For individuals who want to pursue a career as a physical therapist, Grand Canyon University offers a Bachelor of Science in Biology with an Emphasis in Pre-Physical Therapy degree as the first step on the path to a career in this field. This pre-physical therapy degree program includes specialized coursework focused on preparing students for success in their graduate studies to earn a Master of Physical Therapy (MPT) or Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) degree.
Graduates will acquire foundational knowledge in biological sciences, exercise science, social sciences and health care issues. The curriculum of this pre-physical therapy degree program introduces you to general biology, chemistry and physics with combined lecture and lab courses designed to reinforce principles and concepts through hands-on experimentation. Then you will move onto human anatomy and physiology to explore the structure and function of the human body and mechanisms that maintain homeostasis within it. You will explore the study of gross anatomy and functions of the skeletal, muscular and nervous systems.
Throughout the program, you will then delve into the care, treatment and prevention of athletic injuries, featuring principles of sports medicine, the care and treatment of athletic trauma and the use of proper conditioning principles for prevention injury. Curriculum will extend into the writing-intensive course genetics to examine principles of heredity and variation, kinesiology to analyze human movement and the physiology of exercise to study the effects of exercise on the body. The program is designed to equip you with knowledge of physiological responses to exercise, strength conditioning and health psychology. Workshops will provide you the opportunity to focus on the assessment of athletic performance, as well as the development of musculoskeletal flexibility, speed, agility, quickness, strength and power.
Other course topics for earning a BS in biology with a specialty in pre-physical therapy include attitude and social behavior, pharmacology, lifespan development, and spirituality and Christian values in health care and wellness.
Since physical therapists work closely with physical therapy assistants, physicians, other health care professionals and patients, interpersonal communication skills are paramount. These skills, along with the psychological, spiritual and physical components of health, wellness and therapeutic intervention, will be explored. One of the advantages of Grand Canyon University's pre-physical therapy program is that students have the opportunity to work on cadavers in our state-of-the-art lab.
This program is offered in the following formats or locations:
Enjoy Grand Canyon University\'s traditional campus experience. As of fall 2014, our 179-acre campus serves a growing student population of approximately 11,000. New modern classrooms, suite-style residence halls, popular dining options, resort-style swimming pools and a focus on creating a rich student life make GCU a top choice for high school graduates and transfer students.
The programs offered at Grand Canyon University may vary by content and course length. You are currently viewing the program version available in Arizona. In order to view the specific course content and credit length available for your state, please contact a counselor at 877-860-3951 or click here to request more information.
General Education coursework prepares Grand Canyon University graduates to think critically, communicate clearly, live responsibly in a diverse world, and thoughtfully integrate their faith and ethical convictions into all dimensions of life. These competencies, essential to an effective and satisfying life, are outlined in the General Education Learner Outcomes. General Education courses embody the breadth of human understanding and creativity contained in the liberal arts and sciences tradition. Students take an array of foundational knowledge courses that promote expanded knowledge, insight, and the outcomes identified in the University's General Education Competencies. The knowledge and skills students acquire through these courses serve as a foundation for successful careers and lifelong journeys of growing understanding and wisdom.
