Frequently Asked Questions

GENERAL PROGRAM ADMISSIONS QUESTIONS

Do I need my immunization records/evidence before I start the MScPT program?

In order for us to provide clinical exposure for our students in our PT program, these immunizations are required as well as a recent Criminal Record and Vulnerable Sector Check and CPR level C. You will be required to provide evidence of these records before the end of September of the incoming year.  We acknowledge that you will have to start this process before knowing whether you are accepted into our program. Rest assured that if you are interested in Health Care in any capacity, these immunizations or a slight variation will be required regardless of which school you attend.

Can I enroll to start in January?

Enrollment is only offered in September of each year; therefore enrollment is not possible.

Is your program offered online?

Due to the nature of our program, it is not available online. In addition, please note that distance learning is not available either.

Is your program offered as part-time studies?

Due to the nature of our program, part-time studies are not available. Students must enroll as full-time students.

Do you accept transfer students from other physiotherapy schools? The School of Physiotherapy does not accept transfer students from other physiotherapy programs.

The School of Physiotherapy does not accept transfer students from other physiotherapy programs.

Can I apply with a three-year degree?


It is preferable that applicants have a four-year undergraduate degree. However, a three-year degree plus an additional 30 credit hours of university courses at advanced levels, which can include prerequisite courses, will be considered.

Do I have to carry a full-course load every year to be eligible to apply?

No.

Does my undergraduate need to be in science or kinesiology?

No. All recognized degrees that meet the requirement of 120 credits/units or equivalent are treated equally in the evaluation process. The prerequisite courses are designed to prepare applicants for the program regardless of their previous academic area of concentration.

Do DAL students have a priority over those from other Atlantic Province post-secondary institutions?

No. Applicants who have graduated from or who are currently attending DAL do not have priority or preference over applicants from other post-secondary institutions within the 4 Atlantic Provinces.

What does a full course equivalent mean at my school?

Universities across Canada often use different credit systems. Typically, a full course at DAL is equivalent to six credits (a fall/winter course or a two semester course), and half courses are worth three credits (half-year course or a one semester course).

Can I have my qualifications, transcripts, and other documentation evaluated in advance of the official application being submitted?

No. The department will only review transcripts, qualifications, and other documentation once an applicant has submitted during the admissions period.

I completed courses at another university as a one-term or full year exchange student. Do I need to submit a transcript from my exchange program?

Yes.

I am a previous/current Dalhousie student. Do I need to forward copies of my Dalhousie transcripts with my application?

If you have previously attended or are currently attending Dalhousie University, it is not necessary to have hard copies of your Dalhousie transcripts sent to our department along with your application package. However, if you have previously attended any other post-secondary institution in addition to Dalhousie, you must forward two copies of transcripts from each institution. 

What is the tuition cost for your MSc PT program?

Refer to the Fee Calculator provided on the Money Matters website.

I am an international student so I need to submit a TOEFL report. What is your Institution Code and Department Code?

The Institution Code is 0915 and the Department Code is 48.

I missed the deadline! Can I still apply?

No. Applicants are expected to be fully aware of all important dates and deadlines.

 

Can practicum hours count as volunteer hours?

No, practicums and internships are not considered volunteer hours because they are degree requirements.

 

PREREQUISITE QUESTIONS

Is there a minimum grade requirement for the prerequisite courses?

No.

I completed my prerequisite courses at the college level. Is this acceptable?

Prerequisites completed at the college level will only be accepted if they have been transferred to the university transcript with equivalent courses and grades (or pass/fail).
 

How do I determine a course equivalency from another university?

To determine equivalent courses from other universities go to Dalhousie Online: Transfer Credit Equivalencies or contact the department for which equivalency is being sought. (See www.dalonline.dal.ca)
 

Do prerequisite courses have to be at a certain level?

Unless identified with a specific course number, the prerequisite courses can be at the first year university level or above.

Can I use one course to cover two different prerequisite courses?

No.

Can prerequisites be in progress at the time of application?

Yes, as long as they are completed no later than June 1 of the admission year. We need a final transcript showing completion of degree and all prerequisite courses by June 15 of the admission year.

Does your school accept online courses?

We do accept online courses provided they meet Dalhousie’s equivalency.

What are Languages, Humanities and/or Social Sciences, Humanities courses?


