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Pre-Physical Therapy

Pre-Physical Therapy is not a major, but rather a compilation of courses and experiences to prepare students for next steps. Professional schools evaluate achievement in required prerequisites, regardless of major. We recommend for students to choose a major they enjoy and in which they can excel.

Students are encouraged to contact us to receive assistance in planning when to take these prerequisite courses, and those who are declared as being in the Pre-Physical Therapy program are required to meet with their medical professions advisor each semester in order to remain in the program. Students will receive academic advisement for their chosen degree program with their assigned academic advisor for their major.

A competitive GPA is essential when considering a career in the health field. Students must maintain a minimum 3.0 GPA to remain in the Medical Professions Advising program. Our experience is that students with a GPA below 3.0 are, unfortunately, not competitive.
The courses listed below are generally required for physical therapy programs in our region, in addition to the courses necessary for Graduate Record Examination (GRE) preparation. We encourage students to seek out and familiarize themselves with the prerequisite and admission test requirements of their intended physical therapy programs, as requirements may vary.

Biology and Anatomy/Physiology Courses

  • BIOL 1107/1107L: Principles of Biology I/Lab (4)
  • Human Anatomy and Physiology (two courses required)*
    • Options:
      • Armstrong: BIOL 2081/L and BIOL 2082/L*
      • Statesboro: KINS 2531 and KINS 2532*
    • Note: lectures and labs are not offered separately on the Armstrong Campus; pharmacy schools in Georgia do not require the lab portion of this course.

Chemistry Courses

  • CHEM 1211K: Principles of Chemistry I/Lab (4)
  • CHEM 1212K: Principles of Chemistry II/Lab (4)

Mathematics and Physics Courses

  • MATH 1112 or 1113: Trigonometry or Pre-Calculus, if necessary (3)
  • STAT 1401: Intro to Statistics (3)
  • PHYS 1111K: Intro to Physics I /Lab (4), or 2211: Principles of Physics I/Lab (4)
  • PHYS 1112K: Intro to Physics II/Lab (4), or PHYS 2212: Principles of Physics II/Lab (4)

Additional courses to consider*

  • COMM 1110: Public Speaking (3)
  • PSYC 1101: Introduction to Psychology (3)

*Please refer to each school’s prerequisite requirements for specific information.

Make it official. Add your Pre-Professional Program by filling out the Office of Pre-Professional Advisement Interest Form on our home page. This step will ensure that you receive up-to-date information from Medical Professions Advising staff regarding events, programming, and advising.

Study + Excel. A competitive GPA is essential when considering a career in the health field. You must have a minimum of a 3.0 GPA to remain in the Medical Professions Advising program at Georgia Southern University. Talk with your Academic Advisor, professors and Academic Success Center for help with study skills through various workshops and tutoring.

Resume + Interviews. Create and/or improve your resume at the Office of Career and Professional Development. You can also gain confidence and develop your interview skills with a video-taped mock interview.

Job Shadow. Pre-Physical Therapy students should plan to gain 150+ hours of shadowing within three different physical therapy settings. Document your experiences in a physical or digital format, and obtain at least one letter of reference from a physical therapist you have shadowed.

Volunteer + Lead. We recommend that you participate in volunteer activities within your community. Contact the Office of Leadership and Community Engagement for more information about volunteering with local weekly trips, Alternative Break Trips, and more. We also recommend that you participate in leadership seminars, workshops, retreats and LEAD courses. Get involved and join a student club or organization within your interests.

Connect + Explore. Get to know your professors and local health care, professionals. These individuals are valuable resources for research experience, volunteering, shadowing, and letters of recommendation. Consider Study Abroad programs through the Office of International Programs and Services. Attend information sessions, workshops, field trips, and other events for pre-physical therapy students offered by the Office of Medical Professions Advising.

Research. Talk with your professors and peers who are involved with undergraduate research and consider opportunities within your college of study. 

Prepare for the Graduate Record Examination (GRE). This exam requires substantial amounts of preparation and study time, so it is never too early to begin. Typically, students prepare to take the GRE in the spring of their junior year, so it is important that necessary coursework be completed by this time.

Degree: PT or DPT. Physical Therapists (PTs) are medical professionals who work as part of a medical team for a patient treatment plan. Physical therapists are licensed health care providers. They evaluate, diagnose, and manage health conditions and movement problems in people of all ages and abilities. They empower people to take an active role in their care.

Learn more about Physician Assistants at the American Physical Therapy Association website.

Entrance Exam: Graduate Record Examination (GRE)

Medical Programs in US:

There are five Physical Therapy programs in Georgia. Specific admissions requirements are available on each school’s website:

Last updated: 6/10/2022