8 Semester Curriculum


Doctor of Physical Therapy Degree Program Curriculum: 8-Semester Curriculum

For the current DPT cohorts of 2016, 2017, and 2018:

SUMMER 1st year ( 12 Credit Hours, 10 Academic Weeks )
DRSC 5301: Normal Physiology/Embryology
PT 5102: Surface Anatomy
PT 5103: Patient Care Skills
PT 5104: Spanish Medical Terminology
PT 5216: Research Methods
PT 6201: Law and Ethics in PT Practice
PT 6202: Professional Practice in PT

FALL 1st year ( 15 Credit Hours, 15 Academic Weeks )
DRSC 5495: Anatomy for Health Sciences
DRSC 5388: Pathophysiology for Health Sciences
PT 5204: Tests and Measures
PT 5233: Behavioral Science Topics
PT 6406: Exercise Physiology/Prescription

SPRING 1st year ( 16 Credit Hours, 15 Academic Weeks )
DRSC 5390: Neuroscience for Health Sciences
PT 5407: Medical Kinesiology/Motion Analysis
PT 6207: Motor Control and Motor Learning
PT 5311: Modalities in PT Practice
PT 6307: Cardiopulmonary Patient Management
PT 5105: Introduction to Clinical Experience

SUMMER 2nd year ( 11 Credit Hours, 10 Academic Weeks )
PT 6205: Pharmacology in PT
PT 6311: Musculoskeletal I
PT 6314: Neuromuscular Rehabilitation I
PT 6304: Evidence Based Practice in PT

FALL 2nd year ( 15 Credit Hours, 9 Academic Weeks, 8 Clinical Weeks )
PT 5340 Management and Finance in PT
PT 6312: Musculoskeletal II
PT 6108: Integument Patient Management
PT 6315: Pediatrics
PT 6110: Integrative Seminar I
PT 5413: Clinical Education in PT I

SPRING 2nd year ( 15 Credit Hours, 10 Academic weeks, 8 Clinical Weeks )
PT 6414: Neuromuscular Rehabilitation II
PT 6313: Musculoskeletal III
PT 6111: Integrative Seminar II
PT 5425: Clinical Education in PT II
PT 6203: Differential Diagnosis
PT 6109: Imaging

SUMMER 3rd year ( 6 Credit Hours, 8 weeks combined academic and clinical )
PT 5443: Clinical Education in PT III
PT 6209: Geriatrics (online)

FALL 3rd year ( 9 Credit Hours, 3 Academic weeks, 12 clinical weeks )
PT 6606: Clinical Education in PT IV Internship
PT 6116: Physical Therapy Capstone Project
PT 5225: Specific Populations

Course Descriptions

DRSC 5301 Normal Physiology/Embryology 3 credits
A review of the basic processes and events of human embryology that lead to morphogenesis, and the timing of major events in embryogenesis are presented. These topics inform the mechanical, physical, and biochemical functions of adult organ systems and prepare the student for future coursework in gross anatomy, pathophysiology, and neuroscience.

DRSC 5388 Pathophysiology for Health Science 3 credits
An in-depth evaluation of disease and injury processes across the lifespan and their relevance to therapeutic rehabilitation are presented. Attention is given to all major physiological systems.

DRSC 5390 Neuroscience for Health Sciences 3 credits
Human neuroscience with an emphasis on normal and abnormal structures and functions of the nervous system, as applied to neurological dysfunction and its impact on physical and occupational functioning of an individual are studied.

DRSC 5495 Anatomy for Health Sciences 4 credits
A study of the structure and function of the skeletal, muscular, and central and peripheral nervous systems of the human body. The course focuses on human anatomy through didactic methods and cadaver dissection of the trunk, extremities, head, neck, and internal organs.

PT 5102 Surface Anatomy 1 credit
Students will identify bony landmarks, tendons, muscles, joint boundaries, and ligaments of the trunk, head, and extremities. This identification will be extended to include visualization of the locations and boundaries of deeper structures including bones, deep muscles, and internal organs.

PT 5103 Patient Care Skills 1 credit
Skill in basic patient care procedures will be acquired in this laboratory course. These include correct body mechanics, infection control, wheelchair and assistive device application, gait training, patient positioning and draping, transfer techniques including handling lines and tubes and assessment of vital signs.

PT 5104 Spanish Medical Terminology 1 credit
This course is designed to improve fluency in specific Spanish medical terminology commonly used in physical therapy practice. (Students will be grouped according to level of proficiency.)
PT 5105 Introduction to Clinical Experience 1 credit
This introduction to the clinic will assist students in developing their professional practice skills as well as patient and practice management skills through observation and experiential learning. Clinical experiences will be 1 day/week over 10 weeks.

