Exercise and Rehabilitation Science, PHD

Program Director: Marie Hoeger Bement M.P.T., Ph.D.
Exercise and Rehabilitation Science website

Degree Offered

Doctor of Philosophy

Department of Physical Therapy Mission

To prepare future health care practitioners and researchers with an education rich in clinical experiences, community outreach, and research opportunities to develop leaders guided by the values of “Cura Personalis.”

Learning Outcomes

The exercise and rehabilitation science (EXRS) doctoral program is built on the knowledge and skills of a licensed post-baccalaureate trained clinician or master's student in a related field and provides students with advanced knowledge and skills related to clinical and translational research in fields including pathokinesiology, neuroscience, motor and respiratory control, exercise physiology, medical decision making, skeletal muscle physiology and sports medicine.

Graduates of the Doctoral Degree in Exercise and Rehabilitation Science Will be Able to:

  1. Deliver an effective oral presentation of the dissertation proposal.
  2. Demonstrate a comprehensive understanding of pertinent literature.
  3. Identify research questions or problems that are pertinent and significant.
  4. Gather, organize, analyze and report data using an appropriate conceptual framework.
  5. Adhere to requirements for protection of human subjects.
  6. Interpret results in a way that relates to the research findings and adds to understanding in the field.
  7. Demonstrate commitment to advancing the values of scholarship in their own careers and in the mentorship of others.

Program Description

The doctor of philosophy in exercise and rehabilitation science builds upon the core competencies of clinical degrees (anatomy, physiology, pharmacology, medical ethics and patient care) with course work in rehabilitation systems physiology, applied neurophysiology, statistics, molecular genetics and research methodology. Students gain extensive research experience in the exercise, rehabilitation and movement disorders research core laboratories housed within the exercise science program and the Department of Physical Therapy. Research includes the use of EMG, transcranial magnetic stimulation, motion analysis, biomechanics, isokinetic dynamometry, fMRI, body composition, bone mineral density, diagnostic ultrasound and acute and chronic exercise training to explore mechanisms of dysfunction and develop theories for restoring function in people with movement disorders. Movement disorders cross age, gender and all ethnic boundaries and include populations with multiple sclerosis, post-traumatic stress disorder, traumatic brain injury, stroke, cancer, Type II diabetes, survivors, pediatric obesity, cardiovascular diseases and chronic pain syndromes.

The Clinical and Translational Science Institute of Southeastern Wisconsin is a major partner with Marquette’s exercise and rehabilitation science program. Marquette’s participation in this consortium expands opportunities for academic, medical and clinical research within Milwaukee. CTSI partner institutions include the Medical College of Wisconsin, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, the Milwaukee School of Engineering, the Zablocki V.A. Medical Center, Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin and Versiti Blood Center of Wisconsin.

General Information

Students applying to the doctoral program must have successfully completed either a master’s degree in a related discipline or a post-baccalaureate clinical degree (D.P.T., M.P.T., M.P.A., M.S.N., M.D., etc.) with a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.000 (based on a 4.000 scale). Applicants to the master's program must have an undergraduate degree in a related field with a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.000 (based on a 4.000 scale).

The GRE (if applicable) must have been completed within the previous six years, and official scores must be sent to Marquette University directly from Educational Testing Service.

Academic Standards

A cumulative GPA of 3.000 is required in the exercise and rehabilitation science program. The Policies tab describes the criteria and procedures for academic warnings, probation, removal of probation and dismissal. The exercise and rehabilitation science program strictly follows these policies and procedures.