What is the Physical Therapist Assistant Program?
The Baltimore City Community College (BCCC) Physical Therapist Assistant Program offers a direct path to a career in the rewarding field of physical therapy. Physical therapist assistants work under the direction of physical therapists to treat patients suffering from physical disabilities related to disease or injury. The two-year program culminates in an Associate of Applied Science degree and offers a curriculum combining study in anatomy, kinesiology and medical conditions with clinical education and practice.
What Careers Use These Skills?
Graduates care for clients with health care needs in hospitals, extended care facilities and community health care agencies.
Physical therapist assistants (PTAs) work as part of a team to provide physical therapy services under the direction and supervision of the physical therapist. PTAs implement selected components of patient/client interventions (treatment), obtain data related to the interventions provided, and make modifications in selected interventions either to progress the patient/client as directed by the physical therapist or to ensure patient/client safety and comfort.
PTAs assist the physical therapist in the treatment of individuals of all ages, from newborns to the very oldest, who have medical problems or other health-related conditions that limit their abilities to move and perform functional activities in their daily lives.
PTAs provide care for people in a variety of settings, including hospitals, private practices, outpatient clinics, home health agencies, schools, sports and fitness facilities, work settings, and nursing homes. PTAs must graduate from a CAPTE-accredited PTA program and licensure or certification is required in most states in which a PTA works.
Salaries range from $22-27/ hour Full time to $40-$50/hour part-time.
What Degree or Certificate Can I Earn?
You can earn:
Physical therapist assistants work under the direction of physical therapists to help patients with mobility training, therapeutic exercises, posture and body mechanics instruction, general conditioning and other activities to support rehabilitation and recovery of mobility. They are employed in hospitals, rehabilitation centers, extended care and sub-acute facilities, schools and pediatric centers, private practices and outpatient clinics.
- Physical therapist assistants make a starting salary of $34,775 and earn a median income of $54,775.
What Will I Learn?
Students will learn to:
- Explain the structure and function of a normal human body.
- Apply knowledge of the structure and function of the normal human body while delivering patient care within an established plan of care.
- Perform safe, effective, and entry-level physical therapy services (such as assisted movement, exercise treatment and heat/cold therapy) under the guidance of a physical therapist.
- Interpret and implement a treatment plan.
- Educate the client or caregiver in therapeutic exercise, functional training in self-care, and work integration and reintegration.
- Explain the options available in the field of physical therapy.
- Identify the activities necessary for acquiring and maintaining licensure and continuing competence.
- Seek input from the physical therapist to modify physical therapy interventions according to patient response or change in status.
- Write and verbally report comprehensive, accurate, organized and timely patient communications that meet the legal requirements of the profession.
- Adhere to conduct and ethical behavior as described in the Standards for Ethical Conduct for the Physical Therapist Assistant.
- Show respect for differences encountered in interactions with individuals from other ethnic and cultural backgrounds.
- Use critical thinking skills as demonstrated through sound clinical judgments and practices.
What Courses Will I Take?
Always check with an advisor to determine what courses to take. All BCCC students must meet the College’s computer literacy requirement in order to receive a degree or certificate.