The information below is for those who are interested in becoming a physical therapist assistant. We will show how this can be done and why the job is growing and is a great choice for an allied health career! shows a 30% for physical therapy assistants (PTA). This is a great growth percentage!! We will cover salary details and job information later in the article.

Lets get started on describing the field as a whole and showing you the steps and details for becoming a PTA!

What does a Physical Therapist Assistant do?

PTs or Physical Therapists assist the sick and injured to improve movements and manage overall ans specific pain. The are integral to treatment, rehabilitation and prevention of injuries and chronic conditions.

(PTAs) Physical therapist assistants work directly for and under the supervision of physical therapists. They do a vast array of duties. Be it assisting the patient in an exercise or movement, setting up an area or facility or clerical work they are the “Jack of all Trades” in the physical therapy environment. This is key to growing from a PTA to possibly becoming a PT.

Below we get in to much more detail about the specific duties of the jobs.

Core Duties of a Physical Therapy Assistant

Below are the most common tasks for physical therapy assistants.

Observe patients before, during, and after therapy, noting status to PT.
Help patients with exercises
Treat patients (massage, stretches)
Use equipment to help patients
Educate patients and their families about what to do after patient treatment
Clean treatment areas/set up any necessary therapy equipment
Assists patients moving to or from therapy area if it is needed
Wash all linens
Clerical duties

What is the process to become a Physical Therapist Assistant?

The four core steps to becoming a PTA are detailed below. From start to finish! Lets get started!

STEP 1 – Have Your High School Diploma

The first step to being eligible to become a physical therapy assistant you need to have a high school diploma or GED equivalent.

STEP 2 – Enroll in to a Physical Therapy Assisting Program

All PTAs need to have an associates degree from an accredited program. Below is a link to all the accredited PTA programs. The Commission of Accredidation in Physical Therapy Education has a database of accredited programs with an interactive map that will help you find a progam near you. Use the link below.

Accredited PTA Programs

PTA Programs are usually about 2 years in length. Your coursework will include English, anatomy, physiology, algebra and even psychology. Assistants will in most cases also get hands-on training with supervised clinical work. (CPR), basic life support (BLS), and other first-aid skills are also taught with certifications being available for each.

What are the Top Physical Therapy Assistant Schools?

The list below re[resents what we think is the best list of PTA training options you can find. We focus on accreditation, nights and weekend classes and work experience credits.

