Doctor of Physical Therapy Hybrid Option

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106 Credits

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42 Weeks of Clinical Education

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Regional and National Placement Sites

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7 Consecutive Terms

Program Overview


The Doctor of Physical Therapy Hybrid Option (DPT-Hybrid), housed within the Department of Physical Therapy at the School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences, offers a rigorous full-time curriculum and renowned level of training to equip aspiring physical therapists with the proficiencies needed to move the field forward. Designed to parallel our residential program, the #1 DPT program in the nation according to U.S. News & World Report*, the DPT-Hybrid incorporates live online didactic lectures with in-person clinical education experiences. Over the course of seven academic terms and an average of 50-60 hours per week, you will foster the clinical competencies necessary to sit for the National PT Licensure Examination (NPTE) and become a practicing doctor of physical therapy.

*U.S. News & World Report, 2020


The Doctor of Physical Therapy Program at the University of Pittsburgh is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE), 3030 Potomac Avenue, Suite 100, Alexandria, VA 22305; telephone: 703-706-3245; email:; website: If needing to contact the program/institution directly, please call 412-930-4416 or email

To verify accreditation status, please visit the School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences website.


The full-time DPT-Hybrid curriculum is both rigorous and relevant. Centered around four key areas including basic science, clinical science, leadership and professional development, and critical inquiry, the DPT-Hybrid plan of study prepares aspiring physical therapists with the necessary competencies to serve their communities and move the field forward.

The hybrid option emphasizes early and intensive integration into the clinical environment so that students develop a working knowledge and the hands-on skill set to hit the ground running from day one of their careers. Students can expect to dedicate an average of 50-60 hours per week to the program.

Learning Outcomes

The following stated program objectives illustrate the desired educational outcomes demonstrated by our students who successfully complete the University of Pittsburgh Doctor of Physical Therapy Hybrid offering. Under each objective are the key expected behaviors required to meet the stated objectives.

  • Objective 1

    Our graduates achieve optimal outcomes for their patients/clients by using current best evidence or, when available evidence is insufficient, use sound scientific and clinical reasoning principles to inform screening, examination, classification/diagnosis and intervention approaches.

    Key Expected Behaviors to Achieve Objective 1

    Graduates of the program will be able to:

    • Identify, critique and synthesize current evidence to inform patient/client care.
    • Select and administer age- and condition-appropriate, evidence-based tests and measures to screen, examine and evaluate their patient’s/client’s physical, social and emotional status as related to physical therapy care.
    • Generate a patient/client problem list of impairments in body structure and function, activity limitations, participation restrictions and contextual factors/comorbidities from their screening and examination and develop an evidence-based or biopsychosocial plausible plan of care that specifically addresses these problems in a cost-effective manner.
    • Elicit and incorporate patient values and goals when developing and delivering the physical therapy treatment plan and adjust the plan to match the age-specific, cognitive, psychosocial, emotional and cultural needs of the patient/client accordingly.
    • Perform regular re-assessments of their patient’s/client’s response to the treatment plan and modify or progress the treatment plan as needed.
    • Engage in continuous quality improvement initiatives by conducting regularly planned self-assessments of their clinical performance and generate self-improvement plans from these assessments.
  • Objective 2

    Our graduates maintain a high degree of professionalism and ethical behavior in all aspects of their career.

    Key Expected Behaviors to Achieve Objective 2

    Graduates of the program will be able to:

    • Exemplify professional behaviors consistent with the APTA Code of Ethics, Core Values and Code of Professional Conduct by following the promises made in the University of Pittsburgh Physical Therapy Professional Pledge.
    • Effectively interact with all members of the health care team and conduct themselves professionally in all interactions with patients and families, professional peers, other health care and academic colleagues and members of their community.
    • Embrace the principles of life-long learning (e.g., reflective practice, continuing education, state and national conferences, journal clubs) and professional development to ensure ongoing improvement and adherence to the principles of evidence-based and biopsychosocial plausible physical therapy practice.
  • Objective 3

    Produce physical therapists that engage in advocacy and service for their patients/clients, communities and profession.

