Colleges near Atlanta with Physical Therapy Programs
Students wishing to enroll in a physical therapy program in the Atlanta, GA, area have three school options no more than 15 miles from downtown. Two schools offer the advanced training needed to work as a licensed physical therapist, while the other offers a 2-year program in physical therapy assisting. This article examines all three schools and the relevant programs. It also includes a table of information about the schools that could be useful to prospective students, such as size, tuition and the graduation rate.
- Georgia State University, less than a mile from the heart of downtown, offers a doctoral degree option in the field.
- Emory University is approximately five miles from downtown and offers one traditional physical therapy doctorate degree. It also has Doctor of Physical Therapy - Master of Business Administration, Doctor of Physical Therapy - Master of Public Health, Doctor of Physical Therapy - Master of Arts in Bioethics, and Doctor of Physical Therapy - Doctor of Philosophy dual degree programs.
- Individuals seeking a physical therapist assistant associate degree can attend Chattahoochee Technical College, 15 miles from downtown Atlanta in Marietta.
Comparison of Schools
Individuals who are deciding on a college need to consider many factors. The following table showcases important information about each of these schools.
|Georgia State University||Emory University||Chattahoochee Technical College|
|School Type||Four-year, public||Four-year, private, not-for-profit||Two-year, public|
|Total Enrollment (2017)||25,770 undergraduates and 7,046 graduate students*||6,937 undergraduates and 7,326 graduate students*||10,201 undergraduates*|
|Campus Setting||Large city||Large suburb||Large suburb|
|Tuition (2017-2018)||$9,148 for in-state and $24,646 for out-of-state (graduate student average)*||$44,016 (graduate student average)*||$2,782 for in-state and $4,918 for out-of-state (undergraduate students)*|
|% of Students Receiving Some Form of Financial Aid (2016-2017)||94% of first-year students enrolled full-time*||58% of first-time students enrolled full-time*||85% of first-year students enrolled full-time*|
|Acceptance Rate||approximately 18.5% for DPT program in 2018**||22%*||N/A - Open admissions policy|
|Undergraduate Retention Rate (2016-2017)||83%*||93%*||53% for full-time and 43% for part-time students*|
|Graduation Rate||97.2% of DPT students in the class of 2017**||100% of DPT students in the class of 2015***||72% of PTA students (three-year average for 2015-2017)****|
Source: *National Center for Education Statistics, College Navigator; **Georgia State University; ***Emory University; ****Chattahoochee Technical College.
Georgia State University
Georgia State University is a public institution that was established in 1913 and enrolls roughly 33,000 students annually. The Byrdine F. Lewis School of Nursing & Health Professions offers a Doctor of Physical Therapy that will give students the training, knowledge and skills to work effectively as a physical therapist. Upon completion of the program, students will be prepared to take the national licensure exam. Graduates of the program in 2016 and 2017 had a 100% pass rate on the examination.
Doctor of Physical Therapy
The 137-credit-hour Doctor of Physical Therapy program can be completed in three years (including summer semesters) if attended on a full-time basis. Coursework includes anatomy, pathophysiology, interventions, movement science, medical screening and health promotion. In addition to the required curriculum, students will participate in five internships totaling at least 33 weeks. The first internship will be completed in the first semester and the four additional, eight- to ten-week experiences are taken throughout the remainder of the program. Students will have the opportunity for clinical training in specialty areas but must complete training in acute care, outpatient orthopedics and in-patient rehab.
Emory University's School of Medicine was founded in 1854, becoming Atlanta's first medical school and one of the earliest in the country. The Division of Physical Therapy was established in the 1960s, and the school added two joint degree options to its doctorate program in 2006 and 2007, respectively. Today, at this school affiliated with the United Methodist Church, students can earn a Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) or choose from one of four joint degree options in business administration, public health, bioethics, or doctorate of philosophy.
Doctor of Physical Therapy
The 35-month Doctor of Physical Therapy program includes 30 weeks of clinical training in addition to the required curriculum. The program consists of 144 credit hours in courses that cover basic skills, advanced issues and electives in a specialty area. Coursework includes anatomy, ethics, kinesiology, neuroscience, interventions, evidence-based practice, motor learning, pediatric rehabilitation and physical therapy genetics. Students will receive intensive, hands-on training through the required internship that can be performed at a number of clinical sites throughout the nation. Upon completion of the program students are required to sit for the state licensure examination.
Doctor of Physical Therapy - Masters of Business Administration
The Doctor of Physical Therapy and Masters of Business Administration dual degree program combines the curricula of two programs to provide students with quality training and integration of medicine and business. In this four-year program, students spend the first two years taking coursework and clinical training within the DPT program. The third year is spent in the business program, and in the final year students will have two additional clinical experiences and take elective courses. Students must apply and be accepted to the Division of Physical Therapy, School of Medicine and Goizueta Business School in order to enroll in this program. In addition to the required DPT coursework, students will take business classes that cover management, finance and accounting.
Doctor of Physical Therapy - Master of Public Health
The Doctor of Physical Therapy and Masters of Public Health joint degree is administered by the School of Medicine and Rollins School of Public Health. This program is completed in four years, with the first two years in the DPT program, the third year in the MPH program and the final year spent finishing coursework within the DPT degree. Upon graduation, students will be trained physical therapists with the ability to work in the healthcare industry and impact the public health sector in a positive manner.
Doctor of Physical Therapy - Masters of Arts in Bioethics
The Doctor of Physical Therapy and Masters of Arts in Bioethics dual degree program prepares students to become licensed physical therapists and to influence healthcare policies. This program is administered by the School of Medicine and Laney Graduate School. Students take coursework for the DPT program in each year but the second year of this four-year program. Coursework for the bioethics program is completed in the second year.
Doctor of Physical Therapy - Doctorate of Philosophy
The Doctor of Physical Therapy and Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) joint degree is administered through the Emory School of Medicine and Georgia Institute of Technology's School of Applied Physiology. The dual program takes at least four years to complete and requires fulfillment of 144 credit hours of DPT curriculum along with 42 credit hours of applied physiology PhD coursework. This interdisciplinary program prepares students to become researchers as well as practitioners in the field of physical therapy.
Chattahoochee Technical College
Chattahoochee Technical College is a two-year, public institution in Marietta, GA, that was established in 1963 and provides technical training through a variety of programs. The school offers a Physical Therapist Assistant Associate of Applied Science degree program designed for individuals interested in working in hospitals or clinics as an assistant within the physical therapy department. From 2015-2017, 100% of graduates have found employment after completing the program, and 100% of these students have passed the national licensure exam.
Associate of Applied Science - Physical Therapist Assistant
This program consists of 76 credits that include clinical training, general education courses and a variety of courses within the major. Coursework includes anatomy and physiology, physics, patient care skills, kinesiology, pathology, rehabilitation and physical therapy procedures. Students will take three courses totaling 15 credits in clinical education and a one-credit physical therapist assistant seminar to complete the program.