The Physical Therapist Assistant Program is an accredited two-year, five-semester course of study composed of specialized courses in physical therapy, planned clinical training and general education. During the first year, a background in biological and behavioral sciences is established with emphasis on anatomy. General education courses in writing and communication skills are included in the curriculum. As the semesters progress, more time is allocated to the clinical application of physical therapy procedures that were learned in the classroom. Upon completion of the program, graduates receive an A.A.S. degree and are eligible to take the state licensure examination.
Students with incomplete prerequisites may apply; however, they must state how they will satisfy the prerequisites in order to be considered for admission to the program. All prerequisites must be complete prior to starting the program. All prerequisite courses must be completed within 10 years of the application date.
Qualified students are admitted without regard to race, color, religion, age, disability, natural origin, sexual orientation, ancestry or gender.
Students who are pursuing a degree in physical therapy need to be aware of certain elements that potentially can impact fieldwork placement, certification, licensure, and future employment. Federal and various state laws are in place that preclude persons with criminal backgrounds from being in contact with children and patients. Where these laws apply, you will be required to undergo a criminal background check which may include fingerprinting and a search of federal and state criminal data bases. Drug testing may also be required. A felony conviction may affect a graduate’s ability to sit for and/or attain state licensure.
Upon completion of the program, the graduate is prepared in the use of standard procedures involving the therapeutic application of heat, cold, light, massage, electricity, ultrasound, functional activities and exercises. Assisting the physical therapist in evaluation and in more complex treatment interventions are additional areas in which the physical therapist assistant participates. The physical therapist assistant has skills in the treatment of adults and children with disabilities resulting from disease or injury.
Physical therapist assistants are required by state law to work under the supervision of a licensed physical therapist. There are a variety of work settings such as hospitals, private practice, rehabilitation centers, skilled nursing facilities and schools.
- Dr. Carmela Hanna, PT, DPT
- Dr. Marie-Helene McAndrew, PT, DPT
- Kathleen Wittrock