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PhD in Allied Health Sciences with Specialization in Rehabilitation Sciences

Ph.D. in Allied Health Sciences with Specialization in Rehabilitation Sciences

The DElizabeth Hileoctor of Philosophy degree program in Allied Health Sciences was designed to promote knowledge across disciplines and informed collaboration among disciplines while promoting research in an area of specialization. Graduates are prepared to assume research faculty positions, particularly in allied health academic programs. At this time, specialization in Rehabilitation Sciences is available, with emphases in aging, biomechanics, cancer, musculoskeletal conditions, stroke or pediatrics.

An internationally prominent faculty, state-of-the-art facilities and new technology combine to make the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center a leader in education, research and patient care. One of only four comprehensive academic health centers in the nation with seven professional schools, the OU Health Sciences Center serves approximately 4,000 students on the Oklahoma City and Tulsa campuses.

The OU Health Sciences Center serves as the state's training facility for physicians, biomedical scientists, nurses, dentists, pharmacists, and a wide range of allied health and public health professionals. Located one mile south of the State Capitol, the OU Health Sciences Center is the cornerstone of the 300-acre Oklahoma Health Center, a complex of 30 public and private health care institutions.

Graduates of the PhD program will be expected to demonstrate competence relative to the following goals:

  • Understand core content in theories and models of rehabilitation, disability and/or assistive technology that underpin rehabilitation sciences
  • Understand the unique role and contribution to rehabilitation sciences of his/her entering discipline (e.g., physical therapy, occupational therapy, biomedical engineer)
  • Design and implement innovative research relevant to rehabilitation sciences with in-depth, state of the science, content in basic, clinical, social, medical and/or engineering sciences
  • Conduct and disseminate original research in rehabilitation sciences
  • Effectively teach and evaluate content in an area of expertise reflecting a rehabilitation science perspective

Faculty and students work closely together in the PhD program; therefore, prior to submission of an on-line application, a prospective student must identify a faculty member whose expertise is in the applicant's area of interest, has authority to chair a PhD committee, and agrees to serve as the students advisor if admitted.  

• Contact the Department of Rehabilitation Sciences to determine compatibility of educational goals with the program” should be contact a person, or check the website to determine.
• Go here  for a list of faculty and their interests and research activities.
• To see if a potential advisor has the authority to chair a doctoral committee (level 4), click on their name here.
• Contact potential advisors.

To be considered for admission to the Ph.D. program after identifying a potential advisor, an applicant must meet the following requirements:

  1. Have a minimum 3.0 cumulative GPA in graded graduate coursework. The College of Allied Health does not recognize academic forgiveness nor reprieve policies. All attempts of a course are included in the calculation of GPAs;
  2. Have completed at least 34 credit hours of graduate coursework;
  3. A master's degree is preferred. If the applicant has earned a master's degree, it need not be in Allied Health Sciences. Each student's Advisory Committee reserves the right to determine the appropriateness of any graduate work previously completed by a student and may limit transfer credit. A maximum of 30 hours of master's degree work may be applied to the 90 hours required for the Ph.D. degree;
  4. Submit official transcripts from all colleges and/or universities attended and non-refundable application fees;
  5. Take the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) - the General Test includes a Writing Assessment. A combined verbal and quantitative score of 1000 or above (new scoring example 153 verbal + 144 quantitative = 287) and a minimum writing score of 4.0 are preferred.  The OUHSC institution code for the GRE is 6902;
  6. Submit a career goal statement with the online application, which must include a description of how the applicant expects the program to assist in meeting professional goals. The admissions committee will consider the quality of the statement and the compatibility of the applicant's career goals with those of the program;
  7. Provide contact information for three (3) individuals who will submit letters of recommendation on your behalf.  Instructions are provided in the online application;
  8. If English is a second language, take the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL). Minimum requirements are a score of 570 (paper-based) or 88 (internet-based) within two years prior to application. The OUHSC institution code for the TOEFL is 6902; 
  9. All international/Non US Citizen applicants are required to have all transcripts/mark sheets from foreign institutions evaluated by World Education Services (WES) or Educational Credential Evaluators (ECE); and
  10. Application Procedure
  11. Submit a completed on-line applicationApplication deadlines are June 1 for fall, December 1 for spring, and May 1 for summer.

Students may expect additional costs that include, but are not limited to, a personal computer, textbooks, lab fees, insurance, and supplies. Students are required to assume financial responsibilities for expenses associated with clinical requirements. For financial aid information, contact the Financial Aid Office at (405) 271-2118. 

Additional cost information:
Bursar's Office Tuition and Fees
Student Financial Aid



Students will conduct original research under the guidance and supervision of Allied Health faculty. The doctoral dissertation is required.


Curriculum Requirements for the PhD degree in Allied Health Sciences (AHS)
Total number of post-baccalaureate hours for graduation = 90

The 90 post-baccalaureate hours consist of the following:

  • Number of hours in allied health sciences core = 10
  • Number of hours in individualized program 
    (at least six from the College of Allied Health) = 12
  • Number of hours in research and statistics = 18
  • Number of hours in dissertation research = 20
  • Possible number of hours in graduate prerequisite courses = 30

The courses a particular student will take will be determined in consultation with the student’s Academic Advisory Committee.

Interdisciplinary Core Courses Offered in AHS

Specialization Courses offered in Rehabilitation Sciences

Sample Plan of Study for Rehabilitation Sciences Specialization (with MS and/or 30 graduate credits approved transfer)

Course Descriptions

View Program Brochure

Department of Allied Health Sciences
College of Allied Health
The University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center
1200 N Stonewall Avenue, Room 3092
Oklahoma City, OK  73117-1215

Elizabeth Hile, PT, PhD, NCS, CLT
Director of PhD Program
Phone:  (405) 271-2273
Fax:  (405) 271-2432
Email Dr. Elizabeth Hile

Office of Academic and Student Affairs
Phone:  (405) 271-6588
Email the Office of Academic and Student Affairs

Prospective students are encouraged to visit the prospective student's page to utilize resources such as the transfer equivalency tables, admission statistics, job shadowing, gpa calculation, tuition cost, scholarships, student life, campus resources, etc.

Additional information regarding the PhD in Allied Health Sciences can be found in the current Student Handbook.