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    Mar 01, 2021  
2017-2018 | Academic Catalog 
2017-2018 | Academic Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

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Physical Therapist Assistant, A.A.S.

The Physical Therapist Assistant degree provides an exciting opportunity for students to put their motivational, creative problem-solving and people skills to work helping others. Under the direction and supervision of a physical therapist, physical therapist assistants work as a team to provide rehabilitative therapies to various populations, including athletes, amputees, the disabled and those recovering from an illness or injury. These therapies improve daily independence and quality of life by maximiz­ing balance, strength, alignment, coordination, flexibility and overall mobility. Individuals entering this program must be committed to the full-time course load required of this degree, which leads graduates to a challenging, in-demand and rewarding career.

Physical Therapist Assistant Program Applicants

In addition to complying with the College's general admission procedures, Physical Therapist Assistant applicants must:

  1. Have successfully completed one year of high school chemistry or CHM 110S Introduction to Chemistry  as an equivalent course (deadline May 31).
  2. Have satisfactory math assessment score and three years of college preparatory mathematics, or a grade of "C" or better in MTH 099D Intermediate Algebra II 
  3. Have satisfactory assessment scores in reading and writing to be ready to take ENG 121S Composition I  or successfully complete ENG 091D Basic Writing  and ENG 093D College Preparatory Reading 
  4. Have completed CIT 100S Introduction to Computers  or have satisfactory computer assessment score to be placed out of CIT 100S (deadline May 31).
  5. Submit a Physical Therapist Assistant Program application  by January 31 of the year of desired admission to the program. Program admission packets are available in September of the preceding year. Admission is selective as program space is limited.
  6. Criteria for selection of applicants to be admitted into the program include a combination of:
  1. Have completed a minimum of 40 hours of volunteer, observation and/or work experience in at least two Physical Therapy settings with at least 10 hours of this time directly volunteering, observing or working with a physical therapist assistant. This experience should be completed within 3 years prior to admission to the program. Complete written documentation of volunteer, observation and/or work experience on PTA observation form obtained from the Physical Therapist Assistant program.
  2. Have the ability to meet the essential functions of the Physical Therapist Assistant program which include that the PTA student will:
  • take responsibility for own learning
  • be committed to complete the PTA curriculum
  • demonstrate values congruent with those of health care personnel
  • exhibit responsibility for demonstrating attitudes and behaviors expected of the physical therapist assistant
  • use effective interpersonal skills, including sensitivity to diversity
  • demonstrate timely and accurate communication with all individuals involved with the program
  • show responsibility for adhering to institutional and program policies and procedures as documented in the PTA Student Handbook
  • show active participation and partnering in the planning and preparation for clinical experiences
  • exhibit awareness that a legal and binding contract exists between the academic program and clinical site
  • participate in the ongoing assessment of all aspects of the physical therapist assistant program.
  1. At the time of application, the applicant should demonstrate a clear plan in writing to meet the requirements prior to the first PTA course specifically pertaining to #1, 2, 3 and 4 above.

The Selection Committee will meet to review all Physical Therapist Assistant program applications and to select the class to begin the PTA curriculum starting in the following fall semester. All applicants will receive written notice of the status of their application by March 31.

Those students selected for the PTA program are required to have a physical and medical health form completed by a physician, and a successful background check prior to their placement in the first clinical education experience in second semester of the PTA curriculum.

NOTE: Registration in and completion of support/general education courses listed does not guarantee selection into the Physical Therapist Assistant program.

Click here for the PTA Student Handbook  or here for the PTA Clinical Education Handbook .

Program Outcomes

The student will:

  1. Perform in a safe manner that minimizes the risk to patient, self, and others
  2. Demonstrate expected clinical behaviors in a professional manner in all situations.
  3. Perform in a manner consistent with established legal standards, standards of the profession, and ethical guidelines.
  4. Adapt delivery of physical therapy services with consideration for patients' differences, values, preferences and needs.
  5. Communicate in ways that are congruent with situational needs.
  6. Participate in self-assessment and develops plans to improve knowledge, skills and behaviors.
  7. Demonstrate clinical problem solving.
  8. Perform selected therapeutic exercises in a competent manner.
  9. Apply selected manual therapy, airway clearance and integumentary repair and protection techniques in a competent manner.
  10. Apply selected physical agents and mechanical modalities in a competent manner.
  11. Apply selected electrotherapeutic modalities in a competent manner.
  12. Perform functional training in self-care and home management and application and adjustment of devices and equipment in a competent manner.
  13. Produce quality documentation in a timely manner to support the delivery of physical therapy services.
  14. Participate in the efficient delivery of physical therapy services.