Doctor of Science in Rehabilitation Sciences
Gael Orsmond, Ph.D.
The goal of our rehabilitation science program is to prepare graduates with the skills needed to become successful educators, researchers, and innovators in the field of rehabilitation science. Our graduates will have strong research, teaching, and leadership skills needed to have successful careers in academia, industry, and other health services. Through didactic training and mentored research activities, we prepare students to teach in higher education, conduct research and disseminate scholarly work to peers, colleagues, and consumers.
Rehabilitation science is a highly interdisciplinary field of study aimed at enhancing activity, function, and participation in daily life and promoting health and wellness among persons with or at risk of developing disabilities. Rehabilitation science spans the entire life course, from infancy to older adulthood and addresses a wide variety of acute and chronic physical and psychological conditions that may negatively impact people’s abilities to do basic tasks and live their lives the way they want. Rehabilitation science integrates knowledge from diverse fields such as health psychology, social sciences, movement sciences, engineering, community and family systems, health services, and epidemiology with the foundational sciences of rehabilitation clinical practice.
The College that houses our rehabilitation science program is comprised of state-of-the-art research facilities. Our accomplished faculty collaborate extensively within and outside Boston University including several internationally renowned research centers: Health and Disability Research Institute, Clinical Epidemiology Research and Training Unit, Center for Psychiatric Rehabilitation, Neuromuscular Research Center, Center for Enhancing Activity and Participation among Persons with Arthritis (ENACT), and Center for Neurorehabilitation. Faculty also collaborate with colleagues at other Boston University schools and colleges such as the College of Engineering, the School of Medicine, and the School of Public Health, and with community programs including schools, shelters, residential programs, community wellness programs and Centers for Independent Living.
The ScD Program in Rehabilitation Sciences seeks outstanding applicants interested in broadening their career into rehabilitation science. Applicants will be considered with and without a clinical professional degree. Current students come from varied backgrounds, and include BS and MS graduates in biology, health sciences, psychology, and engineering, as well as experienced professionals with licensure or certification in fields such as athletic training, occupational therapy, physical therapy and psychiatric rehabilitation. See the Admissions Requirements page for more information.
The Doctoral Program in Rehabilitation Sciences prepares students for research and teaching careers in the rehabilitation sciences domain. The degree awarded is the Doctor of Science (ScD). Prerequisites for entering the program depend on the area of research that the student chooses. The program beyond the core requirements is flexible, and necessary coursework is determined on an individual basis by the student’s area of concentration.
Why Choose Boston University?
Start with the top national rankings of our rehabilitation sciences, occupational therapy and physical therapy programs. Then consider Boston University’s stature as a major research institution with state-of-the-art facilities. In outside research funding, the College of Health & Rehabilitation Sciences: Sargent College is among the highest at BU, with several important rehabilitation research projects currently in progress. That means you’ll have opportunities to observe and assist in a wide variety of research. Learn more about our faculty’s work in Sargent’s research labs by checking out Special Edition Inside Sargent: Accomplishments in Physical Therapy and Special Edition Inside Sargent: Accomplishments in Occupational Therapy.
Both the design of our projects and the amount of available funding distinguish our program. Our interdisciplinary faculty and the structure of Sargent College itself foster collaboration between departments. We also collaborate extensively with departments of other Boston University schools and colleges. A more conducive setting for pursuing this interdisciplinary health field would be hard to find.
Academically, you’ll have the benefit of studying with accomplished and internationally renowned experts. You’ll explore rehabilitation methods and strategies for evaluation, diagnosis, prognosis and intervention at many levels, from human movement and motor development to participation in society. Throughout the program, you’ll have the guidance and support of a faculty mentor to help you plan your coursework, choose research projects and select your specialization and dissertation topic.
We welcome applicants with or without a clinical professional degree. To learn more about our program, please contact Gael Orsmond, Ph.D..