Top Physical Therapy Schools in Arkansas

Physical Therapy Schools in Arkansas are accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE).

Physical therapy (PT) is care that aims to ease pain and help you function, move, and live better. You may need it to:

  • Relieve pain
  • Improve movement or ability
  • Prevent or recover from a sports injury
  • Prevent disability or surgery
  • Rehab after a stroke, accident, injury, or surgery
  • Work on balance to prevent a slip or fall
  • Manage a chronic illness like diabetes, heart disease, or arthritis
  • Recover after you give birth
  • Control your bowels or bladder
  • Adapt to an artificial limb
  • Learn to use assistive devices like a walker or cane
  • Get a splint or brace

What Is a Physical Therapist?

These licensed health professionals engage in specific graduate training in physical therapy. You may hear them called PTs or physiotherapists.

Physical Therapy Schools in Arkansas

  1. Arkansas State University

The Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) is the preferred degree by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE) and the American Physical Therapy Association’s (APTA) and it reflects the current level of study that is required to meet the latest standards for physical therapy education.

The DPT program is designed so that a bachelor’s degree and prerequisites to the program are completed prior to the professional coursework.

Once accepted into the program, students attend full time for 3 years to complete the DPT degree.

The Doctor of Physical Therapy Program at Arkansas State University is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE).

Address: 910 State University, AR 72467-0910 United States

Phone: (870) 972-3591

See also: Best Accredited Physical Therapy Schools in Alabama 2022

  1. Harding University

In the fall of 2008, Dr. Burks, President of Harding University, appointed a group of individuals to determine the feasibility of establishing a new program at Harding University.

The committee concluded that a Physical Therapy Program fit well with the mission of the University.

Therefore, in 2010 a program director was hired, and the Harding University Physical Therapy Program began.

Over the course of 2010 and 2011 several faculty members were hired and the charter class of students was accepted and matriculated in the fall of 2011.

The mission of the physical therapy program at Harding University is to develop individuals who are prepared to practice contemporary physical therapy from a service-oriented Christian worldview based on scientific evidence, professional ethics, and responsibility.

The DPT program is a continuous eight-semester study comprised of 110 semester hours of coursework and an average of 1,600 hours of supervised clinical experience. Graduates will be eligible to sit for the physical therapist licensure exam.

Address: Box 12292 Searcy, AR 72149-0773 United States

Phone: (501) 279-5990


  1. University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences

The University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences offers a Doctorate of Physical Therapy (UAMS DPT) is located at the UAMS Northwest Campus in the heart of Fayetteville, Arkansas.

This program is a 34-month long full-time format enrolling 24 students each August.

Also, the curriculum uses the flipped classroom concept, with many lectures delivered electronically to the students.

Class and lab time are devoted to integration of material and problem solving.

In-class sessions involve team-based learning and interprofessional learning experiences.

The campus offers state-of-the-art library and clinical simulation facilities, and a new student-led inter-professional clinic.

Programs at the campus are designed to promote inter-professional learning and clinical experiences between students in the UAMS Colleges of Health Professions, Medicine, Pharmacy, and Nursing.

Faculty and students will have ongoing patient contact, beginning in the first month of the curriculum.

In addition, UAMS students can treat in the Veteran’s Home.

Their program is a lock-step curriculum, in which each semester’s content is coordinated across all courses and each semester builds upon the previous semester’s knowledge base.

UAMS DPT students complete 121 credits of coursework, including 36 weeks of full-time clinical internships.

Upon completion of the degree requirements, students are awarded a Doctorate in Physical Therapy.

The DPT Program has developed a strong clinical phase for the program by establishing partnerships with the top health care facilities in the state of Arkansas and beyond.

Clinical rotations will take place in acute care hospitals, rehabilitation centers, out-patient clinics, private practices, extended care and skilled nursing facilities, home health organizations, occupational health centers and the Veterans Administration.

Address: 1125 N College Ave Fayetteville, AR 72703-1908 United States

Phone: (479) 713-8600


  1. University of Central Arkansas

The UCA Physical Therapy Program is the oldest in the state, established in 1969, it fulfilled an immediate need for physical therapists in Arkansas, which at that time had approximately 35 to 40 licensed physical therapists and a population around 1.9 million people.

Mr. Joe Finnell, a physical therapist and assistant professor of physical therapy at Baylor University in Dallas, Texas, began investigating a possible program in 1968 after an invitation from Arkansas Baptist Medical Center in Little Rock (now Baptist Health).

State College of Arkansas (now UCA) and Dr. Jefferson Farris, Dean of the College of Fine Arts and Applied Sciences, agreed to the new school in physical therapy to be located in Little Rock as a joint venture and hired Mr. Finnell as its first director.

The first PT class of sixteen students began the 15-month professional program on June 7, 1971 with candidates earning a Bachelor’s degree upon graduation in August of 1972.

The program received full accreditation in September of 1972. The class size grew over the years and eventually moved to the UCA campus in Conway in 1987.

UCA also offered an A.A.S. degree in Physical Therapist Assisting from 1986 to 1999.

Graduates of UCA earned the Masters of Science degree in PT from 1991 to 2001.

In 2000, UCA admitted the first students to the new Doctor of Physical Therapy and PhD in Physical Therapy degree programs.

UCA is the only program in the state to offer both the DPT and PhD in Physical Therapy degrees.

Today, UCA Physical Therapy is the largest program in the state and recognized nationally with over 2,500 alumni.

Programs offered include the PhD in Physical Therapy, an accredited Pediatric Physical Therapy Residency program that began in 2009 and the DPT degree with 60 students admitted each year.

The faculty comprises 15 full-time members among whom 10 hold a PhD and 11 are board certified clinical specialists in a variety of areas including pediatrics (4), neurologic physical therapy (3), orthopedics, sports, women’s health and wound care. Eight faculty members in the Department hold tenure.

Programs and Degrees offered are;

  • PhD in Physical Therapy
  • Doctor of Physical Therapy
  • Residency in Pediatric Physical Therapy

Address: PTC Suite 300 201 South Donaghey Conway, AR 72035-5001 United States

Phone: (501) 450-3611



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