Albany State University504 College Drive, Albany, Georgia 31705
Allegany College of Maryland12401 Willowbrook Rd SE, Cumberland, Maryland 21502-2596
Amarillo College2011 S. Washington, Amarillo, Texas 79109
American Career College-Anaheim1200 N. Magnolia Ave., Anaheim, California 92801-0000
Anne Arundel Community College101 College Pky, Arnold, Maryland 21012-1895
Anoka-Ramsey Community College11200 Mississippi Blvd NW, Coon Rapids, Minnesota 55433-3470
Arapahoe Community College5900 S. Santa Fe Dr., Littleton, Colorado 80160-9002
Arkansas State University-Main Campus2105 E. Aggie Road, Jonesboro, Arkansas 72401
Arkansas Tech UniversityAdministration Bldg 200; 1509 N Boulder Ave, Russellville, Arkansas 72801-2222
Athens Technical College800 U.S. Hwy 29 North, Athens, Georgia 30601
Atlanta Technical College1560 Metropolitan Pkwy SW, Atlanta, Georgia 30310-4446
Atlantic Technical College4700 Coconut Creek Parkway, Coconut Creek, Florida 33063-3902
Augusta Technical College3200 Augusta Tech Drive, Augusta, Georgia 30906
Austin Community College District5930 Middle Fiskville Rd, Austin, Texas 78752
Baker College1050 West Bristol Road, Flint, Michigan 48507-5508
Baltimore City Community College2901 Liberty Heights Avenue, Baltimore, Maryland 21215-7893
Bay State College122 Commonwealth Avenue, Boston, Massachusetts 02116
Berkshire Community College1350 West Street, Pittsfield, Massachusetts 01201-5786
Big Sandy Community and Technical College1 Bert Combs Dr, Prestonsburg, Kentucky 41653
Bishop State Community College351 North Broad Street, Mobile, Alabama 36603-5898
Blue Ridge Community and Technical College13650 Apple Harvest Drive, Martinsburg, West Virginia 25403
Bossier Parish Community College6220 East Texas, Bossier City, Louisiana 71111-6922
Briar Cliff University3303 Rebecca Street, Sioux City, Iowa 51104
Brightwood College-Dallas12005 Ford Road, Suite 100, Dallas, Texas 75234
Brookline College-Phoenix2445 W. Dunlap Ave., Ste. 100, Phoenix, Arizona 85021
Broward College111 East Las Olas Blvd, Fort Lauderdale, Florida 33301
Bryant & Stratton College-Parma12955 Snow Rd, Parma, Ohio 44130-3151
Bryant & Stratton College-SouthtownsSterling Park - 180 Redtail Rd., Orchard Park, New York 14127
Bryant & Stratton College-Syracuse953 James St, Syracuse, New York 13203-2502
Bryant & Stratton College-Wauwatosa10950 W Potter Road, Wauwatosa, Wisconsin 53226
Caddo Kiowa Technology Center1415 N. 7th Street, Fort Cobb, Oklahoma 73038-0190
Caldwell Community College and Technical Institute2855 Hickory Boulevard, Hudson, North Carolina 28638
California Baptist University8432 Magnolia Ave, Riverside, California 92504-3297
Cape Girardeau Career and Technology Center1080 S. Silver Springs Rd., Cape Girardeau, Missouri 63703-7511
Carl Albert State College1507 S McKenna, Poteau, Oklahoma 74953-5208
Carrington College-Boise1122 N. Liberty St., Boise, Idaho 83704-8742
Carrington College-Las Vegas5740 S. Eastern Ave., Ste. 140, Las Vegas, Nevada 89119
Carrington College-Mesa1001 W. Southern Ave., Ste. 130, Mesa, Arizona 85210
Carrington College-Pleasant Hill380 Civic Dr., Ste. 300, Pleasant Hill, California 94523
Carroll Community College1601 Washington Rd, Westminster, Maryland 21157
Casa Loma College-Van Nuys6725 Kester Ave, Van Nuys, California 91405
CBD College3699 Wilshire Blvd., Fourth Floor, Los Angeles, California 90010
Cecil CollegeOne Seahawk Drive, North East, Maryland 21901-1999
Central Penn CollegeCollege Hill & Valley Rds, Summerdale, Pennsylvania 17093-0309
Central Piedmont Community College1201 Elizabeth Avenue, Charlotte, North Carolina 28204
Cerritos College11110 Alondra Blvd, Norwalk, California 90650-6298
Chattahoochee Technical College980 S Cobb Drive Dr SE, Marietta, Georgia 30060
Chattanooga State Community College4501 Amnicola Hwy, Chattanooga, Tennessee 37406-1097
Clark State Community College570 E Leffel Ln, Springfield, Ohio 45501-0570
Clovis Community College417 Schepps Blvd, Clovis, New Mexico 88101-8381
Colby Community College1255 S Range, Colby, Kansas 67701
