Physical Therapist Assistant

Associate of Applied Science Degree (A.A.S.)
PTA student

About this program

From accidents to sports injuries, physical therapy gets patients back on track, doing the things they love. At Penn College, you’ll explore theories and concepts and put techniques to the test in modern labs outfitted with equipment just like you can expect to find in the field. Then, apply your skills in the real world with three clinical experiences, which can be completed in 65+ diverse sites across Pennsylvania and beyond. Through immersive hands-on experience and with insight from faculty who bring experience across diverse specialties, you’ll learn how to thrive in this growing field. 

Acceptance in this major is based upon additional requirements beyond College admission.

30%

Growth in Demand for Physical Therapist Assistant is Expected through 2026

65+

Diverse Clinical Sites

Two-Year Program

Careers

  • Acute care
  • Outpatient orthopedic setting
  • Inpatient skills nursing facility
  • Rehabilitation center
Courses

At Penn College, we believe your educational experience should go beyond specialized skills. Real-world ready means taking a broader approach that builds communication skills, inspires collaboration, and encourages exploration of arts, history, and science.

​​Specialization requires in-depth knowledge and high-level proficiency. Students learn and apply major-specific concepts, skills, and methods.

  • Introduction to Physical Therapy (PTA100)
  • Clinical Kinesiology (PTA120)
  • PT Procedures I (PTA130)
  • Pathology for the PTA (PTA210)
  • Physical Agents (PTA225)
  • Level 1 Clinical Experience (PTA215)
  • Therapeutic Exercise (PTA220)
  • Clinical Neurology (PTA230)
  • Interpersonal Communication (SPC201)
  • PT Procedures II (PTA250)
  • Rehabilitation (PTA260)
  • Orthopedics and Sports in PT (PTA265)
  • Ethics and Law for the PTA (PTA240)
  • PTA Professional Seminar (PTA245)
  • Level 2A Clinical Experience (PTA270)
  • Level 2B Clinical Experience (PTA275)

​Perspectives are points of view, offering a variety of ways of understanding, interacting, and influencing the world. Students identify, explain, and utilize the approaches used by academics and professionals to study, analyze, or understand problems, and offer solutions.

  • Math Elective (153 or Higher) (MPA)
  • Fitness and Lifetime Sports Elective (FIT)

​​Foundations are the practical, intellectual, and social skills: communication, collaboration, critical and ethical thinking, quantitative thinking, and technological literacy that are crucial to every student at every stage of education and at every stage of life.

  • First Year Experience (FYE101)
  • Human Anatomy and Physiology I (BIO115)
  • English Composition I (ENL111)
  • Medical Terminology Survey (MTR100)
  • General Psychology (PSY111)
  • Human Anatomy and Physiology II (BIO125)
  • Information, Technology, and Society (CSC124)
Facilities

Physical Therapy Lab

Expansive lab space inspires collaboration and partner work while optimizing the hands-on learning experience.

Facilities

Physical Therapy Lab

Expansive lab space inspires collaboration and partner work while optimizing the hands-on learning experience.

Facilities

Physical Therapy Lab

Expansive lab space inspires collaboration and partner work while optimizing the hands-on learning experience.

Student Experience

"Upon completing the program, I felt 100% prepared to step out into the workforce. The program provided a road map to success with everything from the hands-on learning in lab to the clinical education opportunities. Not to mention the teachers and staff were extremely knowledgeable and always available."

Angela Cipolla, Physical Therapist Assistant

Phoenix Rehabilitation and Health Services

Industry Partners

Work with experts to become an expert

Penn College's strong partnerships impact every step of your journey – from your first day in the classroom and labs, to career placement (oftentimes before graduation) and beyond.

UPMC Susquehanna
Geisinger
Phoenix Rehab
Related Programs

Follow your passion

Occupational Therapy Assistant

Associate of Applied Science Degree (A.A.S.)

Applied Health Studies, Completion

Bachelor of Science Degree (B.S.) Online

Surgical Technology

Associate of Applied Science Degree (A.A.S.)

Student Life

Stay active in and out of the classroom

Physical Therapist Assistant Club

The PTA Club provides opportunities for professional and personal development through interaction with and service to the community.

Student Organizations at Penn College

Your college experience is about more than the classroom. Join one of 65+ clubs and organizations, or create your own.

News
03.14.2019

Charter class of Penn College PTAs excels on certification exam

Fifteen members of the first graduating class from Pennsylvania College of Technology’s physical therapist assistant major have ...

03.12.2019

Pre-College Programs to enrich participants’ summer experience

Building construction has been added to the abounding schedule of pre-college initiatives offered at Pennsylvania College of ...

02.06.2019

Penn College physical therapist assistant degree accredited

Pennsylvania College of Technology’s physical therapist assistant program has been accredited by the Commission on Accreditation ...

Study Abroad

Gain global experience

See the world via Williamsport. Take your education abroad and get hands-on experience learning about your industry on a global scale.

Learn More

Clinical Experience

Your knowledge in practice

Explore what’s to come through three clinical experiences. During this two-year program, students participate in one part-time clinical along with two back-to-back, full-time clinical experiences with one of our many partners.

Student Experience

The community as their classroom

Global PT Day-of-Service

Students in Pennsylvania College of Technology’s Physical Therapist Assistant Club harvested a plentiful crop to benefit The Cupboard at Penn College, an on-campus food pantry that assists students and their families.

Read more

Accreditation

The Physical Therapist Assistant program at Pennsylvania College of Technology is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE), 1111 North Fairfax Street, Alexandria, Virginia 22314; telephone: 703-706-3245; email: accreditation@apta.org; website: http://www.capteonline.org . If needing to contact the program/institution directly, please call 570-320-4439 or email pta@pct.edu.

