Physical Therapist Assistant Degree & Certification Program

Physical therapist assistants (PTAs) provide physical therapy services under the direction and supervision of a physical therapist. PTAs implement components of patient care, obtain data related to the treatments provided and collaborate with the physical therapist.

PTAs assist the physical therapist in the treatment of individuals of all ages, from newborns to people at the end of life. Many patients have injuries, disabilities, or other health conditions that need treatment; however, PTAs also care for people who simply want to become healthier and to prevent future problems.


What do Physical Therapist Assistants do?

As licensed providers of phyiscal therapy services, PTAs work directly with patients of all ages to help maximize their movement potential.

Physical therapist assistants:

  • Provide exercise and functional activity training to improve patient mobility and movement.
  • Use knowledge of body systems to provide safe and effective rehabilitation and promote health.
  • Perform tests and measures to collect data about patient progress.
  • Encourage patients through individualized care plans in a professional and compassionate manner.
  • Document patient activities and progress throughout the plan of care.
  • Collaborate with members of the health care team to improve patient outcomes.
How to Become a Physical Therapist Assistant

You can become a physical therapist assistant in five semesters with Lakeland's physical therapist assistant program. Students learn using the latest equipment in Lakeland's state-of-the-art health technologies building.

Once you graduate with the Associate of Applied Science in Physical Therapist Assisting degree, you are eligible to take the National Physical Therapy Licensure Examination (NPTE) for PTAs, which is required for state licensure.

More Physical Therapist Assistant Program Requirements

All students enrolled in a nursing or allied health program/certificate must complete a criminal background check. In accordance with clinical site requirements, students with a criminal record may be ineligible to participate in a clinical education experience course. Delays, for any reason, in obtaining background results may cause an interruption in the clinical rotation sequence or an inability to complete program requirements. Additional background screening may be required by individual facilities.

Drug testing may be requested in accordance with clinical affiliation requirements and/or for patient/student health and safety.

A minimum GPA of 2.0 and a "C" grade or higher are required in all physical therapist assistant and general education courses as listed in the curriculum guide for the Associate of Applied Science (AAS) degree in Physical Therapist Assisting. Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory grades may not be used to fulfill health program requirements.

Physical Therapist Assistant Certification

To apply for licensure as a PTA in Ohio:

  • Graduate from Lakeland's physical therapist assistant degree program.
  • Pass the National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE) and Ohio Jurisprudence Examination
How much do PTAs make?

For up-to-date information on physical therapist assistant salaries and job outlook, visit the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics website.

Salaries vary based on position, years of experience, degree of education, geographic location and practice setting.

Physical Therapist Assistant vs. Physical Therapist Aide

Physical therapist assistants have completed education, clinical training and licensure to provide clinical care and interventions to patients under the supervision of a licensed physical therapist, while physical therapist aides support the clinical team in a more administrative or non-clinical role.

Physical Therapist Assistant Program Fees and Expenses

Tuition cost can be found here.

Fee Type (63 credits) Amount
Lab Fees$401
Program-specific Books$879.81
Background Check$66
Drug Test$45
Application/Registration Fees$75
Entrance Exam TEAS$65
Licensure Exam$727
Graduation Fee$40
Physical Therapist Assistant Program Outcomes

Learn more about our PTA program graduation, licensure and employment rates on our program outcomes page.

The Student Financial Fact Sheet provides students with current information about the cost of attendance. This document is provided in accordance with Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE) policy.

Accreditation Information

The Physical Therapist Assistant program at Lakeland Community College is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE), 3030 Potomac Ave., Suite 100, Alexandria, Virginia 22305-3085; telephone: 703-706-3245; email:; website: If needing to contact the program/institution directly, please call 440.525.7470 or email the program director at

Complaint Process

Members of the general public may express a concern or register a complaint regarding the PTA program or its graduates through the physical therapist assistant program director. Unresolved complaints may be directed to the dean for health technologies. Accreditation concerns should be directed to the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE) at



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