• Specialization is the process by which a physical therapist builds on a broad base of professional education and practice to develop a greater depth of knowledge and skills related to a particular area of practice. Clinical specialization in physical therapy responds to a specific area of patient need and requires knowledge, skill, and experience exceeding that of the physical therapist at entry to the profession and unique to the specialized area of practice.

    The specialist certification program was established to provide formal recognition for physical therapists with advanced clinical knowledge, experience, and skills in a special area of practice and to assist consumers and the health care community in identifying these physical therapists.


    Initial Certification Deadlines

    The 2017 Certification Application Submission Site is open. 

    • July 1, 2016: Certification deadline for
      - Cardiovascular & Pulmonary
      - Clinical Electrophysiology
      - Women's Health
    • July 31, 2016: Certification deadline for:
      - Geriatrics
      - Neurology
      - Orthopaedics
      - Pediatrics
      - Sports
    • August 31, 2016: Reapplication Deadline
    • November 30, 2016: Initial Certification Exam Fee Deadline

    Test Dates

    February 27 - March 18, 2017: 2017 Exam Dates

  • Last Updated: 6/21/2016
    Contact: spec-cert@apta.org