Fast-track Doctor of Physical Therapy

Earn a D.P.T. in Only Six Years

For those called to a career in physical therapy, Samford University offers a fast-track program that provides eligible students the opportunity to earn both a Bachelor of Science in exercise science and a Doctor of Physical Therapy in just six years.

Incoming freshmen may apply for the fast-track program and must meet specific progression standards in order to remain in the program. Acceptance to the fast-track program as a freshman guarantees admission into Samford’s D.P.T. program as long as progression standards are met. 

The first three years of the program are dedicated to completion of all required undergraduate courses. Summer of the fourth year, students begin the D.P.T. program.  A Bachelor of Science in exercise science is awarded in December of the fourth year, and a Doctor of Physical Therapy at the end of the sixth year.

Admission into the fast-track program is highly competitive. Based on the application, a limited number of candidates will be interviewed for admission.  If selected, students are assigned a faculty mentor in the Kinesiology and Physical Therapy departments.

Why Samford?+

  • Passionate faculty who will help you pursue excellence as you identify your calling  through a rigorous undergraduate and graduate curriculum
  • Medical missions opportunities that fulfill internship requirements
  • Research opportunities in which many students have won regional and national awards
  • Intensive clinical work at the graduate level with a program defined by three traits: teamwork, technology, and service
  • Remarkable interprofessional education opportunities, learning alongside students in the schools of nursing, pharmacy and public health in Samford's College of Health Sciences.

Student Benefits While in the Program+

  • Department of Physical Therapy will pay for six years of student membership to the APTA
  • Department of Physical Therapy will fund travel to National Student Conclave one during the first two years of the D.P.T. curriculum
  • Students may sit in on any D.P.T. class during their first three years and may actively participate in D.P.T. program activities

Fast-track D.P.T. Admission Requirements+

  • Admission to Samford University with a declared major in Exercise Science
  • Minimum high school GPA of 3.8 (4.0 scale)
  • Minimum ACT score of 29
  • Completion of the Fast-track D.P.T. Application (Application will be sent from the chair of the kinesiology department.)
  • On-campus interview

Progression Standards+

During the undergraduate program, you must meet the following progression standards to remain in the program.

  • Complete all B.S. in exercise science requirements on time in the first three years
  • Achieve a B or higher in all major courses
  • Maintain a 3.5 GPA by summer three
  • Participate in Samford approved service or mission work by spring semester of third year
  • Must pay a nonrefundable fee of $1,000 to secure admission into the D.P.T. program by Jan 15 of the junior year.

Once you have begun the doctoral program, D.P.T. progression standards apply.


Effective April 29, 2015 Samford University has been granted Candidate for Accreditation status by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (1111 North Fairfax Street, Alexandria, VA 22314; phone: 703-706-3245; email: Candidate for Accreditation is a pre-accreditation status of affiliation with the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education that indicates the programs is progressing toward accreditation and may matriculate students in technical/professional courses. Candidate for Accreditation is not an accreditation status nor does it assure eventual accreditation.

Plan of Study+