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WesternU’s Doctor of Physical Therapy program receives 10-year accreditation

by Rodney Tanaka

July 30, 2019

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The College of Health Sciences at Western University of Health Sciences is pleased to announce that the Department of Physical Therapy Education (DPTE) has once again received the maximum 10-year reaccreditation approval from the Commission on Accreditation of Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE). The reaccreditation extends through June 2029.

“The faculty, students and administration really received what they have earned. They are an amazing group of people,” said College of Health Sciences Interim Dean Dee Schilling, PhD, PT, FNAP. “Our faculty are experts in their field. Our curriculum is outstanding. The level of support we have from administration exceeds that which is often seen at other institutions.”

The reaccreditation process involved months of preparation, a comprehensive self-assessment report submitted to CAPTE, and a successful site visit in December 2018 by a CAPTE team consisting of faculty and administrators from peer academic institutions.

Department of Physical Therapy Education Chair Harshavardhan Deoghare, PT, PhD, rallied the faculty to take an active role in writing a strong report, Schilling said.

“Every faculty and staff member contributed. (The commission) interviewed students and adjunct faculty and were incredibly impressed and pleased,” she said. “All the pieces came together to represent who we are.”

Deoghare praised Schilling and her predecessor, Dr. Stephanie Bowlin, who served as College of Health Sciences dean for 20 years and is now the WesternU Chief of Mission Integration. Schilling and Bowlin provided important leadership and mentored him through the process, he said.

DPTE has a 97 percent graduation rate and a 100 percent licensure examination pass rate and employment rate within one year. The CAPTE team also commended DPTE on various innovative teaching and assessment methods, including the use of simulation, ultrasound imaging and 3D printing, as well as the Clinically Oriented Readiness Examination.

“The successful accreditation site visit and outcome provides testament to the quality of the program, the care and dedication of the faculty, and the quality of the students who have graduated from our program and work as effective, contemporary practitioners of physical therapy,” Deoghare said. “We attract and graduate a special breed of hard-working, humanistic students who not only make a lasting impression on their CIs and employers but actually make a difference in the lives of their patients. At the end of the day it is all about them.”

Click here to visit the Department of Physical Therapy Education website:

Click here to visit the Doctor of Physical Therapy Prospective Students website:

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