PT 5204 Tests and Measures 2 credits
Patient history, systems review, basic tests and measures are presented in this laboratory course. The basic tests include muscle performance, pain, range of motion and self care and home management.

PT 5216 Research Methods 2 credits
Basic research methods, measurement protocols, and applied statistics, for the purpose of critiquing scientific literature are introduced. Research design (experimental and non-experimental) and common statistical tests (parametric and nonparametric) are reviewed. The course emphasis is on the critique and application of research literature.

PT 5225 Specific Populations 2 credits
This course focuses on physical therapy and healthcare delivery reflective of trends in the field. Topics may include, but are not limited to the health and wellness issues of specific populations like women, those who are overweight or obese, adolescents or others. Common medical problems prevalent in these populations are emphasized, as well as the impact on patient/client management and outcomes.

PT 5233 Behavioral Science Topics 2 credits
Social and psychological factors governing therapeutic relationships with patients, including such topics as verbal and nonverbal communication, cultural competence, sexuality, and spirituality are introduced. Health behavior-change models and wellness theories are explored.

PT 5311 Modalities in PT Practice 3 credits
Thermal, mechanical and electrotherapeutic modalities and techniques commonly used in physical therapy practice are studied. Therapeutic effects of heat, cold, light, water, and electricity are assessed, and practical applications of these modalities are demonstrated.

PT 5340 Management and Finance in PT 3 credits
Management theory and fiscal discipline relevant to healthcare delivery as it relates to physical therapy are presented. Alternate means and sources of healthcare delivery are assessed, as well as administrative factors that impact care giving. Concepts and strategies applicable to the marketing and management of physical therapy practice are discussed. The principles and ethics underlying effective conflict resolution are emphasized.

PT 5407 Medical Kinesiology/Motion Analysis 4 credits
The kinematics and kinetics of the human body, postural control, and the basics of gait analysis are comprehensively studied. Biomechanical principles that control human movement are applied to motion analysis.

PT 5413 Clinical Education in PT I 4 credits
A synthesis of applied knowledge acquired from the first year of the curriculum including, but not limited to, human anatomy, basic pathology, and human physiology applied to the physical therapy care of patients/clients are integrated in this clinical internship. (8 weeks, full-time)

PT 5425 Clinical Education in PT II 4 credits
A synthesis of advanced applied physical therapy knowledge and patient/client skills is acquired in various settings of this clinical internship. The student must demonstrate competency in solving complex patient problems in a variety of patient populations. (8 weeks, full-time)

PT 5443 Clinical Education in PT III 4 credits
A refined synthesis of advanced applied physical therapy knowledge and patient/client skills is acquired in various settings in this clinical internship. By the end of this course, students must complete all skill objectives in the clinical education tool in order to attend the final internship. (8 weeks, full-time)

PT 6108 Integument Patient Management 1 credit
A comprehensive review of the integumentary system concentrating on the prevention of integument disruption and management of patients with open wounds, burns, and other dermatologic disorders is presented. Attention is given to the examination of and intervention for integumentary conditions across the lifespan.

PT 6109 Imaging 1 credit
This course introduces the student to physical principles of imaging methods and provides a framework for interpreting medical images. Medical imaging systems include conventional X-ray, computed tomography (CT), magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), nuclear medicine (PET and SPECT), and ultrasound. Basic concepts in medical image processing and analysis, as well as medical applications, will be introduced.

PT 6110 Integrative Seminar I 1 credit
Course work completed by the student across the first and second year of the curriculum is integrated in this seminar. The students will take a comprehensive exam demonstrating their mastery of curricular content, permitting them to begin their first clinical rotation. Comprehensive case studies are presented to the student, who must demonstrate proficiency in patient management skills.

PT 6111 Integrative Seminar II 1 credit
Course work completed by the student across the second and third year of the curriculum is integrated in this seminar. The students will take a comprehensive exam demonstrating their mastery of curricular content, permitting them to go on their second clinical rotation. Comprehensive case studies are presented to the student, who must demonstrate proficiency in patient management skills.

PT 6116 Physical Therapy Capstone Project 1 credit
During the final semester of the Doctor of Physical Therapy Program, students will complete an evidence-based research manuscript and poster presentation relevant to physical therapy practice. Most students will complete an evidence based report related to a patient case. Selected students, at the invitation of a core faculty member, will participate in the faculty member’s original research line. All students must produce a manuscript suitable for publication in a peer-reviewed journal and a poster appropriate for presentation at a state or national conference.

PT 6201 Law and Ethics in PT Practice 2 credits
Ethical principles and legal factors which influence healthcare in general and physical therapy practice in Texas are introduced.

