High School Advanced Preparation

Preparation for physical therapy or occupational therapy school can begin as early as high school. Follow these four guidelines and review the specific precollege classes recommended for pre-PT/OT students.

Basic Preparation Guidelines

  • Study as many different sciences as you can (e.g., a year each of biology, chemistry, physics, and geology).
  • Take as many mathematics classes as you can.
  • Study as many foreign languages as you can.
  • Develop as many computer skills as you can.

Recommended Precollege Classes


  • One year of biology
  • One year of chemistry
  • At least three years of math, including basic and advanced algebra, geometry, and trigonometry
  • English (ability to write and read at the appropriate level, including understanding math word problems)

Strongly Recommended:

  • Physics
  • Calculus
  • Advanced biology, anatomy, or physiology
  • Speech
  • Computer sciences
  • Social studies and history

Additional Learning:

  • Medical terminology
  • Critical thinking
  • Logic (rationale, deductive and inductive reasoning)
  • Professional behaviors (punctuality, attendance, attire, personal interactions with patients or a healthcare team, etc.)

Note: This information is current for the 2023-24 academic year; however, all stated academic information is subject to change. Please refer to the current Academic Catalog for more information.

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