Massachusetts General Hospital Physical and Occupational Therapy Services has a rich history in the area clinical education. The Education and Training Program includes a wide variety of clinical experiences, including:

  • Pre-professional exercise science internships
  • Integrated and full time professional experiences
  • Year-long internships
  • Post-professional clinical residency in specialty areas of neurologic, orthopaedic and sports physical therapy
  • Interprofessional Training

At each level, the goal is to provide an experience that is grounded in the Mass General mission, departmental values and the essential elements of safe, effective and high quality care for patients. The role of clinical instructor is valued by staff and training is provided to assure that individuals have the skills to both effectively treat patients and support the evolving educational needs of students. Students can expect to be challenged throughout these experiences with the goal of preparing them to meet patient needs within a complex and changing health care environment.

Educational Opportunities


Mass General Patient Care Services and the Mass General IHP have collaborated in the development of a clinical experience that focuses on the development of interprofessional skills using competencies developed by the Interprofessional Educational Collaborative (IPEC):

  • Roles and responsibilities
  • Communication
  • Teams and teamwork
  • Values and ethics

Interprofessional pairs of students from the disciplines of Nursing, PT, OT, SLP, PA and Medicine work with an Mass General trained interprofessional instructor who guides an intensive exposure to the interdisciplinary aspects of care delivery. The goal is to lay a strong foundation for understanding of collaborative practice.


The department provides progressive clinical education experiences as follows:

Integrated Clinical Experiences (ICE)

These experiences occur concurrently with academic coursework across a semester. Students work in pairs with a clinical instructor, applying skills and carrying out components of care that they are learning in the classroom.

Full-Time Clinical Education
These full time experiences of 10-14 weeks occur at different points in the student's academic experience. Over their experiences, student work to meet progressive levels of skill, independence and productivity that are outlined and reviewed on a weekly basis.
Year Long Internship-Pre-Licensure
For over 25 years, MGH IHP students, at the conclusion of their didactic curriculum, have been interviewed and hired into year long internship positions on either our inpatient or outpatient services. The initial six months of this experience, prior to licensure, are part of our entry level program. 
Post Professional

Year-Long Internship - Post Licensure
Following licensure, interns continue their training, working under the direction of a PT department clinical specialist. Intern use the four level PT Department Professional Development “grid”, to advance their practice from the first level, novice, towards the second level, clinician.

Residency Programs
Currently, our training program includes three different specialty areas that are accredited through the American Board of Residency and Fellowship Education (ABPTRFE). All programs are designed to advance a physical therapist’s knowledge and skill toward that of an expert and to prepare the clinician to sit for the ABPTRFE certification examination.

  • Neurologic Physical Therapy
    This 15-month residency is clinically based at Mass General with the didactic portion of the curriculum provided through the Neurologic Physical Therapy Professional Education Consortium. The program has two six month rotations on the inpatient and outpatient services.
    Learn more >

  • Orthopaedic Physical Therapy
    This 12-month residency is based within the Physical Therapy Department at the Mass General IHP, with Mass General PT Services as one of the clinical partners. The didactic content is provided in a series of three courses: Advancing Practice in Orthopaedics which is offered in a hybrid on-line and weekend format. Students spend 20 hours per week in clinical practice on the PT outpatient service at Mass General .
    Learn more >

  • Sports Physical Therapy
    Massachusetts General Hospital Sports Physical Therapy has partnered with the Department of Physical Therapy, Movement and Rehabilitation Sciences at Northeastern University to offer a 13-month full-time clinical residency program for physical therapists interested in pursuing a career in sports physical therapy.
    Learn more >

Incoming Students & Observers

Incoming Students

If you are an incoming full-time, part-time or exercise science student please click here for more information regarding your assignment.

If you are not an assigned student, but would like to be, clinical placements at Mass General require a contractual arrangement between the academic institution and Mass General. Presently, we are not able to expand our contract network to new programs.


As part of our departmental education mission, we offer opportunities for individuals in career exploration in the disciplines of Physical and Occupational Therapy to observe the work of our staff in the clinical setting. The goals, structures and application process for the program are included in the information below.

This program is open to individuals who are considering a career in PT or OT who are at least 16 years of age and a junior in high school. The program is not available to individuals who are already enrolled in the professional portion of a PT or OT program. Observation experiences are available on select weekdays only. The program is not available on weekends, evenings or holidays.

Observer Goals & Process (PDF) >

Observer Forms: