As the population ages and faces the physical limitations and injuries that come with age, physical therapists may find themselves in increasing demand. However, becoming a physical therapist is a long and difficult road, as the position requires obtaining a doctorate in physical therapy. Those who are interested in this field but do not intend to obtain a doctorate may be interested in pursuing a career in physical therapy assisting instead. Physical therapy assistants work with patients under the guidance of a physical therapist, utilizing massage, exercise, balance training and other therapeutic methods to accelerate the healing process.
While physical therapy assisting does not require a doctorate, it is still a professional medical career, and becoming educated for the position is still very important. Here are a few featured schools for physical therapy programs that can help students get to where they want to be in their career. We selected these schools using data from the National Center for Education Statistics' Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS), analyzed with our proprietary methodology.
Physical therapy assisting allows workers to help patients regain one of their most basic bodily functions: the ability to walk. This section discusses some of the courses students of this rewarding field may be required to take and a few of the skills they may develop from those classes.
Those who graduate from online programs for physical therapy assistance must be ready to enter a demanding job. In order to provide this preparation, schools craft their curriculum to expose students to a range of information and skills. The following provides an example of some of the common courses that may be required in a physical therapy assistant program.
Students of online education for physical therapy assistance are preparing to work with vulnerable patients who are in a great deal of pain, which requires a specific skill set. The following are examples of some of the skills students may have when they complete their degree programs.
Physical therapy assistants work with patients who are recovering from illnesses and injuries that affected their ability to move. This is a huge responsibility — and states require that professionals obtain a license in order to take on that task. Licensure is a rigorous process that varies depending on the state. Those who want to enter the field may be required to:
In some cases, states require workers with a physical therapy assistant license to keep their knowledge and skills current. In order to do this, states may expect professionals to complete continuing education courses annually to maintain their credentials.
Physical therapy assistants have the rewarding job of helping patients recover from physical injuries and illnesses. Working under the supervision of a physical therapist, these professionals use their learned skills and knowledge of the human body to treat patients with a variety of techniques, including stretching, exercise and massage.
The best part about physical therapy assistant careers is they can begin with just a few years of higher education. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, most physical therapy assistants get started in this career with a two-year physical therapy assistant associate degree from an accredited institution.