Physical Therapist Assistant
Physical Therapist Assistant
Associate in Applied Science Degree (A.A.S.)
Program Website
Health Professions Division
609.570.3383

The Physical Therapist Assistant (PTA) program combines courses in general education and physical therapy with supervised clinical experiences in area clinics, hospitals, and private practices. The PTA program at Mercer County Community College is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE), 1111 North Fairfax Street, Alexandria, VA 22314; 703-706-3245 www.capteonline.org

Graduates are eligible to take the National Physical Therapy Examination for licensure as physical therapist assistants and be recognized by the State of New Jersey Department of Law & Public Safety, Division of Consumer Affairs, State Board of Physical Therapy Examiners, which regulates the practice of physical therapy in the state of New Jersey.

PTAs work under the supervision and direction of a physical therapist and are employed by acute, post-acute, and outpatient physical therapy facilities.

PROGRAM OUTCOMES
  • To maintain high-quality PTA courses and instruction for a diverse student population;
  • To provide meaningful and effective services and activities that support student success and preparation for safe and competent clinical practice;
  • To foster learning environments that celebrate and value diversity and respect;
  • To manage resources that support affordability, quality teaching, innovation, and safe learning environments;
  • To foster community connections with providers of quality physical therapy to enhance the vitality of the PTA program and contribute to the physical therapy community;
  • To provide an environment that creates adaptive learners who are able to function in complex, uncertain, and novel situations;
  • To intentionally focus on learner development of professional identity and commitment to the physical therapy profession;
  • To maintain a commitment to assessment to evaluate the PTA program's success in meeting these goals.

Applicants must have a high school diploma or the equivalent with at least one year of a high school laboratory science. Students who did not complete at least one year of a high school laboratory science and those students whose background in the sciences is old or weak may be expected to complete one or more of the following courses: Physical Science Concepts (PHY 111), Introductory Chemistry (CHE 100), Biological Science Concepts (BIO 113). Full acceptance into the program requires satisfactory performance on the college skills placement test or completion of any required remediation.

Enrollment in the program is limited and based upon an application process. Details regarding the admissions criteria and application process are available on the PTA program website as well as through the Enrollment Services office or Health Professions division.

All professional phase PTA students are required to undergo a criminal background check, obtain a physical examination, and fulfill other health records requirements prior to commencing the clinical portion of the program. The New Jersey Board of Physical Therapy Examiners has the right to determine eligibility for licensure. For additional information, contact the PTA program coordinator.

DEGREE CURRICULUM
2019-2020 Academic Year
 earlier / Archive
PTA.B.AAS
CIP 510806

The course sequence below represents a recommended example of how this degree program can be completed in two years, presuming a Fall Term start and satisfaction of all Developmental Studies (Foundations courses) requirements and prerequisites. Actual approaches toward completion depend on each student's anticipated transfer institution, career objectives, or other individual circumstances.

Students are encouraged to meet regularly with an academic advisor or Success Coach to consider options, establish plans, and monitor progress.

Code Course (lecture/lab hours) Credits
PRE-PROFESSIONAL PHASE
BIO 103 Anatomy and Physiology I (3/3) 4
ENG 101 English Composition I (3/0) 3
PSY 101 Introduction to Psychology (3/0) 3
MAT  — Mathematics elective
  • Select from MAT 115, 125, 140, 200, or approved alternative.
3-4
BIO 104 Anatomy and Physiology II (3/3) 4
CSW 100 College Success and Personal Wellness (2/0)
  • Some exemptions apply. Consult academic advisor for details.
2
ENG 102 English Composition II (3/0) 3
PTA 105 Kinesiology (3/0) 3
  —    — General Education elective
  • Select course from the following general education categories: Social Science, Humanities, Historical Perspective, Diversity and Global Perspective.
3
PROFESSIONAL PHASE
PTA 107 Therapeutic Measurement (1/2) 2
PTA 112 Pathology for PTAs (3/0) 3
  —    — First Aid and CPR Certification
  • Students must hold current certifications in First Aid and CPR for Professionals prior to the start of the Clinical Education courses.
PTA 201 Therapeutic Exercise (1/2)
  • Courses are interrupted for four weeks for the Clinical Education course included in the semester. Class times have been adjusted accordingly.
2
PTA 210 PTA Techniques (3/2)
  • Courses are interrupted for four weeks for the Clinical Education course included in the semester. Class times have been adjusted accordingly.
4
PTA 211 Physical Agents (3/3)
  • Courses are interrupted for four weeks for the Clinical Education course included in the semester. Class times have been adjusted accordingly.
4
PTA 224 PTA Clinical Education I (160 hours) 3
PTA 227 PTA Seminar (3/0)
  • Courses are interrupted for four weeks for the Clinical Education course included in the semester. Class times have been adjusted accordingly.
3
PTA 205 Motor Development (1/0) 1
PTA 213 PTA Therapy Clinic (3/3)
  • Courses are interrupted for five weeks for the Clinical Education course included in the semester. Class times have been adjusted accordingly.
3
PTA 216 Orthopedics in PTA (1/2)
  • Courses are interrupted for five weeks for the Clinical Education course included in the semester. Class times have been adjusted accordingly.
2
PTA 235 PTA Clinical Education II (200 hours) 4
PTA 237 PTA Professional Development (3/0)
  • Courses are interrupted for five weeks for the Clinical Education course included in the semester. Class times have been adjusted accordingly.
3
PTA 240 PTA Clinical Education III (240 hours) 5
  67-68

NOTE: Students must earn a minimum grade of C+ in all PTA, mathematics, and science courses. All PTA courses may only be attempted twice.