Physical therapy assistants (PTA) work with a physical therapist to diagnose and treat patients suffering from illness or injury that negatively impacts mobility. This work involves examining the patient to develop a treatment plan designed to improve mobility, promote healing and wellness, reduce pain, or all of the above. The PTA also works with his or her patients to implement lifestyle changes to help avoid future issues and health problems.
In order to receive a license to work as a PTA, you must complete a two-year, college level program for physical therapy assistants. Here are some examples of PTA schools in Virginia:
Since a career as a physical therapy assistant requires a two-year degree rather than certification, expect to complete "core" classes, such as English, Math, and Psychology. Each school offering a PTA program has prerequisites in these subjects, as well as medical terminology and physiology.
Common PTA courses include:
The state of Virginia requires all physical therapy assistants to obtain a license. In addition, you must complete a two-year college-level program, pass Board examination, and be over the age of 18. Here are some other things to keep in mind if you're pursuing your license in this state:
To keep track of licensing requirements, developments in the industry, and more, check out the following resources for a physical therapy assistant.
Source: Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) 2016-17, National Center for Education Statistics, http://nces.ed.gov/ipeds/
The map below shows job statistics for the career type by metro area, for Virginia. A table below the map shows job popularity and salaries across the state.
Listed below are metro areas ranked by the popularity of jobs for Physical Therapist Assistants relative to the population of the city. Salary data was obtained from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.
2017 Occupational Employment Statistics and 2016-26 Employment Projections, Bureau of Labor Statistics, BLS.gov; O*NET® 23.1 Database, O*NET OnLine, National Center for O*NET Development, Employment & Training Administration, U.S. Department of Labor, onetonline.org
Annual Median Salary