Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT)

Allen College is accepting admission applications for a new DPT program. The Institution is seeking candidacy (the first phase in achieving full accreditation). Please see detailed information below regarding the accreditation process.

The physical therapy profession is comprised of highly educated, skilled, and ethical individuals dedicated to helping people of all ages prevent the loss of or restore the ability to move and function throughout life. Treatment strategies include the use of exercise, patient education, and hands-on techniques to facilitate rehabilitation. Physical therapists are essential members of the inter-professional health care team working collaboratively in a variety of settings schools, homes, hospitals, and clinics.

Program Overview:

The DPT program utilizes a unique, blended model of online coursework and face-to-face labs. Small class sizes and active learning strategies foster a collaborative approach to learning the skills necessary for clinical practice. This non-traditional structure allows flexibility for family and financial needs, and  a more balanced lifestyle.

Program Description:

  • The program is four years (11 consecutive semesters) delivered in a blended format.

  • Traditional lectures are online.

  • Immersive lab sessions are held at the Allen College campus four days each month requiring students to be on campus 16 days each semester throughout the program. 

  • During the first semester, the Human Gross Anatomy lab, taught by Allen College faculty, is held at the Practical Anatomy and Surgical Education (PASE) Lab at St. Louis University, a world-renowned anatomy teaching facility. Attendance is needed four days each month, requiring 16 days in St. Louis during the first semester only. Hotel accommodations are provided by Allen College during lab sessions in St. Louis, for the initial 2020 cohort. Students are responsible for travel as well as housing in Waterloo.

  • Four clinical education experiences, beginning in year two, are a critical component of the curriculum. Working full-time with licensed physical therapists, students practically apply academic instruction to develop clinical and patient-centered skills. Professional practice faculty work to secure sites in which students gain exposure to patients with diagnoses typically seen in physical therapy practice across the lifespan and continuum of care.

  • Maximum class size is 24 students.

Register here to join DPT faculty members and Admissions representatives for an Informational Webinar at 7 p.m. on the following dates:

  • Tuesday, March 31
  • Tuesday, April 28
  • Tuesday, May 26

Learn more about the program's structure and requirements while connecting with future faculty.

Accreditation and Status:

Graduation from a physical therapist education program accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE), 1111 North Fairfax Street, Alexandria, VA 22314; phone: 703-706-3245; is necessary for eligibility to sit for the licensure examination, which is required in all states.

Allen College is seeking accreditation of a new physical therapist education program from CAPTE. The program will apply for candidacy on March 1, 2020. Submission does not assure  the program will be granted Candidate for Accreditation status. Achievement of Candidate for Accreditation status is required prior to implementation of the professional phase of the program; therefore, no students may be enrolled in professional courses until Candidate for Accreditation status has been achieved. Further, though achievement of Candidate for Accreditation status signifies satisfactory progress toward accreditation, it does not assure the program will be granted accreditation.

  • Allen College applied March 2020 for candidacy (this does not guarantee it will be achieved).

  • A decision will be made in July 2020 if CAPTE will grant candidacy. Gaining candidacy does not guarantee achieving full accreditation.

  • Qualified applicants will be invited for interviews May-June 2020. Admission letters will be sent July-August for the August 2020 cohort.

  • Classes will start August 2020 if approval granted.

  • In 2024 the program will be eligible to apply for full accreditation status prior to the first cohort graduating.

Program Mission:

The mission of the Allen College DPT Program is to prepare competent, compassionate, and caring physical therapists who, through a diverse learning community and an innovative, blended educational format led by accomplished and veteran faculty, practice with a commitment to lifelong learning, engagement in their community and leadership in the profession.

Program Goals:

  1. Implement an innovative, blended curriculum with teaching strategies that create an academic program accessible to a diverse faculty and student population.

  2. Recruit and retain experienced, accomplished and veteran faculty qualified through continued competence, scholarship and service who serve as role models for the students.

  3. Demonstrate a commitment to the professional community through continuing education and advocacy for the profession.

Student Goals:

  1. Exhibit caring, compassion and integrity through interactions with patients, their families and their professional community.

  2. Demonstrate lifelong learning, engagement in the community and leadership in the profession.

  3. Demonstrate skill in the use of technology to enhance patient care and their own professional development.

Faculty Goals:

  1. Demonstrate innovative teaching and learning strategies that meet the diverse needs of learners in the entry-level curriculum and in the professional community.

  2. Demonstrate ongoing professional development through practice, scholarship and continued competence.

  3. Serve as resources and role models for students and the community through leadership and service.

To file a complaint with CAPTE, please go to the CAPTE website at:

The program values comments or concerns that allow for improvement of the Doctor of Physical Therapy program. Comments should be sent in writing to Dr. Eric Arguello, Program Director, or Dean, Dr. Peggy Fortsch,