What Kind of Education Do You Need to Become a Physical Therapist Assistant?


If you have the desire to become a Physical Therapist Assistant (PTA), then you need to find an accredited university that has a structured curriculum designed to equip you to be one of the best in the industry. The Associate of Science in Physical Therapist Assistant offered by Florida National University (FNU) is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE).


CAPTE is nationally recognized by the United States Department of Education as well as the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (http://www.capteonline.org/home.aspx). Earning an accredited degree ensures your potential employer that you achieved the highest quality of education by undergoing a well-planned and structured curriculum that has undergone the scrutiny of professionals in the field.

The Importance of an Accredited PTA Degree

An accredited PTA program will adhere to the general expectations of the Physical Therapy profession by giving students a quality education. The one offered at FNU is structured in a fashion where graduates of this program will have adopted the goals of maximizing patients’ recovery by improving their quality of life that is ultimately based on preventing functional decline. With this associate’s degree, graduates will be well prepared to take their licensure exam and apply for PTA positions in outpatient clinics, hospitals and long-term care facilities like nursing homes.

What You Need to Know About FNU’s PTA ProgramWhat Kind of Education Do You Need to Become a Physical Therapist Assistant?

Many people may think that in order to work as a PTA, you must have a bachelor’s degree. The PTA degree program at FNU is a 2-year degree specifically built to prepare students to take the national licensure exam. It is not designed to transfer to other universities. There won’t be a need to if your plan is to pursue a career as a PTA. This degree program sets you up for this kind of success!

What Students Will Take Away from This Program

Unlike most other degree programs, FNU’s PTA degree program is specific to its profession. Graduates of this program are groomed to become licensed PTAs assisting Physical Therapists in carrying out the goals of achieving or maintaining health, wellness, and independent mobility. Graduates of this program will also demonstrate a deep commitment toward their patients, peers, employer, and profession.

The kind of education you need to become an outstanding PTA is one that provides hands-on training both in the classroom as well as a variety of clinical training opportunities. This will give you the hands-on experience every PTA needs before entering the healthcare field as a licensed professional. Another important factor in determining the right kind of education is reviewing the university’s graduate outcomes.


When it comes to ranking a PTA degree program, there’s no such thing. According to the American Physical Therapy Association, they do not rank PTA education programs. As long as they are accredited by CAPTE, these programs are guaranteeing an exemplary quality of physical therapy education. It is also worth noting that aspiring PTAs MUST take the licensure examination in order to qualify for any job as a PTA. In order to sit for this exam, applicants must have graduated from an accredited program. This is extremely critical information, because paying thousands of dollars for a non-accredited PTA degree will be an unwise investment, costing you time and money!

What FNU Expects of PTA Students

While this degree program takes only two years to complete, it will require a great amount of your time and talent. You’ll be challenged to gain a greater comprehension of the physical therapy industry. This means understanding different diagnoses, pain, disabilities, injuries, and mobility limitations they apply to everyday life. Such a feat will require an intense amount of effort toward studying all of the educational materials that make up the curriculum, a higher level of commitment to rise to the challenge and excel.

FNU’s PTA degree program is only offered in the day at our Hialeah campus. There are no night classes available and students will not be able to take classes at our South campus. This is a full-time commitment. Students will not be able to enroll in this degree program on a part-time status.

Because of the clinical rotation requirements, it is imperative that PTA students have liability insurance. A total of 630 hours of clinical practice must be completed before satisfactorily completing your associate’s degree.

The prerequisite for participating in clinical rotations require criminal background checks and completion of the following seminars:

  • Basic Life Support – CPR (BLS)
  • Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA)
  • Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV)
  • Health Insurance Portability and Accountability (HIPPA)

To inquire about the application process, visit FNU’s online page that explains in detail about the PTA enrollment requirements here.

The Earlier You Apply, the Better!

Applying to a college program can be an extremely timely process. Whatever you can do to get the process started will only make the enrollment process easier. However, the PTA program only accepts 30 students into the technical courses and the deadline to apply is July 15th. You still have time! Don’t miss this opportunity to start your career as a PTA college student. Missing the deadline will only delay your professional career as a licensed PTA. Don’t let another year pass you by. Start the application process and apply to Florida National University’s Physical Therapist Assistant associate’s program. In two years, you could be assisting a Physical Therapist address the rehabilitation needs of his or her patients.

Take a look at the full course curriculum of FNU’s PTA degree program here. Then contact an advisor to assist you with the application process. Start now and beat the deadline!