Judith Burton Hess, PT, DHS, OCS, Cert. DN

Assistant Professor

Midwestern University
College of Health Sciences
Physical Therapy Program 
Alumni Hall 340-L
555 31st St.
Downers Grove, IL 60515

Office: (630) 515-6109
e-mail: jhessx@midwestern.edu


BS          Kinesiology                      University of Illinois               1989
MS          Kinesiology                      University of Illinois               1990
MS          Physical Therapy              Duke University                     1992
DHS        Academic Teaching           Midwestern University            2015


My research agenda has three branches, all of which have current projects: orthopedic physical therapy (foot and ankle), the scholarship of teaching and learning, admissions processes for Doctor of Physical Therapy programs.

Research Agenda

Project I:  In the area of physical therapy for the foot and ankle, I have focused thus far on the scholarship of integration.  Working in conjunction with the Doctor of Physical Therapy students, we have presented posters at state and national PT conferences that evaluate the reliability and validity of tests/measure and well as the effectiveness and efficacy of intervention options.  I am particularly interested in further research related to objective measurements of  foot type and associations with lower extremity biomechanics and plantar pressures during gait and functional activities.

Project II: Teaching and learning in professional education programs is enhanced by many types of active learning techniques, which strive to facilitate development of critical thinking and synthesis of large amounts of material over time.  My research in this area has included the use of the One Minute Paper and graduate students' preferences and attitudes regarding commonly used teaching methods.  Additionally, I am interested in examining the benefits and challenges of incorporating humor as a teaching strategy in professional education.

Project III:  Admissions committees strive to select the candidates who have the greatest probability of successfully completing their professional education program.  Many factor have been noted in the literature as being predictive of success or failure in a physical therapy program.  I am currently analyzing data from 4 years of DPT graduates, to determine the strategies that they utilize to prepare for application to physical therapy programs and the relationship to success in the DPT program.  


Tito C, Hess JB. Aquatic Therapy for a Patient with Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia Syndrome: a Case Report. The Internet Journal of Allied Health Sciences and Practice. 2017 Jul 06: 15(3).

Noronha S, Anderson DK, Lee M, Krumdick ND, Irwin KE, Burton-Hess J, Ciancio M, Wallingford M, Workman GM.  Professionalism in Physician Assistant, Physical Therapist, Occupational Therapist, Clinical Psychology and Biomedical Sciences Students. Journal of Allied Health. 2016; 45(1):71-78.


Thorington J, Hess JB. The effectiveness of mobilizations with movement for improving ankle dorsiflexion range of motion in patients with lateral ankle sprains:  a systematic review.   Poster Presentation, Illinois Physical Therapy Association Annual Conference, Bloomington, IL, November 7-9, 2013.

Painter J, Hess JB. Is the foot posture index a reliable and valid measure of foot position in adults?  a systematic review. Poster Presentation, Illinois Physical Therapy Association Annual Conference,  Bloomington, IL November 7-9, 2013.

Hess JB and Nguyen C.  Effects of Custom Foot Orthotics on Tibial Rotation in Runners: A Systematic Review.  Poster Presentation, APTA Combined Sections Meeting, Chicago, IL.  February, 2012.