Eligibility and Requirements

Only those students who seek to obtain a PhD degree will be admitted to the Therapeutic Science program. The Admission Committee will review each applicant’s preparation for doctoral-level work. An acceptable level of preparation must include basic training in statistics and design and completion of an empirical research study or thesis. If an applicant does not have adequate preparation for doctoral-level work, he or she must develop satisfactory research skills prior to formally entering the doctoral program.

The admissions review will also consider the fit between the student's research interests and the design and goals of the Therapeutic Science doctoral program. Applicants who qualify for admission will be required to investigate discipline-specific programs with which their interests intersect, and submit a rationale for why their research and career goals can only be met by the Therapeutic Science doctoral program.

In addition, the applicant's leadership experience and potential, potential to contribute significantly to knowledge generation and knowledge transfer through research, teaching, or service, and the extent to which the applicant's interests and goals correspond to those of the available faculty will be considered as part of the admissions review process.

To be considered for admission into KU's PhD in Therapeutic Science program, the following are required:

  1. Degree
    A Bachelor of Science and a research-based Master's degree are required. Students with degrees in fields other than Occupational Therapy are encouraged to apply. Students with degrees from a university outside the U.S. may be considered provided they meet the requirements equivalent to those from a program in the U.S. as listed above.

  2. Grade Point Average
    An overall minimum 3.0 Grade Point Average (on a 4.0-scale) is required.
    Please note: Reflecting the interdisciplinary nature of the Therapeutic Science program, the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) is not required.


International Students:
An applicant is considered an international student if he or she requires a visa, or currently resides in the U.S. with non-immigrant status, or currently resides in the U.S. while applying for permanent residency. Additional requirements and documentation, such as proof of English language proficiency, are required for international students to become eligible for KU programs. Please review the information for international students before applying.


Background Check
The Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations (JCAHO) requires all incoming students to pay for a background check. This one-time fee must be paid directly to the company performing the background investigation. You will be asked to provide information and make the payment once you have been officially accepted into the program. For more information, please see the School of Health Professions Background Check Instructions.


The University of Kansas prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, ethnicity, religion, sex, national origin, age, ancestry, disability, status as a veteran, sexual orientation, marital status, parental status, gender identity, gender expression and genetic information in the University's programs and activities. The following person has been designated to handle inquiries regarding the non-discrimination policies: Director of the Office of Institutional Opportunity and Access, IOA@ku.edu, 1246 W. Campus Road, Room 153A, Lawrence, KS, 66045, (785) 864-6414, 711 TTY.

Last modified: May 22, 2013
This program starts fall semester in August and applications for the PhD in Therapeutic Science program must be received by February 1 to qualify for the next year's class.

Student Handbooks

Therapeutic Science Student Handbook PDF document (image)

MS in OT Thesis Handbook PDF document (image)


See also:

Information for Non-Degree-Seeking Students


Areas of Study

Sensory processing in daily life

Health promotion in disability

Community interventions for mental health

Creating models for family-centered care

Cognition in quality of life

Successful aging

Accommodation models for community participation

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