JOHNSON CITY (Posted Feb. 15, 2011) – For the second straight year, graduates of East Tennessee State University’s doctor of physical therapy program have fashioned a 100 percent pass rate on the board examination they must take to become practicing physical therapists.
All 22 of the ETSU graduates of the Class of 2009 passed the National Physical Therapy Examination, which is administered by the Federation of State Boards of Physical Therapy to assess the competence of candidates prior to licensure. The federation releases an enhanced report of a university’s examination results about a year after the test is administered, and the ETSU graduates took the exam after graduating in December of 2009.
The Department of Physical Therapy is housed in the College of Clinical and Rehabilitative Health Sciences.
“It’s a great report, and on behalf of our faculty and staff, I’d like to congratulate all of the graduates in the Class of 2009 for making us proud,” said Dr. David Arnall, professor and chair of the department. “This reflects the level of students who are being admitted to our program and their commitment to excellence, and it also says something about the dedication of our faculty and the degree of support and resources we receive from the university. Those are all factors that contribute to success.”
ETSU graduates who took the board exam also posted higher average scores than the averages that were posted by students from other schools in Tennessee or, for that matter, the overall average score by students from all U.S.-accredited schools. Arnall expects the physical therapy program to continue producing consistently high marks, reflecting the strength of applicants to the program and a thorough admissions selection process.
“With the way our program has developed and as the need for more physical therapists develops, we hope it could drive expansion at some point,” Arnall said. “With the Baby Boomer effect of increasing the number of patients, physical therapy is one of those health care fields where it’s expected that, for the next three decades, schools won’t be able to graduate enough students to fill all of the openings nationwide.”