College of Central Florida3001 SW College Rd, Ocala, Florida 34474
College of DuPage425 Fawell Blvd., Glen Ellyn, Illinois 60137-6599
College of Southern Nevada6375 W. Charleston Blvd., Las Vegas, Nevada 89146-1164
Columbus State Community College550 E Spring St, Columbus, Ohio 43215
Columbus Technical College928 Manchester Expy, Columbus, Georgia 31904-6572
Community College of Rhode Island400 East Ave, Warwick, Rhode Island 02886-1807
Concorde Career College-Aurora111 N. Havana Street, Aurora, Colorado 80010-4314
Concorde Career College-Dallas12606 Greenville Ave Ste 130, Dallas, Texas 75243
Concorde Career College-Garden Grove12951 Euclid Street, Suite 101, Garden Grove, California 92840-9201
Concorde Career College-Kansas City3239 Broadway, Kansas City, Missouri 64111-2407
Concorde Career College-Memphis5100 Poplar Avenue, Suite 132, Memphis, Tennessee 38137-0132
Concorde Career College-North Hollywood12412 Victory Boulevard, North Hollywood, California 91606-3134
Concorde Career College-San Antonio4803 NW Loop 410, San Antonio, Texas 78229
Concorde Career College-San Diego4393 Imperial Avenue, Suite 100, San Diego, California 92113-1964
Concorde Career Institute-Jacksonville7259 Salisbury Road, Jacksonville, Florida 32256-6905
Concorde Career Institute-Miramar10933 Marks Way, Miramar, Florida 33025
Connors State College700 College Road, Warner, Oklahoma 74469
Craven Community College800 College Ct, New Bern, North Carolina 28562-4900
CUNY LaGuardia Community College31-10 Thomson Ave, Long Island City, New York 11101
Cuyahoga Community College District700 Carnegie Ave, Cleveland, Ohio 44115-2878
Daymar College-Clarksville2691 Trenton Road, Clarksville, Tennessee 37040
Daytona State College1200 W. International Speedway Blvd., Daytona Beach, Florida 32114
Del Mar College101 Baldwin Blvd., Corpus Christi, Texas 78404-3897
Delgado Community College615 City Park Avenue, New Orleans, Louisiana 70119
Dixie State University225 S University Avenue, Saint George, Utah 84770-3876
ECPI University5555 Greenwich Rd, Virginia Beach, Virginia 23462
Edison State Community College1973 Edison Dr, Piqua, Ohio 45356-9239
El Paso Community College9050 Viscount Blvd, El Paso, Texas 79925
Essex County College303 University Ave, Newark, New Jersey 07102
Fayetteville Technical Community College2201 Hull Rd, Fayetteville, North Carolina 28303-0236
Flathead Valley Community College777 Grandview Dr, Kalispell, Montana 59901
Florida Gateway CollegeHighway 90 East, Lake City, Florida 32025-2007
Florida National University-Main Campus4425 West. Jose Regueiro (20th) Avenue, Hialeah, Florida 33012
Florida State College at Jacksonville501 W State St, Jacksonville, Florida 32202
Franciscan Missionaries of Our Lady University5414 Brittany Dr, Baton Rouge, Louisiana 70808
George C Wallace Community College-Dothan1141 Wallace Drive, Dothan, Alabama 36303-9234
George C Wallace State Community College-Hanceville801 Main St NW, Hanceville, Alabama 35077-2000
Germanna Community College2130 Germanna Hwy, Locust Grove, Virginia 22508-2102
Great Falls College Montana State University2100 16th Ave S, Great Falls, Montana 59405
Greenville Technical College506 S Pleasantburg Dr, Greenville, South Carolina 29606
Guilford Technical Community College601 E. Main Street, Jamestown, North Carolina 27282
Gulf Coast State College5230 West U.S. Highway 98, Panama City, Florida 32401
Gurnick Academy of Medical Arts2121 S El Camino Real Bldg C 200, San Mateo, California 94403
Harcum College750 Montgomery Ave, Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania 19010-3470
Hawkeye Community College1501 E Orange Rd, Waterloo, Iowa 50701
Henry Ford College5101 Evergreen Rd, Dearborn, Michigan 48128-1495
Herzing University-Brookfield555 S Executive Dr, Brookfield, Wisconsin 53005
Herzing University-Winter Park1865 SR 436, Winter Park, Florida 32792
Hodges University2647 Professional Circle, Naples, Florida 34119-8098
Housatonic Community College900 Lafayette Blvd, Bridgeport, Connecticut 06604-4704
Houston Community College3100 Main Street, Houston, Texas 77002
