Updated at: 28-02-2023 - By: Eden Wise


Those already working in the physical therapy field may find that enrolling in one of the top Hybrid Online DPT Programs is a great way to advance their careers and increase their incomes without sacrificing their current responsibilities.

In the last few decades, physical therapy has evolved into a doctoral-level profession with increased independence and a wider scope of practice.

These shifts have occurred alongside systemic, structural shifts in the ways that we learn in health care and higher education.

“By 2020, all physical therapists will earn a Doctorate in Physical Therapy, elevating the field,” as stated by the American Physical Therapy Association. Investing in your career by pursuing a Doctorate in Physical Therapy is not only the right thing to do, but it may be necessary.

And at the current rate of growth, the number of Americans over the age of 65 will more than double in the same time frame! Due to these factors, completing a Doctor of Physical Therapy degree is essential right now. A female physician in her mid-30s uses a laptop in the physical therapy room. The therapist in the physical therapy room is a middle-aged woman who, between patients, uses a laptop to enter data into the hospital’s computer system.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects a much higher-than-average rate of growth (28%) for the physical therapy industry over the next decade. Physical therapists can work in a wide range of settings, from medical facilities to clinics to athletic events. Doctors who focus on this area of medicine have a high level of respect and prestige because of the exceptional care they provide. Reports of job satisfaction and growth potential in this sector are promising for those interested in pursuing a career in this area.

In addition to the educational and time demands of their profession, they can rest assured that they will always have a stable job.

As an example of how technological progress has opened up novel avenues for education, consider the proliferation of online learning models that supplement or replace in-person instruction with remote learning.

Thus, if you want to work in the expanding healthcare sector or move up the career ladder from physical therapist assistant or aide to physical therapist, enrolling in one of the best Hybrid Online DPT Programs will improve your prospects.

Top Best Hybrid Online DPT Programs

Top best hybrid online DPT programs

The College of Saint Scholastica

The College of Saint Scholastica

St. Scholastica College in Duluth, Minnesota is a highly regarded academic institution. An online doctoral program in physical therapy is offered, with a primary focus on imparting the theoretical knowledge essential to the advancement of the field.

Distance learning students from around the world can access the entire curriculum of these Hybrid Online DPT Programs from the comfort of their own homes. The program is comprised of six courses totaling 16 credits. Candidates must have a minimum 3.0 GPA and submit GRE scores in addition to holding a bachelor’s degree in a relevant field.

Shenandoah University

Situated in Winchester, Virginia, Shenandoah University was founded in 1875 as a private liberal arts institution. There are three classes in the school’s online transitional doctor of physical therapy program.

If you already have a master’s degree, you can choose Track 1, which offers a faster route to degree completion, while holders of a bachelor’s degree will need to choose Tracks 2 or 3.

Scores on the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) and a 2.80 or higher overall grade point average (GPA) in all previously attempted coursework are required for admission.

Tufts University

The Doctor of Physical Therapy program at Tufts University combines 67 weeks of online lectures with 31 weeks of full-time clinical training at approved sites across the country.

The program lasts for two years and consists of 127 credits that can be earned over the course of six consecutive terms at Tufts University’s School of Medicine.

This program equips students with state-of-the-art technical education and integrative practical experiences, giving them a solid foundation on which to build a career in a variety of fields.

Tufts University’s online Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) program has received full accreditation and features an evidence-based curriculum taught by expert faculty and experienced clinicians from around the world.

Courses range from an introduction to the field to advanced diagnostics and treatment modalities, with a focus on the musculoskeletal system.

University of South Dakota

University of South Dakota

The Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) online programs at the University of South Dakota prepare students to be scholars, practitioners, and lifelong learners who provide evidence-based physical therapy services to patients across the lifespan. Students learn the theoretical foundations of physical therapy, gain clinical experience, and develop the self-assurance to become effective team members and leaders under the guidance of experienced faculty.

Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center

The Texas Tech Health Sciences Center’s online BS can be earned through the University Center at MCC. Hours from an accredited AAS program can be transferred into this program in addition to MCC’s required general education courses.

In consultation with an advisor, students will decide which of two degrees to pursue. The Healthcare Professional track can lead to careers as radiologic technologists, emergency medical technicians, respiratory care practitioners, therapists in occupational and physical therapy, LVNs, or CLTs in clinical laboratories.

Arcadia University

When it comes to the National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE), which is mandated for licensure as a physical therapist, Arcadia University’s Hybrid Online DPT Programs in physical therapy has a perfect record of success.

It would take 25 months of full-time study to complete the course. Each student will complete 32 weeks of clinical rotations and eight shorter on-campus immersion experiences in addition to synchronous and asynchronous live online classes.

Baker College

The Baker Institution in Michigan is the state’s largest private, not-for-profit university.

A great option for therapeutic exercise. We also ranked it as the best school for online physical therapy education.

Courses can be taken either online or on campus with this hybrid online DPT program. The school caters to non-traditional students who need a more adaptable learning environment. Gain easy entry to your online classroom with the help of Baker Online. You can do this whenever you like, from wherever you like.

Baker College also offers a two-year Associate of Applied Science degree. The program’s goal is to nurture the next generation of PT aides. The total credit count is 78.

