UC Clermont

Physical Therapist Assistant

Associate of Applied Science

Why study Physical Therapist Assistant?

Physical therapist assistants (PTAs) provide physical therapy services under the direction and supervision of a licensed physical therapist. PTAs help people of all ages who have medical problems or other health-related conditions that limit their ability to move and perform functional activities in their daily lives. PTAs work in a variety of settings, including hospitals, private practices, outpatient clinics, home health, nursing homes, schools and sports facilities. PTAs may also measure changes in the patient's performance as a result of the physical therapy, along with providing selected standardized tests per the PTs request.

Care provided by a PTA may include teaching patients/clients exercises for mobility, strength and coordination, training for activities such as walking with crutches, canes or walkers, massage, and the use of physical agents and electrotherapy such as ultrasound and electrical stimulation. See the American Physical Therapy Association website.

Admission Requirements

This program is open to all students with a high school diploma or GED and the desire to succeed in college. Although admission is open, students accepted into the program must meet the academic standards of the program to advance to upper levels of study. The program is a two-phased process of education over two years; the first year or phase is composed of nine prerequisite courses. The second year or phase begins in the Summer term after an applicant has been accepted into the core PTA cohort. This phase contains the in-depth PTA academic and clinical coursework required to graduate from the program and sit for the national PTA license exam. 

Although admission to the major is open, students are accepted into the core program via a competitive admission process and must continue to meet the academic standards of the program to advance to upper levels of study.

Phase One Specifics:

As a first-year student, you will need to take an English and mathematics placement test if you have not obtained the minimum ACT/SAT score required for exemption. These tests do not affect your admission; however, the results are essential for your proper placement in classes. You must complete placement tests before you register for English or mathematics courses. All placement tests are given free of charge.

Admission to the physical therapist assistant technical core is on an annual and competitive basis, requiring a minimum overall college GPA of at least 3.0 plus two years of high school science, two years of high school college preparatory mathematics, four years of high school English and two years of high school social science or their college-level equivalents. The most heavily weighted component in the process is performance on a standardized health sciences aptitude exam, followed by GPA and science course performance. Admission to the physical therapist assistant major does not guarantee acceptance into the technical core curriculum.

Phase Two Specifics:

Admission to the second-year technical core is a competitive admission process and requires a separate application during November-January of your first year. Information sessions and application assistance nights are held during the Fall term in order to guide and assist students through the application process, which is generally open Nov. 1 through mid-January each year.

Once admitted to the technical core, you will also be required to submit a criminal background check and approved BLS Provider CPR certification, physical examination, two-step or Quantiferon TB test and proof of current immunizations. Some clinics require standard panel drug screenings and/or recent proof of TB testing (within 90 days of clinical rotation).

If you have been convicted of a felony or misdemeanor, please contact the state licensing authority in the state in which you hope to be licensed before beginning training in the PTA program to determine if your conviction would prohibit you from practicing as a physical therapist assistant. Ohio, Kentucky and Indiana all require background checks as part of their standard licensing application process.

The Physical Therapist Assistant program is designed to train students in the various exercises, techniques and uses of equipment necessary for the physical rehabilitation of a patient. The physical therapist assistant works under the supervision and direction of a licensed physical therapist.  The vision of the physical therapy profession is to transform society by optimizing movement to improve the human experience. The goal of physical therapy is to improve or restore a patient’s function following injury, illness or disease.  In order to do so, the therapist employs techniques such as heat and cold treatments, ultrasound, massage, and prescribed exercise programs which may involve the use of mechanical equipment.  The physical therapist assistant performs many of the functions of this process: monitoring patient progress, instructing patients in the use of therapy aids and assisting in the performance of prescribed exercises while considering age, diagnosis, psychosocial needs and the human movement system.
Physical Therapist Assistants are employed in a variety of settings including private, federal, state, or city hospitals and clinics, voluntary health agencies, public health agencies, home health care associations, skilled nursing facilities and school systems. 

You may also find it helpful to review essential program-related functions and other important information available on our website. To become a successful PTA student and entry-level clinician, one must be focused and have an interest and aptitude for learning a variety of skills. The Essential Functions are a solid guide for understanding the types and extent of the three domains of learning that are expected (knowledge, skills and effectiveness).

The American Physical Therapy Association reports that the federal government has forecasted very good job prospects for PTAs and an unemployment rate of less than 3.9 percent. In 2016, the Health Collaborative (formerly the GCHC) quoted a vacancy rate of just 4-5 percent among local major hospitals.

