Essential Functions


Essential Functions

The DPT Program at Alvernia University, in compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), does not discriminate against qualified individuals with disabilities.  A person qualified for the DPT program is one who has met academic standards and is able, with or without reasonable accommodations, to meet the essential functions of a physical therapist, in alignment with current practice as determined by several sources as referenced.                                                                                                                                                       

These essential functions are the activities that a student physical therapist must be able to perform, with or without accommodations, in partial fulfillment of the requirements for successful completion of the professional curriculum. They are applicable in the classroom, laboratories, simulated clinical settings, and on clinical education assignments.  Alvernia University uses independent clinical education sites that may or may not be able to offer the same reasonable accommodations made available by the university.

The list of essential functions is designed to assist students interested in the DPT program to make informed decisions about career options.  Additional requirements and competencies are outlined in course syllabi and on the clinical performance instrument.  The Essential Functions must be completed in all settings, which include highly complex environments, and within a time frame that is consistent with actual clinical practice.  If it becomes apparent that a student is unable to fulfill each essential function with reasonable accommodation or if the needed accommodations are beyond what would be considered reasonable thus causing undue hardship to the university or harm to others. 

The Alvernia University DPT Program Essential Functions document has been developed to achieve compliance with the following statutes:  the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, the ADA Amendment Act of 2008, and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973.  ADA records are maintained by the Disability Services Coordinator.  Information related to ADA, Discrimination, and Title IX can be found on the University website at  Questions should be directed to the Disability Services Coordinator located in Bernardine Hall, Room 1121, and by phone at 610-796-8423.  For questions, concerns, or to request review of a request for accommodations, students should contact:  Vice President for University Life and Dean of Students, 400 St. Bernardine Street, Reading, PA 19607, 610-796-8211,

Graduation from a physical therapist program accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE) is necessary for eligibility to sit for the licensure examination, which is required in all states. Alvernia University is seeking accreditation of a new physical therapist education program from CAPTE. The program submitted an Application for Candidacy on June 1, 2014, which is the formal application required in the pre-accreditation stage and underwent an on-site review on July 29-31, 2014. Submission of this document and on-site review does not assure that the program will be granted Candidate for Accreditation status. Achievement of Candidate for Accreditation status is required prior to implementation of the professional phase of the program; therefore, no students may be enrolled in professional courses until Candidate for Accreditation status has been achieved. Further, though achievement of Candidate for Accreditation status signifies satisfactory progress toward accreditation, it does not assure that the program will be granted accreditation. All students accepted into the charter DPT class of 2018 will be accepted conditionally and graduation will be contingent upon full accreditation status as granted by CAPTE.

essential functions

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