Proposed Doctorate of Physical Therapy Program

University of Wisconsin-La Crosse

 

Executive Summary

 

Background:

 

  • 1974:  Physical therapy education began at the undergraduate level at UW-L (BS)
  • 1988: Creighton University offered the first Doctor in Physical Therapy Degree
  • 1996:  MSPT replaced the BS in PT at UW-L
  • 1999:  UW-Milwaukee campus receives Entitlement to Plan a Master of Physical Therapy degree but implementation delayed in anticipation of the transition to DPT
  • June 2000APTA issues a vision statement, “By 2020, physical therapy will be provided by physical therapists who are doctors of physical therapy, recognized by consumers and other health care professionals as practitioners of choice to whom consumers have direct access for the diagnosis of, interventions for, and prevention of impairments, functional limitations, and disabilities related to movement, function, and health.”
  • Spring 2001:  UW-Madison, UW-Milwaukee, UW-La Crosse enter discussions on potential collaboration to offer joint DPT
  • October 2002:  UW-System approved the joint (UW-L, UW-M, UW-Madison) Entitlement to Plan
  • September 2003:  UW-Madison requested permission to withdraw from planning the joint DPT; UW-System authorized UW-M and UW-L to proceed without UW-Madison. UW-Madison’s request was based upon different perspectives regarding pre-requisite coursework, length of the curriculum as well as overall credits required for degree completion.
  • January 2005: Commission for Accreditation of Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE) states in CC-&: “The first professional degree is awarded at the post-baccalaureate level…Based on the amount and complexity of the coursework, the Doctor of Physical Therapy is the preferred degree.

 

Rationale/Justification for the Change of Degree:

 

  • The current breadth and depth of education required of physical therapists is consistent with professional doctoral-level education (see Table 2)
  • APTA Vision 2020 Statement recognized PT as an entry-point into the healthcare system.  With that comes increased responsibility for screening, diagnosis, and referral.
  • 92% of all PT programs have either transitioned, or are in the process of transitioning, to the DPT
  • A professional doctoral degree involves extensive study over a wide range of courses integrating basic sciences with skilled professional practice. The practitioner must exhibit strong clinical skills and reasoning based on evidence-based rationale. 
  • Some degree of apprenticeship learning is typical in most professional doctoral programs.  

 

Degree Tracks:

 

  • Students entering the   profession of physical therapy for the first time and seeking a Doctor of Physical Therapy Degree (entry-level track) may do so using the residential on-campus program (Track I).
  • Students who are already licensed physical therapists and wish to obtain a DPT (transitional track) may do so using distance education and/or non-traditionally scheduled classes (Track II).

 

 

Roles – UW-L and UW-M:

 

  • UW-L will administer and deliver entry-level DPT curriculum
  • UW-M will administer t-DPT curriculum
  • In 3 years, based on market demand, UW-M may initiate an entry-level DPT cohort using the curricular model outlined in this document.  At that time, the two campuses may share responsibilities for delivery of the entry-level coursework
  • There will be a single admissions committee comprised of PT program faculty from both campuses.
  • Administration of clinical education will be coordinated between the two campuses.
  • A curriculum review committee will be established comprised of PT program faculty from both campuses. Curriculum oversight will be retained by both campus governance groups.
  • An arbitration plan will be developed in the event the two campus programs are unable to resolve some issue.
  • An exit strategy will be developed in the event that the two campus partners identify irreconcilable differences.

 

Proposed Entry-Level DPT Program Details:

 

Credits:             112 credits

Length: 34 months full-time (9 semesters)

Size:                 44 students per cohort admitted each year

Faculty: 10 full-time UW-L physical therapy faculty/IAS 

 

Entry-Level Curricular Key Points:

 

  • Sociology course added as a pre-requisite; Math 151 course deleted as a requirement; GRE’s will be required.
  • Increased credits from  97-101 (MSPT) to 112 (DPT)
  • Increased from 8 semesters including summers (MSPT) to 9 semesters including summers
  • Curriculum revisions based on Normative Model for Physical Therapist Education: Versions 2004 and consistent with CAPTE professional education accreditation requirements with increased emphasis on:
    • Differential screening
    • Evidence-based practice
    • Diagnostic imaging, embryology, pharmacology, histology
  • Lengthened full-time terminal clinical education experiences from 24 weeks (MSPT) to 36 weeks (DPT)

 

 

No additional resources are being requested by the UW-L PT program in order to implement the new degree.  Please refer to sections 7 and 8 of the report for details.