The on-campus requirement is strict.

University of St. Augustine

Whether you are just starting out in the field or have years of experience under your belt, the Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) degree program at USAHS, which is widely recognized as a leader in the field, can be adapted to fit your needs.

The clinical training component of their PT programs is spread out over the course of three academic quarters.

University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

UNC is a large public university with a campus in Chapel Hill and an online Transitional Doctor of Physical Therapy program that requires 27 semester hours of study. Courses like “Advanced Patient Management,” “Topics in Health and Wellness,” and “Child & Family Assessment & Intervention” are typical of the program’s “part time” format.

Canvas is the online learning platform that UNC students use to complete their online courses in either a synchronous or asynchronous format. Some of the services available to students online are a writing lab, a math lab, and a help desk. Bear in mind that UNC prefers applicants with a bachelor’s or master’s degree in physical therapy as well as an active license to practice physical therapy before submitting an application.

University of Michigan – Flint

University of Michigan - Flint

Both a Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) and a Dual Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) and Master of Business Administration (MBA) in Health Care Management (DPT/MBA) are available to students at the University of Michigan – Flint (UMFLINT), a medium-sized public university. The first course is between 24 and 27 credits long, and it is meant for practicing physical therapists. When compared to the first option, the second allows students to earn a master’s or doctoral degree in health care management online with a reduced course load (between 144 and 53 credits).

Canvas is the platform used by UMFLINT to provide online, asynchronous learning. Academic advising is one of the features of the online student services available. A minimum 3.0 GPA in prerequisite physical therapy courses, a license to practice, and a resume or CV are all necessary for admission to either program.

A.T. Still University of Health Sciences

Private, small university A.T. Still University (ATSU) provides a Post-Professional Doctor of Physical Therapy degree 100% online. Students have up to 22 months to complete the program based on their individual course selections and degree plans. Courses in Integumentary Physical Therapy, Radiology/Imaging, and Pharmacology are just a few examples.

Canvas is used by ATSU’s online students for both asynchronous and synchronous learning. Help for students with disabilities and online tutoring are two examples of what’s on offer. If you want to study physical therapy at ATSU, you’ll need a bachelor’s degree or higher, a minimum 2.70 GPA in your physical therapy program, official transcripts, proof of licensure, and a portfolio.

Andrews University

The Doctor of Physical Therapy in Transition program at Andrews University is available both on-campus and through a flexible and engaging online learning platform. All courses encourage student-student and student-instructor communication, and online students are encouraged to attend one or two on-campus intensives.

The Higher Learning Commission has officially recognized Andrews University.

Shenandoah University

The Doctor of Physical Therapy online program at Shenandoah University is offered in an asynchronous format to accommodate working professionals’ schedules.

Support for online students is available on campus through immersive experiences and other events. Commonly, the course takes between one and two years to finish. Coursework places an emphasis on utilizing existing scientific literature.

The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges has recognized Shenandoah University’s excellence in education and granted the university accreditation.

Utica College

Utica College

The online Doctor of Physical Therapy program is available at Utica College. It is possible to finish it in as little as four semesters. There are seven different classes that cover topics like self-care basics, diagnostic imaging, pharmacology, pathophysiology, and wellness programs. A practicum is the final component.

The Middle States Commission on Higher Education has granted Utica College accreditation.

Northeastern University

In most cases, students can earn their Doctor of Physical Therapy from Northeastern University’s online program in as little as two to three years.

Flexible work schedules (both full- and part-time) are welcome. Both a clinical and an educational focus are available to students. These include Medical Screening, Nutrition for Physical Therapists, Pharmacology, and Comprehensive Case Analysis.

The New England Association of Schools and Colleges has recognized Northeastern University as meeting its standards for accreditation.


Is DPT hard?

The work of a physical therapist is strenuous in a physical sense. Physical therapists spend much of their working day on their feet, lifting and carrying patients of varying sizes and weights, and using muscles they may not have known they had.

How Long Does It Take to Earn an Online Doctorate in Physical Therapy?

Many prospective physical therapy students have asked me how long it takes to earn a degree in the field. Three years of full-time study is typically all that’s needed to earn a doctorate in physical therapy online. It may take more time if you only attend classes part-time.

While both the DPT and the PhD are doctoral degrees, the PhD requires an additional year of study and a dissertation, while the DPT only requires four. It is possible to earn your Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) degree more quickly because most programs do not require a dissertation or capstone project.

Are online DPT programs worth it?

Recognizing that a doctoral degree in physical therapy is required for employment, the time and money spent on either traditional or online doctoral programs in the field is well worth it. Professional physical therapists in every state must hold a doctoral degree. A Ph.D. in physical therapy is a valuable degree because the field is expected to grow by 21% between 2020 and 2030.

Will additional education be required for license renewal? 

A Physical Therapist’s license expires every two years and must be renewed. Depending on the rules in your state, you may need to take some type of post-degree education course in order to meet the criteria for license renewal. State requirements for maintaining a valid license typically range from 24 to 30 hours of continuing education and a certain number of years in the field.


When searching for the top DPTh programs online, it is important to take into account the degree focus, the number of required credits, and the minimum GPA.

In order to find a Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) online program that works with your schedule and offers the best return on investment, it is helpful to compare different programs.