Physical Therapist Assistant
The course of study for a physical therapist assistant (PTA) is a two-year program, leading to an Associate of Applied Science degree. One cohort is accepted into the program each year. Besides the PTA courses, our program includes general education and science courses necessary for earning an Associate in Applied Science degree. Successful completion of the program satisfies the academic requirement for applying for the state licensure as a PTA and satisfies the requirement for graduates to take the NBPTE, the national licensing exam.
The program contains a total of 66 credit hours. The program is designed to prepare skilled health care workers to perform treatment under the direction of a licensed physical therapist and includes didactic learning, skill development in the lab and clinical training. Clinical facilities will require students to successfully pass a certified background check, a negative screening for drug usage, a seasonal influenza vaccination, TDap vaccination, positive quantitative blood titers for HEP B, Hep C titer, MMR, Chicken pox, PPD to screen for TB annually, and a current CPR card which is AHA BLS Provider.
Graduates are prepared for employment as PTAs in acute care hospitals, rehabilitation centers, outpatient clinics, school systems, home health agencies and other places where physical therapy is licensed to practice. Upon completion of the program, graduates must pass the NBPTE national licensing exam to receive a license in Texas.
The general education core will transfer to a variety of colleges and universities. For more specific information and to obtain the recommended sequencing of courses, contact the program director, a college advisor or a college counselor.
In addition to the general admission requirements of the Lone Star College (LSC), the following are requirements that must be met in order to apply for admission to the PTA program:
- All associate degrees require placement at College Math on an approved exam.
- Have a grade point average (GPA) of at least 2.0 in high school and/or college.
- Complete at least 40 hours of observation in the field under the direction of a licensed physical therapist or licensed physical therapist assistant and provide proof of observation. (Observation Form is available under prospective students on the PTA department web page. http://www.lonestar.edu/physical-therapist-assistant-dept-montgomery.htm)
- Complete BIOL 2401 and PTHA 1201 with a grade of “C” or better prior to the application deadline. Additionally, BIOL 2401 must have been completed within the last 7 years.
- Complete the standardized admission exam.
Final acceptance into the program is contingent upon other criteria as set by LSC, which may include background check and drug screening. Criteria and instructions will be provided to the successful candidate upon admission to the program.
Note: It is recommended that students complete as many of the general education core courses as possible prior to application to the PTA program.
Applications for admission will be received only during the month of May each year (see website for exact application deadlines). Because admission to the program is competitive, the students who are most likely to be accepted are those who score highest on the criteria established by the admissions committee. Those criteria may include but are not limited to the following:
- Completion of the general education core courses in the degree plan.
- High GPA in these courses.
- High Scores on a writing sample and interview.
- All applicants are highly encouraged to attend at least one information session prior to applying to the PTA program. The information sessions are held monthly on the LSC- Montgomery campus and the PowerPoint file is on the departmental home page at http://www.lonestar.edu/physical-therapist-assistant-dept-montgomery.htm Dates and times for the face-to-face sessions are also located on the department’s web page.
- An online application packet for the physical therapist assistant program must be completed and submitted to be considered for acceptance into the program. A link to the on-line application will be available only during the month of May each year (see website for exact application deadlines) beginning in May of each year at http://www.lonestar.edu/physical-therapist-assistant-dept-montgomery.htm The following material must be included on the application, which may require document uploading prior to the deadline to be considered for admission:
- On-line application signed by the student.
- Observation form to be completed after 40 hours of observation under a licensed PT or PTA. The form is available under Application Forms at http://www.lonestar.edu/physical-therapist-assistant-dept-montgomery.htm (Signed and sealed by the licensed professional and either mailed or delivered by hand to the PTA department office B120)
- PSB (Health Occupations Aptitude Exam, 3rd edition) test results. The test ticket and directions on taking the test are available http://www.lonestar.edu/physical-therapist-assistant-dept-montgomery.htm IMPORTANT: PSB Test must be taken at least one week prior to the application deadline.
- Any additional documentation requested during the on-line application.
3. Applicants may be invited for an interview and asked to submit a writing sample for review by the admissions committee. Any student who cannot attend the interview will not be accepted into the program.
4. All successful applicants admitted to the PTA program will be required to attend a mandatory orientation session in the summer before starting the program. Any student who cannot attend the orientation will not be admitted into the program.
5. All successful applicants admitted to the PTA program will be required to submit documentation of a clear drug screen and background check at the orientation.
The admissions committee considers all program applications in the following areas:
- PSB Test Scores: An application test, Health Occupations Aptitude Test 3rd edition, administered through LSCS-Montgomery Testing Center. The test scores academic aptitude, spelling, reading comprehension, and natural sciences. The percentile scores in each area are assigned a point value. The total points available on this test are 12.
- Degree Plan Academic Course Completion -Science Courses: The highest earned grade in BIOL 2401 (within the last 7 years and with a C or higher) and BIOL 2402 (within the last 7 years and with a C or higher) are scored on a 4 point scale and the total score multiplied by 2. The total points available in this area are 16.
- Degree Plan Academic Course Completion - Other Courses: The highest earned grade in all other non-PTHA courses and PTHA 1201 within the degree plan are scored on a 4 point scale. The total points available in this area are 20.
- Bonus Points: Completion of:
- PSYC 2314
- Completion of 3 additional laboratory science courses: BIOL, CHEM, PHYS. Note:(BIOL 1408 is not allowed)
- Completion of a Bachelor’s Degree or higher
- Completion of a Bachelor’s Degree or higher in science or engineering with a minimum of 30 hours of science or engineering coursework and 6 hours of college level mathematics in the curriculum
5. Additional Related Work Experience: Additional points may be earned by submitting proof of the following:
- Licensed as a nursing assistant or massage therapist (Must present a copy of the license).
- PT Tech (Must present an employer letter confirming PT technician employment for a minimum of 3 months)
6. Observation Hours: All applicants must complete 40 observation hours under a licensed PT or PTA. The supervising PT or PTA should score, sign and turn in the PTA observation form which is available on the website to download. The 40 hours may be completed in more than one location and more than one PT or PTA may score a separate observation form. Scores from all applicant observation forms will be averaged for the final observation score.
After the application is submitted online by the deadline date, all application scores will be ranked. The top students will be sent a letter via US mail and an email to the my.lonestar email inviting them to schedule a mandatory interview with the admissions committee.
The interview consists of two components, a writing sample and an oral panel interview. The panel interview will have 3 applicants and members of the admissions committee meet for a brief 15 minute group interview. Applicant scores from the writing sample and interview will be added to the application score and, again, ranked.