Becoming a Physical Therapist in Alaska – AK
Becoming a Physical Therapist in Alaska requires several years of education and successfully fulfilling the licensure requirements of the state. Physical Therapists in Alaska on average earn $80,000 annually. The demand for Physical Therapy services will continue to grow as the general population ages and as injury-recovery treatments advance.
How to Become a Physical Therapist in Alaska
Once students have earned either a Master’s degree or a Doctorate in Physical Therapy (DPT) from an accredited school, they can apply for licensure from the State of Alaska. This involves submitting a state-prescribed application form; paying a non-refundable $50 application fee; submitting an official transcript from an accredited Physical Therapy school; providing a letter of recommendation from the head of the physical therapy school (or a physician, supervisor, instructor, or supervising physical therapist with whom the applicant has worked); and completing a state-board jurisprudence questionnaire. All of these requirements must be completed and reviewed by the state board prior to taking the examination. The state license fee is $230; licenses must be renewed every two years by paying an additional $230 fee.
Within two years of application for licensure, applicants must pass the National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE) and provide verification of 60 hours minimum of employment in a physical therapy service. For students who have taken and passed the national board exam two or fewer years prior to applying for the Alaska State License, the 60 hour verification of experience is waived.
The National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE) is developed and administered by the Federation of State Boards of Physical Therapy (FSBPT) which assesses basic competence for first-time licensure as a Physical Therapist. The applicant must follow the criteria set by the state of Alaska to be eligible to take the exam for licensure in the state. The fee to take the exam is $370 plus a $70.60 fee for the testing site. The exam has 250 computer-based questions broken down into five sections; 200 questions will count for the final score. Applicants are allowed five hours to complete the exam. Scores will be sent directly to the Alaska licensing authority.
Fully-licensed Physical Therapists must have at least 24 “contact hours” of continuing education directly related to patient care within the two-year license period. “Contact hours” are defined in the following ways: one “contact hour” is equivalent to 50 minutes of instruction; ten “contact hours” are equivalent to one continuing education unit awarded by a professional health care organization or one academic quarter credit hour; and 15 “contact hours” can be earned for each semester credit hour.
For more information regarding licensure for Physical Therapists in the state of Alaska:
Alaska Department of Commerce, Community & Economic Development
Division of Corporations, Business, and Professional Licensing
State Physical Therapy & Occupational Therapy Board
P.O. Box 110806
Juneau, AK 99811-0806
(907) 465-2580 voice
(907) 465-2974 fax