Howard Community College10901 Little Patuxent Pkwy, Columbia, Maryland 21044-3197
Hutchinson Community College1300 N Plum St, Hutchinson, Kansas 67501
Idaho State University921 S 8th Ave, Pocatello, Idaho 83209
Illinois Central College1 College Drive, East Peoria, Illinois 61635-0001
Indian River State College3209 Virginia Ave, Fort Pierce, Florida 34981-5596
Iowa Western Community College2700 College Rd, Council Bluffs, Iowa 51503-1057
Ivy Tech Community College50 W. Fall Creek Parkway N. Drive, Indianapolis, Indiana 46208-5752
Jackson State Community College2046 North Pky, Jackson, Tennessee 38301-3797
James A Rhodes State College4240 Campus Dr, Lima, Ohio 45804
Jefferson College1000 Viking Drive, Hillsboro, Missouri 63050-2440
Jefferson College of Health Sciences101 Elm Avenue SE, Roanoke, Virginia 24013
Jefferson State Community College2601 Carson Rd, Birmingham, Alabama 35215-3098
John C Calhoun State Community College6250 U S Highway 31 N, Tanner, Alabama 35671
Johnson College3427 N Main Ave, Scranton, Pennsylvania 18508-1495
Kansas City Kansas Community College7250 State Ave, Kansas City, Kansas 66112
Keiser University-Ft Lauderdale1500 NW 49th St., Fort Lauderdale, Florida 33309
Kennebec Valley Community College92 Western Ave, Fairfield, Maine 04937-1367
Kirkwood Community College6301 Kirkwood Blvd SW, Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52406-2068
Labette Community College200 S 14th, Parsons, Kansas 67357-4201
Lake Area Technical Institute1201 Arrow Avenue, Watertown, South Dakota 57201-0730
Lake Land College5001 Lake Land Blvd, Mattoon, Illinois 61938
Lake Washington Institute of Technology11605 132nd Ave NE, Kirkland, Washington 98034-8506
Lanier Technical College2535 Lanier Tech Drive, Gainesville, Georgia 30507
Laramie County Community College1400 E College Dr, Cheyenne, Wyoming 82007-3299
Lehigh Carbon Community College4525 Education Park Dr, Schnecksville, Pennsylvania 18078-2598
Lone Star College System5000 Research Forest Drive, The Woodlands, Texas 77381-4399
Macomb Community College14500 E Twelve Mile Rd, Warren, Michigan 48088-3896
Madison Area Technical College1701 Wright Street, Madison, Wisconsin 53704-2599
Madisonville Community College2000 College Drive, Madisonville, Kentucky 42431
Manchester Community CollegeGreat Path, Manchester, Connecticut 06040
Marion Technical College1467 Mount Vernon Ave, Marion, Ohio 43302-5694
Martin Community College1161 Kehukee Pk Rd, Williamston, North Carolina 27892-9988
McLennan Community College1400 College Dr, Waco, Texas 76708
Mercer County Community College1200 Old Trenton Rd, West Windsor, New Jersey 08550-3407
Mercy College of Health Sciences928 Sixth Ave, Des Moines, Iowa 50309-1239
Mercyhurst University-North East Campus16 W Division St, North East, Pennsylvania 16428
Meridian Community College910 Hwy 19 N, Meridian, Mississippi 39307-5801
Miami Dade College300 NE 2nd Avenue, Miami, Florida 33132-2204
Mid Michigan College1375 S Clare Ave, Harrison, Michigan 48625-9447
Midlands Technical College1260 Lexington Drive, West Columbia, South Carolina 29170-2176
Milwaukee Area Technical College700 W State St, Milwaukee, Wisconsin 53233-1443
Mineral Area College5270 Flat River Road, Park Hills, Missouri 63601-1000
Missouri Western State University4525 Downs Dr, Saint Joseph, Missouri 64507
Montgomery College51 Mannakee Street, Rockville, Maryland 20850
Morton College3801 S Central Ave, Cicero, Illinois 60804-4398
Mount Aloysius College7373 Admiral Peary Hwy, Cresson, Pennsylvania 16630-1999
Mount Wachusett Community College444 Green St, Gardner, Massachusetts 01440-1000
Mountwest Community and Technical CollegeOne Mountwest Way, Huntington, West Virginia 25701
Murray State CollegeOne Murray Campus, Tishomingo, Oklahoma 73460
Nassau Community CollegeOne Education Dr, Garden City, New York 11530-6793
Navarro College3200 W 7th Avenue, Corsicana, Texas 75110
New England Institute of TechnologyOne New England Tech Boulevard, East Greenwich, Rhode Island 02818-1205
New River Community and Technical College280 University Drive, Beaver, West Virginia 25813-8987
