Program Information Sheet

Thank you for your interest in the Rehabilitation Sciences Doctoral Program (RHB-DP) at the University of Kentucky. My name is Dr. Esther Dupont-Versteegden and I am the Director of Graduate Studies for the RHB-DP. Let me provide you with a brief introduction and description of our graduate program in rehabilitation sciences. The RHB-DP is a designed to produce leaders in Rehabilitation Sciences for the professions of Communication Sciences & Disorders, Athletic Training, Occupational Therapy, and Physical Therapy. Our goal is to prepare capable academicians with the ability to advance knowledge through research and scholarship, with broad understanding of the rehabilitation sciences, expertise in their discipline, and skills to fulfill leadership responsibilities. Through research, academic, and clinical experiences, the program is designed to prepare graduates to conduct rehabilitation-related research, teach at the university level, direct discipline-specific educational programs, work in the rehabilitation services field, and collaborate with other professionals to provide leadership in rehabilitation and health.

The RHB-DP offers a unique multi-disciplinary, multi-institutional emphasis. Students will study with professionals from all four disciplines and course work is offered by faculty members from four institutions within the Commonwealth of Kentucky: University of Kentucky, Eastern Kentucky University, Murray State University, and Western Kentucky University. Our program is dedicated to the idea of interdisciplinary education, research, and service delivery. Core courses may be taken at any of the participating universities and at many sites throughout the Commonwealth of Kentucky through live interactive television with the UK campus in Lexington. While distance learning is widely used for course work, the program cannot be completed through distance education only.

With regard to admissions requirements, students must hold a professional or post-professional master’s degree. Eligibility for licensure or clinical certification in Communication Disorders, Athletic Training, Occupational Therapy, or Physical Therapy is encouraged, but not required for admission into the program. Those with basic science graduate degrees and interests are also welcomed and encouraged to apply and will be considered equally for admission. Acceptance into the program is dependent upon identifying and matching your area of research interest with an RHB faculty member willing to serve as your doctoral studies program mentor. The length and content of a program of study depends upon the student’s educational background and enrollment status (full or part-time).

Our curriculum consists of a minimum of 44 hours of course work. The curriculum includes:

  • a required core sequence of classes in rehabilitation theory and practice;
  • training in clinical and/or experimental research methodologies related to rehabilitation;
  • advanced study in specialization areas consistent with the student's discipline and research interests;
  • research apprenticeships in various labs across different fields of expertise;
  • a teaching apprenticeship; and
  • a dissertation.

We follow a Fall semester only admission guideline, except under very special circumstances for students. For international students, a Fall start date is required by the Graduate School. All applications for graduate study at the University of Kentucky Graduate School must be submitted on-line through the graduate school website. Access the needed forms and begin your application.

This website also has important information for international students with regard to mandatory English language proficiencies (TOEFL and IELST).

  • Details on doctoral education at UK, the Graduate Bulletin can be found on the Graduate School Bulletin
  • RHB Doctoral Program application requirements can be found on the RHB Doctoral Program admissions website
  • Further general information about the Rehabilitation Sciences Program is available on the RHB Website
  • Please note: The application deadline for international students is March 15th and the deadline for domestic students is June 1st for Fall admission.

If you have questions regarding the graduate program or application process, please do not hesitate to contact me via e-mail. As Director of Graduate Studies for the RHB-DP, I will be your point person regarding application procedures and RHB program requirements. Thank you again for your interest in our graduate program.


Esther E. Dupont-Versteegden, Ph.D.