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Top Schools for Physical Therapist Assistants

Learn about physical therapist assistant programs at three top colleges and universities. Also, find a list of other schools that provide training for physical therapy assistants.

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School Information

Physical therapist assistant (PTA) programs typically lead to an associate degree and include courses in anatomy, kinesiology and rehabilitation procedures. Aspiring PTAs can find programs at St. Catherine University, the University of Indianapolis and Louisiana College, each of which has been cited by U.S. News & World Report or the Washington Monthly for the quality of its academic programs. Graduates of physical therapist assistant programs are positioned to take the National Physical Therapy Exam and acquire state licensure, if necessary.

Top U.S. Schools with Physical Therapy Assistant Programs

1. St. Catherine University in Minneapolis, MN

In 2012, U.S. News & World Report ranked St. Catherine University 14th among regional schools in the Midwest. A private Catholic school, St. Catherine's has campuses in St. Paul and Minneapolis. At its Minneapolis campus, the university offers an Associate of Applied Science in Physical Therapy Assisting. Students in this 2-year program have the opportunity to present at Physics Day, an event in which local high school students visit the college to acquire information about careers in healthcare.

2. University of Indianapolis in Indianapolis, IN

The University of Indianapolis ranked 35th among regional Midwestern colleges in 2012, according to U.S. News & World Report. The school's physical therapist assistant program has a selective admissions process and awards an Associate in Science. Accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE), the program takes two years to complete and offers its technical courses in the evenings and general education courses during the day.

3. Louisiana College in Pineville, LA

Louisiana College is a private, Baptist college that was ranked 69th among baccalaureate schools by Washington Monthly in 2011. The school offers a physical therapist assistant program that culminates in an Associate of Applied Science. Requirements include one year of general education classes followed by one year of technical study. During the final three semesters of study, students also participate in experiential practicums.

Ten Good Physical Therapist Assistant Schools in the U.S.

School Name Distinction Location
California University of Pennsylvania Admittance to the technical portion of the PTA program is contingent upon academic performance in the first semester California, PA
College of Southern Nevada School offers an honors program Las Vegas, NV
Idaho State University Free annual healthcare conference for students Pocatello, ID
Louisiana College Over 90% of students receive financial aid Pineville, LA
Mercyhurst North East Physical therapy training lab includes mechanical lift, hydrotherapy tanks and balance boards North East, PA
Missouri Western State University Over two-thirds of qualified applicants are admitted to the program St. Joseph, MO
St. Catherine University Partnership between physical therapist assistant program and Doctor of Physical Therapy program affords interaction and learning opportunities Minneapolis, MN
University of Indianapolis Physical therapy assisting classes offered in the evening Indianapolis, IN
University of Saint Francis - Fort Wayne Students use human patient simulator for practical learning Fort Wayne, IN
Washburn University Physical Therapy Club Topeka, KS
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Popular Schools

  • School locations:
    • Alabama (3 campuses)
    • Arizona (1 campus)
    • California (1)
    • Florida (6)
    • Idaho (1)
    • Kansas (1)
    • Kentucky (2)
    • Michigan (1)
    • Missouri (1)
    • Ohio (7)
    • Oklahoma (2)
    • Oregon (1)
    • Tennessee (1)
    • Texas (1)
    • Virginia (5)
    • West Virginia (1)

    Classroom-Based Programs

    • Master
        • Master in Medical Assisting and Administration

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    • Must be a high school graduate or have completed GED
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    • Must be 18 years of age or older
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    • Must have a Bachelor's degree or higher
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    • Must be 21 years of age or older and have completed some college or 24 years of age or older and a high school graduate for a Bachelor's
    • Masters degree applicants must have a Bachelors
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    What is your highest level of education?

  • Minimum eligibility requirements:
    • Applicants must have completed 12 college credits
    School locations:
    • California (19 campuses)
    • Washington (1 campus)

    Classroom-Based Programs

    • Non-Degree
        • Certificate - Health Administration

    What is your highest level of education?

Other Schools:

  • School locations:
    • New York (1 campus)
    Areas of study you may find at New York University include:
      • Graduate: Doctorate, First Professional Degree, Master
      • Non-Degree: Certificate
      • Post Degree Certificate: First Professional Certificate, Post Master's Certificate
      • Undergraduate: Associate, Bachelor
    • Medical and Health Professions
      • Clinical Laboratory Science Professions
      • Communication Disorders Sciences
      • Dental
      • Medical Administrative Services
      • Medical Assisting
        • Physical Therapist Assistant
      • Medical Diagnostic and Treatment Professions
      • Medical Residency Programs
      • Nursing Professions
      • Nutrition Services
      • Public Health and Safety
      • Therapeutic and Rehabilitation Professions
  • School locations:
    • Michigan (1 campus)
    Areas of study you may find at University of Michigan include:
      • Graduate: Doctorate, Master
      • Undergraduate: Bachelor
    • Medical and Health Professions
      • Clinical Laboratory Science Professions
      • Medical Administrative Services
      • Medical Assisting
        • Physical Therapist Assistant
      • Medical Diagnostic and Treatment Professions
      • Nursing Professions
      • Public Health and Safety
      • Therapeutic and Rehabilitation Professions

Popular Schools

Avg. Wages For Related Jobs

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics