BILL ANALYSIS                                                                                                                                                                                                    

                                                                  AB 2382
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          Date of Hearing:   April 20, 2010

                                 Mary Hayashi, Chair
                 AB 2382 (Blumenfield) - As Amended:  April 12, 2010
          SUBJECT  :   California State University: Doctor of Physical  
          Therapy degrees.

           SUMMARY  :   Authorizes California State University (CSU) to award  
          the Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) degree.  Specifically,  this  
          bill  :  

          1)Authorizes CSU to award DPT. 

          2)Requires DPT offered by CSU to be distinguished from doctoral  
            degree programs at the University of California (UC).

          3)States that nothing in this article shall be construed to  
            limit or preclude the California Postsecondary Education  
            Commission from exercising its authority to review, evaluate,  
            and make recommendations relating to any and all programs, as  

          4)Requires CSU to comply with all the following:

             a)   Funding on a per full-time equivalent student (FTES)  
               basis for each new student in these degree programs shall  
               be from within CSU's enrollment growth levels as agreed to  
               in the annual Budget Act. Enrollments in these programs  
               shall not alter the CSUs ratio of graduate instruction to  
               total enrollment, and shall not diminish enrollment growth  
               in university undergraduate programs. Funding provided from  
               the state for each FTES shall be at the agreed-upon  
               marginal cost calculation that CSU receives;

             b)   The DPT degree shall be focused on preparing physical  
               therapists to provide health care services, and shall be  
               consistent with meeting the requirements of the Commission  
               on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE);

             c)   Each student in the programs authorized by this article  
               shall be charged fees no higher than the rate charged for  
               students in state-supported doctoral degree programs in  


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               physical therapy at UC, including joint DPT programs of the  
               CSU and UC; and,

             d)   CSU shall provide any startup funding needed for the  
               programs authorized by this article from within existing  
               budgets for academic programs support, without diminishing  
               the quality of program support offered to CSU undergraduate  
               programs. Funding of these programs shall not result in  
               reduced undergraduate enrollments at CSU.

          5)Requires CSU, the Department of Finance, and the Legislative  
            Analyst's Office to jointly conduct a statewide evaluation of  
            the new programs implemented under this bill. The results of  
            the evaluation shall be reported, in writing, to the  
            Legislature and the Governor on or before January 1, 2015. The  
            evaluation required by this section shall consider all of the  

             a)   The number of new doctoral programs in physical therapy  
               implemented, including information identifying the number  
               of new programs, applicants, admissions, enrollments, and  
               degree recipients;

             b)   The extent to which the programs established under this  
               article are fulfilling identified needs for physical  
               therapists, including statewide supply and demand data that  
               considers capacity at the UC and in California's  
               independent colleges and universities;

             c)   Information on the place of employment of students and  
               the subsequent job placement of graduates;

             d)   Program costs and the fund sources that were used to  
               finance these programs, including a calculation of cost per  
               degree awarded;

             e)   The costs of the programs to students, the amount of  
               financial aid offered, and student debt levels of graduates  
               of the programs; and,

             f)   The extent to which the programs are in compliance with  
               the requirements of this bill.

          6)Makes legislative findings and declarations.


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           EXISTING LAW  :

          1)Requires that CSU offer undergraduate and graduate instruction  
            through the master's degree in the liberal arts and sciences  
            and professional education, including teacher education.  
            Presently established two-year programs in agriculture are  
            authorized, but other two-year programs shall be permitted  
            only when mutually agreed upon by the Trustees of the  
            California State University and the Board of Governors of the  
            California Community Colleges. 

          2)Limits CSU to awarding doctoral degrees jointly with UC or  
            jointly with independent institutions of higher education,  
            provided that the proposed doctoral program is approved by the  
            California Postsecondary Education Commission.

          3)States that the primary mission of CSU is undergraduate and  
            graduate instruction through the master's degree.

           FISCAL EFFECT  :   Unknown

           COMMENTS  :  

           Purpose of this bill  .  According to the author's office, "AB  
          2382 would grant CSU the narrow authority to independently  
          confer the now-required 'doctorate' degree to enter the physical  
          therapy profession.  The degree, while called a 'doctorate,' is  
          deemed the entry-level degree by the Commission on the  
          Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education. California's master  
          plan for higher education allows CSU to confer degrees for entry  
          into a profession, such as those awarded by the four physical  
          therapy programs at CSU. Additionally, current law allows CSU to  
          confer 'doctorate' degrees in conjunction with the University of  
          California.  Efforts to have joint programs between CSU and UC  
          have had very limited success with declining participation."

           Background  .   The Commission on Accreditation for Physical  
          Therapy Education, which has sole responsibility for accrediting  
          PT education programs in the United States, revised its  
          accreditation standards last October to require the DPT as the  
          terminal degree instead of the Master's degree, requiring PT  
          Master's degree programs to convert to DPT programs by December  
          30, 2015.  Programs that do not meet this criterion by that date  
          will be required to come into compliance no later than December  
          31, 2017, or lose accreditation.


