William Boissonnault, PT, DPT, DHSc, FAAOMPT, FAPTA

Professor Emeritus, University of Wisconsin-Madison
Executive Vice President of Professional Affairs, APTA

Email: [email protected]
Mailing: 1111 North Fairfax Street, Alexandria, VA 22314


  • BS, Physical Therapy, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Madison, WI, 1977
  • MS and DHSc, University of St. Augustine for Health Sciences, St. Augustine, FL, 1999
  • Transitional DPT, MGH Institute of Health Professions, Boston, MA, 2008



Dr. Boissonnault is Executive Vice President of Professional Affairs, APTA, and Professor Emeritus, University of Wisconsin-Madison. He was a founding member of and Curriculum Director for the University of Wisconsin Hospital/Clinics and Meriter Hospital Orthopedic Physical Therapy Clinical Residency Program. Dr. Boissonnault holds multiple adjunct physical therapy faculty positions, presenting nationally and internationally and teaching differential diagnosis, diagnostic imaging, and communication skills. He is editor of the textbook Primary Care for the Physical Therapist; Examination and Triage, (Elsevier Saunders 1st and 2nd edition) and past co-editor of Pathology: Implications for the Physical Therapist I (Saunders-1st and 2nd edition). He has multiple journal publications related to differential diagnosis and physical therapist practice. Dr. Boissonnault is past-president of the Foundation for Physical Therapy, the profession’s national research fund-raising organization, and also past-president of the Orthopaedic Section of the APTA. In addition, he chaired the APTA Manipulation Legislative Task Force and the American Academy of Orthopaedic Manual Physical Therapists Practice Committee.


  • PT 207: Medical Screening and Differential Diagnosis for Physician Referral


  • Patient direct access to physical therapist services
  • Medical imaging and physical therapist practice/education
  • Medical Screening for physician referral


Dr. Boissonnault's current research efforts relate to investigating obstacles/challenges to adoption and implementation of a patient direct access health care delivery model. His efforts also include identifying benchmarks related to medical imaging and physical therapist practice and education.


  • Boissonnault W, Lovely K. Hospital-based outpatient direct access to physical therapist services: current status in Wisconsin. Phys Ther. 2016;96(11):1695-1704.
  • Boissonnault J, Tuttle N, Evans K, Boissonnault W. ECHOWS: Reliability and Validity of a physical therapist patient-interview student assessment tool. Phys Ther. 2016;96(4):443-455.
  • Lee A, Boissonnault W. Aches, pains, sprains, and strains: Use of online media to categorize medical screening and patient referral in physical therapy curricula. Journal of Physical Therapy Education. 2016;30(1):40-46.
  • Leudtke K, Boissonnault, W.; Caspersen, N.; Castien, R.; Chaibi, A.; Falla, D.; Fernández-de-las-Peñas, C.; Hall, T.; Hirsvang, J.R.; Horre, T.; Hurley, D.; Jull, G.; Krøll, L.S; Madsen, B.K.; Mallwitz, J.; Miller, C.; Schäfer, B.; Schöttker-Königer, T.; Starke, W.; von Piekartz, H.; Watson , D.; Westerhuis, P.; May, A1. International consensus paper on the most useful physical examination tests used by physiotherapists for patients with headache: A Delphi study. Manual Therapy.
  • Rendereiro D, Deyle G, Boissonnault W. Imaging in Conjunction with Physical Therapy in Management of a Patient with History of Thoracic Tumor". Journal of Manual & Manipulative Therapy. 2016;23(3):123-127.

View the list on PubMed


  • Catherine Worthingham Fellow of American Physical Therapy Association, 2010
  • APTA Baethke/Carlin Award for Excellence in Academic Teaching, 2005
  • APTA Education Section, Distinguished Educator Award, 2015
  • APTA Lucy Blair Service Award, 2014
  • APTA Helen J. Hislop Award for Outstanding Contributions to Professional Literature, 2008