In about a year or so, I'm going to be applying to physical therapy schools... but I don't know the difference in an MS or DPT degree? I know they're both entry-level, but what is the difference? Is there a "better" degree?What's the difference between an MS and DPT degree in physical therapy?
Some schools are different but in general it breaks down as follows...
PTA - Physical Therapy Assistant = 2 yr degree
PT - Physical Therapist = 4 yr degree
MPT (MS) - Masters Degree in Physical Therapy = 4 yr + 2 yrs grad school
DPT - Doctor of Physical Therapy = 4 yrs + 3-4 yrs grad school
Hope that helps.What's the difference between an MS and DPT degree in physical therapy?
If you are not already in a PT program, count on most likely getting a DPT. Last time I checked, there were only about 6 programs in the US (most in California) that offered the MPT degree. The difference is that the DPT level graduate is better prepared to practice as a direct access provider (meaning you can see a patient without referral from a physician). There is a greater focus in medical screening and examination to better understand what needs to be referred back to a physician.
The DPT doesn't result in any more money, but it results in you better a more solid practicioner. However, nearly all PT programs are now doctorate. Like what happened to the BS in PT back in 2002, the MPT is being phased out and will no longer exist in a few years.