Physical Therapy Assistant Programs in PA with School Overviews

Pennsylvania has twelve colleges that offer physical therapy assistant programs. Learn about the programs, tuition info and program options for the ten largest schools to make an informed education decision.

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Physical Therapy Assistant (PTA) Programs in Pennsylvania

The state of Pennsylvania requires that physical therapists and physical therapy assistants obtain licensure to work in the field. Individuals can receive physical therapy assistant education and training through associate's degree programs. After graduating with this degree, individuals can obtain licensure by taking the National Physical Therapy Exam for PTAs. In addition to academic coursework, students in a PTA program have an opportunity to gain professional experience in a clinical setting.

Butler County Community College

Located in the city of Butler, Butler County Community College offers a Physical Therapist Assistant Associate in Applied Science program that requires students to complete a minimum of 70 credits. Students take courses in patient practitioner interaction, procedures, physical wellness and therapeutic exercise, to name a few. In order to develop practical experience in the field, students take three clinical education courses.

California University of Pennsylvania

Built in the city of California, this university has a physical therapy assistant associate's degree program that requires 66 credits and can be completed in five semesters. Students take courses in physical therapy procedures, therapeutic modalities and kinesiology, among others. Two internships are also part of the curriculum.

Community College of Allegheny County

The Community College of Allegheny College in Pittsburgh features a physical therapy assistant Associate of Science program. The program is 67-69 credits long and consists of 450 hours of classroom learning, as well as 784 hours of clinical experience. The curriculum includes coursework in physical therapy principles and procedures, human growth and development, injury treatment and prevention, clinical observation and professional exploration.

Harcum College

Harcum College in Bryn Mawr offers students the opportunity to pursue a physical therapy associate's degree. Courses teach students how to work full range of motion with patients. They also learn about electrical stimulation and how to care for injuries. Clinical experiences take place in sports rehabilitation centers, hospitals, nursing homes and other types of medical facilities.

Lehigh Carbon Community College

Lehigh Carbon Community College is located in Schnecksville and offers a physical therapy assistant associate's degree that students can earn by completing 64.5 credits. Students take courses in rehabilitation, therapeutic exercise, physical therapy procedures and kinesiology. The clinical experience requires that students complete two seven-week practicums. Each practicum requires 40 hours of work per week.

Mount Aloysius College

Mount Aloysius College is situated in Cresson and has a physical therapy assistant associate's degree program. The curriculum includes coursework in physical rehabilitation terminology, kinesiology, therapeutic exercise and physical therapy neurology. Students take part in three clinical education courses; the first requires that students complete 130 hours, while the second and third courses require 250 hours each.

Penn State University - Dubois

The physical therapy assistant associate's degree program at Penn State's campus in Dubois is two years in length and includes a summer semester. Students learn how to implement treatment programs and communicate with both patients and the physical therapist. Students also learn about exhibiting professional behavior. In addition to clinical requirements, students are also expected to spend time observing and volunteering in rehabilitation facilities.

Penn State University - Hazelton

The Hazelton campus of Penn State offers a physical therapy assistant associate's degree program that can be completed in five semesters. Students take courses in anatomy, physiology, kinesiology, therapeutic exercise, rehabilitation and advanced first aid. Students also learn how to lift and transfer patients and participate in ambulance training. The final semester consists of practicum requirements.

Penn State University - Mont Alto

Students enrolled in Penn State's physical therapy assistant associate's degree program offered in Mont Alto are required to complete four semesters of coursework and one semester of clinical experience. The program is 68 credits long, and courses include physical therapy procedures, therapeutic exercise, rehabilitation and pathophysiology. The practicum requirements include two six-week clinical experiences.

Penn State University - Shenango

The Shenango campus of Penn State features a physical therapy assistant program that prepares students to work with physical therapists and implement treatment plans for patients living with disabilities or injuries. The program requires 68 credits, and after completing an introductory physical therapy assistant course, students take courses in kinesiology, therapeutic exercise, rehabilitation, physical therapy procedures and pathophysiology. A license preparation class and practicums are also part of the curriculum.

School Comparison Table

School Name School Type and Setting Physical Therapy Assistant Programs Offered Undergraduate Tuition & Fees (2012-2013)
Butler County Community College 2-year, public; distant town Physical Therapist Assistant Associate in Applied Science $3,390 in-district, $6,030 in-state, $8,670 out-of-state*
California University at Pennsylvania 4-year, public; fringe town Associate of Applied Science in Physical Therapy Assistant $9,379 in-state, $13,825 out-of-state*
Community College of Allegheny County 2-year, public; large city Physical Therapy Assistant Associate of Science $3,312 in-district, $6,332 in-state, $9,198 out-of-state*
Harcum College 2-year, private not-for-profit; large suburb Physical Therapy Assistant Associate's Degree $20,050*
Lehigh Carbon Community College 2-year, public; rural fringe Physical Therapy Assistant Associate of Applied Science $3,390 in-district, $6,540 in-state, $9,690 out-of-state*
Mount Aloysius College 4-year, private not-for-profit; rural fringe Physical Therapy Assistant Associate's Degree $19,520*
Penn State University - Dubois 4-year, public; remote town Associate of Science in Physical Therapy Assistant $13,244 in-state, $19,800 out-of-state*
Penn State University - Hazelton 4-year, public; small suburb Physical Therapy Assistant Associate of Science $13,300 in-state, $19,856 out-of-state*
Penn State University - Mont Alto 4-year, public; distant town Physical Therapy Assistant Associate Degree $13,356 in-state, $19,912 out-of-state*
Penn State University - Shenango 4-year, public; large suburb Associate Degree - Physical Therapy Assistant $13,244 in-state, $19,800 out-of-state*

Sources: *NCES College Navigator.

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