The University of St. Augustine offers a unique and flexible part-time way to obtain a Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) degree through our Flex distance education program in our San Marcos, CA, St. Augustine, FL and Austin, TX campuses.
The mission of the University's Flexible Doctor of Physical Therapy program is to graduate competent, versatile, reflective, empathetic and autonomous practitioners who by virtue of their critical thinking and active learning skills, clinical experience, diagnostic proficiency, ethical and behavioral standards and commitment to professionalism, will be prepared to assist and direct the patient or client in achieving optimum function. These practitioners will contribute to their practice and society through continued professional growth and personal example of a healthy and productive lifestyle.
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USA Flexible DPT student speaks about how she has worked the program into her life, the challenges she has faced, how she conquered those challenges and the benefits she has received.
Physical Therapy is a health profession involved in prevention, evaluation and treatment of physical dysfunction and injury. The practice is based in movement sciences. Physical therapists aid patients from pediatrics to geriatrics in the best methods of restoring an optimum quality of life.
Termed Flex, this program offers the university's professional physical therapy curriculum online with corresponding lab sessions on weekends. The Flex DPT student can graduate from this 12 trimester part-time program while still maintaining their current employment.
Part-time Flex DPT students share their experiences about how they work the program into their lives, the challenges they face and the benefits that they receive.
The model represents an expansion of the on-campus, entry-level DPT Program in place at the University of St. Augustine (USA). The same mission and curriculum used in the full-time program is utilized in the Flex Program with the only differences being a reduction in the number of credits taken per term and the distance education delivery format. The Flex Program pre-requisites, admission requirements, academic calendar, tuition, and policies are the same as the on-campus program. Students in the Flex program complete 3 full-time clinical internships that are seven to eight weeks in length in the second half of the program. This portion of the curriculum will require full time attendance by the Flex DPT student.
More than 50% of the coursework is delivered on-line to the student. The online courses consist of web-based text with extensive graphics, videos, and audio clips. There are opportunities provided for faculty-to-student and student-to-student synchronous and asynchronous interactive collaboration. Assessment of online learning outcomes includes a wide variety of evaluation tools depending on the course objectives such as: 1) regular quizzes completed online, 2) graded bulletin board assignments, 3) case reports, 4) group projects, 5) research papers, and 6) article critiques.
The University’s pioneering efforts in Physical and Occupational Therapy education brought distance education and its associated technologies to our degree and non-degree programs. By using distance education, we are able to bring education anytime, anywhere and to supplement all programs with the ability to review and study online. Our students, even when on clinical affiliation, continue to receive instruction from the University through our distance education platform.
We strive to offer the highest quality classroom instruction and online courses while taking pride in making the entire educational experience accessible and interactive for students. This blended learning approach allows our students to have a vast range of learning techniques at their fingertips. All online courses were developed with an in-depth understanding of the educational needs of our students, how they will best retain the information provided to them and the ease of accessibility to key university support services and staff to offer assistance along the way. Our lab classes are taught in a hands-on setting, while some portions of the course content are presented through a variety of interactive distance activities and augmented by in-class discussions. All courses utilize some online learning component.
In courses with a lab component, students come together for up to 16 hours of laboratory classes per weekend for no more than eight weekends a trimester. The lab sessions provide an avenue for teaching activities not well suited for online delivery such as the hands-on learning that is vital to physical therapy education, as well as oral presentations, lab practical testing, socialization activities, and some proctored written examinations. Additionally, students may have to make arrangements for locally proctored exams at other times, which may include non-lab weekends.
The University of St. Augustine's entry-level DPT Programs are licensed by the Commission for Independent Education, Florida Department of Education and accredited by The Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE). In addition, the Flex program is accredited by the Distance Education and Training Council.