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Rehabilitation Science Doctoral Program

The Rehabilitation Science doctoral program is the only one of its kind in the Southeast, and the largest in the United States. It is designed to prepare rehabilitation scholars committed to advance the science of rehabilitation.

Rehabilitation ScienceStudents are given the opportunity to develop skills in teaching, research, and interdisciplinary teamwork. Students are mentored by excellent faculty with extensive experience in both teaching and in research. Many of the research projects in which the students participate are funded by federal agencies such as the National Institutes of Health, the NIDRR and the VA. Participating departments in the program include: occupational therapy, physical therapy, rehabilitation counseling, and communicative disorders.

Most physical therapists interested in the Rehabilitation Science PhD Program (RSD) participate in the movement science track offered as one of the disciplines within that degree. Movement science, the study of human movement and postural control, serves as the foundation for the development of evidence-based rehabilitation practices, and reflects the converging knowledge from multiple disciplines. These disciplines include motor control and learning, anatomy, biomechanics, exercise physiology, muscle physiology, neurophysiology, and neuroscience. The aim of the research in this area is to develop scientifically-based assessment and treatment strategies to promote:

  • Maintenance of movement,
  • Restoration of movement, and
  • Compensation for movement loss or dysfunction, secondary to the consequences of aging, injury, disease, or developmental disorders

Movement science research focuses on the impact of these processes by the evaluation of impairments, disability (activity), and handicap (participation).

For more information please visit the Rehabilitation Science website.