• A fellowship program is a postprofessional planned learning experience comprised of a curriculum encompassing the essential knowledge, skills, and responsibilities of an advanced physical therapist within a defined area of subspecialty practice.

    A fellowship candidate has either completed a residency program in a related specialty area or is an American Board of Physical Therapy Specialties (ABPTS) board-certified specialist in a related area of specialty.

    *Please note: Fellowship programs that held accreditation, candidacy status, or were actively undergoing a candidacy review on or before December 31, 2017, have until January 1, 2020, to come into compliance with ABPTRFE’s 2018 Quality Standards. Therefore, these programs may continue to accept applicants who are not residency graduates or hold ABPTS board certification to the fellowship program through December 31, 2019.

    ABPTRFE currently accredits clinical physical therapist fellowship programs in the following areas:

    • Critical Care
    • Hand Therapy
    • Movement System
    • Neonatology
    • Orthopaedic Manual Physical Therapy
    • Performing Arts
    • Spine
    • Sports Division 1
    • Upper Extremity Athlete

    ABPTRFE also accredits non-clinical physical therapist fellowship programs in the area of Higher Education Leadership.

    Many programs utilize RF-PTCAS for their admission process.

    For those programs that do not participant in RF-PTCAS, please contact them directly for their admission process.


  • Last Updated: 11/29/2018
    Contact: resfel@apta.org