May 23, 2024  
Spring 2024 Academic Catalog 
    
Spring 2024 Academic Catalog

Physical Therapist Assistant, A.A.S.


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Andrea Wamsley-Barr (PT, DPT, ATC), Physical Therapist Assistant Program Coordinator
(304) 367-4043
awamsleybarr@pierpont.edu

Accrediting Agency

The Physical Therapist Assistant program at Pierpont Community and Technical College is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE), 3030 Potomac Ave., Suite 100, Alexandria, Virginia 22305-3085; telephone: 703-706-3245; email: accreditation@apta.org; website: http://www.capteonline.org.  If needing to contact the program/institution directly, please call the Program Director at 304-367-4043 or email awamsleybarr@pierpont.edu.

Program Purpose

The Physical Therapist Assistant program is designed to educate and prepare students to work under the supervision of a physical therapist to provide therapeutic treatments to patients who have lost functional ability because of illness or injury. The program prepares students to sit for a state licensing exam and graduates must pass this exam in order to work as a Physical Therapist Assistant.

Program Requirements

Physical Therapy Assistant is an open enrollment, competitive program. To complete the program, students are required to:

  • Students must pass a criminal background clearance check, meet health and immunization requirements, and drug testing.
  • Students must be able to meet the essential functions of the program and classes, with or without accommodations.
  • Students will need to provide their own transportation to assigned clinical sites.

Students begin the program in the fall semester and are required to complete the following open enrollment courses:

The second semester (Spring) is competitive due to PTA program capacity. If the program reaches capacity (currently 20 students), the top 20 students, based on the grade point average of the 7 courses listed above, are eligible to continue in the program. The second semester (Spring) comprises the PTA cohort entering PTA major-restricted courses. If the program does not meet capacity after admitting all students who meet the above criteria, additional students who have successfully completed PHTA 1100 and 1109 may be admitted to the spring semester. Those students who have the highest GPA and the most number of successfully completed credit hours from the first-semester model schedule, may taken until the capacity of the cohort is met.

Any students not selected will have the option of continuing into one of a variety of programs, including, but not limited to, the “Health Sciences - Associate of Applied Science” program.

Students must complete each course in the PTA program model schedule with a grade of “C” or higher and maintain an overall 2.0 GPA to remain in the program. Exam averages must be maintained at least a 75% in PTA courses. Any classes accepted as substitutes for curricular classes also require a grade of “C” or higher. Failure to meet any of these requirements will result in dismissal from the program. Students who have been dismissed may reapply to the program and their credentials will be reevaluated.

Student Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of the PTA program, graduates will be able to do the following:

  • Implement a plan of care established by the physical therapist
  • Demonstrate the cognitive knowledge basic to physical therapy intervention
  • Demonstrate competence in data collection through tests, measurements, and observations
  • Use verbal, non-verbal, and written communication in an effective and appropriate manner
  • Exhibit conduct that reflects practice standards that are legal, ethical, and safe
  • Exhibit professional behavior through integrity, service, and the ability to assume appropriate responsibility

Opportunities

Career opportunities for licensed PTAs can be found in hospitals, clinics, rehabilitation centers, nursing care facilities, offices of physical therapists in private practice, and in home health care.

According to the US Department of Labor, employment of PTAs is expected to grow much faster than average for the next several years (2021-2031), and the median annual salary for WV is over $46,400.

Many PTA graduates continue their education in a baccalaureate field such as Allied Health Administration or Exercise Science. PTAs who wish to become physical therapists must first earn a Bachelor’s degree in a field that satisfies the pre-requisites for the Doctor of Physical Therapy program they wish to attend.

Program Data

Outcomes Data:

GRADUATION YEAR GROUP # OF CANDIDATES # OF PASSING CANDIDATES PASS RATE
2023 First Time 8 6 75%
2023 Ultimate TBD TBD TBD
2022 First Time 13 9 69.2%
2022 Ultimate 12 13 92.31%

 

Two-Year Aggregates:

Year Aggregate (%) CAPTE Benchmark (%)
2021-22 (Ultimate Board Pass Rate) 85.1% 85%
2021-22 61% 60%

 

Graduation Data:

CLASS YEAR GRADUATION RATE (%)
2019 50%
2020 100%
2021 93%
2022 69%
2023 54%

 

Employment Rate: Of the students who have graduated, passed their boards, and sought employment in the past 5 years, 100% were employed as a physical therapist assistant within 6 months of graduation.

PTA Essential Functions  

PTA Student Handbook 2022-2023   

Required Courses (68 Hrs)


Model Schedule (68 Hrs)


Spring First Year (16 Hrs)


Notice to All Students


  • Annual Notification: All career and technical education courses and programs are offered at Pierpont regardless of race, color, national origin, gender, or disability.
  • Advanced Skill Set and Skill Set programs do not qualify for financial aid. Students seeking financial aid eligible degrees may incorporate the classes as electives when their schedule allows or may declare an associate or certificate degree in which the skill set and advanced skill set courses are embedded.
  • Students are reminded to review campus policies and procedures as stated in the catalog.

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