Physical Therapy

How to Apply

The specific dates on this page pertain to the 2014 admissions cycle. It is important that you verify your prerequisites, review the important dates for admissions, and check out our FAQs if you have specific questions. Visit our Admissions Events page to find out where and when you can meet with us to learn more about our program and the admission process.

The Department of Physical Therapy at the University of Toronto offers a 24 month Master of Science in Physical Therapy Program (MScPT).   Applications for the 2014 admission cycle are due by January 10 2014 at 11:59 PM EST. Additional important dates can be found on our Important Dates page.

These quick links will enable you to better navigate the information on this page:

Academic Assessment

Applicants at both the undergraduate and graduate level may apply if they have permanent residency or hold Canadian citizenship.

Undergraduate Student Applicants

For September 2014 admission, applicants must have completed an appropriate bachelor’s degree with high academic standing from a recognized university. GPA will generally be calculated based on the last 20 half courses completed. While the GPA cutoff varies from year to year, the GPA cutoff for the 2013 cycle was 3.75. This is equivalent to grade point averages in the A- range at a minimum. Students taking programs that lead to degrees in any discipline (e.g., Science, Arts, Engineering, etc.) may apply for admission during the fourth year of university study, provided that they have fulfilled the prerequisite course requirements as outlined. Students applying in the final year of a four-year degree program must provide proof of completion of the degree requirements prior to enrolment in the Physical Therapy program, or no later than June 30, 2014.

Grade point average (GPA) will be calculated based on an applicant’s last 20 half courses of university academic study (i.e., the equivalent of 10 full courses) completed by December 31 of the application year, and will include summer, part-time, intersession, correspondence and failed university courses taken beyond the four-year undergraduate degree.  20 half courses is roughly equivalent to two years of full time study. Please note, due to the discrepancy in grade reporting across universities, in order to capture 20 half credits, the GPA must be calculated based on yearly versus term marks. Thus, where grades must be extracted from a year to achieve the equivalent of 20 half courses, the average of that entire year (including both the fall and winter terms) will be used. Activity-type courses, non-convertible grades (e.g., pass/fail) and Consecutive Bachelor of Education (BEd) undergraduate degree courses will not be included in this calculation. If a course is repeated, and both the original course and the repeated course are within the last 20 half courses, then the grades from both courses will be included in the GPA calculation.

GPA varies from school to school and the GPA provided by ORPAS may not be equivalent to the GPA at your school. ORPAS uses the Undergraduate Grading System Conversion Table to process GPA. Please review this table for details on the conversion scale used in this process.

Starting in February 2014, after receiving the application and all of the official transcripts, ORPAS will perform an item-by-item review, comparing all courses on the academic record against the official university transcripts. After this review, applicants will receive a Verification Report indicating the data collected by ORPAS. These reports are sent beginning in February and summarize what transcripts and Confidential Assessment Forms have been received. If applicants have any questions about the verification of the academic records, they should write immediately to ORPAS at orpas@ouac.on.ca. It is your responsibility to check this report and contact ORPAS if there are any discrepancies. Please keep in mind that if you have foreign exchange courses, graduate level courses, or were educated outside of North America, the PT Department will perform a manual GPA calculation.

The School of Graduate Studies requires that all applicants to a Master’s level program have at least a mid-“B” average or better in the final year (i.e., five full-course equivalents at the senior level). Please note that the mid-B average is a minimum requirement, and a higher GPA based on the last 20 half courses completed will be required to be competitive in the admission process, as outlined above.

Note:  Students must have completed at least 10 full courses or 20 half courses at a recognized university for their application to be considered. Transfer credits from the college level that have not been assigned a grade by the university issuing the degree will not be included in this total.

Graduate Student Applicants

Graduate students are normally assessed on their last 20 half course equivalents completed by December 31 of the application year, including both undergraduate and graduate courses. Applicants are required to have a minimum requirement of a mid-B average in all graduate courses, as per regulations set by our School of Graduate Studies. Applicants completing a graduate degree (or who have already completed a graduate degree) will otherwise be considered in the exact same manner as all other applicants. Please review the Undergraduate Student Applicants section from above for further information.

Applicants who Graduated from a Non-Canadian University

Applicants whose education was completed outside of Canada may apply if they have permanent residency or hold Canadian citizenship. They must apply in the same manner as all other applicants. To be considered, official academic records must be sent directly to ORPAS from the originating institutions. Photocopies of academic records may be used to process an application, but applicants should note that official documents will be required before any firm offer of admission can be made. Official English translations done by a certified translator for all non-English documentation must also be submitted.

