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


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

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.

  • 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.

2023-2024 Academic Year
 earlier / Archive
CIP 510806

The course sequence below represents a recommended example of how this degree program can be completed in two years, presuming satisfaction of all Developmental Studies (foundation 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
To Do This Semester
BIO 103 Anatomy and Physiology I (3/3) 4

✔ Meet with your faculty advisor to complete an academic plan.

✔ Complete the mandatory PTA program information session; video and form located at program website (

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. Students who do not place at this mathematics level must meet with their program advisor to develop an academic plan.
BIO 104 Anatomy and Physiology II (3/3) 4

✔ Submit an application (located at for acceptance into the professional phase of the PTA program; accepted between January 2 and February 28 of each year.

✔ Apply for financial aid by May 1.

✔ Apply for Continuing Student scholarships at

✔ Maintain contact with your faculty advisor.

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.
Code Course (lecture/lab hours) Credits
PTA 107 Therapeutic Measurement (1/2) 2
PTA 112 Pathology for PTAs (3/0) 3
PTA 222 Clinical Orthopedics (3/3) 4
PTA 227 PTA Seminar (3/0) 3
PTA 114 Applied Kinesiology (1/2) 2
PTA 210 PTA Techniques (3/2) 4
PTA 214 Physical Agents (2/2) 3
PTA 232 PTA Professional Development (2/0) 2
PTA 224 PTA Clinical Education I (160 hours) 3
PTA 206 Motor Development (2/0)
  • Courses are interrupted for five weeks for the Clinical Education course included in the semester. Class times have been adjusted accordingly.
PTA 217 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.
PTA 235 PTA Clinical Education II (200 hours) 4
PTA 240 PTA Clinical Education III (240 hours) 5

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