    Key Expected Behaviors to Achieve Objective 3

    Graduates of the program will be able to:

    • Represent the profession of physical therapy through service as consultants to other professional, academic and community groups.
    • Advocate for their patients within the health care system, to third party payers, researchers and health policy makers.
    • Advocate for the profession of physical therapy within the health care system, to third party payers, researchers and health policy makers.

Fall 2022 Application Cycle has Closed. Fall 2023 Applications Opens June 2022.

Meet Our Faculty

The prestige of the University of Pittsburgh Doctor of Physical Therapy Hybrid option is in large part due to the excellence and expertise of our program faculty. First and foremost our faculty are skilled clinicians and it is not uncommon to find them engaged in clinical care. This experience and knowledge is consistently brought into the classroom to enhance your learning as a DPT-Hybrid student.

Meet Our Faculty

Career and Program Outcomes

With the demand for physical therapists expected to grow over 18% by 2029*, physical therapy students today must be future focused and prepared to take industry innovations in stride.

We designed the Doctor of Physical Therapy Hybrid option at the University of Pittsburgh to prepare our graduates to not only meet this demand, but move the field forward. Our mission is to replicate our residential format outcomes for Pitt DPT-Hybrid graduates.

Employment Rate within 6 Months of Graduation, 2020


National PT Licensure Examination (NPTE) Pass Rate, 2020


Graduation Rate, 2020


*U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2021

**These statistics are representative of the residential format outcomes.

Characteristics of Successful Hybrid Learners

While both the residential and hybrid format of the Doctor of Physical Therapy program at the University of Pittsburgh offer a challenging curriculum, supportive faculty and immersive clinical experiences, the online components of the hybrid option require a specific set of characteristics and self-discipline. A successful hybrid student is:

  • An independent learner

  • Goal-oriented and motivated

  • A strong oral and written communicator

  • Organized

  • A time management expert

  • Proactive

  • Technologically proficient

Learn more about whether the DPT-Hybrid is the right fit for your learning style.

Is this the right fit for me?


At Pitt, we prepare our Doctor of Physical Therapy graduates to hit the ground running and move research and clinical practice forward from the moment they become licensed physical therapists. Below are some of the organizations that graduates of the University of Pittsburgh Department of Physical Therapy have gone on to work with:

  • University of Pittsburgh Medical Center Centers for Rehab Services
  • University of Pittsburgh Medical Center Rooney Sports Complex
  • University of Pittsburgh Medical Center Department of Orthopaedic Surgery
  • Hartford HealthCare
  • National Football League
  • National Hockey League
  • Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre
  • Mercy Hospital

Admission Requirements

Qualified DPT-Hybrid applicants must possess a bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution. The GRE is optional for DPT-Hybrid applicants. For a full list of program prerequisites and admission requirements, please visit our admission page.

Tuition & Financial Aid

At the University of Pittsburgh, we are committed to supporting our students throughout their academic journey and creating affordable and accessible educational opportunities. To learn more about program tuition, scholarship and financial aid opportunities, please visit our financial matters page.

Upcoming Deadlines

The Doctor of Physical Therapy Hybrid option offers one program start per year. Qualified applicants can apply to the fall cohort of the program each year.

Applications with incomplete requirements submitted after the deadline will not be considered for admission.

Please submit all application materials through the Physical Therapist Centralized Application Service (PTCAS). Only application materials submitted through the PTCAS will be reviewed by the Admissions Committee.

Fall 2022 application cycle has closed. Fall 2023 application cycle opens June 2022.

Fall 2023

October 2022

Application Deadline

November 2022

Admissions Decisions Released

January 2023

Program Deposit Deadline


Check out our frequently asked questions for additional information.

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