Physical Therapist Assistant - BA, BS

The physical therapist assistant degree completion major is designed for associate degree PTA graduates who want to advance their clinical skills, expand their health care, wellness and fitness knowledge, and better position themselves for formal leadership opportunities. Delivered in an online format (with optional face-to-face classroom opportunities), the program allows the associate degree graduate to apply their previous PTA credits to the bachelor’s degree requirements, enabling them to obtain a bachelor's degree with specific coursework in physical therapy-related content in as little as two years.

With additional courses that address advanced PT intervention delivery, evidence-based practice, and health care leadership/administration, graduates of the program will be better prepared to work at the top of their license to meet the needs of patients, employers, and the community. Backed by St. Kate’s reputation in the profession with more than 50 years of experience in PTA education, graduates will have greater potential for career advancement within and outside of the profession.

Course content that challenges students to expand their physical therapy knowledge, along with their skills in critical thinking, problem solving, communication, and self-assessment, ensures that graduates are even more prepared to work in teams, to improve organizational effectiveness in their current or future workplaces, and for roles in leadership and management.

The major course requirements will also apply toward eligibility to sit for the Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist examination through the National Strength and Conditioning Association, toward certification as a Health Coach through the American Council on Exercise, and fulfill components of the APTA’s Advanced Proficiency Pathways for Physical Therapist Assistants.

Admission requirements

Students must be graduates of an associate degree physical therapist assistant program accredited by the Commission on Accreditation for Physical Therapy Education offered at a regionally accredited institution. Students are not required to be licensed as a PTA at the time of admission but are expected to have obtained licensure by the time of graduation.

Students can begin the major coursework in any semester. Students are expected to take PTA 3000 as soon as possible in their program of study and prior to other PTA-specific courses.

This major is offered in the College for Adults only


Prerequisite Course (minimum grade of C required):
BIOL 2400General Anatomy and Physiology with Lab4
Total Credits4
Major Courses (minimum grade of C required):
BIOL 2410Advanced Anatomy and Physiology with Lab4
or FSNU 2300 Nutrition Foundations
ECON 1080Statistical Analysis for the Social Sciences4
EXSS 3200Health Behavior Psychology4
EXSS 3500Methods of Strength Training and Conditioning4
HLTH 3150Epidemiology4
or HLTH 3250 Global Health
IPE 4200WHealthcare Teams - Evidence-Based Practice4
Select two from:8
Leadership, Effective Teams, and Change Management
Managing Within a Diverse Workforce
Healthcare Policy
PTA 3000Physical Therapy Leadership1
PTA 3150Pharmacology for the PTA1
PTA 3800Movement System Analysis and Intervention3
PTA 4000Rehab Administration Capstone3
Total Credits40