|Competency||Requirements||GCU Course Options||Total Credits|
|University Foundations||Upon completion of the Grand Canyon University's University Foundation experience, students will be able to demonstrate competency in the areas of academic skills and self-leadership. They will be able to articulate the range of resources available to assist them, explore career options related to their area of study, and have knowledge of Grand Canyon's community. Students will be able to demonstrate foundational academic success skills, explore GCU resources (CLA, Library, Career Center, ADA office, etc), articulate strategies of self-leadership and management and recognize opportunities to engage in the GCU community. Students with fewer than 24 credits will fulfill the University Foundations requirement with a specified lower-division course. An upper-division selection will be made available to students that enter the university with more than 24 credits.||UNV-103/303, University Success: 4 credits
UNV-108, University Success in the College of Education: 4 credits
UNV-112, Success in Science, Engineering and Technology & Lab: 4 creditsC
|Effective Communication||Graduates of Grand Canyon University will be able to construct rhetorically effective communications appropriate to diverse audiences, purposes, and occasions (English composition, communication, critical reading, foreign language, sign language, etc.). Students are required to take 3 credits of English grammar or composition.||UNV-104, 21st Century Skills: Communication and Information Literacy: 4 credits
ENG-105, English Composition I: 4 credits
ENG-106, English Composition II: 4 credits
|Christian Worldview||Graduates of Grand Canyon University will be able to express aspects of Christian heritage and worldview. Students are required to take CWV-101/301.||CWV-101/301, Christian Worldview: 4 credits||4 credits|
|Critical Thinking||Graduates of Grand Canyon University will be able to use various analytic and problem-solving skills to examine, evaluate, and/or challenge ideas and arguments (mathematics, biology, chemistry, physics, geology, astronomy, physical geography, ecology, economics, theology, logic, philosophy, technology, statistics, accounting, etc.). Students are required to take 3 credits of intermediate algebra or higher.||PHI-105, 21st Century Skills: Critical Thinking and Problem Solving: 4 credits
MAT-134, Applications of Algebra: 4 credits
MAT-144, College Mathematics: 4 credits
BIO-220, Environmental Science: 4 credits
|Global Awareness, Perspective and Ethics||Graduates of Grand Canyon University will be able to demonstrate awareness and appreciation of and empathy for differences in arts and culture, values, experiences, historical perspectives, and other aspects of life (psychology, sociology, government, Christian studies, Bible, geography, anthropology, economics, political science, child and family studies, law, ethics, crosscultural studies, history, art, music, dance, theater, applied arts, literature, health, etc.).||HIS-144, U.S. History Themes: 4 credits
PSY-100, Psychology in Everyday Life: 4 credits
SOC-100, Everyday Sociology: 4 credits
If the predefined course is a part of the major, students need to take an additional course.
|ENG-105||English Composition I||This is a course in writing academic prose, including various types of essays, arguments, and constructions. A writing-intensive course.||4 credits|
|BIO-181||General Biology I||This course is a study of biological concepts emphasizing the interplay of structure and function, particularly at the molecular and cellular levels of organization. Cell components and their duties are investigated, as well as the locations of cellular functions within the cell. The importance of the membrane is studied, particularly its roles in controlling movement of ions and molecules and in energy production. The effect of genetic information on the cell is followed through the pathway from DNA to RNA to protein. Co-requisite: BIO-181L.||3 credits|
|BIO-181L||General Biology I - Lab||This lab course is designed to reinforce principles learned in BIO-181 through experiments and activities which complement and enhance understanding of macromolecules, cell membrane properties, cellular components, and their contribution to cell structure and function. Assignments are designed to relate cellular processes such as metabolism, cell division, and the flow of genetic information to cell structure. Co-requisite: BIO-181.||1 credits|
|ENG-106||English Composition II||This course explores various types of research writing, with a focus on constructing essays, arguments, and research reports based on primary and secondary sources. A writing-intensive course. Prerequisites: ENG-105.||4 credits|
|MAT-250||College Algebra and Trigonometry||This course is a unified study of fundamental algebra and trigonometry concepts that provide the necessary background for the study of calculus. Topics include linear equations and inequalities in one and two variables; scatter diagrams and curve fitting; polynomial, rational, exponential, logarithmic, and trigonometric functions, their graphs, and their inverse functions; and systems of equations and inequalities. There is an emphasis on developing both a fundamental understanding of the concepts involved as well as their application to real-world problem solving. Prerequisite: Grade of C or better in MAT-134.||4 credits|
