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Specifics

Program Details

Program specifics about earning a Physical Therapist Assistant A.A.S. Degree at Northland.

Physical Therapist Assistants (PTAs) work under the direction and supervision of a Physical Therapist. PTA’s perform various physical therapy services specified in the plan of care developed by the Physical Therapist. These services include data collection, treating patients with exercise and other treatment procedures, administering physical agents/modalities, and reporting patient responses to the Physical Therapist. The curriculum consists of basic science coursework, technical coursework, including laboratory activities and practice, and clinical education experiences in a variety of healthcare settings.

Program Accreditation

Northland Community & Technical College is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.

The Physical Therapist Assistant program at Northland Community & Technical College is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE), 3030 Potomac Ave. Suite 100, Alexandria, VA 22305-3085; telephone: 703-706-3245; email: accreditation@apta.org; website: www.capteonline.org.

If needing to contact the program/institution directly, please call 218-793-2565 or email justin.berry@northlandcollege.edu.

Program Learner Outcomes

  1. Student will work under the supervision of a physical therapist in an ethical, legal, safe, and effective manner.
  2. Student will implement a comprehensive treatment plan developed by a physical therapist promoting optimal outcomes for patients.
  3. Student will integrate related concepts and theories of liberal arts and basic science with physical therapy knowledge and practice.
  4. Student will demonstrate effective oral, written, and nonverbal communication in a culturally competent manner with patients and their families, colleagues, other health care providers, and the public.
  5. Student will interact skillfully with patients across the life span.
  6. Student will demonstrate a commitment to professional growth and life-long learning.

Student Outcomes

Employment rate definition: Employment as a PTA within one year of graduation for graduates seeking employment.

  • Two-year Graduation Rate (2022 & 2023): 88.9%
  • Two-year Employment Rate (2022 & 2023): 100%
  • Two-year Ultimate Licensure Exam Pass Rate (2022 & 2023): 95.6%
  • Two-year First-Time Licensure Exam Pass Rate (2022 & 2023): 95.6%

Ultimate Licensure Examination Pass Rates (by Year of Graduation)

2023: 92.9%
2022: 100%
2021: 100%
2020: 100%
2019: 100%
2018: 100%
2017: 92.9%
2016: 86.7%
2015: 100%
2014: 100%
2013: 92.3%
2012: 92.3%
2011: 100%
2010: 92.9%
2009: 71.4%

First Attempt Licensure Examination Pass Rates (by Year of Graduation)

2023: 92.9%
2022: 100%
2021: 100%
2020: 91.7%
2019: 92.3%
2018: 100%
2017: 85.7%
2016: 80%
2015: 100%
2014: 93.8%
2013: 84.6%
2012: 76.9%
2011: 100%

Cohorts below are listed by starting year of program

2023 Cohort
Admissions information: 18 applicants with 18 students meeting program admission criteria

2022 Cohort
Admissions information: 20 applicants with 18 students meeting program admission criteria

2021 Cohort
Admissions information: 22 applicants with 21 students meeting program admission criteria
Graduation Rate: 85.71%
Graduate Employment Rate: 100%

2020 Cohort
Admissions information: 21 applicants with 21 students meeting program admission criteria
Graduation Rate: 92.31%
Graduate Employment Rate: 100%

2019 Cohort
Admissions information: 25 applicants with 21 students meeting program admission criteria
Graduation Rate: 64.3%
Graduate Employment Rate: 100%

2018 Cohort
Admissions information: 28 applicants with 26 students meeting program admission criteria
Graduation Rate: 73.3%
Graduate Employment Rate: 90.9%

2017 Cohort
Admissions information: 27 applicants with 25 students meeting program admission criteria
Graduation Rate: 76.5%
Graduate Employment Rate: 100%

2016 Cohort
Admissions information: 34 applicants with 27 students meeting program admission criteria
Graduation Rate: 75.0%
Graduate Employment Rate: 100%

2015 Cohort
Admissions information: 41 applicants with 27 students meeting program admission criteria
Graduation Rate: 77.8%
Graduate Employment Rate: 100%

2014 Cohort
Admissions information: 52 applicants with 44 students meeting program admission criteria
Graduation Rate: 83.3%
Graduate Employment rate: 100%

2013 Cohort
Admissions information: 49 applicants with 41 students meeting program admission criteria
Graduation rate: 77.8%
Graduate Employment rate: 100%

2012 Cohort
Admissions information: 38 applicants with 33 students meeting program admission criteria
Graduation rate: 88.9%
Employment rate: 100%

2011 Cohort
Admissions information: 48 applicants with 33 applicants meeting program admissions criteria
Graduation rate: 72.2%
Employment rate: 100%

