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What Can I Do with a Physical Therapy Master of Science Degree?

Graduates of university programs that lead to Master of Science in Physical Therapy degrees may choose to continue their education. This article discusses the potential outcomes of a master's-level physical therapy degree program and how one might best utilize such advanced education.

Master of Science Degree in Physical Therapy

A program leading to a Master of Science in Physical Therapy degree is designed to offer an advanced course of study for students who are interested in pursuing careers as physical therapists. Such programs may introduce students to exercise physiology and neurology as well as other topics. Most programs combine intensive classroom study with hands-on, clinical experience. Students who earn this physical therapy degree are qualified to enter the doctoral-level programs that could lead to professional practice as physical therapists.

Important Facts About Physical Therapists

Median Salary (2018) $87,930
Entry-level Education Doctoral or professional degree
Job Outlook (2016-2026) 28% (faster than average)
Work Environment Private offices, clinics, hospitals, nursing homes

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Further Study in the Field

Graduates who have earned Master of Science in Physical Therapy degrees may choose to continue studying towards Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) degrees. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (www.bls.gov), a doctoral degree in physical therapy (DPT) is necessary for students who wish to begin practicing professionally as physical therapists. The DPT degree is the highest level of education in the field and exposes students to advanced topics and further clinical experience. After completing the several years of schooling, students must also pass the certification examination which is administered by the states in which they intend to practice. Earning a doctorate-level degree in the field may also prepare one for a career as a university professor.

Physical Therapy Practice

Physical therapy practice can provide students with opportunities to utilize the knowledge and skills they learned in school. These medical specialists work in hospitals, clinics or private offices to help patients improve mobility and overall health. They are responsible for assessing a patient's physical condition, as well as developing and implementing treatment plans that best meet their patients' needs.