All requirements for applicants within this population are the same as within the Undergraduate Student Applicants. Please review this information for degree and grade requirements. Transcripts will be evaluated for equivalency. Evaluation of equivalency will only be assessed through the application process.

To facilitate this process, you may wish to contact World Education Services (WES) to evaluate foreign credentials. Applicants are responsible for incurred costs. WES reports will be used only as a reference in the assessment of admission eligibility. WES reports are not mandatory, and applicants will not be penalized if a WES report is not submitted. If an applicant utilizes WES and has original documents sent to WES,  original documents from the originating institution (i.e., the applicant’s home university) must still be sent to ORPAS.

English Proficiency Requirement

Facility in the English language must be demonstrated by all applicants educated outside Canada whose primary language is not English and who graduated from a university where the language of instruction and examination was not English. Applicants must demonstrate facility in the English language through the successful completion of the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL), with minimum scores of:

  • Paper-based test: 600 with 5 on the TWE and 50 on the TSE.        
  • Internet-based test: 100/120 overall and 22/30 on the writing and speaking sections.

TOEFL candidates should request that results be sent to the University of Toronto, institution code 0982.

Alternatively, the School of Continuing Studies, University of Toronto, offers the certificate Academic English whereby a minimum grade of “B+” in Level 60 meets the English language facility requirement.

All official English facility results reports must be forwarded to the Department of Physical Therapy no later than March 1, 2014. English facility test results are valid for two years.

Internationally Educated Physical Therapists

The first step for internationally educated physiotherapists who wish to practice in Canada is to apply to the Canadian Alliance of Physiotherapy Regulators for an assessment of their educational qualifications. Internationally educated physiotherapists who are credentialed as having a degree that is substantially equivalent to a Canadian entry-to-practice degree are not considered for admission to the MScPT program.

If interested in bridging the gaps identified in The Alliance credential review or preparing for the Physiotherapy Competency Examination, please read more about our Internationally Educated Physiotherapists Bridging program.

Please note that internationally educated physical therapists are not considered for admission to the entry to practice (MScPT) program. If interested in graduate studies in the rehabilitation sciences, please visit the University of Toronto’s Graduate Department of Rehabilitation Science.

Prerequisite Courses

Applicants must complete the prerequisite section of the online application. Applicants are required to include a URL that links to an online course description from the university calendar. Applicants not able to provide a link to an online course description are required to mail paper copies of detailed course descriptions to ORPAS. If mailing the course descriptions, do not exceed three pages, and be sure to include your full name and ORPAS identification number on the paperwork. ORPAS will forward the documentation to your university/program choice(s).

All prerequisite courses must be taken at a university level. All prerequisite courses must be completed within the last seven years, or no earlier than September 2007 and no later than May 31, 2014. Web-based and distance education courses are accepted provided they are at a university level. Additionally, it is acceptable to take two one half-course equivalents to fulfill one full-course equivalent. For example, within the Life and/or Physical Science prerequisite, it is acceptable to complete one half-course equivalent in anatomy and one half-course equivalent in chemistry.

All applicants will be required to have completed:

  • one full course (or two half courses) equivalent in Human/Vertebrate Physiology: Note an example of an accepted course would be the University of Toronto course PSL201Y, Basic Human Physiology. Please be aware that plant physiology will NOT be accepted nor will a combined animal/plant physiology. The course should cover the principles of human/mammalian physiology including the living cell, the internal environment; neuro-muscular, cardiovascular, respiratory, gastrointestinal, renal and endocrine systems; metabolism; reproduction; and homeostasis.
  • one full course (or two half courses) equivalent in Life and/or Physical Sciences (other than physiology): Examples of Life Sciences include anatomy, biology, basic medical sciences, pathology, psychology, etc. Examples of Physical Science include chemistry, physics, geology, geography, etc.
  • one full course (or two half courses) equivalent in Social Sciences and/or Humanities and/or Languages: Examples of Social Sciences include anthropology, political science, economics, sociology, psychology, etc. Examples of Humanities include history, religion, philosophy, classics, literature/English, etc.
  • one half course equivalent in Statistics or Research Methods: Statistic courses that may be acceptable include basic statistics, psychology statistics, geography statistics, kinesiology statistics, biometrics and quantitative research methods. Calculus in itself is not acceptable as a statistics course, and statistics content in other courses does not meet the requirement.

