COVID-19 Related Admissions

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the George Washington University's Doctor of Physical Therapy (GW PT) program has revised some of its admissions criteria for the 2021-22 PTCAS admissions cycle to reflect the current and unprecedented challenges our applicants are facing.

Please use this page to stay up-to-date on how the pandemic affects application requirements for the 2021-22 PTCAS admissions cycle.

Pass/fail coursework

Given the disruption experienced due to COVID-19, we recognize some students have chosen and/or been required to take courses Pass/Fail or Credit/No-Credit from spring 2020 through fall 2021. Therefore, during the 2021-22 admissions cycle GW DPT will accept coursework from spring 2020 through fall 2021 Pass/Fail or Credit/No-Credit for prerequisites.

To give us the best sense of your academic preparation, we encourage as much coursework as possible to be taken on a graded basis (vs. Pass/Fail or Credit/No-Credit); this is especially true of our prerequisite courses.

Online/distance learning courses and labs

In keeping with our admissions requirements during past admissions cycles, prerequisite courses (including labs) taken online at any regionally accredited institution are acceptable. Therefore, online and distance learning courses and labs will be accepted in fulfillment of prerequisite coursework completed during any admissions cycle, including during the 2021-22 PTCAS admissions cycle.

Letters of reference

Although our requirements for the type and number of letters of reference are unchanged for the 2021-22 PTCAS admissions cycle, we appreciate the challenges of obtaining observation hours and a reference from a licensed physical therapist during the COVID-19 pandemic.

*If you are unable to obtain a reference from a licensed physical therapist (PT) due to COVID-19, we ask that you discuss your limitations in obtaining a PT reference in the section of the 2021-22 PTCAS application which allows applicants to expand on how they were personally or professionally affected by COVID-19.

*Additionally, if you are unable to obtain a reference from a licensed physical therapist, in lieu of this requirement, we will accept a reference from either:

  • a healthcare professional that you have observed or who has observed you in a clinical setting (e.g. physical therapist assistant, occupational therapist, medical doctor, physician's assistant, registered nurse practitioner, speech-language pathologist, certified athletic trainer); or
  • an individual who can speak to your motivation, professionalism, ability to collaborate, ability to interact with individuals from diverse backgrounds and other attributes beyond those observed by academic faculty

Virtual interviews

Interviews will be held in a virtual format during the 2021-22 PTCAS admissions cycle. Interviews are required for admission and are scheduled on a rolling basis throughout the fall and early spring. Applicants selected for an interview will receive an email invitation.There will be many opportunities to learn about our program and for us to learn about you as well.

GRE General Test

Our GRE General Test requirement is unchanged for the 2021-22 PTCAS admissions cycle. To meet the needs of applicants who are unable to take the GRE at a designated test center due to COVD-19 related public health concerns, ETS is temporarily offering a GRE General Test at-home option. We will accept the ETS at-home GRE test.

For more information about this temporary ETS offering, see: https://www.ets.org/s/cv/gre/at-home/

Shadowing/observation hours

GW PT recommends a minimum of 70 hours of observation/shadowing experiences to encourage applicants to develop an understanding of the breadth of the physical therapy career path. While we encourage applicants to obtain observation hours and shadowing experiences in different settings when possible, including tele-health, we appreciate the challenges of obtaining observation hours during the COVID-19 pandemic.

*We will consider applicants who are unable to meet the minimum recommended 70 hours of observation due to COVID-19. For such applicants, we ask that you discuss your limitations in obtaining observation hours in the section of the 2021-22 PTCAS application which allows applicants to expand on how they were personally or professionally affected by COVID-19.

GW supplemental application fee waiver

For applicants facing financial hardship who have also been granted a GRE test fee waiver within the last 2 years of submitting their application, we will approve a GW supplemental application fee waiver request. If you meet this criteria, you must request a fee waiver in the GW supplemental application with a note that you received a GRE test fee waiver and our office will follow up with you.