Fact Sheet

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  • MISSION

    The comprehensive mission of the Division is to:

    • educate physical therapists and research scientists,
    • conduct research that will expand our knowledge of the biological bases of human movement,
    • advance the clinical practice of physical therapy. 

    RANKING and ACCREDITATION

    • The Division is ranked first in the nation by U.S. News and World Report.
    • All academic degrees awarded by the Division are accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges/Accrediting Commission for Senior Colleges and Universities. The Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE) accredits the Doctor of Physical Therapy program.

    HISTORY

    • Established in 1943 to train physical therapists at the undergraduate level. 
    • By 1974 the only professional degree offered was a Master's in Physical Therapy.
    • Second program in the nation to offer the Doctor of Physical Therapy as the entry-level professional degree in physical therapy (1995).
    • First physical therapy program to directly award a PhD degree (1984). 
    • Added Biokinesiology to its name to reflect its expanding research mission and to promote Biokinesiology as the foundation science of physical therapy.

    OUTSTANDING ACADEMIC PROGRAMS

    • Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) Program - prepares graduates for a professional career in physical therapy. 
    • Residency Programs in Orthopedic, Neurologic, Sports, and Pediatric Physical Therapy - train individuals who are already physical therapists to be advanced practitioners in the specialty areas of orthopedic and neurologic physical therapy. 
    • Master of Science (MS) and Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Biokinesiology Programs - prepare graduates to be research scientists in the field of Biokinesiology.  

    BIOKINESIOLOGY

    • The integrative study of the biological bases of normal and disordered movement.
    • An interdisciplinary science that focuses on understanding how the human body adapts to growth and experience as well as to injury, disease, and aging.

    EXCEPTIONAL CLINICAL EDUCATION

    • The Division maintains contracts with 1100+ facilities all over the US including Alaska, Hawaii and the District of Columbia. 
    • DPT students spend a total of 44 weeks in full-time clinical education experiences over their three-year curriculum.  

    DISTINGUISHED FACULTY

    • The Division's award-winning faculty is at the forefront of research; many travel all over the world as guest lecturers.
    • Seven current faculty have been selected Worthingham Fellows of the American Physical Therapy Association, the highest award given by the professional association, more than in any other physical therapy program in the nation.
    • 100% of the Division's full-time faculty have doctorate degrees.  Several are recognized as leaders in their fields.
    • The Division's adjunct faculty is regionally and nationally recognized for their expertise. 

    CUTTING EDGE RESEARCH

    • The faculty conducts research in the areas of musculoskeletal biomechanics, motor behavior and neural control, exercise science and muscle research, and motor development.
    • The faculty receives external funding of more than $2 million per year from foundations and federal funding agencies, including NIH.
    • Division faculty have led and participated in the largest rehabilitation clinical trials that have ever been funded by NIH. 

    SUPERB CLINICAL PRACTICE

    • The Division has an extensive practice component that provides high-quality physical therapy services to the community and serves as a locus for clinical education and clinical research
    • The USC Physical Therapy Associates (the faculty practice plan) provides outpatient physical therapy services in two locations.
    • The Division provides physical therapy services at Keck Hospital of USC and the USC Norris Hospital

    EXCELLENT LAB and TRAINING FACILITIES

    • The Division occupies about 34,000 square feet in the Center for Health Professions (CHP) building on USC's Health Science Campus.
    • The Division houses four large teaching laboratories with state-of-the-art equipment, two locker rooms for students, a computer lab, a lecture hall, three smaller classrooms, and two conference rooms.  Three large suites contain offices for faculty and staff.
    • The Division has fourteen laboratories providing research space for faculty investigators.
    • The Bice Clinical Research Center is a common facility with waiting room and other amenities for patients, and their families, who participate in clinical research.
  • Faculty Spotlight
    Jason 89x115
    Jason J. Kutch, PhD, BSE, assistant professor, joined the faculty of the USC Division of Biokinesiology and Physical Therapy in August 2011.
  • Other Division Fact Sheets