Physical Therapist

Interview of Karlyn Dauplaise, physical therapist, Florida Hospital, and physical therapy alumna, University of Central Florida (UCF)
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Quick Facts

  • 100% - (ATHLETIC TRAINING) First-time pass rate on the certification exam by 2016 graduates
  • 2nd - (HEALTH SCIENCES) Ranking among the 15 most popular majors at UCF in 2016-17
  • 12 - (PHYSICAL THERAPY) Ranking among "100 Best Jobs" by U.S. News & World Report

Mailing Address

Department of Health Professions
College of Health and Public Affairs
University of Central Florida

4364 Scorpius Street
Orlando, FL 32816-2205

Phone: 407-823-2214
Fax: 407-823-2596


Athletic Training Class_01Application to UCF's Athletic Training (AT) Program traditionally occurs during the spring prior to the junior year of study. It is a restricted-access program accepting between 25 to 30 students each year.

Students who have met UCF's General Education Program (GEP) requirements, AT Program prerequisite courses, and other program admission requirements -- including a minimum overall GPA of 2.75 -- are eligible to apply to the program.

Applicants must be accepted as a student to UCF before they can be accepted into the program. Please visit Undergraduate Admissions for an undergraduate application if you are not already a student at UCF.

Admission Criteria


BSC 2010C General Biology I and Lab 4 hrs
ZOO 3733C Human Anatomy 4 hrs
PCB 3703C Human Physiology 4 hrs
HUN 2201 Fundamentals of Human Nutrition 3 hrs
STA 2023 Statistical Methods I 3 hrs
PSY 2012 General Psychology 3 hrs


PHY 2053C Col. Physics I (algebra based) or 4 hrs
PHY 2048&L Physics for Scientists I (calculus based)  

All prerequisite and co-requisite courses must have a minimum of a "C" (2.0) grade. Equivalent prerequisite and co-requisite courses taken at other institutions are acceptable provided the student has earned a minimum of "C" (2.0) or better.  Information on equivalent course work can be found in the UCF Undergraduate Catalog, Athletic Training section under "Transfer Notes."

For the most complete, up-to-date degree and program requirements, see Athletic Training in the UCF Undergraduate Catalog. The information shown here should not be used as a replacement for information in the official undergraduate catalog.

Please visit Frequently Asked Questions for answers to some of the most popular inquiries regarding prerequisite and co-requisite courses.


Students are required to complete a minimum of 100 documented clock hours working, volunteering, or shadowing with a certified athletic trainer. These hours can be completed in a variety of settings. However, at least 50 hours must be completed in a high school, college or professional setting. Students are responsible for making arrangements for the completion of the hours requirement on their own.

Students must complete training in bloodborne pathogens prior to beginning observation hours with an athletic trainer. The American Heart Association offers an online course that can be found at Other companies offer online instruction as well. The course chosen must meet OSHA's Bloodborne Pathogens standard. Students should be prepared to show proof of course completion in order to complete their observation hours. 

Please visit Frequently Asked Questions for answers to some of the most popular inquiries including how to obtain and document the required 100 hours of observation.


Students interested in entering the professional phase of the AT Program should contact Program Director Kristen Schellhase for advising and complete an AT Program application during the spring before the summer the student would like to gain acceptance.

The application includes basic information regarding successful completion of prerequisites, completion of the required observation hours and current GPA. The application also includes pertinent information regarding the technical standards, a physical examination, criminal background information and a letter of interest. 

The process of acceptance also includes an interview with the admissions committee. The scoring of the interview includes, but is not limited to, professional appearance, general aptitude, interpersonal skills, attitude toward the profession and knowledge regarding the profession of athletic training. Scores are tabulated and the candidates are notified of status as accepted, awaiting a decision or denied. Students who have not gained acceptance into UCF for the Summer B session will not be accepted into the program.


The AT Program is a rigorous and intense program that places specific requirements and demands on students. An objective of this program is to prepare graduates to enter a variety of employment settings and to render care to a wide spectrum of individuals engaged in physical activity. The technical standards set forth by the AT Program establish the physical, cognitive and attitudinal abilities considered necessary for an entry-level athletic trainer. Further, the technical standards attempt to reflect the necessary skills and abilities needed to meet the expectations of the program's accrediting agency (Commission on Accreditation of Athletic Training Education, or CAATE) and the Board of Certification (BOC©) Practice Analysis.

The following abilities and expectations must be met by all students admitted to and matriculating through the AT Program:

1.  Students must possess the mental capacity (without assistance from an intermediary) to integrate, synthesize, analyze and problem solve in order to effectively examine and treat patients with injuries and illnesses. Students must be able to perform the above quickly in an emergency situation and it a timely manner otherwise.

2.  Students must possess sufficient cognitive, postural and neuromuscular control, sensory function, ambulation, and coordination to perform appropriate patient examinations and interventions using accepted techniques, as well as accurately, safely and efficiently use equipment and materials for such purposes. Students must be able to perform the above quickly in an emergency situation and it a timely manner otherwise.

3.  Students must annually pass examinations by external entities such as CPR for the Professional Rescuer (or similar certification) and OSHA Bloodborne Pathogens Training.

4.  Students must possess the ability to communicate (orally and in writing) effectively and sensitively with patients and colleagues, including individuals from different cultural and social backgrounds. This includes, but is not limited to, the ability to establish rapport with patients and communicate/document judgments and treatment information effectively. Students must be able to understand and speak the English language at a level consistent with competent professional practice.  Students must be able to perform the above quickly in an emergency situation and it a timely manner otherwise.

5.  Students must be able to document appropriate vaccinations applicable to healthcare professionals and maintain appropriate personal hygiene conducive to the classroom and clinical setting.

6.  Students must have the capacity to maintain composure, exercise good judgment and perform within the standard of care for a student of the same educational level during periods of high stress.

Applicants to the AT Program will be required to verify that they understand and meet the above technical standards or that they believe that, with certain accommodations, they can meet these standards. 


The AT Program supports UCF's Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action Programs in both student selection and faculty recruitment. View UCFs official policy at

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Program Contact

Contact the program office for general program information and questions.

Office: HPA II - 119
Phone: 407-823-2747
Fax: 407-823-2596



Our new student organization, the Health Awareness Prevention Society, focuses on promoting a healthy lifestyle by increasing awareness of healthy living through education and prevention.
— Suha Saleh,  Assistant Professor, Health Sciences Director
It was great to see Jennifer [Plant] honored with the statewide Athletic Trainer of the Year Award. She is an exceptional teacher, a professional leader and an amazing colleague.
— Kristen Schellhase,  Interim Chair, Athletic Training Director
The event [for children with disabilities] was a huge success. We had about 30 children, and the students did a phenomenal job. I'm already receiving inquiries about next year's event.
— Jennifer Tucker,  Physical Therapy Instructor
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