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Programs News Kevin Storr March 17, 2020

M.S. in Occupational Therapy now ranked #23M.S. in Occupational Therapy now ranked #23The University of Alabama at Birmingham Occupational Therapy and Physical Therapy graduate programs each move up in the latest U.S. News & World Report “America’s Best Grad Schools” rankings.

The Master of Science in Occupational Therapy program is now ranked #23 and the Doctor of Physical Therapy program moves up six spots to #13. Both programs are housed in the UAB School of Health Professions.

“We are honored to see our MSOT and DPT programs consistently climb these rankings of the best programs in the U.S.,” said Andrew Butler, Ph.D., dean, UAB School of Health Professions. “Their growth speaks to their exceptional and dedicated faculty, staff, preceptors, alumni, and their outstanding students – all of whom are great ambassadors for their programs and professions.”

Doctor of Physical Therapy now ranked #13Doctor of Physical Therapy now ranked #13The Department of Physical Therapy began in 1964 – before UAB was a university – and has offered outstanding educational programs in physical therapy ever since. The Doctor of Physical Therapy program is the 2nd highest-ranked program in the Southeast – only one-tenth of a point from joining the Top 10 overall. In 2017 and 2018, the DPT program saw a 100 percent ultimate licensure exam pass rate, which led to every graduate finding employment as a physical therapist.

“This positive recognition from our peer institutions is largely due to the visibility of our faculty and alumni and the many accomplishments they have achieved,” said David Morris, Ph.D., chair, Department of Physical Therapy. “Our UAB DPT program has for many years been recognized as an excellent program; the latest rankings affirms that our positive reputation continues.”

The M.S. in Occupational Therapy program is the 3rd highest ranked program in the Southeast and only one-tenth of a point from being among the Top 20 overall.

Over the past three years, the MSOT program has a 99 percent graduation rate and their graduates have a 99 percent pass rate of the National Board of Certification in Occupational Therapy (NBCOT) examination.

“As a department we are committed to recruiting a culturally diverse body of students and our students come to us from across the state and country – maintaining high pass rates and graduating students who are sought after by employers is our ultimate goal and so these rankings are a reflection of our success with this mission and a credit to our students, faculty and staff,” said Gavin Jenkins, Ph.D., chair, Department of Occupational Therapy and MSOT program director. “Looking at similar programs in state-funded institutions moves us into the top 15 for state programs and this is exactly the trajectory we want to be on.”

According to the U.S. News & World Report methodology, the Physical Therapy and Occupational Therapy rankings “are based solely on the results of peer assessment surveys sent to deans, other administrators and/or faculty at accredited degree programs or schools in each discipline.”

U.S. News & World Report rankings are staggered by years. The rankings released in 2019 saw the Master of Science in Health Administration ranked #1 in the nation – the first UAB program ever ranked at the top. Another program in the School of Health Professions, the Physician Assistant Studies program, is ranked 37th in the U.S.

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