North Central State College2441 Kenwood Circle, Mansfield, Ohio 44901-0698
North Idaho College1000 West Garden Avenue, Coeur d'Alene, Idaho 83814-2199
Northeast Wisconsin Technical College2740 W Mason St, Green Bay, Wisconsin 54307-9042
Northern Virginia Community College4001 Wakefield Chapel Rd, Annandale, Virginia 22003-3796
NorthWest Arkansas Community CollegeOne College Drive, Bentonville, Arkansas 72712-5091
Northwestern University633 Clark St, Evanston, Illinois 60208
Norwalk Community College188 Richards Avenue, Norwalk, Connecticut 06854
Oakton Community College1600 E Golf Rd., Des Plaines, Illinois 60016-1268
Ocean County CollegeCollege Drive, Toms River, New Jersey 08754-2001
Odessa College201 W University Blvd, Odessa, Texas 79764
Ohlone College43600 Mission Blvd, Fremont, California 94539-0390
Olympic College1600 Chester Ave, Bremerton, Washington 98337-1699
Onondaga Community College4585 West Seneca Turnpike, Syracuse, New York 13215-4585
Orange County Community College115 South St, Middletown, New York 10940
Orangeburg Calhoun Technical College3250 Saint Matthews Rd, Orangeburg, South Carolina 29118-8299
Ozarks Technical Community College1001 E. Chestnut Expressway, Springfield, Missouri 65802
Pearl River Community College101 Hwy 11 N, Poplarville, Mississippi 39470
Pennsylvania Institute of Technology800 Manchester Ave, Media, Pennsylvania 19063-4098
Pensacola State College1000 College Blvd, Pensacola, Florida 32504-8998
Piedmont Technical College620 North Emerald Road, Greenwood, South Carolina 29646
Prince George's Community College301 Largo Rd, Largo, Maryland 20774-2199
Professional Skills Institute1505 Holland Road, Maumee, Ohio 43537
Provo College1450 W 820 N, Provo, Utah 84601
Pueblo Community College900 West Orman Avenue, Pueblo, Colorado 81004-1499
Quincy College1250 Hancock Street, Quincy, Massachusetts 02169
Remington College-Cleveland Campus14445 Broadway Ave, Cleveland, Ohio 44125-1957
River Valley Community College1 College Place, Claremont, New Hampshire 03743-9707
Riverside College of Health Careers316 Main Street, Newport News, Virginia 23601
Roane State Community College276 Patton Lane, Harriman, Tennessee 37748
Saint Louis Community College3221 McKelvey Road, Bridgeton, Missouri 63044
Salt Lake Community College4600 S Redwood Rd, Salt Lake City, Utah 84123
San Diego Mesa College7250 Mesa College Dr, San Diego, California 92111-4998
San Jacinto Community College8060 Spencer Hwy, Pasadena, Texas 77505
San Juan College4601 College Blvd, Farmington, New Mexico 87402-4699
Santa Fe College3000 Northwest 83rd Street, Gainesville, Florida 32606-6210
Seminole State College2701 Boren Blvd, Seminole, Oklahoma 74868-1901
Seminole State College of Florida100 Weldon Blvd, Sanford, Florida 32773-6199
Siena Heights University1247 E. Siena Heights Dr., Adrian, Michigan 49221
Somerset Community College808 Monticello Street, Somerset, Kentucky 42501-2973
South Arkansas Community College300 S West Ave, El Dorado, Arkansas 71731-7010
South College3904 Lonas Road, Knoxville, Tennessee 37909-0000
South Plains College1401 S. College Ave, Levelland, Texas 79336
South Texas College3201 W Pecan, McAllen, Texas 78502-9701
South University-Austin1220 West Louis Henna Boulevard, Round Rock, Texas 78681-2300
South University-Cleveland4743 Richmond Rd, Warrensville Heights, Ohio 44128
South University-Columbia9 Science Court, Columbia, South Carolina 29203
South University-Montgomery5355 Vaughn Rd, Montgomery, Alabama 36116
South University-Novi41555 W 12 Mile Rd, Novi, Michigan 48377
South University–Richmond2151 Old Brick Rd, Glen Allen, Virginia 23060
South University-Savannah709 Mall Blvd, Savannah, Georgia 31406
South University-Tampa4401 N Himes Ave, Suite 175, Tampa, Florida 33614-7095
South University–Virginia Beach301 Bendix Rd, Ste 100, Virginia Beach, Virginia 23452
South University-West Palm Beach9801 Belvedere Road, Royal Palm Beach, Florida 33411
Southeast Kentucky Community and Technical College700 College Rd, Cumberland, Kentucky 40823
