PHYSICAL THERAPY FAQs
When is the deadline for submission of all application materials to Admissions by new students?
The last Friday in February of the year in which you wish to enter the PTA program.
What degree programs are offered at NCC in Physical Therapy?
NCC offers the Physical Therapist Assistant Program, allowing students to achieve a career in the growing and dynamic field of physical therapy in as little as two years. NCC also offers advisement for students planning a career as a Physical Therapist. Students can begin their academic studies at NCC in the Liberal Arts and Sciences. To become a professional physical therapist, a doctoral level of study is required.
What is the difference between a Physical Therapist (PT) and a Physical Therapist Assistant (PTA)?
Besides the education as noted above, the Physical Therapist evaluates the patient, sets the goals, plans and oversees the treatment program. The Physical Therapist Assistant carries out treatment activities, with varying degrees of supervision by the physical therapist.
How do I decide whether to become a PTA or PT?
The website www.apta.org provides a wealth of information. Prospective PT and PTA students can view career and education information and link to videos highlighting the fields. A faculty advisor can review your high school and/or college records to help you decide. Appointments with an NCC PT faculty advisor are available through the Allied Health Sciences Department located in Cluster E-Room E2225, 516.572.9640.
Can a PTA become a PT?
PTAs may choice to go on to become Physical Therapists. It is first necessary to complete a bachelor’s degree that includes sciences and other prerequisites required by the PT schools you wish to attend. The liberal arts courses that were a part of your PTA curriculum will count towards the credits you need in order to complete a bachelor’s; but, the PTA courses most likely will not count. In addition to a bachelor’s degree many schools require the Graduate Record Examination (GRE). Admission is competitive.
I read that volunteer hours are required. How do I get volunteer hours?
All students interested in PT careers must have completed volunteer or paid work hours in a physical therapy facility. Many facilities will offer volunteer opportunities to students who show courteous and mature behaviors when inquiring about volunteer work. Always have a PT or PTA document your hours by supplying you with a signed letter on official letterhead stationery from the facility where you did your observation. Again, observation requirements can vary by school.
How do I apply to the PTA Program?
For students new to NCC, application is through the Office of Admissions. For students currently attending NCC, a Change of Program application is available from the Allied Health Sciences Office. It is highly recommended that you make an appointment with a PT faculty advisor to help determine your eligibility for admission. Applications received by the last Friday of February will receive priority for September admission. Applications may be taken after February, if there are seats available. Admission is competitive, as the number of seats in the program is limited.
What are the minimum requirements to apply for admissions to Nassau’s PTA program?
Admission to the program is highly competitive.
If you have graduated from high school and have not attended college, your high school record should show that you have completed both biology and chemistry with grades of 75 or above, two years of pre-college math with grades of 75 or above, and if your high school ranks its graduates, you should rank in the upper half of the graduating class.
If you have attended college, your college record should show that you have completed a laboratory science for science majors (preferably, Anatomy & Physiology I) with a grade of “C+” or above, and at least 8 additional credits of liberal arts courses from the PTA curriculum. The minimal acceptable GPA to apply is 2.5. If chemistry was not taken in high school, than a college introductory chemistry course is required.
All students applying must also provide a letter documenting 10 hours of observation in a physical therapy facility, on official letterhead stationery from the facility where you observed.
I didn’t do too well in high school. Can I still become a PTA?
For students who are not as academically prepared, advisement is available to complete the PTA Program in 3 years rather than 2 years. The majority of students accepted to the PTA program have completed some college credits prior to beginning their PTA coursework.
What kinds of jobs does the PTA get?
The Physical Therapist Assistant can work in out-patient settings, hospitals, nursing homes, rehabilitation or pediatric centers and a variety of other settings. Full-time and part-time jobs are readily available.
I was in Liberal Arts and Sciences (or another major) but I am thinking of switching to the PTA program. What do I have to do?
Make an appointment with an NCC PT faculty advisor, through the Allied Health Sciences Department (Cluster E, room 2225; phone: 516.572.9640). Additionally, visit the PTA program Application and Admissions Requirements web page. The minimum requirements for the PTA Program are listed above, and also on the NCCPTA Program Sheet (available through Admissions. Follow all instructions and pay attention to application deadlines.
What classes does the student who wants to become a Physical Therapist take?
NCC recommended courses are listed in the Liberal Arts and Science-Physical Therapy (LA/AA AA) Program Sheet (LA/AA AA). Please be aware that each school may have its own specific entry requirements. Most PT programs require a baccalaureate degree in order to apply.
What schools offer PT? What are the admission requirements?
A complete list of accredited schools is available from The American Physical Therapy Association at www.apta.org. Click on links for prospective students. Search by PT vs. PTA and by state. Admission requirements can vary among schools.
Can I take evening and weekend classes?
Most classes are available in the evening or weekend, except for the actual Physical Therapist Assistant classes which are available in the daytime only.
Where can I get more information?
NCC PT Faculty advisement is available by making an appointment at the Allied Health Sciences department-E2225, 516.572.9640. General information about the field of physical therapy is available through the APTA, www.apta.org.