Physiotherapy in the USA for Indian Students in 2024: Top Universities, Fees & More

11 min read

The USA is a preferred choice for those interested in the medical field, particularly physiotherapy. Physiotherapy focuses on unlocking an individual’s physical potential, with programmes emphasising orthopaedics, geriatrics, neurology, and related areas. 

The field of physiotherapy is rapidly expanding in the USA, creating a high demand for skilled physical therapists. Leading universities in the USA provide comprehensive physiotherapy courses

If you’re an Indian student seeking guidance on physiotherapy courses in the USA, you’ve come to the right place. Please continue reading to learn about physiotherapy courses in the USA, their costs, admission requirements, and more.

Explore the key features of pursuing Physiotherapy in the USA below.
FeatureInformation
Total Number of Universities330
Courses AvailableUG: 
BS in Exercise Science
BA in Recreation Therapy
BSPT+DPT (Doctor of Physical Therapy)

PG: 
MSc in Physical Therapy
MSc in Clinical Exercise Physiology
MS in Kinesiology 
DurationUG: 3-4 years
PG: 2-3 years 
Exams RequiredIELTS
TOEFL
GRE
GMAT
Annual Tuition Fees15 lakhs INR to INR 50 lakhs INR
Average Salary per annum45 lakhs to 90 lakhs INR
Intakes AvailableFall
Spring
Summer
Source: Government Website of the USA

Note: All the above figures are approximate per existing data and are subject to change.

Benefits of studying Physiotherapy in the USA

Let’s explore why studying physiotherapy in the USA could be a fantastic choice for you.

Outstanding Healthcare Facilities: 

  • The USA boasts some of the world’s leading universities, renowned for their cutting-edge infrastructure, exceptional healthcare facilities, and high-quality, hands-on learning experiences. 
  • Pursuing a master’s or bachelor’s degree in physiotherapy in the USA can be a dream come true.

Well-Designed Curriculum: 

  • The physiotherapy curriculum in USA universities is carefully crafted to meet market needs, ensuring you acquire the essential skills as a physiotherapist.

Promising Career Opportunities: 

  • Joining recognised physiotherapy universities in the USA opens doors to a career with substantial returns. 
  • Physiotherapy has been ranked as the 16th most popular healthcare job by the USA News and World Report, indicating promising career prospects and ample scope.
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Top Universities for Physiotherapy in the USA

You’ll encounter several renowned universities as you search for a Physiotherapy university in the USA. To make an informed decision, consider their rankings in the QS World University Rankings 2024 and their annual tuition fees. 

This information will provide you with precise insights into which university is suitable for your admission.

Here are the Top 10 Universities to study Physiotherapy in the USA.
physiotherapy in the usa
University NameQS World University Rankings 2024Annual Tuition Fees (INR)
University of Washington6330 lakhs
University of South California11650 lakhs
Northwestern University4750 lakhs
University of Delaware49827 lakhs
University of Pittsburgh22230 lakhs
University of Iowa49125 lakhs
Duke University5735 lakhs
Emory University19945 lakhs
Creighton University30930 lakhs
George Mason University801-100025 lakhs
Source: Official University Website

Note: All the above fees are approximate figures per existing data and are subject to change.

Top Programs for Physiotherapy in the USA

Universities such as the University of Washington, the University of Delaware, and the University of Pittsburgh are widely recognised for their comprehensive physiotherapy programs in the USA. These courses usually offer a comprehensive approach, advanced clinical training, and chances to engage in cutting-edge research.

Moreover, universities like Emory University and the University of Iowa have esteemed medical schools with extensive physiotherapy programs, attracting students worldwide.

