Physical therapy assistants may receive career training through a physical therapy assisting associate's degree program at a 2-year community college or career institute. Most states require physical therapy assistants, or PTAs, to obtain an associate's degree and pass the state and national physical therapy licensing exams before they can work in the field.
10 Physical Therapy Assistant Schools
Some physical therapy assistant programs in the United States are offered at the institutions listed here.
|College/University||Location||Institution Type||Degrees Offered||Undergraduate Tuition (2018-2019)|
|Loma Linda University||Loma Linda, CA||4-year, Private not-for-profit||Associate's||$30,720|
|Arkansas State University||Jonesboro, AK||4-year, Public||Associate's||In-state $8,607; Out-of-state $15,297|
|College of Central Florida||Ocala, FL||4-year, primarily associate's, Public||Associate's||In-state $2,570; Out-of-state $10,126|
|Jackson State Community College||Jackson, TN||2-year, Public||Associate's||In-state $4,221; Out-of-state $16,509|
|Great Falls College, Montana State University||Great Falls, MT||2-year, Public||Associate's||In-state $3,386; Out-of-state $10,278|
|Broward College||Fort Lauderdale, FL||4-year, primarily associate's, Public||Associate's||In-state $2,830; Out-of-state $8,952|
|Illinois Central College||East Peoria, IL||2-year, Public||Associate's||In-district $4,500; In-state $9,600; Out-of-state $11,340|
|Lorain County Community College||Elyria, OH||2-year, Public||Associate's||In-district $3,485; In-state $4,140; Out-of-state $8,081|
|Dixie State University||Saint George, UT||4-year, public||Associate's||In-state $5,253; Out-of-state $15,051|
|Idaho State University||Pocatello, ID||4-year, public||Associate's, Bachelor's||In-state $7,420; Out-of-state $22,940|
Source: *National Center for Education Statistics
School Selection Criteria
There are some important considerations when choosing a physical therapy assistant program.
- Look for a school that offers a wide range of physical therapy courses and allows students to work closely with faculty.
- Schools that have modern training equipment and strong relationships with various medical facilities are an additional benefit, since physical therapy assistants work in settings that include hospitals, nursing homes, rehabilitation facilities and outpatient clinics.
- Consider a school that has clinical student training at partner facilities, which may help lead to permanent employment.
- It is important to choose a recognized, accredited program that meets state licensing requirements.
Associate of Science in Physical Therapy Assisting Program Overview
A 2-year associate's degree program for aspiring physical therapy assistants may require candidates to complete 20-40 hours of clinical observation before being admitted into the program.
Most physical therapy assistant programs are two years in length, and include earning an associate's degree. Physical therapy assistant programs are offered at a number of public and private institutions with varying tuition rates, and it is also possible to complete a certificate or bachelor's degree program.