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Strong Research Focus, Interdisciplinary Approach

UNC’s versatile Rehabilitation Science Ph.D. offers superior preparation for a broad range of careers. You’ll get the rigorous academic training required for faculty positions, while gaining applied research experience and specialized skills that equip you for other professional pathways, including careers in government, public policy, health care administration and other leadership roles.

Our program stands out for its scientific, evidence-based orientation. UNC boasts active research programs in human rehabilitation, exercise science, public health, nursing, kinesiology and related fields, providing you with a wide range of opportunities for interdisciplinary collaboration. You’ll develop a concentration in one of four cognate areas (community health, gerontology, research methods and business management), tailoring the program to your academic interests and professional goals. With this well-rounded Ph.D., you’ll excel as an educator, investigator and administrator.

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Ph.D. in Rehabilitation Sciences

The Rehabilitation Sciences Ph.D. totals 64 credit hours, culminating in a doctoral dissertation based on original scholarship. You’ll get extensive training in research design and statistical methods, with the freedom to choose your own focus area for investigation. The program includes supervised experience in college-level teaching, which can give you an advantage with faculty search committees.

This Program Is No Longer Taking Applications.

Your Future in Rehabilitation Sciences

The field of rehabilitation sciences stands at a crossroads. With an aging population, rapidly evolving medical technology and changes in health care delivery, the nation faces unique challenges in rehabilitation sciences—but also unique opportunities to make progress. UNC’s doctoral degree prepares you to play a leadership role in shaping the discipline's future.

Consider UNC’s Ph.D. in Rehabilitation Sciences if you want to:

  • Develop a specialized subdiscipline within rehabilitation sciences
  • Gain applied research experience
  • Develop a broad base of professional skills
  • Prepare for careers inside and outside of academia

You’ll learn:

  • Research methods
  • Statistical analysis
  • Administrative and leadership skills
  • Health care policy and administration

Sample courses:

  • Collaborative Research in Human Sciences
  • Statistical Methods
  • Advanced Seminar in Rehabilitation Administration
  • Rehabilitation Counseling Supervision

Beyond the Classroom

UNC provides a robust environment for research, with a wide range of partnership opportunities. Our campus includes a fully equipped gait lab and cancer rehabilitation institute, offering broad possibilities to implement research projects and gather clinical data. You may also find collaborators within the Colorado School of Public Health, which unites the resources of UNC, Colorado State University and the University of Colorado.

Where can your degree take you?

  • University or college faculty
  • Health care administration
  • Governmental policy
  • Public and community health

Grounding Education in Research

Jill Bezyak, Ph.D., is one of the nation’s leading authorities on evidence-based practice in rehabilitation counseling. Her current research focuses on education and implementation strategies for the Americans with Disabilities Act. Bezyak’s work has helped change the way service agencies and counseling professionals work together, with the goal of broadening access to rehabilitation services, enhancing communication and improving patient outcomes.


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