Southeastern Technical College3001 E First St, Vidalia, Georgia 30474
Southern Adventist University4881 Taylor Cir, Collegedale, Tennessee 37315-0370
Southwest Tennessee Community College737 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee 38103
Southwest Wisconsin Technical College1800 Bronson Blvd, Fennimore, Wisconsin 53809-9778
Southwestern Illinois College2500 Carlyle Ave, Belleville, Illinois 62221-5899
Southwestern Oklahoma State University100 Campus Dr, Weatherford, Oklahoma 73096-3001
Spokane Falls Community College3410 W Fort George Wright Dr, Spokane, Washington 99224-5288
Springfield Technical Community College1 Armory Sq, Springfield, Massachusetts 01105-1296
St Catherine University2004 Randolph Ave, Saint Paul, Minnesota 55105
St Louis College of Health Careers-Fenton1297 North Highway Drive, Fenton, Missouri 63026
St Petersburg College6021 142nd Ave N, Clearwater, Florida 33760-2822
St Philip's College1801 Martin Luther King Dr, San Antonio, Texas 78203-2098
Stanbridge University2041 Business Ctr Dr Ste 107, Irvine, California 92612
Stark State College6200 Frank Ave NW, North Canton, Ohio 44720
State College of Florida-Manatee-Sarasota5840 26th St W, Bradenton, Florida 34207
State Fair Community College3201 W 16th Street, Sedalia, Missouri 65301-2199
Suffolk County Community College533 College Rd, Selden, New York 11784-2899
SUNY Broome Community College907 Upper Front St, Binghamton, New York 13905
Surry Community College630 S. Main St., Dobson, North Carolina 27017-8432
Tarrant County College District1500 Houston St, Fort Worth, Texas 76102-6524
Technical College of the Lowcountry921 Ribaut Road, Beaufort, South Carolina 29901-1288
Terra State Community College2830 Napoleon Rd, Fremont, Ohio 43420-9670
Texas Health School11211 Katy Fwy Ste 170, Houston, Texas 77079
The College of Health Care Professions-Austin6330 E. Highway 290 Suite 180, Austin, Texas 78723
The College of Health Care Professions-Dallas8585 N. STEMMONS FREEWAY, SUITE 300, NORTH TOWER, Dallas, Texas 75247
The College of Health Care Professions-McAllen Campus1917 W. Nolana Ave Suite 100, McAllen, Texas 78504-4398
The College of Health Care Professions-San Antonio4738 N. W. Loop 410, San Antonio, Texas 78229
The College of Health Care Professions-Southwest Houston7322 SOUTHWEST FREEWAY SUITE 100, Houston, Texas 77074
Three Rivers College2080 Three Rivers Blvd, Poplar Bluff, Missouri 63901
Tidewater Community College121 College Place, Norfolk, Virginia 23510
Touro College500 7th Avenue, New York, New York 10018
Trident Technical College7000 Rivers Avenue, Charleston, South Carolina 29423-8067
Tulsa Community College6111 E Skelly Dr, Tulsa, Oklahoma 74135-6198
Union County College1033 Springfield Avenue, Cranford, New Jersey 07016-1528
University of Evansville1800 Lincoln Avenue, Evansville, Indiana 47722
University of Saint Francis-Fort Wayne2701 Spring St, Fort Wayne, Indiana 46808-3994
Victoria College2200 E Red River, Victoria, Texas 77901
Vincennes University1002 N First St, Vincennes, Indiana 47591
Volunteer State Community College1480 Nashville Pike, Gallatin, Tennessee 37066-3188
Walters State Community College500 South Davy Crockett Parkway, Morristown, Tennessee 37813-6899
Washburn University1700 SW College Avenue, Topeka, Kansas 66621-0001
Washington State Community College710 Colegate Dr, Marietta, Ohio 45750
Washtenaw Community College4800 E Huron River Dr, Ann Arbor, Michigan 48105-4800
Weatherford College225 College Park Drive, Weatherford, Texas 76086-5699
West Kentucky Community and Technical College4810 Alben Barkley Drive, Paducah, Kentucky 42002-7380
Western Iowa Tech Community College4647 Stone Ave, Sioux City, Iowa 51102-5199
Western Technical College9451 Diana Drive, El Paso, Texas 79924
Western Technical College400 Seventh St. North, La Crosse, Wisconsin 54601
Whatcom Community College237 W Kellogg Rd, Bellingham, Washington 98226
Wytheville Community College1000 E Main Street, Wytheville, Virginia 24382-3308
Zane State College1555 Newark Rd, Zanesville, Ohio 43701-2626

