About the School of Physical & Occupational Therapy

Message from the Director

The School of Physical & Occupational Therapy at McGill University is recognized globally as a top-ranked academic institution, both in the delivery of enriched educational programs in the field of rehabilitation and also in the creation of new discoveries in rehabilitation science and the translation of that new knowledge to the practice arena.

The School has a remarkable history, marked by a tradition of ongoing innovation and leadership. Our School is one of the oldest in Canada, beginning in 1943 as a program for physical therapists, and evolving into the first Canadian BSc program in Physical and Occupational Therapy in 1954. Our PhD program in Rehabilitation Science, now over twenty years old, was also the first doctoral program in this field in Canada. We have the only Occupational Therapy and Physical Therapy programs in the country with two entry points for admission. Our School now has close to 700 students enrolled in 8 different undergraduate and graduate programs including two on-line graduate certificates.

As a graduate of the BSc program in Occupational Therapy at McGill University, and as a member of the School’s faculty for over two decades, I have been fortunate to play different leadership roles in the evolution and advancement of the School’s programs and academic activities. The dedication of our faculty and support staff to our mission, excellence in education and research, ensures that the quality of our educational programs and research productivity is of the highest caliber. Our students are privileged to be a part of this enriched learning environment, captivated and inspired by our knowledgeable faculty, and challenged and nurtured by our clinician-educators in the clinical setting.

The research conducted by investigators at the School is highly innovative, cross-cutting and relevant to practicing therapists and to individuals with disease or disability. Research programs at the School are broadly focused, directed at recognizing the biopsychosocial components that underlie disability, beginning with elaboration of the intrinsic and extrinsic mechanisms that contribute to dysfunction, development of new tools and technologies for clinical application and research discovery, investigation of new treatments that optimize health and functioning, and enhancement of knowledge exchange and utilization and professional education to advance practice.

The key ingredients to our success are clear: our spirit of collegiality and interdisciplinary collaboration, mutual respect and teamwork and a lot of hard work and commitment to our mission. This is an exciting period of renewal and growth at our School, and I am privileged to be able to participate in promoting that growth and to enhance our relationships and collaborations with our students, the Faculty of Medicine, the clinical community and the university at large.

Thank you for your interest in learning more about our School through our website. Whether you are interested in one of our educational programs, or you are an alumnus of the School or a member of the community with an interest in the field of rehabilitation, I urge you to learn more about our School and be part of our network.

Laurie Snider OT, PhD
Director and Associate Dean
School of Physical & Occupational Therapy