Physical Therapy

Physical therapists (PTs) are health care professionals who work with people who have been in accidents or have disabling conditions such as low-back pain, arthritis, heart disease, fractures, head injuries, stroke, and cerebral palsy.  They help patients who have had surgery or treatment restore function, improve balance and mobility, increase flexibility and coordination, and diminish pain. Physical therapists work in clinics, hospitals, schools, rehabilitation centers, and many make home visits. They are known for improving and restoring mobility without expensive surgery and reducing the need for medications through pain management. PTs are required to complete a graduate degree, either a master’s or clinical doctorate.  


Physical Therapy Courses

 Entrance exam Some programs may require GRE exam


 Suggested electives


CHEM 326 -- Organic Chemistry I & 326L Lab - 5
PSYC 221 -- Lifespan Development Psychology - 3
PSYC 451 -- Psychology of Abnormal behavior - 3
PE 103 Nutrition for Everyday Living
Upper level kinesiology course at BHSU or other program

 Shadowing hours  Volunteer or work hours recommended



Required Classes for All Medical Majors

Biology courses  BIOL 151 -- General Biology I & 151L Lab - 4 
BIOL 153 -- General Biology II & 153L Lab - 4
BIOL 221 -- Human Anatomy & 221L
BIOL 326 -- Biomedical Physiology & 326L
BIOL 331 -- Microbiology & 331L 381L Lab - 4

BIOL 371 -- Genetics & 371L Lab - 4


Chemistry courses  CHEM 112 -- General Chemistry I & 112L Lab - 4

CHEM 114 -- General Chemistry II & 114L Lab - 4
CHEM 326 -- Organic Chemistry I & 326L Lab - 5
CHEM 328 -- Organic Chemistry II & 328L Lab - 5


Math courses MATH 123 -- Calculus - 4

MATH 281 -- Introductory Statistics - 3 or Math 381 Probability and Statistics

Physics courses  PHYS 111 -- Introduction to Physics I & 111L Lab - 4

PHYS 113 -- Introduction to Physics II & 113L Lab - 4

Social Science courses PSYC 101 -- General Psychology - 3

SOC 100 -- General sociology

English courses Met through SDBOR general education requirements
 Suggested electives 


BIOL 375 Current Bioethical issues
Epidemiology (no course number yet)
SOC 411 Licit and Illicit Drugs
SOC 420 Alcohol Use and Abuse


Student Resources

Professional Associations and Accreditation

    Entrance Exam

    Most physical therapy schools require the Graduate Record Exam as an entrance exam. Learn more about the GRE here.

    Selected Regional Programs

    Important Note:

    Consult the admissions/application web pages of the professional programs for information on required pre-requisite courses and admissions tests, application procedures, and application deadlines. Some professional/graduate programs will not accept AP or CLEP credits, online courses, or correspondence courses for the core science and math pre-requisite requirements. Many programs also require that all pre-requisite coursework be completed within a certain period of time, e.g., within 5 years prior to application. Policies vary by school and program. Be sure you know the requirements