Robert Wellmon

Robert Wellmon, PT, DPT, PhD

  • Distinguished University Professor

Affiliated Programs


  • DPT, Physical Therapy (2013)
    MGH Institute of Health Professions (MA)
  • PhD, Physical Therapy (2004)
    Temple University (PA)
  • BS, Physical Therapy (1988)
    Thomas Jefferson University (PA)
  • BS, Biology (1979)
    St. Joseph's University (PA)

About Me

I am a Distinguished University Professor in the Institute for Physical Therapy Education and a physical therapist who is board certified by the American Board of Physical Therapy Specialties in Neurology (NCS) and a National Academies of Practice Distinguished Scholar and Fellow (FNAP). I have a BS in biology from St. Joseph’s University, my entry-level clinical practice degree from Thomas Jefferson University and my MS and PhD in physical therapy from Temple University. I also have a post-professional doctorate in physical therapy from the MGH Institute of Health Professions.

I have been a full-time faculty member at Widener University since 1997 and was the recipient of the 2009 Lindback Foundation Award for Distinguished Teaching, an honor bestowed annually to a member of Widener’s faculty, and became a Distinguished University Professor in 2020.  As an educator, my goal is to create authentic, interactive, socially constructed learning experiences that help students become critical and creative thinkers, risk takers, and problem finders and solvers. This is achieved by implementing a variety of teaching strategies involving lecture, flipped classroom experiences, small and large group discussions, incorporating peer feedback, and simulation.

Research Interests

My professional interests and areas of research involve the examination of factors affecting functional task performance in older adults and patients recovering from stroke and traumatic brain injury, exploring the psychometric properties of outcome measures used in clinical physical therapy practice, and assessing the effectiveness of interprofessional teaching and learning activities designed to improve interprofessional collaboration.

At Widener University, I have collaborated with colleagues from Social Work, Education, Nursing, Occupational Therapy, Speech-Language Pathology, Human Sexuality Studies, and Clinical Psychology to develop and implement multiple interprofessional learning experiences both within the College of Health and Human Services and across the larger University.

Media Expertise

  • Physical rehabilitation
  • Stroke rehabilitation
  • Balance and falls – elderly
  • Exercise and aging
  • Geriatrics
  • Health care issues in physical rehabilitation
  • Interprofessional education


  • Wellmon, R., Gulick, D., Paterson, M., Gulick, C. Validity and Reliability of 2 Goniometric Mobile Apps: Device, Application and Examiner Factors. Journal of Sport Rehabilitation. 2016; 25(4):371-379.
  • Wellmon, R., Lefebvre, K., Ferry, D. Effects of High-Fidelity Simulation Physical Therapy and Nursing Students" Attitudes Toward Interprofessional Learning and Collaboration. Journal of Nursing Education. 2017; 56(8):456-465.
  • Wellmon, R., Colby, N., Baumberger-Henry, M., Fletcher, P., Knauss, L. Changing Student Attitudes Toward Interprofessional Learning and Collaboration: Evidence for the Effectiveness of Partnering with Healthcare Mentors in the Academic Setting. Journal of Allied Health. 2017; 46(4):205-212.https://pub,
  • Lefebvre, K., Wellmon, R., Bartlo, P., Bednarek, W., Hoffman, J., Karnes, J., Vanderberg, L. Effects of Guarding on the Outcomes of the 6-Minute Walk Test. Cardiopulmonary Physical Therapy Journal. 20201; 21(2):66-74.

Professional Affiliations & Memberships

American Physical Therapy Association (APTA), APTA Pennsylvania (APTAPA), Academy of Neurologic Physical Therapy (ANPT), Academy of Geriatric Physical Therapy (AGPT), Academy of Physical Therapy Education (APTE), National Academies of Practice (NAP), Neurodevelopmental Treatment Association of America (NDTA)


  • Lindback Foundation Award for Distinguished Teaching, Widener University (2009)
  • Pennsylvania Physical Therapy Association Service Award (2012)
  • Thomas Jefferson University School of Health Professions Alumni Special Achievement Award (2013)
  • APTA Pennsylvania Neurology Special Interest Group Award for Clinical Excellence in Neurology (2019)
  • American Physical Therapy Association (APTA) Lucy Blair Service Award (2021).


  • Robert Wellmon, distinguished university professor in the Institute for Physical Therapy Education, is a co-author on this mix-methods study published in the Journal of Physical Therapy Education. The purposes of this study were to examine whether novice and experienced clinical instructors' assessment practice differ and explore the reasons for these differences. Findings showed a low number of statistically significant differences between novice and experienced clinical instructors awarding Clinical Performance Instrument ratings which suggests that there were few true quantitative disparities between the assessors.

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  • CH&HS Faculty Member Named Distinguished University Professor

    Robert Wellmon was named a Distinguished University Professor at the 2020 Faculty Awards event. The designation recognizes faculty of distinction and demonstrates to the broader community that Widener is committed to recognizing excellence in teaching, scholarship and service throughout a faculty member’s career. Wellmon has distinguished himself on campus with excellent teaching, dedicated service to the university and a well-regarded, clinically relevant research program. He has implemented transformative curricular initiatives to promote student learning and success through several interdisciplinary and inter-professional endeavors. His scholarship is nationally and internationally recognized, with numerous publications and recognition by the National Academies of Practice as a Distinguished Scholar and Fellow. He has served as the chair of the Southeast District of the Pennsylvania Physical Therapy Association and on the Board of Directors of the National Interprofessional Education Consortium of the American Council of Academic Physical Therapy. 

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  • Bob Wellmon Receives Neurology Special Interest Group Award

    Bob Wellmon, professor in the Institute for Physical Therapy Education, was recognized as a leader in the field with the Neurology Special Interest Group (SGI) Award from the Pennsylvania Physical Therapy Association (PPTA). Presented at the 2019 PPTA conference, Professor Wellmon earned this distinguished award for his significant and meaningful contributions to the field of physical therapy.

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