Physical Therapist Assistant

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Program Description

Physical Therapist Assistants (PTAs) perform components of physical therapy procedures and related tasks, as directed by a supervising physical therapist (PT). PTAs help patients and clients who have movement dysfunction due to injury or disease, by assisting the PT with therapies designed to improve mobility, relieve pain, prevent or limit permanent physical disability, and promote overall fitness and wellness.

The Physical Therapist Assistant program is in a 1 + 1 format, with the first year planned for prerequisite coursework only. Students then apply to the technical phase which would be for the subsequent fall/spring/summer term. Students will be required to have all prerequisite coursework completed prior to the start of the technical phase of the program. Course instruction is coupled with laboratory instruction and supervised clinical experience.

The PTA program requires a separate application process with requirements in addition to those for Clinton Community College. Requirements will include but not be limited to a minimum prerequisite GPA, interview with PTA faculty, a grade of “B” or better in the Anatomy and Physiology Courses (which must have been completed within four years prior to admission to program), observation hours in a PT setting, etc.

Meeting the program admission requirements does not necessarily guarantee admission. The technical phase of the program will last one year with final clinical rotations occurring in the summer. All technical coursework will take place on the Clinton Community College campus. In order to become licensed students must pass a national exam.

Clinton Community College is in the process currently of developing an "Application for Candidacy" with the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education.

Graduation from a physical therapist assistant education program accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE), 1111 North Fairfax Street, Alexandria, VA 22314; phone; 703-706-3245; is necessary for eligibility to sit for the licensure examination, which is required in all states.

Clinton Community College is seeking accreditation of a new physical therapist assistant education program from CAPTE. The program will submit an Application for Candidacy, which is the formal application required in the pre-accreditation stage. Submission of this document does not assure that the program will be granted Candidate for Accreditation status.

Achievement of Candidate for Accreditation status is required prior to implementation of the technical phase of the program; therefore, no students may be enrolled in technical courses until Candidate for Accreditation status has been achieved. Further, though achievement of Candidate for Accreditation status signifies satisfactory progress toward accreditation, it does not assure that the program will be granted accreditation. For more information as a Physical Therapist Assistant visit

Award Options

Associate in Applied Science Degree

Job Outlook

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), employment growth for PTAs should average 45.7 percent between 2010 and 2020. Median annual range is $48,290, though starting wages may be somewhat less. Employment opportunities may be found in hospitals, long term care facilities, home health agencies, physical therapy facilities and offices of other health practitioners.

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