As outlined above, psychology may be used as either a life science or a social science course. For non-U of T courses, full courses are generally defined as six credit, full year courses; half-courses as three credit, half-year courses. You can verify that your human/vertebrate physiology and statistics/research methods courses will be accepted by visiting the Prerequisites Verification page.

Please note that the grades you received in your prerequisite courses will not be counted as part of the GPA calculation unless they are within the last 20 half credits completed (see the GPA information above, found within the Undergraduate Student Applicants section, for more information on how GPA is calculated).

Non-Academic Assessment

References

The department requires one academic reference and one professional reference. Applicants must submit these references using the ORPAS Confidential Assessment Forms included in the ORPAS application. Referees should also include a letter on their university/official stationary which provides additional details on the applicant, as per the instructions on the ORPAS Confidential Assessment Form.

Both referees should be individuals who can address the applicant’s aptitude for studies in a health profession. Referees should also have direct knowledge of the applicant and are in a position to reasonably make statements concerning the applicant’s character, communication and academic capabilities, and special circumstances if applicable.  Examples of academic references include professors or instructors from a university setting.  A common example of a professional reference is a supervisor in either a volunteer or employment setting. References from family members and friends are not acceptable. Additionally, professional references from caregivers (e.g. family doctors, dentists, etc.) are not acceptable if the applicant’s sole relationship with the caregiver was as a patient.

The forms and letters must be submitted by the referees directly to ORPAS at the Ontario Universities’ Application Centre.

Computer Administered Profile (CAP)

There is an initial screening of the academic qualifications that narrows the pool of applicants. Only top applicants (ranked initially by marks) are invited to write the Computer Administered Profile (CAP) on-site at the University of Toronto in Toronto, Ontario on Saturday, April 26, 2014. In order to accommodate religious observances and special requirements there will be a secondary CAP date, Wednesday April 23, 2014. Applicants invited to the CAP exam will be notified by email in late March/early April.

The Computer Administered Profile is a two hour exam with a series of short and long answer questions. The CAP is not a personal profile nor is it an MCAT-type exam that you can study for, rather it is designed to assess personal characteristics/attributes, life experiences, knowledge of the profession, and critical thinking/problem-solving skills. Typical questions will explore understanding of the profession and ability to problem solve. Enrolment selection is based on a combination of CAP exam score weighted at 40% and GPA weighted at 60%, along with a file review.

Upon receiving a letter of invitation to the CAP a written request with supporting documentation will be required to accommodate the request for the alternative date. Distance from Toronto will not constitute a special requirement and all applicants are responsible for their own travel costs to and from the CAP.

Application Statistics

Entering Year 2014 2013 2012 2011 2010 2009 2008
# Applications 1035 1139 1048 1062 1004 879 984
GPA* Cutoff 3.76 3.75 3.71 3.68 3.63 3.59 3.62
Final Class Size TBD 88 87 100 85 84 90
Average GPA* of Incoming Class TBD 3.85 3.83 3.82 3.76 3.78 3.77

*GPA calculations are based on the ORPAS Undergraduate Grading System Conversion Table.

Other Information

Ontario Graduate Scholarship (OGS)

The Ontario Graduate Scholarship Program recognizes academic excellence in graduate studies at the master’s and doctoral levels in all disciplines of academic study. The OGS program at U of T is jointly funded by the Province of Ontario and the University of Toronto. For 2014-2015, the Province of Ontario will provide about $30 million towards these scholarships and eligible institutions will provide $15 million (figures to be confirmed).

The value of the OGS is $5000 per term. Thus, awardees may receive $10,000 for two consecutive terms or $15,000 for three consecutive terms. Students in the Department of Physical Therapy are enrolled for three terms per year, and therefore usually receive the full $15,000. In all instances, the awarding graduate unit will contribute to one third the cost of the total award received by the students.

The University of Toronto is responsible for the awarding of the scholarships held at U of T.  U of T will providesa centralized on-line application available to students in the fall accessible via the School of Graduate Studies website.

Applicants to the MScPT program can apply for OGS prior to entering the MScPT program. Candidates are encouraged to review all details on eligibility criteria, how to apply, and deadline dates.

Registration to Practice

Registration to practice physical therapy is required in all provinces and territories. Alberta, British Columbia, Ontario, Prince Edward Island, Nova Scotia, and Newfoundland require that all applicants for licensure have passed the Physiotherapy Competence Examination (PCE), which includes both written and clinical components. Upon successful completion of the Physical Therapy program at The University of Toronto, graduates may apply to the Canadian Alliance of Physiotherapy Regulators to take this examination. We hold a six-year accreditation through the Accreditation Council for Canadian Physiotherapy Academic Programs (ACCPAP) – the maximum award rating for master’s physical therapy education programs. We also hold a 10-year accreditation from the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE), which allows our graduates to obtain licensure in the United States.

