Once admitted to the Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) program, students are eligible to apply for one of the two dual‑degree options. One to two positions each year are available in the Doctor of Physical Therapy and Master of Public Health (DPT/MPH) dual‑degree option and one position is available in the Doctor of Physical Therapy and Doctor of Philosophy in Physical Rehabilitation Science (DPT/PhD) dual‑degree option. These positions are competitive and will require completion of separate supplemental applications (to either the MPH or PhD programs). Completion of supplemental applications does not guarantee acceptance into the dual‑degree options.
After admission into the DPT program, students interested in the DPT/MPH dual‑degree option may submit an application with additional requirements for consideration of admission to the DPT/MPH dual‑degree option. There is a cap of 2 students per year for acceptance into the DPT/MPH dual‑degree option.
Students interested in the combined DPT/MPH option must first be accepted for admittance into the DPT program. After admission into the DPT program, students interested in the DPT/MPH dual‑degree option must submit a Supplemental Application to the MPH program by the following outlined dates for consideration for the DPT/MPH dual‑degree option. All students accepted into the DPT program are eligible to apply to the DPT/MPH dual‑degree option.
The priority deadline for applications for the DPT/MPH dual‑degree option is January 15th, which is available to students who have received early admission to the DPT program. For those students accepted to the DPT program under regular admission, or those early admit DPT students who do not submit for priority consideration, the final deadline for application for the DPT/MPH dual‑degree option is March 1st. There is a cap of 2 students per year for acceptance into the DPT/MPH dual‑degree option. Students will be rank ordered based upon cumulative GPA for acceptance into the DPT/MPH dual‑degree option. Submitted supplemental applications for the DPT/MPH dual‑degree option will be reviewed by the MPH Program Director. The DPT Director of Faculty and Student Affairs and the Director of the MPH program will notify students accepted into the DPT/MPH dual‑degree option by March 1st for early admission students and by April 1st for regular admission students. Enrollment into the MPH portion of the DPT/MPH dual‑degree option will occur the year of acceptance with enrollment into the DPT portion of the DPT/MPH dual‑degree option occurring the following year.
Tuition & Financial Aid
Tuition and fees vary based on the year in which the student is enrolled in the DPT/MPH dual‑degree program and whether you are a Maryland state resident. Student will pay DPT tuition and fees for the Summer of first year, MPH tuition and fees for Fall and Spring of first year, Summer of second year, and DPT tuition and fees for Fall and Spring of third year and all semesters in the fourth year. See Tuition and Fees for DPT Program
See Tuition and Fees for MPH Program
The DPT/MPH dual‑degree program is a four-year curriculum. The fall and spring of the first year includes completion of the core and concentration courses from the MPH program. Concentration courses are selected from one of the following specialization areas: community & population health, epidemiology and global health from the MPH program.
The second year begins in the summer with a foundational science and professional issues course from the DPT program. The fall and spring of the second year includes a systems-oriented approach to foundational sciences and is followed by instruction in the performance of clinically relevant, system-specific and age-appropriate examination and intervention skills as well as a second professional issues course within the DPT program.
The third year includes knowledge, skills and clinical decision making necessary for medically complex settings, inpatient and outpatient care settings, and focused instruction in musculoskeletal and neuromuscular disorders.
The summer, fall, and spring of the fourth year requires 33 weeks of practical physical therapy experience in a variety of clinical and non-traditional settings, subdivided into three separate full time clinical education experiences. These opportunities are back-loaded in the curriculum to enable the student to possess all needed skills to examine, evaluate, diagnose, and intervene appropriately for primary, secondary, and tertiary physical impairments, functional limitations, and disabilities. The final year also culminates in a capstone requirement related to the area of specialization within the MPH program, a MPH field experience and an online MPH seminar series. For detailed descriptions of the DPT Blocks refer to the DPT Curriculum Overview section. For detailed descriptions of the MPH courses refer to the Master of Public Health website.
Throughout the curriculum, specific course content is determined by the goals and threads of the curricular plan, feedback from clinicians and students, the Guide to Physical Therapist Practice, current literature on physical therapy teaching and practice, and competencies specified in the Associations of Schools of Public Health, Education Committee Report, Master's Degree in Public Health Core Competency Development project.
The student is required to successfully complete the following for advancement:
The student is required to successfully complete the following before graduation:
In addition to all DPT program Goals & Outcomes, the DPT/MPH option includes the following goals and outcomes:
This is pending due to student outcome data not being available until the first class graduates.
After admission into the DPT program, students interested in the DPT/PhD dual‑degree option may submit an application with additional requirements for consideration of admission to the DPT/PhD dual‑degree option. There is a cap of 1 student per year for acceptance into the DPT/PhD dual‑degree option. An additional slot may become available but only if there is an available funding source for years 4-6.5.