Specific colleges allow aspiring physiotherapists to pursue dual-degree options alongside DPT courses. It will enable individuals to specialise in two different areas simultaneously:

  • DPT/PhD
  • DPT-MPH
  • DPT-MBA.
Below are the popular programs in the top 10 universities to study Physiotherapy in the USA.
University NamePrograms Offered
University of WashingtonMSc in Physical Therapy
Doctor of Physical Therapy
University of South CaliforniaDoctor of Physical Therapy
Master of Public Health
Northwestern UniversityDoctor of Physical Therapy
University of DelawareMS in Physical Therapy 
Doctor of Physical Therapy
University of PittsburghMS in Physical Therapy (MSPT) 
Doctor of Physical Therapy
University of IowaDoctor of Physical Therapy
Duke UniversityDoctor of Physical Therapy
Emory UniversityDoctor of Physical Therapy
Creighton UniversityDoctor of Physical Therapy
George Mason UniversityMS in Kinesiology 
Source: Official University Website

Eligibility Criteria for Physiotherapy in the USA

If you’re planning to pursue Physiotherapy in the USA, you must meet specific criteria and requirements for admission. A breakdown of requirements is given below:

Educational Qualifications:

  • For UG: A minimum SAT score of 600-800.
  • For PG: Hold a bachelor’s degree in Physiotherapy with at least 60% from recognised universities.
  • Ensure your GPA is 3.0 and above on a scale of 4.0 to pursue a master’s degree in Physiotherapy in the USA.

English Language Proficiency Score:

  • If you’re a non-native speaker, provide language proficiency scores.
  • Minimum scores required:
  1. IELTS: 6.0 – 7.0
  2. TOEFL: 90 – 100

GRE or GMAT Scores:

  • Universities in the USA may ask for GRE or GMAT scores for Physiotherapy programs.
  • Average scores include:
  1. GMAT: 550 – 675
  2. GRE: 280 – 330

Work Experience (For PG Only):

  • A minimum of two years of post-qualification experience is necessary for Physiotherapy programs.
  • You should also finish about 20-24 hours of physical training (PT) to demonstrate your experience.
  • Having work experience can improve your chances of admission.

Copy Of Passport and Visa:

  • Indian students need a visa and passport for admission to the USA universities.
  • Apply for a USA student visa at least three months before your planned travel to the USA.

Documents Required for Physiotherapy in the USA

When applying for Physiotherapy courses in the USA, ensure you have all the necessary documents prepared. These should include:

  • Academic transcripts
  • Original certificates from the university
  • Scorecards for English Language Proficiency (ELP) and either GRE or GMAT
  • Statement of purpose
  • Letter of recommendation
  • Resume or CV
  • Copy of your passport
  • Proof of your financial resources
  • Visa to study in the USA.

Application Process for Physiotherapy in the USA

Now, let’s explore the application process for Physiotherapy courses in the USA. Follow these steps to smooth the admission process:

  • Identify the university that offers Physiotherapy courses in the USA.
  • Once you decide on a university, visit its official website to find all the requirements.
  • Pay the necessary application fees and fill out the application form.
  • Make sure to submit all your documents before the application deadline.
  • If you receive an invitation, attend university interviews.
  • After the interviews, wait for the application letter and arrange the required funds for the university deposit.

Cost of Living in the USA

In addition to the fees for the physiotherapy course in the USA, you must also cover your living expenses while in the country. The estimated monthly living cost for Indian students in various US states ranges from 1.5 lakh INR to 2 lakh INR

It includes essential needs like accommodation, food, stationery, transportation, study materials, and other necessary items. Knowing these factors will assist you in budgeting effectively and ensuring a pleasant experience in the USA. 

Here are the living costs in the USA for various expenditures.
physiotherapy in the usa
Type of ExpenseCost of Living (INR)
Accommodation60,000
Food20,000
Transport15,000
Books & Supplies6,000
Miscellaneous (Internet, Health Insurance, Entertainment)23,000
Source: Government Website of the USA

Note: All the above expenses are approximate figures per existing data and are subject to change.

Top 10 Scholarships for Physiotherapy Courses in the USA

Getting a Physiotherapy degree at a university in the USA can be very expensive. However, many physiotherapy universities in the USA provide scholarships to Indian students. These scholarships include grants, awards, and financial aid to help cover your expenses.

