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Melissa Tovin, PT, MA, PhD, CEEAA, PCS

Melissa Tovin
Director, PT Residency and Fellowship, Physical Therapy - Ft. Lauderdale
Professor, Bachelor of Health Science
Professor, Physical Therapy - Ft. Lauderdale
(954) 262-1697


Dr. Tovin received her degree in Physical Therapy from New York University, her Master’s Degree in Applied Physiology from Columbia University, and her PhD in Higher Education from Georgia State University.


Dr. Tovin is a Board-Certified Clinical Specialist in Pediatric Physical Therapy. She is also a Certified Expert in Exercise for Aging Adults through the American Physical Therapy Association.


Courses: PHT 6721: The Healthcare Educator; PHT 6700 - Introduction to Research Methods and Data Analysis; PHT 6817: Pediatrics I; PHT 6819: Pediatrics II; PHT 6904: Research Capstone (Ind. Study); PHT 7800: Dissertation; HPH 7410: Qualitative Research Design

Dr. Tovin is the lead faculty for the pediatric course module, which covers two semesters in the professional-DPT Program.  She also teaches qualitative research in the professional-DPT and PhD programs. Dr. Tovin provides dissertation advisement for PhD students, capstone research advisement for DPT students, and supervises DPT students during community-based service activities including Special Olympics. 

Scholarly Activities and Interests

Dr. Tovin’s research and clinical interests focus on autism spectrum disorders, pediatric-adult transitions, exercise and wellness, and education.  She has several publications in professional journals, and has also presented at national and international conferences.  Dr. Tovin has recently published four textbook chapters on the topic of pediatric physical therapy, and is currently working on a book chapter on the topic of qualitative research methodology.    

Dr. Tovin is actively engaged in research and community outreach programs serving adolescents and young adults with autism spectrum disorder.  Current research projects include promoting optimal movement in pediatrics, the feasibility of tele-fitness technology to improve physical activity and health indicators in individuals with autism spectrum disorder, and the effectiveness of inter-professional education models in PT curricula.

Areas of Practice

Dr. Tovin has over 30 years of experience as a physical therapist working in a variety of settings including adult neurologic and orthopedic rehabilitation, sports medicine and out-patient orthopedics, acute care, geriatrics, home care, and pediatrics. Over the past 20 years, she has focused primarily in treating pediatric patients in the school, out-patient clinic, and home settings.      

Professional Activity 

Dr. Tovin has been an APTA member since 1986, and is currently a member of both the Academy of Pediatric Physical Therapy (APPT) and the Academy of Physical Therapy Research (APTR).  She currently serves as the Chair of the Qualitative Research Special Interest Group of the APTR. 

Dr. Tovin is an Editorial Board Member for Physical Therapy (PTJ), the official scientific journal of the American Physical Therapy Association. She also serves as a manuscript reviewer for the Strength and Conditioning Journal, Physiotherapy Theory and Practice, and the Journal of Physical Therapy Education.

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