Students interested in the DPT/PhD dual‑degree option must submit a letter of interest outlining their area of research interest to the Director of the PhD Program and the DPT Director of Faculty and Student Affairs by July 1. Students will meet individually with the Director of the PhD program to advise on student eligibility based on prior academic performance, current academic performance and research background. All students deemed eligible will be invited to apply to the DPT/PhD dual‑degree option via the Graduate School application process and must complete all required Graduate School application materials. Eligible students should contact the PhD Coordinator by email to acquire the Graduate School’s paper application for admission. No application fee is required for the DPT/PhD dual‑degree option. Students must identify as a DPT/PhD dual-degree candidate on the graduate school application form.
The deadline for submission of Graduate School application materials for the DPT/PhD dual-degree option is Dec 15th of year 2 of the DPT program.
The PhD Admissions Committee will review the applications of all candidates who meet the minimal criteria for acceptance and give an assessment first on whether the student is acceptable for admission and second on whether they have an open position for a dual‑degree student.
Students that receive an acceptable rating from at least 75% of the total number of graduate faculty and at least one potential advisor will advance for further consideration. All eligible candidates will then be ranked by the graduate faculty at a meeting for final determination of acceptance into the DPT/PhD dual‑degree programTuition & Scholarships
The DPT/PhD dual‑degree option is designed to be completed in an expected minimum of 6.5 years with the goal to prepare physical therapy clinician researchers who can function as independent entry-level practitioners but are also capable of carrying independent research in either an academic or clinical setting. Graduates of this program would be uniquely positioned upon graduation for academic positions, post-doctoral fellowships as well as clinical research positions. Students should indicate their interest in the dual‑degree option after they are accepted into the DPT program.Integration with PhD-related work while undertaking the DPT degree occurs in 3 ways:
Studied Assessment of Equivalency Credits
Musculoskeletal I and II will be considered for transfer (instead of Neuromuscular I and II) if a student is taking a strongly biomechanical approach to their research questions and their advisor approves.
* It is important to note that these weighted assessed credits are only transferrable if the student has attained a B or above in the respective DPT blocks on average at the end of the DPT program since the graduate school requires a B average. If a student attains a C in a relevant course this must be balanced by the equivalent number of credits for an A to maintain the B average.
Format for the DPT/PhD dual‑degree Option Curriculum
This dual‑degree option is designed in a quasi-sequential format so that students focus first on acquiring the DPT in the standard 3-year program with the integration and addition of a portion of PhD-related work (outlined above). Starting in year 4, they focus exclusively on the PhD. The DPT curriculum is the same as presented in the DPT Program Curriculum with the exception of the composition of one of the three Terminal Full Time Clinical Experiences (see paragraph above).
The PhD curriculum consists of a minimum of 60 credits made up of the following areas of study: Interdisciplinary Science Core coursework (minimum 10 credits); Tools Core (minimum 12 credits); Concentration/Cognate Area (minimum 22 credits) and Dissertation Credits (minimum 12 credits). The remaining four (4) credits can be used in any of the areas of study at the student/advisor’s discretion. Tools Core refers to research skills needed in the field of physical rehabilitation science as well as direct preparation for an academic career. The concentration area for all students is Neuromotor Control and Rehabilitation. A relevant cognate (complementary) area, which includes, but is not limited to, Applied Physiology, Cognitive Motor Neuroscience, Epidemiology, Human Centered Computing, Rehabilitation Biomechanics, Rehabilitation Engineering depends upon the student's research interests.
Note: Some of the concentration/cognate and tools courses are not available on the UMB campus, in which case students will be required to travel to UMCP or UMBC.
Curriculum for PhD Phase of DPT/PhD Option
* Required Courses
# Concentration Area
Mapping of DPT and PhD courses for the DPT/PhD program showing courses that will transfer to the PhD after completion of the DPT (italicized and bolded) and the mapping needed to complete the PhD in 6.5 years.
SCH = Semester Credit Hours
*The exact timing of the Dissertation Defense depends on how the research progresses. Students with extenuating circumstances, who need additional time after the 6.5 years, are responsible for their own funding.
While in the DPT and PhD phase of the DPT/PhD option, the PhD Director will review the academic status of students after each year in consultation with the Director of Faculty and Student Affairs, the student’s primary research advisor, as well as, other faculty as appropriate to assist in making recommendations related to advancement in the dual-degree option.
The student is required to successfully complete the following before graduation of DPT phase of the DPT/PhD dual‑degree option:
In addition to all DPT program Goals & Outcomes, the DPT/PhD dual‑degree option also includes the following Goals and Expected Outcomes:
This is pending due to student outcome data not being available until the first class graduates. Enrollment for the DPT-PhD dual‑degree option begins Fall of 2018 and outcome data is expected with the first graduating student in 2024-25.