Mayo Clinic physical therapist working with a patient


To be eligible for admission to the Physical Therapy Doctoral Program, you must have at least a bachelor's degree from an accredited college or university.

The following prerequisite letter-graded courses and work experience must be completed prior to starting the program:

Biological sciences

At least four biology courses, each with laboratory experience, including:

  • One course in human physiology
  • One course in human anatomy or a combined anatomy/physiology course distributed over two academic terms
  • These courses are recommended, though not required: microbiology, histology, embryology, and neuroscience
  • Exercise physiology may satisfy one of the biological sciences prerequisite requirements, but not the human physiology prerequisite
Chemistry Two courses with laboratory study
Physics Two courses with laboratory study
Statistics One course in basic statistics, including elementary probability, descriptive measures, confidence intervals, t-tests and linear regression
Psychology Two courses, including general or introductory psychology and abnormal psychology (or equivalent)
Medical terminology Course is recommended but not required
Graduate Record Examination (GRE) Completion of the general test component of the GRE and reporting of scores. Note that scores should be sent directly to Mayo Clinic School of Health Sciences PTCAS GRE code #3721. We recommend all applicants complete the GRE by July 31.
Work and/or observation experience A minimum of 40 hours of observation or work experience in a physical therapy setting is needed prior to starting the program (varied practice settings). 100 hours is preferred.

To be considered as a candidate for the Physical Therapy Doctoral Program, applicants must have at least a 3.0 cumulative undergraduate GPA (on a 4.0 scale) and a 3.0 or better prerequisite GPA. Grades from all courses are used to calculate the cumulative GPA. A grade of D is unacceptable in any of the required prerequisite courses.

Advanced placement (AP) credits earned in high school may fulfill up to two prerequisite course requirements, with a maximum of one course per particular field of study (for example, one course in the biological sciences, one course in chemistry, one course in physics, one course in psychology or one course in statistics).

Transfer of credit

Due to the sequential nature of the physical therapy curriculum, the program does not accept transfer credit from other educational institutions.

Non-U.S. citizen applicants

Mayo Clinic physical therapist working with a student

International applications to the Physical Therapy Doctoral Program are welcomed, though preference is given to U.S. workers. U.S. worker refers to those who are authorized to work in the United States, including:

  1. U.S. citizens
  2. U.S. nationals
  3. Lawful permanent residents
  4. Asylees and refugees

International applicants whose primary language is not English must submit results from the Test of English as a Foreign Language Internet-based test (TOEFL iBT). Scores from the speaking portion of the exam are given particular consideration in admission decisions. Learn more about the exam and register online at the Educational Testing Service.

The Mayo Clinic School of Health Sciences PTCAS code for the TOEFL iBT is 5312. Our minimum score requirement for the TOEFL, consistent with general recommendations for graduate students in the health professions, includes a total TOEFL score that exceeds 89 with a minimum score of 25 for speaking.

Educational transcripts from schools outside the U.S. must be translated (if they are not already in English) and evaluated for U.S. equivalency by an accredited credential evaluation service company prior to submission. Please refer to the National Association of Credential Evaluation Services for a list of qualified companies. The applicant pays for the examination and credential-evaluation services.

See the Mayo Clinic School of Health Sciences non-U.S. citizen applicants policy.

More information

See also Mayo Clinic School of Health Sciences admissions policy information.

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