Menu Close

How to Apply to Physical Therapy School

I’ve written a few blog posts on this topic already, but I figured it would be helpful to consolidate everything into one post. I’ve included links to other blogs and articles that I think are helpful.

When I was applying, I made a checklist of everything that I had accomplished so far, everything that I had left to do, and every deadline for PTCAS and specific schools. It kept me organized and also made me feel accomplished whenever I felt overwhelmed by the process.

Must Reads

For a great overview on the entire process of applying, make sure to read this awesome post from NGPT: How to Apply to Physical Therapy School.

Ask any specific PTCAS questions on the PTCAS Facebook Page. They respond within a couple days, and it’s always best to hear an answer directly from them. You can also call them if you need a more immediate response.


How to Decide Where to Apply 
My Road to PT – 7/16/2014

What to Do Before PTCAS Opens
My Road to PT – 7/16/2014

How to Prepare for PT School Applications
My Road to PT – 7/16/2014

Getting organized
Student Doctor Network Forums – 2015

Observation Hours

Guide to Observation Hours
My Road to PT – 6/5/2015

How to know you are observing a “good” physical therapist
Student Doctor Network Forums – 2010

What to expect on first day
Student Doctor Network Forums – 2014


How to Prepare for the GRE
My Road to PT – 5/20/2015

What is the best way to prepare for the GRE?
Student Doctor Network Forums – 2015

Does GRE weigh heavy on admissions?
Student Doctor Network Forums – 2013


How to Write Your Application Essays
My Road to PT – 1/2016

Answering if academic record reflects capabilities
Student Doctor Network Forums – 2015

Student Doctor Network Forums – 2015

Letters of Recommendation

Appropriate way of asking for a letter of recommendation?
Student Doctor Network Forums – 2012

How do you get letters of recommendation?
Student Doctor Network Forums – 2011


Tips for a Successful Interview
My Road to PT – 1/24/2016

How to Survive the PT School Interview
The PT Student – 1/23/2013

Student Doctor Network Forums – 2015

What to wear on a DPT school interview?
Student Doctor Network Forums – 2012

Cost of Applying

I don’t know how much I spent on the overall application process because I applied to 10 schools, so I lost track of everything pretty easily. I easily spent $1500 with PTCAS, the GRE, sending GRE scores, Magoosh, interview clothes, and travel expenses for interviews (gas, airplane tickets, hotels).

  • PTCAS Fees are based on the number of schools you are applying to.
  • Non-PTCAS Application Fees – The cost differs for each school, but I paid around $50 for each program that had extra fees.
  • Supplemental Application Fees – Some PTCAS schools wanted me to submit a grad school application through their own website, which cost around $35-50.
  • GRE Fees – The test is about $200. When you show up on test day, you can enter in 4 schools and they will send your GRE scores for free. You will send 1 score to PTCAS, scores to non-PTCAS schools, and scores to any PTCAS schools that want your scores sent directly to them. After the first 4 free scores, you have to pay about $27 for each school.
  • GRE Study Tools – Online subscriptions (like Magoosh) or GRE books can be free, or up to hundreds of dollars.
  • Transcript Fees – My undergrad did not charge money to send transcripts, but the community college and the other state college I attended charged about $5-10 to send transcripts. You send 1 transcript from each school to PTCAS, non-PTCAS schools, and PTCAS schools if they want your grades sent directly to their office.
  • Interview Clothes – Formal interview clothes can cost up to $200, but you can definitely be frugal and spend less than that.
  • Travel Costs – Traveling to interviews can be as little as gas money, but airplane tickets can cost $600 roundtrip depending on where you are flying and how early you are able to purchase tickets.
  • Acceptance Fees – Once accepted, most schools require that you pay an acceptance deposit of $500-1000, depending on the school. They give you a set amount of time to pay it by, anywhere from 2-4 weeks, to save your spot in their program.
    • If you choose to attend another school, your acceptance fee from the rejected school may or may not be refunded. Research the school’s policy on this.


Do you have any tips for applying to PT school? Share below!

Thanks for leaving a comment!

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


  1. Hannah Atkinson

    Hi, I am writing an essay on the process of admissions into Physical Therapy school and the PTCAS and I am wondering if there were any study material that you used to study for the admission exam, any free resources or those you have to pay for, what those resources were and how much they cost. Thank you for your time and for making this helpful website.