Health Requirements

Registration procedures are mailed to newly admitted students and include an immunization record that must be completed in full. It requests information on tuberculosis and other chest diseases, hepatitis B, measles, mumps, rubella, chicken pox, diphtheria/tetanus and polio. Evidence of a tuberculin test is required prior to registration. Students are also required to provide a copy of a valid certificate in First Aid and Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) at the Basic Rescuer level upon entry to the program. Please note that you will be required to gain First Aid and CPR certification/recertification after August 1, 2014 and before school begins in September, regardless of when your current certification expires. These requirements are set by our clinical partners and must be met so that students are able to participate in clinical practice.

Deposit

Students who accept an offer of admission to this program are required to remit a non-refundable enrolment deposit of $250. The amount of this deposit is applied toward payment of the student’s fees for the coming academic year. In the event that the applicant fails to enroll, the deposit is not refunded.

Criminal Record Checks

Increasingly, some sites (for example school boards, community care employers) require that employees, including students, have a completed criminal record check prior to the start of the clinical internship. Students assigned to placements at these locations will be required to complete and submit the results of a Basic or Vulnerable Persons Criminal Record Check, at their own expense. Students will be informed by the Department of Physical Therapy if this check is necessary prior to the beginning of the placement. Please note that failure to obtain a satisfactory police record check may result in an alternate or delayed placement and may affect the graduation date. You may wish to obtain two original copies of your report so that you may keep one for your own records.

Submitting an Application

All applicants seeking admission to the MSc in Physical Therapy Program must complete an application, available from ORPAS, which is a division of the Ontario Universities Application Centre (OUAC). Visit ORPAS and click on the link ORPAS Online Application.

If you have any questions regarding the ORPAS application form, please contact ORPAS by email at orpas@ouac.on.ca or by phone at 519-823-1063.

Applications are usually available from ORPAS by mid October annually.

The 2014 application deadline is January 10, 2014 at 11:59 PM EST. All application materials (including the online application, prerequisite form, course descriptions and references) should be received by ORPAS by this date. The only exception to this are transcripts, which are due by January 31, 2014. This means that transcripts must be received by ORPAS by January 31, 2014.  Remember that Internet connections may be disrupted close to the deadline (therefore, do not leave your application until the last minute).

After receiving the application and all of the official transcripts, ORPAS will calculate a sub-GPA. You can check your Verification Report (VR) by logging into your ORPAS application. This report is available once your academic record has been reviewed by ORPAS, which will occur in February. The VR will present an up-to-date summary of all information contained in your application, including what transcripts and Confidential Assessment Forms have been received. It will also include the sub-GPA and a list of all courses/grades used in the calculation.  ORPAS will send you an email once this report is available to view.

It is your responsibility to check this report and contact ORPAS by March 1 2014 if there are any discrepancies. If you have any change requests after viewing this report, you  can make the request by logging into SAM (which is accessed through the ORPAS online application). Please keep in mind that if you have foreign exchange courses, graduate level courses, or were educated outside of North America, the PT Department will perform a manual GPA calculation.

Applicant Checklist

Before applying:

Applying:

  • Have you read through the information regarding deadlineprerequisites and the CAP test?
  • Have you submitted your application?
  • Have you printed your application from the final “Submit” section for your records?
  • Have you requested transcripts for all postsecondary institutions that you attended?
  • Have you paid all application service fee(s) and transcript request fee(s)?
  • Have you given your references the paper copy of the Confidential Assessment Form and asked them to write a corresponding letter?
  • Have you released your TOEFL test scores (if required)?

After applying:

  • Have you checked your ORPAS Verification Report (available via your online ORPAS application) for GPA accuracy and to ensure your references and transcripts have been received by ORPAS?
  • Have you checked your email (including your junk folder) for an invitation to the CAP, which will be sent by April 1?
  • Have you submitted acceptable application changes using the ORPAS Secure Applicant Messaging (SAM) tool? (This tool can be accessed through the online ORPAS application.)

More Questions?

If you still have questions after reviewing the above information, please visit our FAQs page. Applicants are welcome to contact us with unanswered questions by emailing us at physther.facmed@utoronto.ca.