Languages involve the study of spoken or written communication. Examples include the study of specific languages, including French, Spanish, Italian, etc. Humanities are academic disciplines which study the human condition, using methods that are primarily analytic, critical, or speculative. Examples include History, Religion, Philosophy, Classics, Literature/English, etc. Social science is the scientific study of human society and social relationships. Examples include Anthropology, Political Science, Economics, Sociology, Psychology, etc.

Physics and/or Biomechanics are no longer listed as a prerequisite course requirement, but they are still listed as highly recommended, do I still need them to apply to your program?

Human motion, joint function and exercise prescription are all components of a physiotherapy in which biomechanics are strongly integrated. We do teach human biomechanics in Dalhousie's Physiotherapy Program, therefore, these courses are no longer required as a prerequisite. Your admission into our program will not depend on whether you have taken them or not.

 

GPA QUESTIONS

What is the average GPA of the incoming class?

The average admission GPA over the past 5 years is 3.81/4.3.

I completed a chiropractic diploma, will those marks be counted towards my GPA?

No. Marks from programs leading to Chiropractic, Naturopathic or Homeopathic diplomas are not included in the GPA calculation.

I’m a graduate student. Are my graduate level marks used in my GPA calculation for interview consideration?

No.

Can I upgrade my GPA for consideration into your program?


The Faculty of Graduate Studies will allow applicants who have already completed a four year undergraduate degree to take a maximum of five courses at third and fourth year levels to increase their 60-credit hour applicant pool GPA for consideration into a graduate level program at Dalhousie University. These courses must be completed before our application deadline which is January 31st. The grades obtained from courses taken after your 4 year degree will replace your earliest grades (typically, first term of 3rd year) so you need to look at your transcript to see what grades you received in that term and if it is worth it to upgrade. You do not want to replace an A or an A+ to risk getting a lower grade. Regardless of how you do in these courses, they will contribute to your 60 credit hour admission GPA.

If I need to obtain prerequisite courses after I have completed my undergraduate degree, will these marks count in my overall GPA calculation?

Prerequisite courses (at 1st or 2nd year level) taken after a 4-year undergraduate degree are not included in the 60 credit admission GPA. These courses are only checked off as having completed the prerequisite course requirement for admission.

My University uses a 4.0 grade scale system. How do I convert my admission GPA to Dalhousie University's 4.3 grade scale system?

Instructions can be found on the Faculty of Graduate Studies website.

How is GPA calculated?

We will consider your last 60 credit hours completed by December 31, starting with the fall session of your current academic year and working backwards. 

Refer to the Faculty of Graduate Studies Office website on how to calculate admission GPAs. If you are still unsure, email your concerns to ptadmissions@dal.ca

Will summer or distance education courses be counted in GPA?

Yes, as long as they are at the university level.

 

APPLICATION QUESTIONS

I completed my Graduate Application Form online and I paid my $115 application fee. How long does it take for my academic referee(s) to receive their email notification link?

Allow 5 business days for your referee(s) be contacted by the e-reference system.

Can you send me an application package?

We encourage all applicants to view all program and application information (including downloadable forms) on our website. 

How much is the application fee?

The fee for applying to our program is now $115.00 (Canadian dollars) for each application submitted. This fee is non-refundable. Applications which do not include the application fee will not be processed. DO NOT SEND CASH. If paying by credit card, cheque, or money order, please indicate method of payment on your Dalhousie Graduate Application (Page 3). Please forward your application with payment to the Registrar’s Office at the following address:

Registrar's Office
Dalhousie University
PO Box 15000
Halifax, NS  B3H 4R2

I am reapplying to the program, can I use any of my admissions documents from last year?

If you are reapplying to the program, transcripts and reference letters can be reused only if you applied last year. You must ask for permission from your academic referees to reuse their letters and provide proof of this (via email) to ptadmissons@dal.ca. If you choose to reuse documents, all applicants must ensure that the school has the most up-to-date version of all transcripts. If you have completed any additional courses at any of your institutions, you should re-submit new copies of official transcripts. 

I applied using the online application, what else do I need to do to apply?

Please note that the online application only replaces the Dalhousie Graduate Application of the application process. All applicants still need to ensure that all other supplemental documents are submitted directly to the School of Physiotherapy. Detailed information on which documents are required can be found on in the Admissions tab on our webpage.

I believe I am a mature applicant. Are the admissions requirements different for me?

