Physical Therapy Assistant Guide

Welcome to the PTA Guide, a physical therapy assistant education & career resource. We have everything you need to become a licensed PTA in your state. A few of the helpful things that you'll find here are information resources by state such as tools and info on PTA Schools, PTA license requirements, PTA Jobs, PTA salary data for states & major cities.
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CAPTE Accredited PTA Programs

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This is a complete database of all 331 CAPTE accredited PTA Programs in the U.S. to help you find PTA Programs in your state. Just click on your state to see a list of PTA schools available and more information about each individual program.

The best accredited PTA programsCurrently there are 331 CAPTE Accredited PTA programs in the U.S. to choose from. With so many options, a prospective PTA student may struggle finding the best match for their needs. Although the American Physical Therapy Association (APTA) does not rank PTA programs, quality of education is assured by CAPTE accreditation of the available physical therapy assistant programs.

It is currently required in all states, except for Colorado and Hawaii, to graduate from an accredited PTA program in order to sit for the physical therapist assistant licensure exam called the National Physical Therapy Exam (NPTE) administered by the Federation of State Boards of Physical Therapy (FSBPT).

Top 20 PTA Programs in the U.S.

The following colleges and universities have PTA programs and have also been reviewed by students and ranked according to the review score they received. Click on the review score in the far right column to see student reviews of each PTA program.

School Name
Address – Google Maps
Pacific University 2043 College Way Forest Grove, OR (503) 352-6151 4.1
University of Washington Seattle, WA (206) 543-2100 4.5
University of Puget Sound 1500 N Warner St, Tacoma, WA ‎ (253) 879-3100 4.0
Texas Woman’s University 304 Administration Dr, Denton, TX (940) 898-2000 4.0
California State University, Long Beach 1250 Bellflower Blvd, Long Beach, CA (562) 985-4111 4.4
New York Institute of Technology 1855 Broadway, New York, NY (212) 261-1500 4.2
University of Maryland 8082 Baltimore Ave, College Park, MD (301) 405-1000 4.5
University of Texas Medical Branch 301 University Blvd, Galveston, TX (409) 772-1011 4.4
University of Indianapolis 1400 E Hanna Ave, Indianapolis, IN (317) 788-3368 4.3
Nova Southeastern University 3301 College Ave, Fort Lauderdale, FL (954) 262-5551 4.5
A.T. Still University 5850 E Still Cir, Mesa, AZ (480) 219-6000 4.2
University of Illinois at Chicago 2035 W Taylor St, Chicago, IL ‎ (312) 996-6620 4.3
University of Colorado Denver 250 14th St, Denver, CO ‎ (303) 556-2400 4.3
The George Washington University 2121 I St NW, Washington, DC (202) 994-1000 4.0
Old Dominion University 5115 Hampton Blvd, Norfolk, VA (757) 683-3000 4.0
Hampton University 100 E Queen St, Hampton, VA (757) 727-5000 4.3
Eastern Washington University 526 5th St, Cheney, WA (509) 359-6200 4.2
University of Montana 32 Campus Dr, Missoula, Mt (406) 243-0211 4.0
Sacred Heart University Connecticut 5151 Park Ave, Fairfield, CT (203) 371-7999 4.0
University of Vermont 85 S Prospect St, Burlington, VT (802) 656-3131 4.3

Comparing PTA Programs

As mentioned before, the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE) is the accrediting agency for PTA programs. It is crucial that you attend an accredited PTA program so that you can obtain your license to perform PTA work in all states. We offer a complete database of accredited PTA programs that you can use to learn more about each of the accredited PTA programs available in your state. Keep in mind that only some of these programs offer online PTA courses, here is a list of physical therapy assistant schools online.

Although researching physical therapy assistant programs is the first step, once you have found a few of interest, speaking with advisors and students as well as visiting the programs is very valuable for making your final decision. You can learn a lot about the program to see if it will be the best one for you to meet your educational goals and individual student needs.

Factors to Consider for PTA Programs

There are a number of things to consider when comparing physical therapist assistant programs. Here is a list of some of the most important factors to keep in mind as you search for your PTA program:

  • College size
  • Pass rates of the licensure exam
  • Classroom and lab facilities
  • Curriculum and Program Structure
  • School expenses and opportunities for financial aid
  • Location and campus setting
  • Faculty quality (cohesiveness, composition, and how long have they worked together?)
  • Available extracurricular activities
  • Student body demographics
  • Distance from your home
  • PTA program’s entering class
  • Employability – rate of employment for graduates
  • School admission requirements
  • Opportunities for clinical education and training

As you take these factors into consideration, it can be helpful to survey current students as well as recent graduates of the programs of interest. Also, interviewing employers who have hired these graduates can give you more insight to each program’s strengths and weaknesses.

Ready to Find a Local PTA Program?

To get started you can use our free PTA Program matching tool by answering a couple questions about what you’re looking for to see a list of programs that match your criteria. Or you can find accredited PTA programs in your state searching our database.

For additional information on the accreditation process, the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE) has more information on accredited PTA programs.

1) Click on any schools below to learn more about their programs
2) Under “Program of Interest” choose “Physical Therapist Assistant” or another degree of interest