PT 6202 Professional Practice in PT 2 credits
Attributes, behaviors, and values embodied by physical therapists in the conduct of professional practice, including documentation skills, teaching and learning principles, and maintenance of effective therapeutic relationships are introduced.

PT 6203 Differential Diagnosis 2 credits
An evaluation of the musculoskeletal, neuromuscular, cardiopulmonary, and integumentary conditions encountered by physical therapists, with emphasis on physical therapist diagnosis are presented. Recognition of signs and symptoms associated with various conditions beyond the scope of physical therapist intervention is developed, enabling the practitioner to make appropriate referrals.

PT 6205 Pharmacology in PT 2 credits
Foundational information concerning pharmacologic interventions and how drugs can be used as part of a comprehensive healthcare and rehabilitation regimen are the focus of this course.

PT 6207 Motor Control and Motor Learning 2 credits
The neural, physical, and behavioral processes that govern human motor performance across the lifespan are studied. Theories of motor learning and re-learning following trauma are emphasized, with attention given to how intervention and feedback variables impact the learning process. Factors that influence postural control during life are addressed.

PT 6209 Geriatrics 2 credits
Students will differentiate the specific considerations of an aging population with regard to disease processes and the physical therapy management of those patients.

PT 6304 Evidence-based Practice in PT 3 credits
Concepts developed in Research Methods, with a focus on incorporating scientific evidence into physical therapy practice are continued. The student is exposed to the discipline of retrieving, evaluating, and incorporating the findings of scientific literature in the conduct of clinical practice. Students will focus on the critical evaluation new information from research findings and integration of the best research evidence into clinical practice.

PT 6307 Cardiopulmonary Patient Management 3 credits
This course provides theoretical and practical instruction for the evaluation and management of physical therapy patients with cardiovascular and pulmonary disorders. Emphasis is placed on the etiology and pathology of selected cardiopulmonary medical conditions, as well as the therapeutic management of patients with these conditions. Students will create a physical therapy plan of care for selected cardiovascular and pulmonary dysfunctions using diagnostic, pharmacologic, and clinical laboratory data. Concepts of health promotion and fitness are explored.

PT 6311 Musculoskeletal I 3 credits
This course focuses on the examination, evaluation, and management of patients/clients with surgical and non-surgical orthopedic conditions of the cervical, thoracic, and lumbar spines; temporomandibular joint, pelvis, sacroiliac and pubis joints including the prescription of orthotics.

PT 6312 Musculoskeletal II 3 credits
This course focuses on the examination, evaluation, and management of patients/clients with surgical and non-surgical orthopedic conditions of the hip, knee, or foot/ankle, including the management of orthotics and prosthetics.

PT 6313 Musculoskeletal III 3 credits
This course focuses on the examination, evaluation, and management of patients/clients with surgical and non-surgical orthopedic conditions of the shoulder, elbow, or wrist/hand including the management of orthotics and prosthetics.

PT 6314 Neuromuscular Rehabilitation I 3 credits
Building on anatomical knowledge presented in Neuroscience for Health Sciences, this course offers a systematic review of clinical disorders of the central and peripheral nervous systems, with emphasis on accompanying sensorimotor sequelae. Basic neurological tests and measures are introduced along with basic treatment interventions.

PT 6315 Pediatrics 3 credits
The etiology and pathology of neurological and orthopedic dysfunction in the pediatric patient/client from birth through age 18 are presented. Emphasis lies in clinical application of examination and intervention for the pediatric patient in early childhood.

PT 6406 Exercise Physiology/Prescription 4 credits
This course focuses on the acute and adaptive physiological responses to endurance and resistance exercise. Understanding the responses of the cardiovascular, pulmonary, neuromuscular, musculoskeletal, endocrine, thermoregulatory and renal systems will prepare the clinician to prescribe exercise interventions for healthy and clinical populations.

PT 6414 Neuromuscular Rehabilitation II 4 credits
Building on knowledge acquired in Neuromuscular Rehabilitation I, this course develops clinical approaches to the long-term management of pathology and trauma in neurologic patients. Using differential diagnosis, students develop the ability to identify neurologic disorders in real and simulated patients, with the goal of implementing an effective plan of care. Emphasis on clinical application.

PT 6606 Clinical Education In PT IV-Internship 6 credits
This is the final internship for the physical therapy student. Curricular objectives are culminated in a 12 week rotation in a setting that will advance the student’s skills in a specific area of practice. Professionalism, autonomous practice, and evidence-based practice are emphasized in all practice settings. Students must integrate all aspects of patient and practice management skills within the individual’s practice setting. (12 weeks, full-time) v