This internet browser is outdated and does not support all features of this site. Please switch or upgrade to a different browser to display this site properly.

Units in first semester 2021 may be delivered online and in alternative formats whilst restrictions in relation to the COVID-19 pandemic are in place.

Female student in learning in a clinical setting

Clinical Physiotherapy

Professional Doctorate by Research


Doctor of Clinical Physiotherapy
4 years full-time
Curtin Perth


We offer a range of postgraduate courses for physiotherapists looking to extend their knowledge and qualifications. They are clinically-oriented to enhance your clinical reasoning, diagnostic, therapeutic, assessment, management and rehabilitation skills.

Top 1 %

Curtin is ranked in the top one per cent of universities worldwide.

Academic Ranking of World Universities 2020.

Get the Curtin edge

Access to leadership programs, specialist facilities and industry placements give you a competitive edge in the job market.

Global education

You’ll have access to a range of international study opportunities.

This inaugural coursework doctorate has been developed to allow you to develop your professional physiotherapy knowledge and skills, and complete a significant research program. As well as choosing from a range of specialist coursework units, you will study the philosophy of evidence-based practice and develop practical skills in identifying, acquiring, evaluating and using evidence. You will further your clinical decision-making skills through the use of statistical analysis, including the examination of various forms of statistical testing.

Clinical practice is a significant component of this course. During your placement you will detail a variety of case histories and evaluate each as a reflective practitioner.

In your second year your studies will prepare you for your doctoral thesis. You will explore research methods, learn to generate ideas for research projects and study the research process. You will also complete a minor research project and prepare a journal paper, oral or poster presentation of your findings.

Your final year will be devoted to your doctoral thesis.

Please note: Participation is obligatory in laboratory classes which require appropriate disrobing when acting as clients in the peer group, and physically manipulating patients including lifting and supporting people with disabilities.

Please refer to the handbook for additional course overview information.


Why research at Curtin

Curtin is widely recognised for applied research firmly focused on solving real-world problems. Underpinning our research endeavours are strong partnerships with industry, business and government, which result in outcomes that greatly benefit the broader community locally, nationally and globally. Our international reputation for being a strong partner in industry-driven research ensures our graduates enjoy outstanding opportunities to become innovators in their fields.

What you'll learn

  • apply highly advanced theoretical and clinical knowledge to the delivery of physiotherapy services in diverse and changing settings
  • critically analyse information to plan, implement and evaluate highly advanced physiotherapy practice
  • locate, extract and critically appraise evidence and information at a highly advanced level from a range of resources and apply to practice
  • use appropriate written, verbal and non-verbal communication skills for effective interactions with individuals and groups
  • use new and existing technologies relevant to specialised practice responsibly and effectively
  • understand and implement varied learning strategies and take responsibility for ongoing highly advanced professional and personal development
  • understand and apply ways of practicing highly advanced physiotherapy internationally through continued development of cross-cultural awareness within a global health care perspective
  • demonstrate respect for individual human rights and cultural diversity
  • independently and collaboratively apply highly advanced professional skills in an ethical manner across a range of professional settings

Admission criteria

Applicants require one of the following:

  • A master level degree in physiotherapy; or
  • A bachelor degree with first or upper second class honours in physiotherapy; or
  • A bachelor degree in physiotherapy plus a postgraduate diploma or equivalent in physiotherapy with a course-weighted average of not less than 75%

Applicants must be registered physiotherapists in Western Australia and be able to supply certification of fitness to undergo manipulative procedures.

Applicants holding a bachelor degree with good results in a relevant field and at least six years’ professional experience, or three years at a level which enables full membership of a relevant professional body may be considered.

Please contact the Faculty Graduate Studies Officer and/or Area Coordinator for enquiries.

Curtin requires all applicants to demonstrate proficiency in English. Specific English requirements for this course are outlined in the IELTS table below.

IELTS Academic (International English Language Testing System)
Overall band score6.5
  • Pearson Test of English Academic:
  • Certificate in Advanced English (CAE):

You may demonstrate English proficiency using the following tests and qualifications.

Essential requirements for admission (including fieldwork requirements)

Many of our courses require students to comply with additional essential requirements. Failure to comply with any of the essential requirements may potentially prevent the successful completion of the course and/or achieving professional registration.

Advanced standing

At Curtin, we understand that everyone’s study journey has been different.

You may have already studied some of the units (subjects) listed in your Curtin course, or you may have work experience that matches the degree requirements.

If this applies to you, you can apply for credit for recognised learning (CRL), which means your previous study is recognised and matched against a similar unit in your intended Curtin course.

A successful CRL application exempts you from having to complete certain units within your course and means you could finish your degree in a shorter amount of time.

CRL is also known as recognition of prior learning, advanced standing and credit transfer.

Use the CRL search to find out how much CRL you qualify for, or contact us at:


Tel: 1300 222 888

CRL search

Fees & charges

Under the Research Training Program (RTP), Australian and New Zealand citizens and Australian permanent residents undertaking higher degrees by research may be granted an Australian Government RTP Fee Offset Scholarship to assist with tuition fee liability.

You may be eligible for a scholarship or industry assistance (sponsorship) may be available from external organisations under special conditions.

Fee information is not available for this course at this time. Find estimated course fees.


For start dates, please view the academic calendar.

Curtin Perth flag


Research Term 1
  • On Campus
Research Term 2
  • On Campus
Semester 1
  • On Campus


Research Term 1
  • On Campus
Research Term 2
  • On Campus
Semester 1
  • On Campus


Research Term 1
  • On Campus
Research Term 2
  • On Campus
Semester 1
  • On Campus


Research Term 1
  • On Campus
Research Term 2
  • On Campus
Semester 1
  • On Campus

All endeavours are made to ensure location information for courses is up to date but please note they are subject to change.

The University reserves the right to withdraw any unit of study or program which it offers, to impose limitations on enrolment in any unit or program, and/or to vary arrangements for any program.

How to apply

Please review information on how to apply for the campus of your choice

Please note that each campus has different application deadlines. Please view our application deadlines page for further information.

Apply now

Help is at hand

See our frequently asked questions or get in touch with us below.

Opening hours:
Mon to Fri: 8.30am – 4.30pm, except Tues: 9.30am – 4.30pm (AWST). Closed public holidays.
  • The offering information on this website applies only to future students. Current students should refer to faculty handbooks for current or past course information. View courses information disclaimer.

  • Curtin course code: DR-CLPHYT
  • CRICOS code: 096302C
  • Last updated on: March 17, 2021