Verify Status

More Information

The Physical Therapist Assistant program at Pennsylvania College of Technology is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE), 1111 North Fairfax Street, Alexandria, Virginia 22314; telephone: 703-706-3245; email: accreditation@apta.org; website: http://www.capteonline.org. If needing to contact the program/institution directly, please call 570-320-4439 or email pta@pct.edu.

Students who are accepted into the pre-major program will complete coursework that will meet general education requirements for the PTA major. Upon completion of this coursework, students who meet the qualifications for acceptance into the program will be ranked based on their performance in the pre-major coursework. The top 20 students in this ranking will be receive acceptance into the PTA program beginning in the Spring semester. For further details, please see the PTA Program Selective Admission Procedure.

Students will be required to purchase personal malpractice insurance prior to their first clinical experience. Students are responsible for the cost of all clearances and immunizations as will be noted on the website and consistent with other health science degrees. Students will be required to purchase a student membership to the APTA by the second spring semester of the program

Students enrolled in the Physical Therapist Assistant major must maintain a 'C' or better in all of their major coursework. This major uses an A, B, C and F grading scale in all PTA courses.

Students who earn an "F" in any major course within the first technical semester will be placed back into the pre-major status and will have the opportunity to be selected back into the program in December.  Students who earn an "F" in any 200 level major course will not be permitted to progress through the PTA curriculum until the deficiencies have been remediated and the student has earned a "C" grade or better.  A student may continue to take non-PTA courses in the PTA curriculum. 

Students with less than a 2.0 GPA will be placed on academic probation as stated in the College catalog.  In order to be considered a candidate for graduation, the student must have an overall GPA of at least a 2.0.

Child abuse clearance and criminal background checks are required by agencies involved in clinical education experiences.  Agencies can bar students from their sites if a criminal record exists or a positive drug test is noted.  By virtue of contract for Penn College students to be at clinical sites, drug testing is required for admission and students will be subject to random drug testing while in the Physical Therapy Assistant Program.  The Pennsylvania State Board of Education and Licensure and APTA advise that a drug-related conviction and/or conviction of a felonious act may result in denial and/or revocation of a license to practice physical therapy.  Inability to gain clinical education experiences results in inability to meet program objectives and outcomes, and will have a negative impact on a student's ability to progress through the curriculum.  For additional clarification, students should speak with their program director.

Students requesting admission to the Physical Therapy Assistant program must provide course syllabi from related technical coursework to be reviewed by the Program Director for determination of acceptance.  Transfer credit and advanced placement is evaluated by the Registrar's office. If students are transferring physical therapy specific courses, they must present a full course description and syllabi with course objectives to the Physical Therapy Assistant director, who will evaluate for equivalency to core-specific courses.  Students wishing to transfer into the technical phase of the program will be assessed based on the same standards of those coming out of high school.  Students must have achieved a minimum of a C in all prerequisite courses. 

International health credentials/licensure, science courses, and most math courses will not be accepted to satisfy requirements of this major.  Please see additional information for international students applying to Health Science majors.

View general transfer information

Alternative Credit refers to academic credits earned through means other than traditional college course completion, including: credit by exam, articulation, proof of competency gained in high school, work/life experience, and advanced placement.

Visit the Alternative Credit Options page for requirements and procedures and for information on credit through Advanced Placement.

Students will be required to purchase a PTA tool kit, available at the College Store. Included in the program tool kit; Adult size blood pressure cuff, stethoscope, reflex hammer, bandage scissors, goniometers (small, medium and large), tape measure.

Students are required to have access to a computer, but are not required to possess a laptop computer. Students will be required to purchase designated Penn College polo shirts and a name tag for use on clinical experiences. Refer to full list of estimated expenses under Tools, Uniforms and Supplies

Some items are available for purchase through The College Store.

  • Mr. Patrick J Barry, DPT, Director of Therapy Operations, Geisinger - Healthsouth LLC
  • Ms. Ellen Detweiler, Physical Therapist, Susquehanna Health
  • Ms. Kimberly L Dixon, MPT, Physical Therapist, Susquehanna Health System
  • Ms. Boneita A Dodge, MPT, Staff Physical Therapist, Susquehanna Health
  • Ms. Jodi Fletcher Stiner, MPT, GCS, Physical Therapist, Evangelical Community Hospital
  • Mr. Castan Kiersch, MPT, Facility Director/Physical Therapist, PHOENIX Rehabilitation and Health Services, Inc.
  • Dr. Mary Lazarski Stout, Owner/CEO, Central Penn Physical Therapy, Inc.
  • Ms. Denise Lorson, PT, Supervisor, Therapeutic Services, The Children's Development Center
  • Mr. Matthew R Martin, MSPT, OCS, Manager of Rehabilitation Services, UPMC Susquehanna
  • Dr. Donald Shipe, Facility Director/Physical Therapist, PHOENIX Rehabilitation and Health Services, Inc.
  • Mr. Richard Smith, Physical Therapy Assistant, Sun Orthopedic Physical Therapy
  • Ms. Sheryl E Snyder, Coordinator of Clinical Education, Susquehanna Health
  • Ms. Terra Thompson, Physical Therapist Assistant, Cole Memorial Hospital
  • Dr. Loragene Walker, '05, Staff Physical Therapist, AdvantageCare Rehab - Susque-View
  • Mr. Joseph F Wood, DPT, Director of Therapy Operations, UPMC Susquehanna
  • Dr. Barry M Wrench, Facility Director/Physical Therapist, PHOENIX Rehabilitation & Health Services Inc.
Contact

Admissions Counselor

Lorenzo Marefka

SASC, Rm. 1088
800.367.9222 ext. 7111
lmarefka@pct.edu