Program Mission

white coat ceremony

The mission of the DPT program is to prepare students to become physical therapists that embrace evidence-based physical therapy practice, meet the multifaceted health needs of patients, consumers, and society, and participate in professional and community service. To fulfill this mission we create a stimulating and collaborative environment that promotes education, research, service, and leadership.

Program Philosophy

The Doctor of Physical Therapy Program at the University of Florida supports the mission and goals of the college and the Department of Physical Therapy with the ultimate purpose of preserving, promoting, and improving the health and well-being of populations, communities, and individuals. Our values of excellence, diversity, integrity, respect for human dignity, teamwork, and social responsibility serve as the pillars of our faculty’s educational philosophy and are reflected in our program goals.

We believe that:

  • Physical therapists are essential members of the healthcare team who maintain, restore, and improve movement, activity, and health enabling individuals of all ages to have optimal functioning and quality of life while ensuring patient safety and applying evidence to provide efficient and effective care. (APTA 2011)
  • The promotion of health and preventative health care are major roles in physical therapy.
  • Optimal learning occurs in an educational environment that:
    • Fosters the growth of the individual personally and professionally.
    • Is safe, inclusive, respectful, caring, fair, collegial, and ethical;
    • Supports collaborative learning through the sharing of ideas, values and philosophies among patients, students, clinicians, and faculty;
    • Supports diversity in student learning styles, personalities, and backgrounds while using teaching techniques that stimulate intellectual development, critical thinking skills, and problem-solving abilities.
    • promotes quality in didactic, clinical, and professional endeavors.
  • The responsibility for advancing professional knowledge through research and creative endeavors should be demonstrated by the activities and attitudes of the faculty and consistently conveyed to the students
  • The practice of life-long learning is necessary for ongoing professional competence, and we strive to instill the attitudes and skills necessary for their continued scholarship.
  • Each patient, student, and faculty member has the right to access the best evidence based practice, and that as role models we faculty must engender these values.
  • Through involvement in professional organizations, we can contribute to shaping the growth of the profession in its organizational, legislative and societal responsibilities.

The Doctor of Physical Therapy Program believes that by creating a dynamic and innovative learning environment in a culture of social responsibility and robust research activities, our program will generate leaders who will move our profession forward.