Nicholas Cooper, PT, DPT, PhD

Assistant Professor

Dr. Cooper teaches kinesiology and biomechanics, evidence-based practice, differential diagnosis, and diagnostic imaging.

He specializes in orthopaedic physical therapy.

His clinical experience is in general orthopaedic physical therapy practice, sub-specialty interprofessional orthopaedic spine practice, and interprofessional chronic pain rehabilitation.

His research interests include the role of therapeutic exercise to improve function in people with low back pain.

Read Dr. Cooper's CV (pdf)

See Courses Taught


  • PhD, University of Iowa, Physical Rehabilitation Science
  • DPT, University of Iowa
  • Bachelor of Science in Engineering, University of Iowa

Certifications and Licensure

  • State of Iowa, Board of Physical and Occupational Therapy, License Number 4178
  • Board Certified Specialist in Orthopaedic Physical Therapy, American Board of Physical Therapy Specialties, Certificate Number: 42705


Cooper NA, Sluka KA. Gluteus Medius Strengthening in Chronic Low Back Pain, A Pilot Study. 2018 Combined Sections Meeting, American Physical Therapy Association, New Orleans, LA

Cooper NA, Rakel BA, Zimmerman MB, Tonelli SM, Herr K, Clark CR, Noiseux NO, Callaghan JJ, Sluka KA (2017). Predictors of Multidimensional Functional Outcomes after Total Knee Arthroplasty. Journal of Orthopaedic Research.

Cooper NA, Scavo KM, Strickland KJ, Tipayamongkol N, Nicholson JD, Bewyer DC, Sluka KA (2016). Prevalence of Gluteus Medius Weakness in People with Chronic Low Back Pain Compared to Healthy Controls. European Spine Journal. Vol 25(4):1258-65.

Liebano RE, Vance CG, Rakel BA, Lee JE, Cooper NA, Marchand S, Walsh DM, Sluka KA (2013). Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation and Conditioned Pain Modulation Influence the Perception of Pain in Humans. European Journal of Pain. Vol 17(10):1539-46.

Tonelli SM, Rakel BA, Cooper NA, Angstrom WL, Sluka KA (2011). Women with Knee Osteoarthritis Have More Pain and Poorer Function than Men, but Similar Physical Activity Prior to Total Knee Replacement. Biology of Sex Differences. Vol 2:12.

Rakel B, Cooper N, Adams HJ, Messer BR, Frey Law LA, Dannen DR, Miller CA, Polehna AC, Ruggle RC, Vance CG, Walsh DM, Sluka KA (2010). A New Transient Sham TENS Device Allows for Investigator Blinding While Delivering a True Placebo Treatment. Journal of Pain. Vol 11(3):230-8.

More About Dr. Cooper

Courses Taught

DPT 530 Kinesiology & Biomechanics
DPT 700 Evidence Based Practice II
DPT 710 Evidence Based Practice II
DPT 715 Evidence Based Practice IV
DPT 820 Differential Diagnosis

Professional Organizations

American Physical Therapy Association
Iowa Physical Therapy Association
American Pain Society


American Board of Physical Therapy Specialties Specialty Academy of Content Experts

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