|SOC-102||Principles of Sociology||This course presents a survey of the concepts, theories, and methods used by sociologists to describe and explain the effects of social structure on human behavior. It emphasizes the understanding and use of the sociological perspective in everyday life.||4 credits|
|PSY-102||General Psychology||This foundation course in the science of behavior includes an overview of the history of psychology, the brain, motivation, emotion, sensory functions, perception, intelligence, gender and sexuality, social psychology, human development, learning psychopathology, and therapy.||4 credits|
|MAT-274||Probability and Statistics||This course provides an introduction to the study of basic probability, descriptive and inferential statistics, and decision making. Emphasis is placed on measures of central tendency and dispersion, correlation, regression, discrete and continuous probability distributions, quality control population parameter estimation, and hypothesis testing. Prerequisites: Grade of C or better in MAT-134 or MAT-144.||4 credits|
|Course #||Course Title||Course Description||Credits|
|BIO-182||General Biology II||This course is a study of biological concepts emphasizing the interplay of structure and function at the molecular, cellular, and organismal levels of organization. Relationships of different life forms are studied, noting characteristics and general lifecycles of the different types of organisms, including bacteria, archaea, and eukaryotes. Plant structure, function, and reproduction are studied, as well as photosynthesis and plant nutrition. Ecological principles are discussed, including organism interactions at the various ecological levels. Principles of conservation are introduced. Prerequisite: BIO-181. Co-requisite: BIO-182L.||3|
|BIO-182L||General Biology II - Lab||This lab is designed to reinforce principles learned in BIO-182. Organisms are examined to recognize similarities and differences among different types. Plant structure and processes, including photosynthesis and water transport, are investigated through observation and activities. Concepts of ecology are explored through study of species interactions projects and other activities. Co-requisite: BIO-182.||1|
|CHM-113||General Chemistry I-Lecture||This is the first course of a two-semester introduction to chemistry intended for undergraduates pursuing careers in the health professions and others desiring a firm foundation in chemistry. The course assumes no prior knowledge of chemistry and begins with basic concepts. Topics include an introduction to the scientific method, dimensional analysis, atomic structure, nomenclature, stoichiometry and chemical reactions, the gas laws, thermodynamics, chemical bonding, and properties of solutions. Prerequisites: MAT-134. Co-requisite: CHM-113L.||3|
|CHM-113L||General Chemistry I - Lab||The laboratory section of CHM-113 reinforces and expands learning of principles introduced in the lecture course. Experiments include determination of density, classification of chemical reactions, the gas laws, determination of enthalpy change using calorimetry, and determination of empirical formula. Prerequisite: MAT-134. Co-requisite: CHM-113.||1|
|PHY-111||General Physics I-Lecture||This course is a study of basic concepts of physics, including motion; forces; energy; the properties of solids, liquids, and gases; and heat and thermodynamics. The mathematics used includes algebra, trigonometry, and vector analysis. A primary course goal is to build a functional knowledge that allows students to more fully understand the physical world and to apply that understanding to other areas of the natural and mathematical sciences. Conceptual, visual, graphical, and mathematical models of physical phenomena are stressed. Students build critical thinking skills by engaging in individual and group problem-solving sessions. Prerequisites: MAT-250, MAT-261 or College Algebra. Co-requisite: PHY-111L.||3|
|PHY-111L||General Physics I - Lab||This course utilizes lab experimentation to practice concepts of physical principles introduced in the PHY-111 lecture course. Learners are able to perform the proper analysis and calculations to arrive at the correct quantifiable result when confronted with equations involving gravity, sound, energy, and motion. Prerequisite: MAT-250, MAT-261 or College Algebra. Co-requisite: PHY-111.||1|
|BIO-201||Human Anatomy and Physiology I||This course is the first of a two-course sequence examining the structure and function of the human body and mechanisms for maintaining homeostasis within it. This portion includes the study of cells; tissues; genetics; and the integumentary, skeletal, muscular, and nervous systems. Co-requisite: BIO-201L.||3|
|BIO-201L||Human Anatomy and Physiology I: Lab||This course involves a study of the gross anatomy and functions of the skeletal, muscular, and nervous systems. This experiential lab involves gaining basic knowledge of the use of human cadavers, animal demonstrations, and computer-assisted instruction. Co-requisite: BIO-201.||1|
