Physical Therapy Assistant Schools in Arizona

Physical therapy assistant schools in Arizona are located in five locations in the greater Phoenix area, in Tucson, and in Lake Havasu City. Two of these institutions are public colleges, and three are private, and one offers a “hybrid” program alongside its traditional full time day program, in which lectures can be studied online, the classes are held on weekends, and only the clinical practicums are the full-time day time commitment.

The Arizona programs listed below prepare students over approximately 2 years for an Associate’s degree, and they are currently accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE) of the American Physical Therapy Association.

Curriculum Content at Physical Therapy Assistant Schools in Arizona

These physical therapist assistant schools combine a blend of academic courses, laboratory training, and real-world clinical practice to teach the knowledge and skills required for an entry-level role as a physical therapy assistant in a wide range of settings, from hospitals, clinics, and outpatient centres, to home health care agencies, schools, private businesses, and many more. There are usually at least three clinical rotations, requiring full-time attendance for six weeks or more, in a range of participating outpatient clinics, hospitals, and other facilities.

Physical Therapy Assistant Schools in Arizona

Core professional courses may include topics such as human anatomy and physiology, interpersonal communication, kinesiology, patient mobility techniques, modalities in physical therapy, clinical pathology and neurology, orthopaedic physical therapy, and psychology.

Admission to programs is normally selective, and contingent upon satisfactory fulfilment of criteria which vary from school to school. Common expectations include completion of a period of volunteer work or observation in an approved PTA setting, satisfactory scores in prequalifying general education courses such as English, mathematics/algebra, and medical related classes such as anatomy and physiology. Schools also usually specify a minimum GPA, both for admission and for progression through the PTA program itself.

Programs accredited at the time of writing are as follows:

Carrington College
1300 South Country Club Drive
Mesa, AZ 85210

Carrington College is a private college with 10 different campuses in Arizona, Idaho, New Mexico, Nevada, Oregon, and Washington state. In Arizona, its PTA program is offered from its Mesa campus, about 20 miles east of Phoenix. Contact the program director for further details about admissions criteria, information and orientation sessions, and other up-to-date information.

Contact details: Abigail Villodas – Program Director

GateWay Community College
108 North 40th Street
Phoenix, AZ 85034-1704

GateWay’s PTA program comes in two formats: a full-time, classroom-based program taught during the day, and a “hybrid” program which offers the lecture components online, and lab classes on-site at the weekends. Both formats require full-time attendance in person for the three 6 week clinical experiences will are an integral part of the program. Applicants must have completed 40 hours experience as volunteers or in paid work in a setting under the supervision of a licensed physical therapist, and have completed college courses in English, anatomy and physiology with a cumulative GPA of 2.4. Students must maintain a C grade minimum in all courses to progress through the program.

Contact details: Peter Zawicki – Program Director

Mohave Community College
1977 Acoma Boulevard, West
Lake Havasu City, AZ 86403

MCC has four campuses which serve Mohave County in north-west Arizona, and it offers its PTA program from its Lake Havasu City campus. It’s a full-time, integrated two-year program over six semesters leading to a degree as Associate of Applied Science, requiring 72 credit hours, and admits 20 students per year. Prospective applicants should contact the Program Director (see below) to express an interest in the program. They are advised to take the Health Occupations Basic Entrance Test (HOBET V) in advance, and are also recommended to take general education courses in communications, English, biology, and psychology in order to increase points for admission. Applicants must also be certified in CPR at the Healthcare Provider level. The application period runs from the beginning of January to the beginning of April, and prequalified applicants must attend an open house.

Contact details: Rhonda Schnabl – Program Director

Pima Medical Institute

PMI is a private Healthcare School offering Bachelor’s and Associate’s degrees and certificate programs in a variety of medical related topics in Arizona, California, Colorado, Nevada, New Mexico, Texas, as well as online. Its PTA program is available in Arizona from its campuses in Mesa and Tucson. It lasts five semesters, with a program total of 66.5 credits. Prospective students should contact the program director at the campus of their choice for further information about the program and admissions criteria.

PMI – Mesa Campus
957 S Dobson Road
Mesa, AZ 85202

Contact details: Robyn Wilhelm – Program Director

PMI – Tucson Campus
3350 East Grant Road
Tucson, AZ 85716-2800

Contact details: LouAnn Negrete – Program Director

Trainees successfully graduating from accredited physical therapy assistant schools in Arizona will be eligible to take the National Physical Therapy Examination that is administered by the Federation of State Boards of Physical Therapy (FSBPT). Candidates who pass this examination are eligible for licensure/certification according to the rules laid down by the Arizona State Board of Physical Therapy.

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