Admissions Office
The College of St. Scholastica
1200 Kenwood Avenue
Duluth, MN 55811
(218) 723-6046
(800) 249-6412
TTY/TDD: (218) 723-6790

Sandy Marden-Lokken, PT, Ed.D.
Interim Department Chair
Science Center, Room 3125K
(218) 723-6090

Physical Therapy (4 + 3 Doctorate)

Fast Facts: Physical Therapy (4 + 3 Doctorate)

  • Undergraduate students can take part in St. Scholastica's "4-plus-3-DPT" program, where students earn their four-year degree, then apply to the three-year Doctor of Physical Therapy program. See program requirements section for application criteria. 
  • Accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE).
  • Numerous hands-on learning opportunities include a physical therapy clinic on campus and required off-campus clinical experiences and internships that prepare students for the professional workplace.
  • Faculty are experienced clinical practitioners  including certified specialists in geriatrics, orthopedics and pediatrics 
  • One hundred percent of all program graduates are successful in finding jobs.

Program Requirements

Doctor of Physical Therapy applicants must meet the following criteria to be considered for admission:

  • A bachelor’s degree, including the required prerequisite courses and GPA
  • A cumulative GPA of 3.0
  • At least 60 observation hours within two physical therapy settings
  • Completion of the Graduate Record Exam (GRE)

Applications are submitted through the Physical Therapy Centralized Application Service. The application cycle begins on July 15 each year. All applications must be submitted by the Oct. 1 deadline for entrance to the class beginning the following summer. Admission to this program is based primarily upon a student’s academic record, personal interviews, scores attained on the Graduate Record Exam (GRE) as well as reasons cited for wanting to enter the profession.


The St. Scholastica Physical Therapy program has contracts with more than 350 clinical sites throughout the United States. During clinical, students gain rehabilitation experience in outpatient, inpatient and rural PT settings. Because of such intensive hands-on learning, students who complete this Doctor of Physical Therapy program are very well prepared to meet the therapeutic needs of whomever they serve.


The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts that between 2010 and 2020, physical therapist employment will increase by 39 percent. Not only is demand high for physical therapists, salaries are too. The median annual salary for an entry level PT position is about $76,000. Additionally, physical therapists can find employment in so many venues:  hospitals, clinics, nursing care facilities, outpatient care centers, private practice settings, rehab centers, home healthcare agencies, and academic and research settings.

Pair with a Language

Boost your brain power and give yourself a competitive edge in our global economy by pairing your major with a language. St. Scholastica offers programs and courses in American Sign Language, French, German, Latin, Ojibwe, Russian and Spanish.

Sample Curriculum

Here are some classes you could take as part of this major or minor. Please note that you would not necessarily need all of these courses to fulfill a major or minor. This list doesn't include general education courses. Be sure to create your course plan in consultation with your advisor.

Course Creation Center

Expand and Collapse Coursework

Expand and Collapse BIO 1110 - General Biology I

Study of living systems with particular emphasis on the molecular, cellular levels of organization within the various kingdoms of life. 3 class hours, 2-hour lab. This course is required of all biology majors.

Expand and Collapse BIO 2110 - Anatomy and Physiology I

Introductory study of anatomy and physiology of the vertebrate body with an emphasis on the human. Topics include an introduction to cells, tissues, and systems organization, osteology, fluid compartments, gross and microscopic anatomy, physiology of the circulatory system, body defense systems and the gross anatomy of musculature. 3 class hours, 3-hour lab. Prerequisite: BIO 1110 or BIO 1036.

Expand and Collapse BIO 2120 - Anatomy and Physiology II

Continuation of BIO 2110. Topics include gross and microscopic anatomy, physiology of the renal system, respiratory system, digestive system, nervous system and endocrine system. 3 class hours, 3-hour lab. Prerequisite: BIO 2110.

Expand and Collapse CHM 1110 - General Chemistry I

Introduces atomic and molecular structure, bonding, stoichiometry, gas laws, chemical periodicity, and equilibrium. Three 50-minute lectures, one 2-hour lab each week. Prerequisite: high school chemistry and appropriate placement test score.

Expand and Collapse EXP 3321 - Kinesiology

The kinesiology course provides students the opportunity to engage in an advanced introduction to: (a) the study of the origins, insertions, and functions of 75 major muscles of the upper and lower extremities; (b) the brachial plexus and lumbar-sacral plexus and the role of each in muscle function and dysfunction; (c) the application of functional anatomy concepts in weight lifting and stretching exercises, human movement activities, and athletics; and (d) the blending of anatomical information with the physiology of the body to thoroughly grasp the meaning of “the science of movement.”

Expand and Collapse PSC 2001 - Physics I

Covers algebra-based general physics including Newtonian mechanics (motion, force, energy, momentum), harmonic motion, fluids, and thermodynamics. Students must have ease and familiarity with basic algebraic and trigonometric techniques. Includes one 2-hour laboratory per week. Prerequisite: A grade of C (2.0 on a 4.0 scale) or better in College Algebra (MATH 1111) or a C or better in a more advanced college math course or a math ACT score of 24 or higher or by permission of the instructor.

Expand and Collapse PSC 2002 - Physics II

Continues the study of algebra-based general physics including content in electricity and magnetism, geometric optics, sound and light waves, and selected topics in modern physics. Includes one 2-hour laboratory per week. Prerequisite: A grade of C (2.0 on a 4.0 scale) or better in PSC 2001.

Expand and Collapse PSY 3423 - Abnormal Psychology

Provides an overview of what is considered to be abnormal behavior in American society. The main focus of the course is on describing various mental disorders and discussing how these disorders are explained and treated according to the major theoretical perspectives. Important issues related to diagnosing, researching and treating mental disorders are also addressed. Prerequisite: one course in general or developmental psychology and junior status recommended.

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  • "I choose the DPT program at CSS because the faculty has an exceptional reputation in the community and among the professionals in the field of physical therapy. The faculty are wonderful resources and make every effort to take the time to be available to students."

    – Alyana Newton, ‘15