Projections by JobsEQ®, a product of Chmura Economics & Analytics, predict a 2.2 percent annual increased need for new PTA’s over the next five years within the Greater Cincinnati tri-state area. The projections are a 37 percent increase in the need for new PTA positions in Ohio in order to replace those workers in the attrition stage and to grow over the next 10 years.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment is expected to grow much faster than average because of increasing demand for physical therapy services. The Bureau of Labor Statistics site displays a 31-percent increase in PTA demand from 2016-2026, with 14,700 annual openings per year.

For details on program graduation rates, employment rates, examination passing rates and other outcome statistics, visit the Program Outcomes page.

Academic advising is an essential part of your educational experience.

We are committed to providing advice and assistance throughout your academic journey. You and your advisor work together to create an academic plan based on your goals.

Questions? Email us at clermont.advising@uc.edu or call us at 513-732-5205 to schedule an appointment.

After being accepted into the Core PTA cohort via the special admissions process, one of the program's primary professors advises each student. Scheduling is crucial to ensuring that students are ready to apply for admission into the core year of the program.

The UC Clermont campus is located on 91 wooded acres in Batavia, Ohio, in the heart of Clermont County. Our faculty-to-student ratio is low. You will find small class sizes and personal interaction with your instructors create the ideal learning environment. Parking is convenient and at no additional charge. Plus, our tuition is the lowest of the UC colleges.

Our program maintains active partnerships with local clinical facilities, state educational consortia, the Ohio Physical Therapy Association (OPTA) and licensing boards. We collaborate with the Doctor of Physical Therapy students on UC's Uptown Campus East as well as the other allied health programs.

The Academic Success Center (ASC) is committed to helping students become successful, independent learners through partnerships that promote individual interests and abilities. We encourage and support opportunities for self-discovery in an informal environment that promotes academic skill development.

The best students recognize that they can sometimes use a little extra help to achieve their academic goals. Seeking tutoring is a responsible choice, demonstrating that students care about their academics enough to go the extra mile to succeed. Stop by the ASC in Jones 104 and meet our highly trained team of tutors who are ready and willing to assist you.

You must complete an application for degree the semester before you expect to graduate. You should see your advisor in the Advising Center for assistance. PTA students are required to hold a 3.0 overall minimum GPA and at least a grade of “C” in all PTA curricular courses in order to graduate.

We accept transfer applications all year long, and you may start any semester, provided your transcripts arrive in time to be evaluated before the start of the semester you wish to attend. The program offers special transfer student sessions once per quarter to assist students in their transition. These are announced college wide and in the PTA Applications Community. FAQs are available online on the PTA website to assist students.

If you have not taken college-level mathematics or English, you will need to take the placement test.

You must also separately apply for admission to the technical core for the PTA program. Please see your academic advisor to see how this applies to you.

Other UC students may transfer into Clermont College by completing an application for change in college and program. The college recommends you see your advisor before transferring into a different major to minimize any impact on your degree progress.

You must also apply separately for admission to the technical core. Please see your academic advisor to see how this applies to you.

You must demonstrate English proficiency. You must also meet admissions deadlines and visa requirements, and provide documentation of sufficient funds before we can complete your admission. Please call the International Admissions Office (513) 556-2069 for details or email international.admissions@uc.edu with questions.

Learn more about becoming an international student at UC Clermont.

Application Deadlines

For specific deadline information, visit the Admissions webpage.

Traditional, non-transfer students should plan to start their Physical Therapist Assistant coursework in the Fall semester, because the basic series of foundation courses required for this program starts in the fall and continues sequentially through the spring. Those courses are required for review of your application into the technical core year. You must also apply separately for admission into the technical core at the end of your first semester. Deadlines are posted in the PTA Application and the PTA Applications Community.

The University of Cincinnati and all regional campuses are accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

The Physical Therapist Assistant Program is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE). The program was first accredited through the University of Cincinnati College of Allied Health in 1987. Transfer of sponsorship to Clermont College was approved in November 2009, maintaining its full accreditation status. The Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education has re-accredited this program until December 31, 2026.

Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE), 1111 North Fairfax Street, Alexandria, Virginia 22314; telephone: 703-706-3245; email: accreditation@apta.org; website: http://www.capteonline.org.

To confirm the current CAPTE accreditation status for the program, please visit the program website.

Contact Information

Clermont College
4200 Clermont College Drive
Batavia, OH 45103
(513) 732-5319

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Program Code: 34ASC-PTA-AAS