2010 Cohort
Admissions information: 40 applicants with 33 applicants meeting program admissions criteria
Graduation rate: 72.2%
Graduate Employment rate: 100%

2009 Cohort
Admissions information: 37 applicants with 28 applicants meeting program admissions criteria
Graduation rate: 75%
Graduate Employment rate: 100%

2008 Cohort
Admissions information: 30 applicants with 26 applicants meeting program admissions criteria
Graduation rate: 87.5%
Graduate Employment rate: 100%

2007 Cohort
Admissions information: 28 applicants with 18 applicants meeting program admissions criteria
Graduation rate: 87.5%
Graduate Employment rate: 100%

Licensure & Certifications

Graduation from a CAPTE accredited physical therapist assistant program allows a graduate to take the National Physical Therapy Exam (NPTE) administered by the Federation of State Boards of Physical Therapy (FSBPT), which is a step in the process to obtain licensure as a physical therapist assistant.

Additional Program Resources

Essential Functions for Physical Therapist Assistant Students

There are several important factors for you to consider when you are determining your future career directions. To be successful in the PTA classroom and in your job following graduation, you should be able to meet all of the following expectations:

1. Attend class approximately 10-25 hours a week
2. Complete all assignments on time
3. Participate in classroom discussions
4. Perform or instruct others in the following procedures (learned in class) in a timely manner: transfers, gait training, physical agents, activities of daily living, therapeutic exercises or activities, data collection procedures
5. Use sound judgment and safety precautions; exposure to bloodborne pathogens and/or infectious disease may occur as part of the educational experience. Students are trained in safety/infection control and are expected to follow these guidelines to avoid contracting or transmitting disease.
6. Meet class standards for successful course completion
7. Use critical thinking when making decisions
8. Follow standards stated in PTA Program Policy and Procedure Manual and the PTA Program Clinical Education Handbook
9. Address problems or questions to the appropriate person at the appropriate time
10. Maintain classroom work area, equipment, supplies, personal appearance and hygiene conducive to professional setting as appropriate
11. Behave in a competent, professional manner

Physical requirements for the PTA Program include the need to occasionally, frequently, or continually:

1. Sit 2-5 hours per day with lecture blocks up to 3 hours
2. Stand 1-6 hours with lab time blocks up to 3 hours
3. Lift up to 60 pounds
4. Push/pull up to 50 pounds of force exerted at waist level
5. Squat or stoop
6. Use auditory, tactile, and visual senses to assess physiological status of an individual
7. Demonstrate good standing and unsupported sitting balance
8. Demonstrate good finger dexterity
9. Coordinate verbal and manual instructions
10. Communicate effectively with a variety of people through written and verbal methods
11. Use hands repetitively
12. Shift weight in sitting or standing
13. Use a firm grasp
14. Reach above shoulder level
15. Kneel, kneel-stand, and half kneel
16. Use equipment that emits electrical, ultrasonic, and thermal energy
17. Physically move and transfer patients

Students who have concerns about the ability to perform any of these functions should contact the PTA Program Director at (218) 793-2565. Individuals with disabilities may request reasonable accommodations or information by calling (218) 793-2598.

PTA Program Mission Statement
The Northland Community and Technical College Physical Therapist Assistant Program provides a contemporary and comprehensive curriculum to prepare graduates to work under the direction and supervision of a physical therapist. Graduates will be prepared to perform clinical duties in an ethical and competent manner and will demonstrate the values of lifelong learning and professional development.

PTA Program Goals
1. Prepare program graduates for entry-level positions as physical therapist assistants able to work under the direction and supervision of a physical therapist in a legal, ethical, and competent manner

2. Prepare graduates to exhibit effective critical thinking and clinical problem-solving skills

3. Prepare graduates to communicate effectively in a culturally competent manner with patients from diverse backgrounds

4. Program faculty will provide students a positive learning environment and a comprehensive curriculum based on contemporary physical therapy practice

5. The program will promote the importance of continuing personal and professional development through life-long learning opportunities and professional organization membership

Complaints
Complaints regarding the program or the program graduates should be first addressed to the PTA Program Director at justin.berry@northlandcollege.edu. Unresolved complaints or complaints about the Program Director should be directed to Stephanie LeDuc, Dean of Health, Public Services, and Technical Programs. Ms. LeDuc’s email address is stephanie.leduc@northlandcollege.edu and her phone number is 218-793-2609. All complaints will be documented, including the projected outcome, and kept on file at the program facility. Complaints regarding Accreditation of this program should be addressed to the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education. This Commission is located at 3030 Potomac Ave. Suite 100, Alexandria, VA 22305-3085, and their email address is accreditation@apta.org. No retaliation will occur by NCTC or the PTA Program due to a complaint being filed.