|CHM-115||General Chemistry II-Lecture||This is the second course of a two-semester introduction to chemistry intended for undergraduates pursuing careers in the health professions and others desiring a firm foundation in chemistry. Upon successful completion of this course, students demonstrate knowledge and/or skill in solving problems involving the principles of chemical kinetics, chemical equilibrium, and thermodynamics; understanding chemical reactions using kinetics, equilibrium, and thermodynamics; comparing and contrasting the principal theories of acids and bases; solving equilibrium involving acids, bases, and buffers; describing solubility equilibrium; describing terms associated with electrochemistry and solving problems associated with electrochemistry; and describing fundamentals and applications of nuclear chemistry and organic chemistry. Prerequisite: CHM-113. Co-requisite: CHM-115L.||3|
|CHM-115L||General Chemistry II - Lab||The laboratory section of CHM-115 reinforces and expands learning of principles introduced in the lecture course. Experiments include determination of rate law, examples of Le Chteliers principle, the use of pH indicators, buffer preparation, experimental determination of thermodynamic quantities, the use of electrochemical cells, and qualitative and quantitative analysis. Prerequisite: CHM-113 and CHM-113L. Co-requisites: CHM-115.||1|
|PHY-112||General Physics II-Lecture||This course is the second in a one-year introductory physics sequence. In this course, the basics of three areas in physics are covered, including electricity and magnetism, optics, and modern physics. Course topics include an introduction to electric and magnetic fields, the nature of light as an electromagnetic wave, geometric optics, quantum mechanics, and nuclear reactions. Prerequisites: PHY-111 and PHY-111L. Co-requisite: PHY-112L.||3|
|PHY-112L||General Physics II - Lab||This course utilizes lab experimentation to practice concepts of physical principles introduced in the PHY-112 lecture course. Some of the topics learners understand and analyze involve the relationship between electric charges and insulators/conductors, magnetism in physics, energy transformations in electric circuits, the relationship between magnetism and electricity, and how they relate to the medical industry. Prerequisites: PHY-111 and PHY-111L. Co-requisite: PHY-112L||1|
|BIO-202||Human Anatomy and Physiology II||This course is the second of a two-course sequence examining the structure and function of the human body and mechanisms for maintaining homeostasis within it. This portion includes the study of immunity; metabolism; energetics; fluid, electrolyte and acid-base balance; and the endocrine, hematologic, cardiovascular, lymphatic, respiratory, digestive, urinary, and reproductive systems. Prerequisites: BIO-201 and BIO-201L. Co-requisite: BIO-202L.||3|
|BIO-202L||Human Anatomy and Physiology II-Lab||This course is a study of the gross anatomy and functions of the endocrine, cardiovascular, respiratory, digestive, renal, and reproductive systems. The experiential lab involves an advanced exploration of concepts using human cadavers, animal demonstrations, and computer-assisted instruction. Prerequisites: BIO-201 and BIO-201L. Co-requisite: BIO-202.||1|
|EXS-214||Care, Treatment, and Prevention of Athletic Injuries||This course is designed to provide students with a basic knowledge and understanding of the principles of sports medicine, the care and treatment of athletic trauma, and the use of proper conditioning principles for the prevention of injury. Prerequisites: One of the following combinations: 1) BIO-155 and BIO-155L; or 2) BIO-201, BIO-201L, BIO-202, and BIO-202L; or 3) BIO-360, BIO-360L, and either BIO-474 or BIO-484. Co-requisite: EXS-214L.||3|
|EXS-214L||Care, Treatment, and Prevention of Athletic Injuries Lab||This lab is designed to complement and support the principles taught in EXS-214. The course is designed to provide students with a basic knowledge and understanding of the principles of sports medicine; the care and treatment of athletic trauma; safety and its importance in related settings; and the use of proper conditioning principles of the prevention of injury. Prerequisites: One of the following combinations: 1) BIO-155 and BIO-155L; or 2) BIO-201, BIO-201L, BIO-202, and BIO-202L; or 3) BIO-360, BIO-360L, and either BIO-474 or BIO-484. Co-requisite: EXS-214.||1|
|BIO-457||Genetics||This writing-intensive course provides a comprehensive examination of the principles of heredity and variation, including Mendelian, molecular, and population genetics. Students explore topics such as gene mapping, DNA structure and replication, population genetics, and molecular change. Prerequisites: BIO-181 and BIO-181L.||4|
|EXS-335||Kinesiology||This course is an analysis of human movement, integrating knowledge of the skeletal, muscular, and neurological systems with the effects that gravity, friction, internal and external forces, and the laws of motion have on their functions. Topics presented include biomechanics of human bone, joint, and skeletal muscle; structure and function of the upper extremity, lower extremity, and spine; concepts of linear and angular kinematics and kinetics as applied to human motion; equilibrium and stability on land; and motion through a fluid medium of air or water. Included is the application of these factors to various types of physical skills. Prerequisites: BIO-155 and BIO-155L. Co-requisite: EXS-335L.||3|