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          As of January 2010, there were 203 DPT programs (96%) and only  
          nine master's programs (4%) accredited nationally.  There are  
          currently nine private DPT programs in California and one public  
          program-a joint DPT between San Francisco State University and  
          UC San Francisco.  CSU operates four PT Master's programs at its  
          Fresno, Northridge, Long Beach, and Sacramento campuses.  CSU  
          Fresno also offers a nine-month DPT option upon completion of  
          its program in partnership with UC San Francisco. 

          The Master Plan for Higher Education differentiates the  
          functions among the public postsecondary education segments.   
          Specifically, UC is given exclusive jurisdiction in public  
          higher education for doctoral degrees, although CSU can award  
          joint doctorates, with the exception of the Doctor of Education  
          (Ed.D) degree.  CSU was granted the authority to offer the Ed.D  
          degree because data indicated that California lagged behind the  
          nation in Ed.D degrees per K-12 students, and UC did not offer  
          Ed.D programs. 

          Master's degree programs typically are two to two and one-half  
          years in length, while doctoral degree programs last three  
          years.  Doctoral programs include a more robust clinical  
          education and diagnostic education.  Doctoral degree programs  
          are more costly to operate than baccalaureate or master's level  
          programs.  However, representatives from the existing CSU  
          master's degree programs maintain that their current curriculum  
          is equivalent to a DPT, and no additional funds will be needed  
          for program planning, facilities, or faculty growth.  

          A similar situation existed with regards to CSU's audiology  
          program.  A decade ago, CSU offered five master's level  
          audiology programs and one joint doctoral program.  The American  
          Academy of Audiology declared that accreditation would require a  
          doctoral degree, which threatened the accreditation of CSU's  
          audiology programs.  Anticipating the need of both audiologists  
          and physical therapists, AB 724 (Scott) of 2005, would have  
          authorized CSU to offer a doctoral program in both disciplines.   
          These provisions were dropped amidst opposition from UC and  
          others, and CSU discontinued its audiology programs in 2007.   
          There is currently only one doctoral audiologist program in  
          California, a joint program between San Diego State University  
          and UC San Diego.  

          According to the author, the existing DPT programs cannot  


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          accommodate the demand for training, and CSU's retreat from the  
          field would put California's health marketplace at a competitive  
          disadvantage for attracting PTs.   
          Arguments in support  .  The sponsors, California Physical Therapy  
          Association, write, "Not only will AB 2383 meet the need to  
          comply with the mandate of CAPTE, but also will meet the growing  
          need for physical therapists in California.  The Bureau of Labor  
          and Statistics projects a 30% increase in the need for physical  
          therapists by 2016.  Labor estimates for California continue to  
          place physical therapy in one of the top three jobs in demand  
          over the next twenty years.  In addition, the Employment  
          Development Department estimates that there is currently an  
          annual shortage of 500 therapists a year in California.  With  
          the four CSU programs graduating 38% of the physical therapy  
          workforce each year, California can simply not afford to allow  
          these programs to close when the need for rehabilitative  
          services is at an all time high.  Moreover, the CSU physical  
          therapy programs cost an average of half of the physical therapy  
          programs offered at private institutions.  In short, this  
          legislation keeps the profession accessible to lower and middle  
          income students."

           Arguments in opposition  . The California Podiatric Medical  
          Association writes, "Currently, UC has the exclusive  
          jurisdiction to award a doctoral degree.  Our concern, as others  
          in the medical professions have expressed, is whether the CSU  
          system is set up to include the enhanced clinical rotations  
          which are key to a meaningful higher level of Physical Therapist  
          training.  Additionally, it is entirely unclear that the CSU  
          system has the funding to establish a doctoral program that  
          would include adequate clinical training, or how the new program  
          would differ from the Masters of Physical Therapy currently  

           Related legislation  :  AB 867 (Nava) of 2009, pending in the  
          Senate Appropriations Committee, would grant CSU the authority  
          to award the Doctor in Nursing Practice degree.  

          AB 724 (Scott), Chapter 269, Statutes of 2005, authorized CSU to  
          award the Ed.D, DPT and the Doctor in Audiology degree.  The  
          latter two provisions were removed due to objections by UC.



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          California Physical Therapy Association (sponsor)
          American Nurses Association of California
          California Association of Health Facilities
          California Hospital Association
          Intercollegiate Academic Clinical Coordinators Council
          Northern California Clinical Education Consortium
          Numerous individuals.

          California Medical Association
          California Podiatric Medical Association
          Analysis Prepared by  :    Sarah Weaver / B.,P. & C.P. / (916)