Applicants who have been out of University for more than five years qualify as mature applicants. Mature applicants must still meet the same admission requirements as all other applicants. Mature applicants must submit two academic references as well, but can include a third letter from a professional experience. The professional referee must use the Confidential Reference Letter Form (hard copy), check off the non- academic box on the form, and can attach a personally-written letter to the form.   

WHAT ARE SOME OF THE REASONS WHY MY APPLICATION MAY BE CONSIDERED INCOMPLETE?

1. School of Physiotherapy did not receive a Supplementary Application Form to accompany your Faculty of Graduate Studies application.  
2. The Supplementary Application Form was missing information.
3. Only one academic reference was provided. Please follow up with your academic referees to ensure they have completed their reference.
4. The academic referee was not “Academic”, meaning they did not have an appointment at a post-secondary educational institution and/or the academic referee has not completed Graduate level studies (MSc or PhD).
5. Volunteer hours were submitted, but it was unclear from your supervisor whether these were accumulated in the past two years. Please ensure that volunteer hours listed are only those accumulated in the past 2 years.
6. Missing volunteer supervisor confirmation letter. We have provided a template for this letter that directs your supervisor to include the required information. Please follow up with your supervisor to ensure they have completed their reference and emailed it to the School of Physiotherapy.  
7. Grade point average (GPA) below 3.3. We do not accept students with a GPA under 3.3 (based on the Dalhousie University Grade Point Scale).

 

APPLICATION FORM QUESTIONS

What are the admissions procedures and where can I find the application forms?

We have provided a detailed overview of our admissions procedures and selection criteria on our admissions weblink.  All applicants for graduate programs at Dalhousie must complete the Faculty of Graduate Studies Application for Admission Form. In addition, Physiotherapy applicants must complete the School Supplementary Application Form available at www.physiotherapy.dal.ca as of September 1.

 

When can I expect to hear from the school regarding the status of my application?

The School of Physiotherapy, in accordance with Dalhousie University’s Covid-19 response, has cancelled the admission interview for this year. The School will be using the CASPer and GPA scores, based on information received to date, to determine an admissions score. We will be making offers to candidates by April-end. Applicants who have been placed on a waiting list will be contacted if a spot becomes available; this may happen at any time between May and the first week in September.

How do I know whether the department has received my individual documents?

Due to the volume of applications, we are unable to confirm receipt of admission documents to applicants via phone or email. You can check the status of your received documents by logging into the online application system (for questions on how to do this, please contact the Registrar’s Office at 902-494-2450). Please note, however, that it can take up to five weeks after the admission deadline for the online checklist to show the status of received documents.

Can my referees use the print version, confidential reference letter form?

No. When you apply using the online version of the Dalhousie Application, you will have the option in your online application to enter your academic referees’ university email addresses for electronic submission. The electronic reference system will ONLY accept references from accredited university email addresses. Non-academic reference letters must be submitted by the referee using their institution email account to ptadmissions@dal.ca using the Confidential Reference Letter form.

Can I contact the Admissions Committee for information pertaining to the Physiotherapy program at Dalhousie University?

No. The Admissions committee can address specific questions pertaining to your application that may need to be clarified from information in the admissions application package. The committee cannot provide guidance on program selection and professional questions. Please see the FAQ “Is physiotherapy right for me?” and consult appropriate university websites including the Faculty of Graduate Studies, School of Physiotherapy, Dalhousie Accessibility, etc. In addition, students are encouraged to not only focus their attention on Dalhousie University but to explore other physiotherapy programs, both national and international, to increase their awareness of physiotherapy education models and school structures.

 

CASPer QUESTIONS

What is CASPer?

CASPer is an individual online test that assesses for non-academic competencies and interpersonal characteristics that are important for successful students and graduates of our programs; it complements the other elements in our applicant selection process. The competencies and characteristics include:
• professionalism 

• communication

• collaboration

• ethics

• empathy
The CASPer test is comprised of 12 video or text-based scenarios. Following each scenario, you will be required to answer a set of 3 probing questions within a total of 5 minutes; each response is graded by a different rater.

How do I register for CASPer?

Applicants must manually register on takecasper.com, have their identification validated, and reserve a test time that matches their choice of program(s) and application cycle.

When do I need to take CASPer if I am appying to Physiotherapy at Dalhousie?

You are required to take CASPer prior to the January 31st application deadline.
 
Applicants who have not completed a CASPer test designated for Fall admissions by the application deadline will have their application cancelled by the university.
 
