Physical Therapy Schools in San Antonio with Degree Summaries

Research physical therapy degrees in San Antonio, which currently has 3 schools offering programs within roughly 50 miles of the city's center. Read an overview of the degree program requirements and admission policies at these colleges to decide which one is right for you.

San Antonio Physical Therapy Degree Programs

Students interested in a physical therapy career can find undergraduate and graduate education options within an hour's drive of San Antonio. This article highlights the courses and training experiences offered at 3 area schools. For even more info about the colleges, be sure to look over the table of school facts and figures.

  • St. Philip's College is a 2-year school located about 3 miles from downtown San Antonio. It offers an Associate of Applied Science program to students who'd like to pursue careers in physical therapist assisting.
  • Students interested in training to become physical therapists might want to consider the entry-level doctoral program at Texas State University - San Marcos. This large university is located around 51 miles outside of central San Antonio.
  • The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, situated roughly 11 miles from the downtown area, also offers a Doctor of Physical Therapy. Program options are available to students with or without an undergraduate degree in physical therapy.

St. Philip's College

This school's physical therapist assistant program is offered by the Allied Health Department. Through a combination of coursework and clinical experiences, students prepare to work alongside physical therapists and help patients recover from injuries that hinder or limit their movement.

Physical Therapist Assistant Associate of Applied Science

This 2-year program requires students to maintain full-time enrollment status and complete coursework in the correct sequence. Students begin with introductory courses in physiology and anatomy before moving on to examine topics in patient care and exercise techniques. After completing clinical experiences in the summer, they take classes in rehabilitation and neurological disorders. The final semester largely consists of additional clinical education. Upon program completion, students are eligible to sit for the Texas Board of Physical Therapy Examiners licensing exam for physical therapist assistants.

Texas State University - San Marcos

The College of Health Professions at Texas State University - San Marcos offers 3 graduate programs, 1 of which is a Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT). The university transitioned its Master of Science in Physical Therapy (MSPT) into a doctoral program 2008.

Doctor of Physical Therapy

This is a full-time 9-semester program available to applicants who hold a bachelor's degree. About 40 students are admitted into each year's cohort. Their first-year coursework covers topics in physical therapy research, anatomy, neuroscience and patient care techniques. In their second year, students take on clinical experiences as well as advanced classes on the cardiopulmonary and musculoskeletal systems. A third year of clinical education and coursework rounds out program requirements. Once they've completed the entire curriculum, students must take a comprehensive exam to receive their degree.

University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio

The DPT is the only doctoral program offered by the School of Health Professions at the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio. Its Department of Physical Therapy offers a couple of program options to students with varying education and experience.

Doctor of Physical Therapy

This program allows students to apply after completing just 3 years of undergraduate prerequisite coursework. Students who already have a bachelor's degree can also apply to this 3-year, 8-semester program. First-year courses cover topics in anatomy, physiology and kinesiology, while second-year courses focus on treatment modalities for musculoskeletal, neuromuscular and cardiopulmonary conditions. Students begin clinical experiences in the summer and must work under a licensed physical therapist at 3 different sites for a total of 30 weeks. A clinical internship is also required after completing third-year coursework in such topics as patient management and physical therapy administration.

Transitional Doctor of Physical Therapy

This program is intended for students who've already earned a bachelor's or master's degree in physical therapy. Students with a master's degree must complete 8 courses in 4 semesters. Ethics, decision-making, pharmacology, diagnostic imaging and business issues are some of the topics covered. Students with only a bachelor's degree must complete 2 additional physical therapy research courses.

Comparison of Schools

Very different costs, student enrollment numbers and campus settings are found among the profiled schools. Check out the table below to get details on these and more stats that can help you make an informed education decision.

St. Philip's College Texas State University - San Marcos The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio
School Type Public, 2-year Public, 4-year Public, 4-year
Total Enrollment (Fall 2011) 10,710* 34,087* 3,234*
Campus Setting Large city Distant town Large city
Undergraduate Tuition & Fees (2011-2012) In-district: $1,952
In-state: $3,632
Out-of-state: $6,992*
In-state: $7,264
Out-of-state: $15,402*
In-state: $6,944
Out-of-state: $17,273*
% of Undergraduate Students Receiving Grant or Scholarship Aid (2010-2011) 49%* 49%* 65%*
Undergraduate Acceptance Rate (2011) N/A - Open admissions 77%* 25%*
Retention Rate (2011) 41% for full-time students* 79% for full-time students* N/A
Undergraduate Graduation Rate (2011) 5%* 56%* N/A

Source: *NCES College Navigator.

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