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  1. #1
    Registered User BoyBawang's Avatar
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    What Bachelor's Degree should I get to become a Physical Therapist?

    Hi, after high school, I'm thinking of pursuing a career as a physical therapist. I read that you need a Master's or a Doctorate degree to get a job as a physical therapist so I was wondering which Bachelor's degree should I get before doing the master's physical therapy program at cal state long beach. The Cal State Long Beach site said that they recommend a Bachelor's in Biology. But isn't there a Bachelor's degree in Physical Therapy? So which Bachelor's should I get?

    1. Bachelor's degree in biology
    2. Bachelor's degree in Physical Therapy
    3. Bachelor's degree in Kinesiology and Exercise. (so while I study for my master's, I can maybe work part time as an Athletic Trainer or something)

    thanks
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  2. #2
    Ever-learning GainThis's Avatar
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    Kinesiology is likely your best bet. I'm in KIN now, 2nd year, and a lot of people go on to grad school to become P.T.'s
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  3. #3
    Fade into Bolivian....... Martiniman's Avatar
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  4. #4
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    It doesn't matter brah. My aunt is a PT and she has a biology degree.
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  5. #5
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    I'm in PT school right now and it doesn't matter as long as you meet the required pre-requisites the grad school requires (Psych major here). Kinese or Exercise Science will probably be the most applicable. If I were you I would look into going to a grad school that offers the DPT (Doctorate of Physical Therapy). Most programs are moving in that direction now, especially with the PT field striving for direct access to patients and professional autonomy.
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  8. #8
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    Kinesiology
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  9. #9
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    there are a number of diff options, but MAKE SURE YOU GET GREAT GRADES so you will be accepted into the highly competative PT program
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  10. #10
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    In the future, could the minimum requirement to get a job as a PT possibly become a Doctorate degree instead of Master's degree being the minimum requirement?
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  11. #11
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    Originally Posted by BoyBawang View Post
    In the future, could the minimum requirement to get a job as a PT possibly become a Doctorate degree instead of Master's degree being the minimum requirement?
    vision 2020, look into it. Attempting to convert all PT programs into doctorates to allow for direct access in all states
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  12. #12
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    not anything that would concern you however, as many PT's nowadays are old school and grandfather;d in with bachelor degrees
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  13. #13
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    i would Say law or criminal justice
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    Ok so I'm probably going to get a bachelor's in Exercise Science and Kinesiology. So I read up on Vision 2020 and I don't really get it. Does it mean everyone needs a DPT to become a physical therapist? So does that mean there will no longer be a Master's Degree in PT? btw thanks to all that replied
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    Registered User insatiablebulk's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by BoyBawang View Post
    Ok so I'm probably going to get a bachelor's in Exercise Science and Kinesiology. So I read up on Vision 2020 and I don't really get it. Does it mean everyone needs a DPT to become a physical therapist? So does that mean there will no longer be a Master's Degree in PT? btw thanks to all that replied

    You do not need a DPT to become a physical therapist. However, it is most likely in your best interest to go for the DPT. Strides are being made to make every PT out there a DPT so that the general public will recognize PTs as the professionals to go to for musculoskeletal problems instead of say a chiropractor, athletic trainer, or other profession. We are trying to get direct access to patients in all states so we have professional autonomy, instead of having to get referrals from a physician. Some states already have direct access in place.

    For those with bachelors, they have years of experience on their side plus continuing education courses they have to take to keep up to date with the latest research and information. However, many are enrolling in transitional DPT programs.

    Also, think about when you graduate. As a new grad, if you have a masters in PT and someone has a DPT, that employer will most likely hire the DPT if everything else is equal.
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    Originally Posted by insatiablebulk View Post
    You do not need a DPT to become a physical therapist. However, it is most likely in your best interest to go for the DPT. Strides are being made to make every PT out there a DPT so that the general public will recognize PTs as the professionals to go to for musculoskeletal problems instead of say a chiropractor, athletic trainer, or other profession. We are trying to get direct access to patients in all states so we have professional autonomy, instead of having to get referrals from a physician. Some states already have direct access in place.

    For those with bachelors, they have years of experience on their side plus continuing education courses they have to take to keep up to date with the latest research and information. However, many are enrolling in transitional DPT programs.

    Also, think about when you graduate. As a new grad, if you have a masters in PT and someone has a DPT, that employer will most likely hire the DPT if everything else is equal.
    without question you have a foot in the door with a DPT, and by 2020 probably all programs will convert to DPT, but for now OP you can sit for the PT boards with a masters, I can understand how after going to school for at least 6 years you would want to get out and make some money and quit building debt
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    At my school we have a Kinesiology pre-physical therapy major. I think Kines is the closest major that will get you prepared for PT school.
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    I'm thinking of maybe going PT and I'm an Econ major - I just have to take the required undergrad science classes and all
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    Originally Posted by BoyBawang View Post
    Ok so I'm probably going to get a bachelor's in Exercise Science and Kinesiology. So I read up on Vision 2020 and I don't really get it. Does it mean everyone needs a DPT to become a physical therapist? So does that mean there will no longer be a Master's Degree in PT? btw thanks to all that replied
    DPT is the way to go if you are trying to become a PT.
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  22. #22
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    Fu(k fsu mtomjr14's Avatar
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    Registered User galifter's Avatar
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    I had an exercise science degree entering PT school and feel like it gives you a leg up on other majors. The exercise science people in my class had a much better grasp on physiology on the cellular level and gross anatomy when considering exercise prescription.
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    Registered User xxxxxPatrick's Avatar
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    Have you looked into grad school yet? Is it tough to get into? I'm in the same boat as you. Want to continue school and become PT.
    Originally Posted by GainThis View Post
    Kinesiology is likely your best bet. I'm in KIN now, 2nd year, and a lot of people go on to grad school to become P.T.'s
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    Registered User xxxxxPatrick's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by insatiablebulk View Post
    I'm in PT school right now and it doesn't matter as long as you meet the required pre-requisites the grad school requires (Psych major here). Kinese or Exercise Science will probably be the most applicable. If I were you I would look into going to a grad school that offers the DPT (Doctorate of Physical Therapy). Most programs are moving in that direction now, especially with the PT field striving for direct access to patients and professional autonomy.
    Was it tough to get into PT school? What was your GPA coming out of Undergrad? Thanks.
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    Originally Posted by xxxxxPatrick View Post
    Have you looked into grad school yet? Is it tough to get into? I'm in the same boat as you. Want to continue school and become PT.

    strong bump....



    but I am a 2nd year DPT student, have a bachelors in Exercise Science. GPA was around 3.45 or so and I got in to the top school I wanted without issue (my undergrad school, if it matters)
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