|EXS-335L||Kinesiology Lab||This laboratory course is designed to apply the anatomical, kinesiological, and biomechanical principles learned in the lecture course to human body movement. Movement of all of the major joints of the body is analyzed by relative and absolute joint position and muscle action, and biomechanical terms - such as linear and angular kinematics, friction, work, power, energy, and torque - are applied to human motion. Prerequisites: BIO-155 and BIO-155L. Co-requisite: EXS-335.||1|
|PSY-361||Attitude and Social Behavior||This course provides students with an in-depth look at social influences on human behavior. It is intended for students who are interested in theory and research on how attitudes influence and are influenced by behavior. Emphasis will be placed on biological explanations of social behaviors in animals, group processes, observational learning, helping others, attachment, social support, modeling, and the factors that affect attitude change. Prerequisites: PSY-102 or SOC-102.||4|
|EXS-340||Physiology of Exercise||This writing-intensive course is a study of the effects of exercise on the body. Topics include nutrition as the basis for physical activity; how energy is produced and utilized during physical activity; the energy delivery and vital functions of the respiratory, cardiovascular, muscular, and nervous systems during exercise; how these systems can be enhanced through training; the impact of ergogenic aids and environmental stress on performance; and the effect of exercise on body composition, weight control, aging, and disease prevention. The bodys responses and adaptations to exercise at the systemic, as well as the subcellular level, are also discussed. Prerequisites: BIO-155 and BIO-155L. Co-requisite: EXS-340L.||3|
|EXS-340L||Physiology of Exercise-Lab||This is a course of field and laboratory experiences designed to reinforce the basic principles learned in the lecture course. Skills of measurement and evaluation, including computerized methods employed to facilitate testing, are applied to physiological and systemic principles of exercise. Prerequisites: BIO-155 and BIO-155L. Co-requisite: EXS-340.||1|
|EXS-370||Pharmacology: Drug Use and Abuse||This course examines current theories and practices of pharmacology and epidemiology of drug use as related to athletic training and sports medicine. Additional topics include drug abuse issues, such as: performance-enhancing substances; psychological, legal, social, and cultural implications; and approaches to solving drug abuse problems. Prerequisites: EXS-214 and EXS-214L.||4|
|PSY-357||Lifespan Development||This is a course in developmental psychology with emphasis on the physical, social, cognitive, personality, and moral developments within an individual. The course is designed to provide an understanding of the transitions of life from conception to death. Prerequisite: PSY-102.||4|
|HLT-302||Spirituality and Christian Values in Health Care and Wellness||This course explores the concepts of health, wellness, and spirituality from the Christian perspective and as they relate to the holistic needs of patients, providers, and health care communities. Students reflect upon the concepts of healing and the caregiver's role in meeting the spiritual needs of diverse populations while seeking to advance health and wellness within the context of a healing paradigm.||4|
|EXS-458||Theory and Practice of Strength Conditioning||This course is the study of the physiological responses to exercise, exercise technique, program design for anaerobic and aerobic exercise, exercise prescription principles, and organization and administration of strength and conditioning facilities. This course provides students information on the design and implementation of a successful strength and conditioning program. Emphasis is placed on assessment, description, and analysis of sport movement, and designing weight training programs to enhance performance variables. Workshops reinforce these goals, focusing on assessment of athletic performance, as well as the development of musculoskeletal flexibility, speed, agility, quickness, strength, and power. This course assists those students who desire to take the National Strength and Conditioning Associations Certified Strength and Conditioning (CSCS) Exam. Prerequisites: EXS-340 and EXS-340L.||4|
|PSY-352||Health Psychology||This course reflects psychologys growing interest in health-related issues, and gives students an overview of the broad topics in health psychology. Topics include theories of health behavior, patient adherence, stress and pain development and management, cancer and chronic illness development and management, and health-related behaviors such as substance use, proper nutrition, and exercise. This course focuses on health from a biopsychosocial perspective. Prerequisite: PSY-102.||4|
|HLT-305||Legal and Ethical Principles in Health Care||This course introduces students to major ethical theories, principles, and decision-making models that form the basis for resolution of ethical dilemmas in the health care field. Guidelines for legal and ethical practice are also examined from the context of regulatory requirements established by accrediting and certifying agencies.||4|
|General Education Requirements:||34 - 40 credits|
|Elective Requirements:||8 - 12 credits|
|Total Degree Requirements:||120 credits|
* Please refer to the Academic Catalog for more information. Program subject to change.