How to Apply

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Application Process and Timeline

The regular application deadline is the September 1, 2021 at 11:00pm CST, but submission prior to the deadline is highly encouraged.  All necessary documents for applications must be submitted via our online application system, www.ptcas.org.  All applicants must also complete an Online Admissions Application (OAA) to the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences College of Health Professions by the first Monday in October.

IMPORTANT information about PTCAS and your application:

  • The PTCAS application, additional documents, and all other required documentation must be submitted by September 1, 2021 at 11:00pm CST
    • Required documentation includes: completed PTCAS application, essays, evaluators names and requests for letters of recommendation, resume, unofficial GRE score (at the least), completed supplemental application to the UAMS College of Health Professions, and optional observation hours.
    • The UAMS College of Health Professions Online Admissions Application can be accessed at http://healthprofessions.uams.edu/prospective-students/apply/
      • Note:  If the Online Admissions Application is not complete, the candidate’s entire application will be considered incomplete.
  • We understand it may take time for PTCAS, evaluators, and physical therapists to verify different aspects of your application.  Therefore, we recommend that you apply early in order to meet verification deadlines.
  • NOTE – All applicant information must be received and verified in PTCAS by October 1, 2021.  Incomplete applications WILL NOT be reviewed.
    • All transcripts must be verified by PTCAS by this date.
    • All official GRE scores must be received in PTCAS by this date.
    • All letters of recommendation must be received by this date.
  • All required materials should be uploaded to PTCAS.  Mailed copies will not be accepted.
  • Required documentation includes: completed PTCAS application, essays, evaluators names and requests for letters of recommendation, resume, unofficial GRE score (at the least), completed supplemental application to the UAMS College of Health Professions, and optional observation hours.
  • It is the responsibility of the applicant to check PTCAS frequently to ensure all your required information has been received and verified in PTCAS.
  • You must also update Fall grades in PTCAS per the Academic Update deadlines.

Applicants must provide:

  1. UAMS Online Admissions Application (OAA): An online application to the college is required, must be completed by September 1, 2021 at 11:00pm CST, and is available on the website.  A non-refundable application fee of $40.00 is required and must accompany the OAA application.  On the first page of the application, be sure to make the following selections to choose this program:
    -Academic Career: Graduate
    -Campus: Main UAMS Campus
    -Term: Fall
    -Academic Program: College of Health Prof PROF
    -Admit Type: Applicant
    -Academic Plan: Physical Therapy DPT
    -Academic Sub-Plan: N/A
  2. Documentation of Observation Hours: WAIVED FOR THE 2021-2022 APPLICATION CYCLE — For reference in future cycles, if observation hours are required, they must meet the following requirements:
    Completion of a minimum of 60 observation hours (paid or voluntary) in a variety of physical therapy settings including at least 20 hours in each of two separate settings such as outpatient, acute care, rehab/sub-acute rehab, extended care facility, nursing home, home health, wellness/prevention/fitness, industrial/occupational health, and school/preschool. For example, 40 hours in outpatient, 15 hours in pediatrics, and 10 hours in acute care may meet the 60 observation hour requirement, but it does not meet the minimum of 20 hours in 2 separate settings.  Observation hours to be documented in PTCAS and verified by a physical therapist – electronically or by written signature.  It is the applicants’ responsibility to ensure all hours are verified by a licensed physical therapist through PTCAS. Observation hours that are not verified or do not meet the minimum requirements will be considered as an incomplete application and will not be reviewed.
  3. Reference Letters: Two letters of recommendation (documented in PTCAS).  Refer to PTCAS or https://healthprofessions.uams.edu/programs/physical-therapy/admission-requirements/ for acceptable evaluators.
    • Applicants need to have completed the request for the recommendation in PTCAS by September 1, 2021.
    • Letters of recommendation need to be completed and uploaded into PTCAS by the person completing the recommendation by October 1, 2021.
  4. GRE Scores: GRE scores are required and may be used for ranking candidates.  Use Institution Code 2121 for the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences PTCAS.  The GRE must be officially submitted to PTCAS. Unofficial or applicant reported scores will not be accepted.
  5. Official Transcripts: A bachelor’s degree completed by the start of the DPT program along with specific prerequisite coursework and a minimum cumulative and prerequisite GPA of 3.0 (on a 4.0 scale) is required for consideration for admission.  Note that 24 of the 33 required semester credits of pre-requisite courses (a minimum of 8 courses) must be completed by the application deadline.  If prerequisite coursework was repeated, the program will use the highest grade in the prerequisite GPA calculation. All grades, regardless of number of times a course was taken, will be considered within the cumulative GPA.  Admission to the program for students who have completed 24 out of the required 33 semester credits will be conditional pending the completion of all prerequisite courses with a grade of “C” or better before matriculation.  Admissions is aware that due to COVID-19 and the impact on colleges and universities, some students are being issued pass/fail, credit/no credit prerequisite grades. We will accept this grading system for any coursework taken in 2020 as long as the college or university documents “pass/P or credit/CR” and the credit hours on the transcript
  6. CASPer Test – Computer-Based Assessment for Sampling Personal Characteristics: CASPer is an online test which assesses non-cognitive skills and interpersonal characteristics that we believe are important for successful students and graduates of our program, and will complement the other tools that we use for applicant screening. In implementing CASPer, we are trying to further enhance fairness and objectivity in our selection process. Applicants will need to register for the CASPer test at http://www.takecasper.com and choose the school code for UAMS Physical Therapy.  The last date to take the CASPer test and complete the CASPer Snapshot short video response tool is September 9, 2021.   Check the CASPer website for limited available test dates.
  7. Interview: The top applicants will be invited for an on-campus interview in the beginning of December.
  8. International Applications: Students with an F1 visa are eligible to apply if coursework was taken at a regionally accredited institution in the United States. Transcripts from institutions outside the United States are not accepted, even after use of an evaluation service.