Step 3 – Pass the National Physical Therapy Assistant Exam

All states require certification for their physical therapy assistants. The exam is called the NPTE given at a national level by the Federation of State Boards of Physical Therapy. To be successful for the NPTE exam it is recommended you follow a few guidelines. We detail them below for you.

1 – Preparation for the Exam – (see here for tips).

2 – Take Care of all Your Pre-examination Requirements – Arrive at least 30 minutes before your scheduled appointment time and have two forms of acceptable identification with you. These forms of ID are a currently valid, government-issued photo ID and another piece of identification which is pre-printed with your name and containing your signature on it.This can be a credit card for example.

3 – Tips for the Day of the Exam – Candidates are allowed 5 hours for the PT examination and 4 hours for the PTA examination. The exams has have 250 questions for PTs and 200 questions for PTAs. The time limit is for test taking time and you are allowed two 15 minute breaks during your test that will not take away from your overall time limit. Candidates are not permitted to bring anything into the testing room other than their identification and locker key. Food/beverages are not permitted in the testing room and lockers are provided to candidates to store their personal items while they are testing. Wear comfortable clothes (Use layers in case of temp changes) and be ready mentally for a grueling long examination of your education.

The Physical Therapy Licensure Compact

The FSBPT has a licensure compact between states that allows those who are certified in the states in the compact to work across state lines without having to re-certify in those states. For more details about the compact see this informative breakdown from the FSBPT here. The states currently in the compact enacting full licensure are Washington, Colorado, Oregon, Arizona, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, New Hampshire, Nebraska, New Jersey, North Dakota, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, West Virginia, Utah and legislation has been introduced in Pennsylvania. Many other states are in the process of and have legislation for the compact to be made law in their states.

Step 4 – Get your Physical Therapy Certification for your State

After successfully passing the certification exam you may have to pass a background check in most states. Once you have done that you will have all you need for PTA certification!

About Physical Therapist Assistant Salary

Physical therapy assisting is growing at a wonderful rate of 30%! This is a great rate of growth for the field as a whole. has many statistics that back this up below.

What is the average salary for a Physical Therapist Assistant?

According to the average salary is $46,920 per year and hourly pay is $22.56 per hour.

PTA salary by state

State NameHourly mean wageAnnual mean wage
New Hampshire28.5459360
New Jersey32.6967990
New Mexico23.6749230
New York26.5755260
North Carolina28.3859030
North Dakota22.6147020
Rhode Island29.5461450
South Carolina26.8755900
South Dakota19.7541080
West Virginia23.8149520


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