How to Become a Physical Therapist Assistant in Ohio – OH
First and most importantly, you must earn a diploma from high school (or its equivalent). High school courses give you a foundation in mathematics and the basics of science. While in high school you can work or volunteer as a physical therapy aide or even within your high school athletics office, to get a feel for the profession.
Ohio law requires that your physical therapy assistant training program be accredited, so it is very important that you take special care to enroll only in a school that is verified as accredited by the American Physical Therapy Association's Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education.
Physical therapy assistants must gain a minimum of a two year degree in order to become qualified for a license. The majority of physical therapy assistant training programs are two year associate’s degrees and it is important to note that some schools and programs have competitive entrances. The coursework you take to become a physical therapy assistant will be challenging and cumulative in nature. You will have classes in anatomy, and physiology as well as algebra, statistics. The core education requirements of your school will help to make you well-rounded as you prepare to enter the work world.
Along with the courses in physical therapy assisting, you will be expected to work in a clinical and hands-out setting where you will gain valuable experience. As well this clinical time will be spent putting to practice things that you have learned in the classroom. Your clinical portion of your education should be taken very seriously as this will best prepare you for the real world work you will be able to do once you have a license and have secured a job. Another important thing to note about clinical rotation is that you are exposing yourself to potential employers and making connections that could help you as you begin searching for a job in Ohio.
Ohio requires that you take and pass the national examination for physical therapy assistants. The National Physical Therapy Examination is administered at many locations all over the state of Ohio at different points in the year. The fee for this exam is not less than $75.
You then must enroll in and take the Ohio jurisprudence examination. This is the law specific to the state and is required before you may get a license. The jurisprudence exam is available on line and the content that will be covered is available in the jurisprudence exam candidate handbook on the Ohio Occupational Therapy, Physical Therapy and Athletic Trainers Board website.
Once you have passed the national physical therapy assistant examination and the Ohio jurisprudence examination you can then file an application for licensing in the state of Ohio as a physical therapist assistant. These forms are available on line through the Ohio Occupational Therapy, Physical Therapy and Athletic Trainers Board as well. A criminal background check is required to submit your application.
Ohio does not grant a temporary license to practice so you must wait until you have proof of licensing to start working as a physical therapy assistant. You will be able to find employment in many different settings so there will certainly be a good fit for you. If you want to advance in your profession you can be further educated to become a physical therapy assistant instructor.