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  1. How many residents are in the program? We accept 4 residents per year.
  2. How long is the program? The program is 12 months long, beginning each year in August.
  3. Is the program open to new graduates? Yes! We have employed both novice and more experienced PTs. There are benefits both to starting a career with residency and to waiting until you have more experience. Optimal timing differs for each applicant.
  4. Where do residents practice? Residents' primary employment is either with the University Orthopaedic Center (UOC) or the Salt Lake City VA Medical Center (SLCVA). All residents have secondary employment and do a moderate % of their total patient care time at their non-home institution. Residents have full access to all of the resources at both institutions. 
  5. What are characteristics of successful residents? Desirable applicants include those who:
    • Demonstrate strong fundamental skills in the principles of clinical reasoning and the application of manual examination and treatment procedures.
    • Desire to practice at the highest level of evidence-guided practice and demonstrate commitment to promoting the continued integration of practice, research, and scholarly inquiry in orthopaedic physical therapy.
    • Possess superior verbal and written communication skills.
    • Are willing to work diligently on self-reflection and are able to honestly and accurately assess their performance and thinking.
    • Seek and respond to feedback.
    • Project confidence and can justify clinical decisions while remaining open to new ideas.
  6. How long has this program been in operation? The program's first cohort matriculated in 2012. The program has been accredited since 2014.
  7. What is the graduation and OCS pass rate? To date, 100% of our residents have graduated on time. Our first-time pass rate for the OCS exam is 91%.


  1. Do residents earn a salary? Yes, resident salaries for their 30 patient care hours per week are in the $42-46K range with benefits (equivalent to 0.75 FTE, employer and experience dependent).
  2. Do residents receive standard benefits? Yes, prorated to 0.75 FTE (employer dependent).
  3. How much does the program cost? Residents pay a fee to the program, not to exceed $4500. The fee may be paid over the first six months.
  4. Are there any other financial benefits? The program covers the cost of the APTA Basic Clinical Instructor Certification course. See additional benefits: ABPTRFE.

A week in the life...

  1. What is a typical weekly schedule? Residents do patient care for 30 hours/week. This includes 4 hours/week one-on-one mentored time. Most clinic hours are in the afternoons M-F, leaving weekday mornings free for specialty clinics, didactics, and teaching. Average teaching time is 4 hours/week in Fall semester and 1-2 hours/week in Spring semester. In-person didactic sessions are scheduled 1.5-2 hours weekly with intermittent supplemental courses in advanced regional anatomy and imaging. Specialty clinic time averages 3 hours/week over the year but is back loaded in the second half of the residency year.
  2. What specialty clinic experiences are available to residents? Residents spend an average of 3 hours / week in specialty clinics, exposing them to the breadth of orthopaedic patient management. See specialty sites here.
  3. What is the teaching expectation? Residents assist in musculoskeletal coursework in the entry-level DPT program at the University of Utah. In the Fall, residents assist in labs and with content review and testing in the Tests and Measures course. In the Spring, residents' main teaching responsibility is to mentor entry-level students in the UOC and SLCVA as well as in the student-run pro bono clinics. They may also choose to assist in manual therapy labs.
  4. What about research? While our emphasis is on advancement of clinical skill, we believe residents benefit from participating in clinical research. Residents work with a research mentor and participate in the stage(s) of the projects that are occurring during their residency year.
  5. Any other interesting experiences? Residents submit an abstract for CSM and/or another professional conference, participate in community or clinical projects, and become APTA certified clinical instructors.


  1. Does this program use RF-PTCAS? At this point, we are able to manage an independent application process, which keeps application costs low for those who prioritize our program.
  2. How do I apply? See our admissions page for all application materials and timeline.


  1. Pre-employment requirements
  2. Utah licensure application / information.

Contact Us

Misha Bradford

Residency Program Director



ABPTRFE Accredited Program

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