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What education and training is needed to be a physical therapist assistants?

Melissa Norris

in Higher Education

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Karen Wright on June 8, 2018

The following is written by and according to the Department of Labor and particular to the education and training required for a physical therapy assistant. . Most of the physical therapist assistants trained on the job, but most physical therapist assistants earn an associate degree from an accredited physical therapist assistant program. Some States require licensing for physical therapist assistants. . The education and training. Employers typically require physical therapist aides to have a high school diploma. They are trained on the job, and most employers provide clinical on-the-job training. . In many States, physical therapist assistants are required by law to maintain at least an associate degree. According to the American Physical Therapy Association, there were 233 accredited physical therapist assistant programs in the united States as of 2006. Accredited programs usually last 2 years, or 4 semesters, and culminate in an associate degree. . The programs are divided into academic study and hands-on clinical experience. Academic course work includes algebra, anatomy and physiology, biology, chemistry and psychology. Clinical work includes certifications in CPR and first aid and field experience in treatment centers. Both educators and prospective employers view clinical experience as essential to ensure that students understand the responsibilities of a physical therapist assistant. . Licensing. Do not need licenses to practice as a physical therapist assistant. However, some States require the licensing or registration in order to work as a physical therapist assistant. The states that require licenses stipulate specific educational and examination criteria. Additional requirements may include certification in cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and first aid and a minimum number of hours of clinical experience. Complete information on regulations can be obtained from State licensing boards. . Other qualifications. Physical therapist assistants and aides should be well-organized, detail-oriented and careful. They usually have strong interpersonal skills and a desire to help the people in need. . Advancement. Some physical therapist aides advance to become therapist assistants after gaining experience and, often, additional education. Sometimes, this type of education is required by law. . Some physical therapist assistants advance by specializing in a clinical area. They specialize in the treatment of a certain type of patient, such as geriatric or pediatric, or a type of ailments such as sport injuries. Many physical therapist assistants advance to administration positions. These positions might include organizing all the assistants in a large physical therapy organization or acting as a director of a specific department such as sports medicine. Other assistants go on to teach in an accredited physical therapist assistant academic program, lead health risk reduction classes for the elderly, or organize community activities related to fitness and risk reduction. . For the source and more detailed information concerning your request, click on the related links section (u.s. Department of Labor) indicated directly below this answer section.


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