FAQs - AdmissionsFAQs - PrerequisitesFAQs - Online AppFAQs - Other

Question 1: How many applications do you receive, interviews do you grant, and applicants do you accept in an average year?
For the class entering Fall 2015, we received almost 1200 applications, granted almost 400 interviews, and seated a class of 54 students. On-campus interviews are required and we strongly encourage you to attend a Preview Day event or Information Session.

Question 2: Do you have an early decision process?
No. The Doctor of Physical Therapy program does not have an early decision process.

Question 3: How many hours of clinical experience are required prior to application?
A minimum of 100 hours of volunteer or paid work experience in two or more physical therapy facilities and/or clinical settings (minimum of 40 hours per facility or clinical setting) is required. In-patient hours are highly recommended. In-patient settings may include: in-patient hospital (acute, sub-acute/transitional care or rehab), skilled nursing facilities (SNF), extended care facilities (ECF) and residential facilities (geriatric/pediatric).

Question 4: Do you give preference to California residents?
No. Although a significant portion of our student body is from California, this is merely a reflection of our overall applicant pool.

Question 5: Do you accept international students?
Yes. International students and any other applicants who are not U.S. citizens should be prepared to provide proof of legal U.S. residency at the time of application. Proof of legal U.S. residency is required prior to any offer of acceptance. Visit the international student website for more information.

Question 6: Can I transfer into your DPT program from another DPT program?
No. We do not accept transfers at this time.

Question 7: Does it matter that I'm older than your average applicant?
No. We encourage applications from qualified candidates regardless of age.

Question 8: Do the recommendation letters have to be turned in with the application packet?
No. Letters of recommendations are a part of the PTCAS application. Three are required: one (1) from a supervising physical therapist, one (1) from a college professor/instructor for a course you have taken, and one (1) from either another supervising physical therapist or a college professor/instructor.

Question 9: May I turn in more than the required number of recommendation letters?
Yes. However, it is advisable to limit the number to one extra since a total of three well-chosen recommendations will usually paint a clear picture of the candidate, and additional recommendations will only add to the committee members' reading time.

Question 10: How does the committee decide which applicants will be offered seats?
After the committee has interviewed all eligible candidates they will be assigned a status: admit, alternate, or non-accept. Applicants will be notified by e-mail of their status within two weeks of their interview date. There is no need to call, as applicants will be notified immediately if there is a change in their status.

Question 11: When are acceptance letters and final notifications mailed?
Most final decision letters are mailed February through March.

Question 12: I am a re-applicant. How can I improve my application or my chances of being admitted?
Take a critical review of the information that you mailed the admissions office and see if there are any obvious voids. For example, maybe you had one or two low grades that lowered your overall and/or prerequisite GPA, or maybe you weren't involved in community service, or merely forgot to include it on your application. You would be surprised at how much you can learn about the strengths and weaknesses of your application simply by looking at it from an admissions perspective. If you had a low grade, especially in a prerequisite course, you should consider retaking that class, since we will recalculate your GPA with the new higher grade when we receive the new transcript. It is important to realize that sometimes there is not one obvious thing that you can change to be admitted. Every case is different and every year the competition is different. Above all else, it is important to realize that we receive applications from many highly qualified applicants each year and are only able to offer acceptances to 54. If this is the path to which you are committed, then keep trying!

Question 13: Will I be required to complete a background check?
Complete confidence in the honor and integrity of the health professions student and health care professional is essential, and students must exhibit honesty and integrity in all aspects of their life. Any prior criminal record of an applicant will be evaluated by the University as part of its determination that the applicant meets the Standards of Professional Conduct. In addition, a prior criminal record may negatively impact a student's ability to participate in the University's curriculum. To meet State regulations and hospital accreditation requirements, clinical facilities are requiring students to complete criminal background checks prior to beginning clinical education experiences. Some clinical facilities require a urine drug test as well. Because of this newer regulation to assure patient safety, students admitted to the Professional DPT program will be required to complete a criminal background check upon acceptance into the program. Certain convictions may prevent students from entering clinical facilities, which may hinder a student's ability to successfully complete the DPT Professional program. If a criminal conviction or other relevant sanction is shown on the background check, clinical sites may choose not to allow a student to utilize their facilities. If applicable, we encourage you to check with the appropriate State licensing board(s) to determine whether your background may be a barrier to future licensing.

Question 14: Does the DPT program require any additional background checks or drug screening tests?
Yes, you may be required to complete an additional background check. Urine drug screens may also be required if needed for clinical education experiences or any sentinel acts. Procedures and costs for obtaining background investigations and urine drug screenings will be disseminated by the Physical Therapy Clinical Education Staff.


Question 1: Can I have prerequisite courses in progress at the time of application? How many?
Yes, however, no more than one science (if semester-based course; two if the course is quarter-based) and one non-science prerequisite course can be in progress after the Fall term prior to matriculation (i.e. December 31, 2015 for Fall 2016 entering class). All prerequisite courses must be completed by the end of the Spring semester/quarter prior to matriculation. View requirements for details.