 

 

 

(2/01/05)

 

 

 

 

 

 

University of Wisconsin System Consortia Doctor of Physical Therapy Degree

Authorization to Implement Addendum

 

In order to facilitate the administration of the UW System Consortia Doctor of Physical Therapy Degree (DPT), the following are procedures agreed to by the consortium partners UW-Milwaukee, College of Health Sciences, Department of Human Movement Sciences, Program in Physical Therapy and UW-Lacrosse, College of Science and Allied Health, Department of Health Professions, Program in Physical Therapy:

 

Admission

 

·          Applications will be submitted to the UWS PT Consortial Program to either the UW-Milwaukee or UW-LaCrosse office of Graduate Admissions.

·          Applications will allow students to request a preferred campus or indicate either is acceptable.

 

·          There will be a single admissions committee comprised of Physical Therapy Program faculty/staff from both campuses which will determine admissions criteria, review schedule, and will make final decisions in exceptional cases.

 

·          Sub-committees located on each campus will do the initial screening of the applications.

 

·          The same portfolio and minimal admissions criteria will be used by both subcommittees.

 

·          All qualified applications will be shared by the two subcommittees for the purpose of best meeting the requested preferences of qualified applicants, and to provide “space available” alternatives.

 

Clinical education

 

·          Administration of Clinical Education will be coordinated between the two campuses primarily through the communication of the Academic Coordinators for Clinical Education (ACCEs) of each campus.

 

·          To the extent possible, students will be placed together, one from each campus, at clinical education sites.

 

·          To facilitate the above:

o         Clinical Education site databases will be computerized and shared.

o         Clinical faculty training will be shared.

o         Site Contracts will be negotiated jointly.

 

Curriculum

 

·          A Curriculum Review Committee will be formed with members from each campus Physical Therapy faculty/staff and advisory members (clinical educators and student members).  This committee will have responsibility for all curricular reviews at the Program level, and coordinate reviews at the Department, College, Campus, System, and Accreditation levels.

 

·          For the conduct of regular, annual curricular review we propose a committee composed of three faculty/staff and one student from each campus. Clinician consultants (advisory) will augment the committee as issues require.

 

·          Decisions regarding course offerings (schedule, format, primary faculty and laboratory/discussion leader assignments) will be reviewed by the joint Curriculum Committee.

 

Arbitration

 

·          In the event the two campuses cannot resolve some issue, council/resolution will be provided by a group comprised of:

o         One faculty representative from each campus

o         One Dean’s representative from each campus

o         One external reviewer (qualifications determined by the nature of the issue)

o         One UW-System appointee

 

Exit Strategy

 

·          If the two campus partners identify irreconcilable differences, the means to dissolve the partnership will be determined by an advisory board assembled to include program representatives, provosts from each campus, and a UW-System appointee.

 

 

 

1/31/05

 

 

 

 

Table 1.  Program Comparisons

 

 

 

Existing DPT  Programs in the US

Current UW-L MSPT  Program

Proposed Joint DPT Program

Number of Credits

Mean

Range

115.5

90-147

101

112

Number of weeks between start of program & graduation

 

Mean

Range

144.8

102-172.3

130

148

Total number of weeks in program

Mean

Range

118.4

–91-167

104

116

Number of contact hours in didactic portion

Mean

Range

1868

1219 – 3944

1,550

1750

Number of contact hours in clinical education portion

Mean

Range

1459.3

800-2320

1,280

1720

TOTAL number of contact hours in program

Mean

Range

3409.9

2422-5768

2,830

3470

 


 

Table 2: Comparison of Professions Educating at the Doctoral Level

(National data - http://dptvision.org/comparison.html)

 

Degree

PsychD

DPM

DDS

DO

DPT

DC

PharmD

OTD

Pre-requisite semester hours

BS (120)

MS (+45)

90

64

90

90 or 120

60

63

BS (120)

MS (+45)

Semesters in professional school

6

8

8

8

8

8

9

5

Amount of clinical experience

+1 year

+48 weeks

 

 

35 wks

 

20 wks

36 wks

Semester hours in professional school

70-100

123

180

152

115

150+

148

72

Total semester hours

220+ internships

213+ externships

244

247+ residency

205-235

210+

211

192-237