CASPer results are only valid for the indicated application cycle, and only for the specified program type.

How can I prepare for CASPer?

Because it is a test of your personal characteristics and non-academic competencies, no studying is required for CASPer.

You are encouraged to familiarize yourself with the test structure and technical requirements by exploring the sample CASPer content at www.takeCASPer.com, and ensure you have a quiet environment to take the test.  You can also view the company's video information session here.

Can I have access to my CASPer test results?

The results of the CASPer test are never disclosed to applicants.

What is the fee for CASPer?

Are accommodations available for applicants with disabilities?

If you are taking the CASPer test and require testing accommodations, we recommend that a formal request and supporting medical documentation be provided at least three weeks in advance of your scheduled test date, in order to allow sufficient time for document review and a decision on the appropriate accommodation.

Accommodations are approved on a case by case basis, we should be able to accept the same documents used to approve accommodations for other tests (eg. MCAT).  Please email your documents to support@takecasper.com, (or FAX to 1-416-352-7615). You may also request a link to directly upload your documents to a secure encrypted folder.  We will let you know if we need further supporting documents after a preliminary review.

In terms of your documentation, we are looking for some kind of professional medical assessment to describe your condition and what accommodations you will need to take the test comfortably.  We strive to provide a CASPer test that is accessible to every applicant. The types of accommodated tests that we offer include:  extended time, closed captions, described video, the use of voice-to-text / text-to-speech software, or a scribe/reader.

Please note that all documents submitted are strictly confidential, and will only be used to determine accommodation decisions. Your accommodation status will not be shared with the academic program(s) you have applied for, or anyone evaluating your test.

Technical problems or other questions regarding CASPer?

Use the support button on takecasper.com  or email support@takecasper.com.

How long from my test date does it take for Dalhousie to receive my scores?

Approximately 3 weeks.

 

CLINICAL REQUIREMENT QUESTIONS

Which CPR course is required for your MSc PT program?

A (Standard) First Aid/CPR certificate (Level C or Health Care Provider) is required. This must be done prior to Placement 1.

Do I need to have both a record of my Hepatitis B shots and serology?

Yes, in some instances the record of Hep B immunisations is not available and in that case it is up to the Academic Coordinator of Clinical Education (ACCE), to decide whether to admit the student to the Clinical Education programme on the basis of positive serology for Hep B Ab. (So far, the ACCE has been 100% favourable to serology only admission.)

Can I do my TB tests in the fall, after I arrive at Dal?

Yes, you can have them done at the Dalhousie Student Health & Wellness Clinic on Tuesdays without an appointment?

What happens if I am not immune to Hep B?

Your doctor will make the call on whether you have one booster or have to repeat the Hep B series.  In many case 1 booster followed by serology one month later establishes immunity to Hep B.  Some students will have to repeat the series of shots and serology.  This is a 7 month process.  Students have gone on placement without being immune.  (The school assumes the risk of legal action in this case.) Those students must be given information on Hep B and sign the NSHA waiver which absolves the NSHA of legal repercussions in case of infection i.e. Dal assumes the risk).

Can my CRC/VSS be sent directly to the school?

Yes, they can be sent by mail or email to the Clinical Education Assistant.

Do you accept digital CRC/VSS?

Yes, you can email the documents to ptclined@dal.ca

The police require a letter from the school to perform the CRC/VSS. Is it possible for you to send me such a letter?

Yes, the school will provide a letter for you to give to the police stating that the CRC/VSS is a MScPT programme requirement.

My doctor gave me a booster, however I need another one after I get to Halifax. Where do I go in Halifax to have this done?

You can go to the Dalhousie Student Health and Wellness Clinic at 1246 LeMarchant St.

Where can I get my serology done?

Please go to the Dalhousie Student Wellness Clinic and request serology.  They will give you a requisition for the required serology and you can take that requisition to the Halifax Infirmary, where they will take blood.  The HI will send the report back to the Dal clinic where you can pick it up and bring to the school.

My CRC/VSS is not in a sealed envelope. Is this OK?

Yes, the school will accept it.

Is the flu shot mandatory?

No, it is recommended, but not mandatory.

Can I use records that are older than six months?

Your CRC/VSS must have been done within the last 6 months.  For serology records, 6 months is ideal, but they must have been done within the last 12 months.

I had TB testing done 2 years ago. Do I need to have it redone?

You will need to submit a record of a prior 2 Step TB test and a current 1 step test.