Here are the top 10 Scholarships for Physiotherapy courses in the USA.
Scholarship NameEligibility CriteriaScholarship Amount (INR)
AAUW Indian Fellowship ProgramNon-American women with a bachelor’s degree.16 lakh
Alpha Kappa Alpha Educational Advancement Foundation Graduate ScholarshipFull-time student of Physiotherapy course with a minimum 3.0 GPA.A single-time grant offering financial assistance for your studies and local transportation.
F.A. Davis ScholarshipFull-time student of Physiotherapy course with a minimum 3.0 GPA.2.5 lakh
Quad FellowshipStudents from Australia, India, Japan, and the USA studying STEM degrees and clinical healthcare.40 lakh
Merit Scholarship, Northwestern UniversityStudents with a GPA of 3.6 scoresVaries
Stauffer Scholarships, University of DelawareStudents of the Physical Therapy programVaries
Mary Gross Hutchinson Memorial Scholarship, University of WashingtonStudents of Physical Therapy with good scoresVaries
Norman & Ruth Goldman Scholarships, University of IowaStudents of Physical Therapy programVaries
Fulbright Foreign Student Scholarship ProgramStudents of PG and PhD courses in PhysiotherapyVaries
Anne Doyle Indian Student AwardStudents will be chosen based on their academic record, essays and LOR.85,000
Source: Official University Website

Note: All scholarship amounts above are approximate figures per existing data and are subject to change.

Scope of Physiotherapy in the USA

Physiotherapy offers vast career opportunities in the USA. Once you finish your physiotherapy studies there, you can find jobs in public and private hospitals, home healthcare services, nursing, and physician offices. 

The average annual salary for a physical therapist in the USA is between 50 lakhs INR and 1.2 crores INR.

Some popular job prospects in Physiotherapy in the USA are listed below.
physiotherapy in the usa
Job ProspectAverage Salary (INR)
Osteopath69 lakhs
Physical Therapist75 lakhs
Rehabilitation Director70 lakhs
Research Assistant51 lakhs
Sports Physio Rehabilitator65 lakhs
Source: Government Website of the USA

Note: All the above salaries are approximate figures per existing data and are subject to change.

Industry-wise Salary of a Physiotherapist in the USA

In 2023, the annual earnings for physiotherapists stood at 77 lakhs INR. The employment rate for physiotherapists in the USA is projected to increase by 17% from 2021 to 2031. 

Here’s the average salary for physiotherapists in different industries.
Type of IndustryAverage Salary (INR)
Home Health Care Services 91 lakhs
General Medical and Surgical Hospitals 83 lakhs
Nursing Care Facilities85 lakhs
Offices of Physicians 76 lakhs
Offices of Other Health Practitioners 75 lakhs
Source: Government Website of the USA

Note: All the above salaries are approximate figures per existing data and are subject to change.

State-wise Salary of a Physiotherapist in the USA

There are five states in the USA where there’s a high demand for hospitals and healthcare, leading to a more significant number of jobs. 

Here’s the average salary for physiotherapists in different states.
Type of IndustryAverage Salary (INR)
Delaware80 lakhs
Maine 71 lakhs
Montana 70 lakhs
New Hampshire 76 lakhs
Vermont 73 lakhs
Source: Government Website of the USA

Note: All the above salaries are approximate figures per existing data and are subject to change.

To Sum Up

With a median wage of 77 lakhs INR, the USA is undoubtedly considered one of the top destinations for physiotherapy courses. It’s not just about the higher return on investment; exemplary education also plays a significant role. 

So, if you’re aiming for a promising future in physiotherapy, consider adding the USA to your list. Leap Scholar provides flexible study options, collaborating with leading Indian universities to help you achieve your foreign education goals. 

For further information, contact our counsellors today.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Q. Can you study physiotherapy in the USA as an Indian student?

    A. Yes, Indian students can pursue physiotherapy in the USA. However, you must obtain a student visa (typically F-1 or M-1) to study at a recognised academic institution. The process involves applying to the university, obtaining an I-20 form, and applying for a visa at a US embassy or consulate in your home country.

  • Q. How much does studying physiotherapy in the USA cost?

