Physical Therapist Assistant, A.A.S.

Overview

Physical therapist assistants (PTAs) work under the supervision of a physical therapist (PT). Following examination and evaluation, the physical therapist designs individualized treatment programs for patients and clients. The PTA helps in providing these treatment interventions, reporting the patient’s progress and response to treatment to the PT as well as documenting in the patient’s medical record. PTAs help patients achieve relief of pain and improved movement and function through physical therapy interventions which may include therapeutic exercise, functional training and physical therapy modalities such as heat, hydrotherapy and electrotherapy.

Employment opportunities are available in hospitals, clinics, rehabilitation centers, nursing homes, schools, government agencies, private clinics, home-care and other settings.

Admission & Curriculum Change Requirements
NCCC PTA Program Complaint Policy and Complaint Procedures
Program Specific Policies
Requirements to Remain in the Program

Program Goals and Objectives
  • To assist students in meeting a minimum of seven of the ten SUNY General Education requirements.
  • To prepare students for entry-level positions in digital media-related fields
  • To prepare students for successful transfer to four-year institutions in digital media-related fields.

Alumni Spotlight

David J. Faccini, Jr. ‘94, PTA, LMT

The path to success in the learning process starts with the professors. Dr. Wehling and Dr. Wyzykiewicz have the passion, professionalism, strictness and compassion to help each student that steps into the classroom on that first day achieve success in the profession. When I visited NCCC for an educational tour, I was fascinated by the visit with the Physical Therapist Assistant program staff and information received during the visit. I had received physical therapy myself due to sports injuries. But, it wasn’t until I was in the lab listening to how “I” could make such a difference in someone’s life that I decided this was the right choice for me. Since graduating from NCCC, I have worked in several settings from outpatient, in-patient, skilled nursing, acute care, home care, hospital based, health insurance and pediatrics. I found over the years, that pediatrics is my passion.

David J. Faccini, Jr., PTA, LMT

Expected Growth of Occupations

Data from the NYS Department of Labor predicts that New York will need approximately 15,560 new healthcare practitioners and healthcare technicians per year to meet the needs of the state’s health care system.

*Data taken from NYS Occupational Handbook

Goals of the NCCC PTA Program

  1. The program will provide academic preparation of graduates capable of meeting the regional workforce need for PTAs.
    (Related program outcomes 1, 2, 3*)
  2. The program will prepare graduates who possess entry-level or better clinical skills to work under the direction of a physical therapist.
    (Related program outcomes 6, 9, 10, 11*)
  3. The program academic and clinical faculty will provide learning experiences reflective of current practice in a variety of health care settings, and build knowledge of the importance of evidence-based practice. Related program outcomes 4,5*)
  4. The program academic and clinical faculty will foster professionalism in graduate interactions with patients, clients, families and other health care providers and staff.
    (Related program outcomes 7, 8*)
  5. The program will offer a learning environment which will prepare graduates for participation in opportunities for continued professional growth and development.
    (Related program outcomes 12, 13*)
  6. The program faculty will maintain currency in contemporary physical therapy practice through continued professional growth and development. (Related program outcome 8*)

NCCC Program Statistics

  • The Physical Therapist Assistant Program at Niagara County Community College is accredited by the 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. If needing to contact the program/institution directly, please call 716-614-6422 or email dwyzykiewicz@niagaracc.suny.edu. Accredited through 2026.
  • Graduation rate: Average for years 2017 – 2019: 74.3%.
  • Licensure examination ultimate pass rate: Average for years 2011-2018: 100%.
  • Employment rate: 100% of graduates (who sought employment) were employed as PTAs within one year of graduation.

*NCCC PTA Program Outcomes

  1. The pass rate for graduates on the National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE) will be 85%, or better overall, averaged over two years.
  2. 85% of graduates will be rated overall above average or better on employer surveys.
  3. For those seeking employment, 90% of graduates will be employed within one year of their graduation, averaged over two years.
  4. Students will rate clinical education faculty as above average or higher for provision of a learning experience reflective of best physical therapy practices at least 60% of the time.
  5. Students will rate PTA academic faculty as above average or higher for provision of a learning experience reflective of best physical therapy practices at least 60% of the time.
  6. Clinical education faculty will rate academic preparation of students for best physical therapy practices as above average or higher at least 70% of the time.
  7. All clinical education faculty will have a record of participation in at least one activity of professional development, continuing education, or community service within the past two years.
  8. All academic faculty will have a record of participation in at least one activity of professional development, continuing education, or community service within the past year.
  9. Students will rate the PTA classroom and laboratory equipment as above average or higher at least 60% of the time.
  10. Program faculty will rate the PTA classroom and laboratory equipment as above average or higher at least 60 % of the time.
  11. Clinical education faculty will rate the knowledge and ability of students to use facility equipment as above average or higher at least 60% of the time.
  12. At least 90% of students in their final clinical education experience will plan on participation in professional development, continuing education, or community service activities within a year of graduation.
  13. At least 50% of graduates will have participated in professional development, continuing education, or community service activities within a year of graduation.

Accreditation

Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE) of the American Physical Therapy Association
1111 North Fairfax Street
Alexandria, VA 22314-1488
(703) 684-2782 | (800) 999-2782

CAPTE

The Physical Therapist Assistant Program at Niagara County Community College is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE) of the American Physical Therapy Association, 1111 North Fairfax Street, Alexandria, Virginia 22314; telephone: 703-684-2782; email: accreditation@apta.org; website: http://www.capteonline.org. If needing to contact the program/institution directly, please call 716-614-6422 or email dwyzykiewicz@niagaracc.suny.edu. Accredited through 2026.

Complaints are submitted to the
Department of Accreditation, APTA
1111 North Fairfax Street
Alexandria, VA 22314
703-684-2782
accreditation@apta.org