The mission of the PhD in Health and Rehabilitation Sciences program is to: develop future leaders within focused domains who advance healthcare through research, teaching, and outreach, in the health and rehabilitation sciences disciplines.

School members are expected to become stewards of the science by applying rigorous scientific methods and cutting-edge analytical approaches in a focused domain. Being at the scientific forefront facilitates a culture of knowledge and innovation and is fundamental to becoming a steward of one's profession. Our faculty and graduates will lead their disciplines by engaging in life-long research, effectively disseminating scientific discoveries, and performing service to their professions.
Our PhD program's success is equated with completion of these targeted activities. All targeted activities are expected to be contextually linked to our programs' five thematic pillars.
  • Biomechanical
  • Neurological
  • Health analytical
  • Biological
  • Behavioral

Examples of our PhD program’s success include:

  • Highly successful career development resources: 100% Job Placement Success
  • Interprofessional focus on academia: 80% of graduates continue in academic research/teaching careers
  • Numerous doctoral student awards and grants: 100% financial support for students

The PhD program is open to allied health professionals who have completed a graduate degree. Examples include a Master of Science (MS) in Allied Medicine, Masters of Occupational Therapy (MOT), Masters of Physical Therapy (MPT), Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT), and Masters of Science in Dietetics. Other related graduate degrees may be appropriate; for additional information please contact the HRS Academic Coordinator of Graduate Education at For students with a bachelor's degree, the MS can be earned by overlapping the MS and PhD programs through the dual degree MS/PhD program.

Innovative Research

  • Develop in-depth foundational knowledge within one of the focused five pillars of study
  • Develop mastery of innovative research methods, statistical techniques, and qualitative and quantitative analysis to produce original rigorous research, culminating in independent, scholarly thought
  • Advance the science and the profession through pursuit of grant funding, publication of scientific discoveries and dissemination in scientific and professional forums as well as in the classroom
  • Aggressively disseminate research discoveries and knowledge to stakeholders in diverse locations and backgrounds, including other professionals, students, consumers, and legislators

Inspired Teaching

  • Translate discovery into practice through effective teaching of current, evidence-based methodologies and science in health and rehabilitation sciences
  • Provide attentive, effective academic and research mentoring other practitioners and future scientists
  • Foster and practice the habits of excellence in teaching, curriculum design and implementation, program evaluation and mentoring.

Professional Outreach and Leadership

  • Serve as an ambassador for the profession and the program in interactions with others locally, regionally, nationally, and internationally to advance policy and health care
  • Thrive in interdisciplinary discussion, debate and collaboration
  • Expect the best by engaging in self-criticism, bringing passion to professional duties, and being committed to collegiality

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