Question 2: Can I substitute any courses for your prerequisites?
No. Other courses may not be substituted for the required prerequisites.

Question 3: How are repeated courses calculated into the GPA? 
When calculating your GPA the admissions staff will use the most recent attempt of the course and the grade received. Courses and the grades received will not be averaged or counted more than once. The GPA’s reported on the PTCAS are re-calculated upon receipt and review of the repeated course worksheet by the Admissions Office. Applicants may only repeat a course one time.

Question 4: Do you accept advanced placement (A/P) credit, or Pass/No Pass courses?
Only one prerequisite course may be taken on an advanced placement or pass/no pass basis. For those prerequisites requiring a sequence (i.e. Chemistry or Physics), only one course in the sequence may be taken on an advanced placement or pass/no pass basis. While it will satisfy the prerequisite, it will not affect your GPA.

Question 5: Do I need to have a bachelor’s degree to apply?
Yes. This is a doctoral degree program and thus requires a bachelor's degree as a prerequisite. The degree must be conferred by the end of the Spring term prior to matriculation.

Question 6: Do you require any standardized tests prior to application?
No, since the beginning with the 2012-2013 application cycle we no longer required the GRE exam.

Question 7: Do you require a minimum GPA to apply?
Currently you are required to have and maintain through matriculation into the program, a minimum overall and prerequisite GPA of 3.0 or higher. View requirements for details.

Question 8: May I use a single course to satisfy more than one prerequisite?
No, you may not use a single course to satisfy multiple prerequisites. Each prerequisite must be satisfied by an individual course. 

Question 9: Can I talk to a counselor about my coursework?
If you’d like to find out whether the courses you’ve taken or plan to take will satisfy WesternU’s Professional Program’s DPT prerequisites you can:

  1. Search the prerequisite database by institution.
  2. If your courses aren't listed in the database and you have numerous courses in question, or simply wish to lay out your coursework, you may instead print and submit an academic worksheet (available on the requirements page March-August)

By laying out your coursework in relation to our prerequisites, you will be able to determine the courses you may still need to complete. In addition, you will be able to assess your academic performance in the courses (prerequisites) our admissions committee believes are of greatest importance. If the course name does not match the prerequisite title, you must submit a course syllabus for review.

Once you receive our assessment, feel free to contact us with any questions you might have. 

Question 1: What if I cannot remember my Login ID or PIN?
Send an email to EDS@westernu.edu. Please include your legal name, program you applied for, mailing address, phone number and birth date.

Question 2: What if I am locked out of my account?
Send an email to EDS@westernu.edu. Please include your legal name, Login ID and program you applied for.

Question 3: What is the difference between "Applications in Progress" and "Processed Applications"?
The Application Menu can have up to three sections:

  • Applications in Progress: If you wish to create a new application, click "NEW". If you started an application and didn't complete it, click on the appropriate term in this section.
  • Submitted Applications: Applications listed here have not been entered by Enrollment Data Services (EDS). This could take 1-2 business days after you "Complete" your application. If your application has not moved to "Processed Applications" after 2 business days, please contact EDS at EDS@westernu.edu
  • Processed Applications: Check your application status and view outstanding requirements, by clicking on the term in this section. Status updates can take 5-7 business days after receipt of application materials.

Question 4: How do I check my application status online?
Login to the "Admissions Application/View Application Checklist Login" web page using the Login ID and PIN you created with your application. Under "Processed Applications" click the Admission Term. Check Application Status; if "Incomplete", check for missing dates under Received column. Please keep in mind that it can take 5 to 7 business days, after receipt of your application materials, to post those items to your application. If your application materials are not posted to your account after the appropriate amount of time, please email EDS@westernu.edu for more information; include your legal name and any alternate name(s) that may appear on your documents.

Question 5: What if I want to change information on my application after I have completed it?
After your application is complete, changes cannot be made however, you can send us a word document, PDF or email which can be added to your application. Please send to EDS@westernu.edu. Please include your legal name, Login ID and program you applied for.

Question 6: How do I view the contents of my application after I have completed it?
Unfortunately, once your application is complete, you cannot view the contents. We suggest that you print each section prior to completing your application.

Question 7: When checking my application status, why do I see more than one term listed under "Processed Applications" when I've only submitted one online application?
If you applied to multiple programs/campuses via a Primary and/or Secondary Application, you will see all active applications listed here by the term. This doesn't necessarily mean we have received all required applications/materials. Please verify all requirements have been received. (See Question 4:"How do I check my application status online?" above.)

Question 8: What if I want to apply to more than one program? Do I need to create a new Login ID?
You can create multiple applications with one Login ID. Just select "New" under "Applications in Progress" to start a new application.

Question 9: Can I use my preferred name on my application?
Always use your "Legal" name on your applications (both Primary and Secondary). Nicknames/Preferred names must not be used. If the program you are applying to requires a Primary and Secondary application, your name must match exactly for both applications to be properly applied to your record. Please send an email to EDS@westernu.edu notifying us of errors as soon as possible. Please include your legal name, Login ID and program you applied to.