English Proficiency Requirement

All applicants, regardless of citizenship, whose native language is not English, are required to demonstrate fluency (speaking) and literacy (reading and writing). The primary means to document fluency and literacy is to submit a Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) of 88 or greater on the Internet-based version with 18 or greater on each of the four subtest scores (listening, structure/writing, reading, and speaking), or 570 total score on the paper version with 55 or greater in each of the four subtest scores (listening, structure/writing, reading, and speaking) that constitute the total score.

As of February 11, 2021, the IELTS test score will be accepted.  The minimum score on the IELTS test is 6.5.  Please note that departments have the prerogative of setting higher score requirements. The IELTS test must have been taken within the two years immediately preceding the requested semester of admission.  An official copy of the IELTS score, issued by the Educational Testing Service must be sent directly to UAMS by the Educational Testing Service. A photocopy of the scores sent to the student is not sufficient. No action will be taken on an application containing a photocopied test score.


Applicants who are selected for an interview will be notified through correspondence in PTCAS. Interviews are held the first Thursday and Friday in December.

**All accepted applicants must consent to and pay for a criminal background check and drug screen prior to matriculation.  The company this will be conducted through, fees, and dates of completion will be provided in the offer of admission packet. Background checks and drug screens are required by most clinical sites during the didactic and clinical phase of the program. Matriculation into the program is contingent upon acceptable background check and drug screen results.  Adverse results of a background check will be considered on an individual basis and may result in an inability to matriculate into the program.  Enrolled students may be randomly drug tested throughout the curriculum and clinical sites may require updated background checks. More information about the requirement will be provided to accepted applicants.  No student will be accepted into program who would not be eligible for Arkansas Physical Therapy licensure (refer to the Arkansas State Board of Physical Therapy for details: https://www.arptb.org/).

Admissions Timeline

This schedule represents the admissions timeline in a typical year. In any given year, the schedule may have to be adjusted.

July 5TENTATIVE Date for PTCAS Application to Open
September 1, 2021Deadline for regular admission. Note – applicants must have completed at least 24 of the 33 required hours of pre-requisite courses (minimum of 8 courses) by time of submission.

*Admissions is aware that due to COVID-19 and the impact on colleges and universities, some students are being issued pass/fail, credit/no credit prerequisite grades. We will accept this grading system during the semesters/quarters impacted by COVID-19 as long as the college or university documents “pass/P or credit/CR” and the credit hours on the transcript.
September 9, 2021Last day to take CASPer test
October 1, 2021All aspects of the application must be received and verified by PTCAS
First Thursday and Friday in December, 2021Interviews for regular admission applicants.
December through January Initial acceptance letters for regular admission and alternate letters mailed. All accepted applicants are required to submit a non-refundable $500 matriculation deposit at time of acceptance. This deposit will be applied towards the first semester’s tuition.
AugustEntering cohort begins first semester of DPT program.

To learn more about the Accreditation Status of the Physical Therapy program, please CLICK HERE