined Anatomy and Physiology) Two semesters of Chemistry and two semesters of Physics, each with laboratories One semester in General or Introductory Psychology, and a second course in Psychology One semester in Mathematics (college-level), and one semester in Statistics 3) Applicants must submit results of the Graduate Record Examination. The institution number to use for the test is ) Applicants must provide evidence of at least 50 hours of volunteer or work experience in a physical therapy setting. 5) Three recommendation forms are required; one from a college professor, one from a physical therapist who has observed the applicant in a clinical setting, and an additional reference of the applicant s choice. 6) Applicants must submit a personal statement of approximately 500 words (see enclosed description of suggested content). 7) Before entering the program, students must submit evidence of current certification in cardiopulmonary resuscitation. The CPR course must include skill practice on CPR and choking for the adult (1 and 2 person CPR), child, and infant. 8) All applicants who are in any of the following categories are required to obtain a minimum eligibility score of 637 (PBT with a minimum of score of 5 on the essay section), 270 (CBT with a minimum of score of 5 on the essay section), or 110 (IBT-no score less than 24 in any of the 4 sections) on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL); or the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) a minimum score of Band 7; a) those whose native language is not English; b) those from countries where English is one of the official languages, but not necessarily the first language of the majority of the population; c) those from countries where English is not a native language, although available as a language of instruction at all or some levels of schooling; d) those whose transcripts are not in English or from schools in non-englishspeaking countries. The institution number to use for the test is For information, contact the Educational Testing Service (TOEFL), PO Box 6151, Princeton, NJ ; (609) Web site: For information about the IELTS test, contact IELTS, Inc., 100 East Corson Street, Suite 200, Pasadena, CA 91103, USA; phone (626) ; fax (626) ; website: 9) A separate brochure regarding required documentation is available for international students. 10) Accepted students must submit a $500 deposit to guarantee their place in the class For further information, contact:

5 Office of Admissions, School of Public Health, New York Medical College, Valhalla, New York Phone (914) Fax (914) and see our Webpage:

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