    A. The cost of studying physiotherapy in the USA can vary depending on your university and program. On average, a Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) program’s tuition ranges from 15 lakhs INR to 50 lakhs INR. In addition, you should consider other expenses such as accommodation, living costs, textbooks, and healthcare insurance, which might add 9 lakhs INR to 15 lakhs INR per year.

  • Q. What are the job prospects for physiotherapy graduates in the USA?

    A. The job prospects for physiotherapy graduates in the USA are generally promising. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the employment of physical therapists is projected to grow 18% from 2019 to 2029, much faster than the average for all occupations. The increasing ageing population and the need for rehabilitation services contribute to this growth.

  • Q. Can Indian students work as physiotherapists in the USA after graduation?

    A. Indian students graduating from a physiotherapy program in the USA can work as physiotherapists by obtaining a work visa. One standard option is the H-1B visa, which allows employers to hire foreign workers in speciality occupations. However, it’s important to note that the job market and visa requirements can change over time, so it is advisable to consult the relevant immigration authorities or an immigration attorney for the most up-to-date information.

  • Q. What are the prerequisites for studying physiotherapy in the USA?

    A. The prerequisites for studying physiotherapy program in the USA vary among universities and programs. However, typical requirements include a bachelor’s degree in a relevant field, completion of specific prerequisite courses (such as biology, chemistry, and physics), a minimum GPA, and satisfactory scores on standardised tests like the GRE (Graduate Record Examination).

  • Q. Are scholarships available for Indian students studying physiotherapy in the USA?

    A. There are scholarships available for Indian students studying physiotherapy in the USA. Some universities offer merit-based scholarships specifically for Indian students, while others may have general scholarships or funding opportunities for students in the health sciences field. External organisations and foundations also provide scholarships or grants for Indian students.

  • Q. Can physiotherapy courses be studied online in the USA?

    A. Yes, there are online physiotherapy courses available in the USA. However, most physiotherapy programs require significant practical experience and hands-on training, which may not be entirely feasible through online learning. Some universities may offer hybrid programs that combine online coursework with on-campus or clinical components, allowing students to gain necessary practical skills while studying remotely.

  • Q. Do physiotherapy courses in the USA require clinical placements?

    A. Yes, physiotherapy courses in the USA typically require clinical placements, as practical experience is integral to the curriculum. These clinical placements provide students with real-world exposure under the supervision of licensed physical therapists. Clinical placements may occur in various healthcare settings, such as hospitals, rehabilitation centres, sports clinics, or private practices.

  • Q. Are physiotherapy courses in the USA accredited?

    A. Yes, physiotherapy courses in the USA are typically accredited by the CAPTE. Accreditation ensures that the program meets quality education and clinical training standards. Graduating from an accredited program is essential for obtaining licensure as a physical therapist and practising professionally in the USA.

  • Q. Can physiotherapy graduates from other countries practise in the USA?

    A. Physiotherapy graduates from other countries can practise in the USA; however, they must meet specific requirements set by the state licensing boards. Typically, Indianly-educated physiotherapists must undergo a credentials evaluation by organisations like the Foreign Credentialing Commission on Physical Therapy (FCCPT) or the Indian Consultants of Delaware, Inc. They may be required to pass a licensing examination, demonstrate English language proficiency, and fulfil additional requirements.

  • Q. How long does completing physiotherapy courses in the USA take?

    A. The duration of physiotherapy courses in the USA depends on the level of study and program chosen. A Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) program generally takes three years, including didactic coursework and clinical rotation. Some universities may offer accelerated or extended programs, altering the duration. It is essential to check with individual institutions for specific program lengths.

  • Q. What is the cost of living for physiotherapy students in the USA?

    A. The cost of living for physiotherapy students depends on the location and personal lifestyle choices. You can spend roughly 9 lakhs INR to 15 lakhs INR per year on accommodation, including shared apartments or university dormitories. Other living expenses, such as food, transportation, utilities, and entertainment, may add to the expenses.


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Anjandeep Singh

Anjandeep is a study-abroad advisor, with years of experience in the international education industry. He specializes in guiding students towards opportunities in Canada and the UK.

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