AAS Physical Therapist Assistant
Role of the Physical Therapist Assistant in Health Care Delivery
The Physical Therapist Assistant (PTA) is a technically educated health provider who assists the Physical Therapist in the provision of physical therapy and may perform physical therapy interventions selected by the supervising Physical Therapist. The Physical Therapist Assistant works under the direction and supervision of the Physical Therapist, helping manage conditions such as back and neck injuries, sprains/strains, and fractures, arthritis, burns, amputations, stroke, multiple sclerosis, birth defects, injuries related to work and sports, and others (American Physical Therapy Association).
Overview of the Physical Therapist Assistant Program
The South College Physical Therapist Assistant program is a 24-month program leading to an Associate of Science degree. PTA major courses must be completed in the designated order. Classes are taught in the morning and afternoons, Mondays through Fridays. Class schedules may change at the discretion of the institution. Students should be committed to considerable out of classroom preparation and study. Certain methods classes require off-campus site attendance. Clinical education internships are required and administered by South College and take place in a variety of health care delivery facilities in the Knoxville metropolitan area and beyond. Students are responsible for their own transportation to and from these off campus educational sites. Students are responsible for costs associated with any emergency services needed while participating in off-site educational activities.
Physical Therapist Assistant Licensure
Passing the National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE) administered by the Federation of State Boards of Physical Therapy is a requirement for professional practice in the state of Tennessee. Specific information regarding application for licensure will be available to students during their last term of enrollment. Licensure or registration is not required in every state for the physical therapist assistant to practice. Complete information on practice acts and regulationscan be obtained from individual state licensing boards.
The Physical Therapist Assistant program at South College is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE) of the American Physical Therapy Association (APTA).