How to Become a Physical Therapist Assistant in New Jersey – NJ
Step #1: State Licenses in New Jersey
To practice as a physical therapy assistant in New Jersey, it is mandatory to have a state license after successful completion of the training program you attend. The New Jersey State Board of Physical Therapy Examiners, which is a Division of Consumer Affairs, is the governmental office which administers and monitors all licenses and the renewal of state licenses.
There is a one-time application fee of $125 for a state license. In addition, the licensure fee is $100. This means that accumulatively, it will cost a student $225 the first time that they apply for their state license. After that, the license must be renewed biannually, or every two years, and the cost of renewal is $100. If the license expires before it can be renewed, the physical therapy assistant will have to pay a reinstatement fee of $150; in addition to the licensure fee.
In culmination with the licensing fees, there are four other requirements for getting licensed in the State of New Jersey. They include:
- Graduation from an accredited college or training program. Accreditation must be recognized by the Council on Post Secondary Accreditation and by the United States Department of Education.
- Completion of all clinical education requirements.
- Completion of the jurisprudence exam.
- Passage of the National Physical Therapy Assistant Examination (NPTAE).
Step #2: College Accreditation
The State of New Jersey will not consider licensing a student that has not graduated from an accredited college or university. While there is no specific accrediting agency laid out by this state, it is required that the accreditation be approved by the Council on Post Secondary Education and also by the United States Department of Education.
Not only is this accreditation paramount to receiving a physical therapy assistant license in New Jersey, but the future physical therapy that you be working under will be looking strongly at the appropriate accreditations when he or she considers hiring you.
Step #3: Jurisprudence Examination
The jurisprudence examination is not given in every state; however, in New Jersey, it is considered part of the licensing process. This examination covers all of the state laws and regulations that pertain to physical therapy assistants. It can also go into detail to determine the credibility and educational level of the applicant. The jurisprudence test can be taken before or after the national examination.
Step #4: National Certification
The Federation of State Boards of Physical Therapy, or FSBPT, provides the National Physical Therapy Assistant Examination to all recently graduated students. In order to be eligible for this test, a student must have successfully completed an educational course in physical therapy.
The State of New Jersey needs to have a passing score of at least 600 points for a student to be able to obtain their state license. The total possible points on the test are 800.
Not only is this certification prerequisite to the licensing process, but it will also be required from any physical therapy that you are interested in working for. A simple check with the FSBPT can tell an employer if you are certified, and the employer will be double-checking this.