Question 10: What address should I use if I need to mail any additional application materials?
For official documents (transcripts, letters of recommendation, etc.) please mail to:
Western University of Health Sciences
Attn: EDS/program you are applying for (DO, PHARMD, DPM, etc.)
309 E Second Street
Pomona, CA 91766

For non-official documents (prerequisite worksheets, repeated coursework, etc.) please email to EDS@westernu.edu. Please include your legal name, Login ID and program you applied for.

Question 11: How do I pay my application fee?
All application fees require payments made by credit card. Only cards with Visa and Master Card logos will be accepted.No checks, money orders, or cash will be accepted for payment of application fees.

Question 12: What if I don't have a Visa or Master Card?
Payment may be made with a Visa or Master Card prepaid gift card which can be purchased at many major chain stores or online. Please be aware that the gift card must contain a balance sufficient to cover the application fee in one full payment.

Question 13: Are fee waivers accepted?
Application fees must be paid by credit card to submit your online application. To qualify for an application refund due to a financial hardship, you must contact Admissions for instructions and approval. After approval, your credit card charge will be refunded (this could take up to 10-15 business days).

Question 14: What if I cannot find a College Code for a school I attended?
Please be sure to search for your school in the "Previous College(s) Attended" section of your application using City and State by selecting the "Lookup College Code" link. If your school is not listed, please send an email to EDS@westernu.edu. Please include your legal name, Login ID and program you applied for. The college codes in our system are WesternU specific and may be different from college codes provided by your institution.

Question 15: How do I find a College Code for schools outside of the United States?
Please do not list foreign schools in the "Previous College" section of your application. All foreign coursework must be evaluated (course-by-course) through an approved evaluation service (World Education Services or Josef Silny & Associates). Instead of listing the foreign schools you attended, please list the service used to evaluate your foreign coursework. You can find World Education Services and Josef Silny& Associates by selecting the Lookup College Code link and searching by Country and selecting 'Foreign Country' and City 'Foreign City'. If you need additional assistance, please email EDS@westernu.edu. Please include your legal name, Login ID and program you applied for.

Question 16: How do I view the colleges that I have already entered?
Select "Previous College(s) Attended" from the Application Checklist. If you previously entered and saved school information to your application, the first school's details will be displayed in the form. Click "Enter or View another College or Degree" to view any additional schools. When you come to a blank form, there are no additional saved schools available. When you are done viewing your schools, select "Return to Checklist without saving changes".

Question 17: How do I remove a college from my application?
If you have added an incorrect college or duplicate college in error, it cannot be removed until your application is submitted. Make a list of any colleges that must be removed, then continue with your application. Once you have submitted your application, email EDS@westernu.edu requesting to have those schools removed from your application and specify the reason for removing them from your record. Please include your legal name, Login ID, and program you applied for.

Question 18: I am a current employee of WesternU, are there any additional forms needed for HR purposes?
If you are a current employee of WesternU, you must complete an Employee Authorization Release Form. You can request this form by sending an email to EDS@westernu.edu. Please include your legal name, Login ID and program you applied for.

Question 19: Will I receive notification that my application was received?
Yes, once your application is processed we will send an email confirming it was received. Please be sure to check your "Junk Mail" folder for this email and allow emails from the domain 'westernu.edu' (WesternU Faculty, Staff, and Students) to avoid any delay of its delivery. For more information on adding WesternU to your email whitelist, please review these Email Whitelist Instructions. If you need additional assistance, please email EDS@westernu.edu. Please include your legal name, Login ID and program you applied for.

Question 1: What is the board passing rate for your physical therapy students?
The success of WesternU’s Professional DPT curriculum is evident in the fact that 98% of the 2013 DPT graduates passed their national licensure exam!

Question 2: Is tuition the same for in-state and out-of-state residents?
Yes. We are a private institution so the tuition rate is the same for all DPT students. Learn more about tuition and how to finance your education.

Question 3: Is there an opportunity to do research while attending WesternU?
Students are required to actively participate in research that is guided by a faculty mentor.  The mandatory Capstone Research Project provides an opportunity for collaborative, interprofessional research that can be empirical, clinical or community service focused.  The research process also allows students to enhance their  own academic development in a unique set of skills of interest and develop a unique collegial bond among the research team as they complete their Capstone Research, including student presentations at peer reviewed state and national conferences.  

Question 4: Is it advisable to work while I take classes?
No. This is a full-time commitment and we discourage you from working, even part-time.

Question 5: How can I learn more about the financial aid available to me?
For more information regarding tuition, financial aid and scholarships, please visit the financing my education page.

Question 6: Is the DPT program accredited?
Yes, the Professional Doctor of Physical Therapy program at Western University of Health Sciences, College of Allied Health Professions is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE), 1111 North Fairfax Street, Alexandria, Virginia 22314; telephone: 703-706-3245; email: accreditation@apta.org; website: www.capteonline.org.