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Physical Therapist Assistant w Responsive Tabs

Programs

SouthArk’s Physical Therapist Assistant Program combines a strong general education core with theoretical and applied learning experiences required for PTA education. The PTA Program is a 1 + 1 format. Students must successfully complete 32 semester hours of prerequisite courses prior to application to the PTA Program. 

The technical phase of the PTA training consists of three (3) consecutive semesters of full-time, day-time studies including both classroom studies and clinical internships (30-40 hours/week). In-program technical studies begin in the summer semester and conclude the following spring semester. 

Enrollment in the technical component of training is limited to 20 students (admissions criteria are available in the PTA Program offices, rooms 250 and 252 Health Science Center, and are located under "Qualifications for Admission" at this website).

Students successfully completing the PTA Program course of studies will be awarded an Associate of Applied Science Degree and are eligible to take the national licensure examination. SouthArk’s PTA Program is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE, 1111 North Fairfax St., Alexandria, VA 22314, 1-800-999-2782).

Certificate of Proficiency

Academic Qualifications
Applicants must successfully complete the following courses* with a minimum of a grade “B” in each science course (BIOL 2064/L, Anatomy & Physiology I; BIOL 2074/L, Anatomy & Physiology II / Lab; and BIOL 2304/L, Kinesiology / Lab) AND a combined GPA of 2.75 or greater

Course Number Course Title Number of Credit Hours Minimal Grade Required
ENGL 1113 Composition I 3 credit hours C or better
ENGL 1123 Composition II 3 credit hours C or better
MATH 1023 College Algebra 3 credit hours C or better
CSCI 1003 Computer & Information Processing 3 credit hours C or better
PSYC 2003 General Psychology 3 credit hours C or better
BIOL 2064/L Anatomy & Physiology I/Lab 4 credit hours B or better
BIOL 2074/L Anatomy & Physiology II/Lab 4 credit hours B or better
BIOL 2304/L Kinesiology / Lab 4 credit hours B or better
PTA 1002 Introduction for Physical Therapist Assistants 2 credit hours C or better
HIT 1003 Medical Terminology 3 credit hours C or better

* Any substitutions to the stated academic prerequisites must be approved by the PTA Program Director prior to application to the PTA Program.

HOBET V
The HOBET V examination must be completed at any time prior to March 31 of the year in which the applicant expects to enter the technical phase of PTA training. Arrangements may be made through the Allied Health Advisor, Room 217 of the Health Science Center (HSC). There is a $ 30.00 charge for this examination. Students must have successfully completed all Basic Studies courses (exception: BSTD 0513, Intermediate Algebra) prior to taking the HOBET V exam. Applicants must achieve an acceptable score in all areas of the exam (minimal score requirements are as follows:  Reading 55; Math 55; and English 55). Students who are unsuccessful in meeting the minimal scoring requirements will be required to follow the Health Sciences policies regarding remediation and re-examination. PTA Program applicants are allowed to take the HOBET V a maximum of three (3) times to achieve a successful score. Tutorial work is available in SouthArk’s Learning Center (at no charge) for the HOBET V.  Only scores obtained within 18 months of application will be accepted.

Criminal Background Information
Each applicant must successfully pass a criminal background check.

Physical Therapy Observation
Students must conduct eight (8) total hours of observation in two (2) different physical therapy settings under the direction / supervision of a licensed Physical Therapist OR a licensed Physical Therapist Assistant. One physical therapy setting must be in a home health, OR in a nursing home (long-term care) setting. The other physical therapy setting can be in an acute-care facility, a rehabilitation unit, pediatric center, OR out-patient clinic. Attached to the application are the appropriate forms to document these observations. Students completing observations prior to application may obtain the appropriate forms from the PTA Program offices.  Observations must have occurred within the past two (2) years.

Graduation and Program Pass Rate

Year

# Accept

# Grads

% Retained

# Taking Exam

#Pass 1st Time

# Pass Later

# Not Pass

% Pass

Natl. Avg
Pass Rate

Ark.
Pass Rate

07-08

23

20

87%

20

17

3

0

100

82

***

08-09

25

21

84%

21

17

3

1

95

91%
(3-yr
avg)

73%
(3-yr
avg)

09-10

25

19

76%

18

14

2

2

89%

10-11

26

22

85%

21

19

3

0

100%

11-12

24

18

75%

18

17

1

0

100%

*     1st time pass rate information only
**   3-year combined of ultimate pass rate
*** not available

Seventy-nine percent of students entering the PTA program graduate (3-year average) and 96% of graduates pass the national licensure exam (3-year average).

Professional Organizations and Accreditation

Professional Organizations

PTA Program faculty are members of the American Physical Therapy Association (APTA) and the Arkansas Chapter of the APTA. In addition, The PTA Program Director is a member of the Education Section of the APTA and the PTA Program Special Interest Group.

All students enrolled in the technical training component of PTA education at SouthArk are strongly encouraged to join the American Physical Therapy Association.

Pi Theta Alpha (PTA) Club serves as the college's PTA student organization. All students in the technical phase of training are members of the PTA Club.

Accreditation SouthArk's Physical Therapist Assistant Program is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE, 1111 North Fairfax St., Alexandria, VA 22314, 1-800-999-2782).  Original accreditation was granted in May 2000, and re-accreditation was granted in April 2006, effective until June 2016

Course Studies and Additional Requirements

PTA Program Course of Studies:
• The technical component of PTA training begins each summer semester. The course of studies encompasses three (3) consecutive semesters, completing with the close of the following year’s spring semester.
• Classroom, lab, and clinical education experiences are scheduled for full days (up to eight-hour days), Monday through Friday
• Clinical education experiences will require students to provide their own transportation (and lodging, if necessary) to clinical education sites outside the immediate college area.

Additional requirements prior to beginning the PTA Program:
Students accepted into the PTA Program will be required to:
• pass a medical physical examination (at personal cost to the student)
• obtain Hepatitis B Vaccine series (at personal cost to the student)
• obtain a recent tuberculosis test (at personal cost to the student)
• obtain rubella and varicella titers (at personal cost to the student)
• obtain CPR certification (at personal cost to the student)
• document ability to meet the physical performance standards of a Physical Therapist Assistant as described by the Dictionary of Occupational Titles
• agree to SouthArk's "Student Substance Abuse Screening Policy"
• attend an orientation session provided by the PTA Program faculty