Physical therapy provides services to patients and clients of all ages who have impairments, functional limitations, disabilities or changes in physical function and health status resulting from injury, disease, or other causes. The physical therapist assistant works under the supervision of the licensed physical therapist to provide treatments in a variety of health care settings such as hospitals, extended care centers, school systems, ambulatory care centers, private practice and other centers where physical therapists are employed. Upon successful completion of the program, the student is eligible to take an exam to qualify for licensure in the state in which the graduate chooses to practice.

Program contact: Learn more

Program Admission Requirements

Application may be submitted to the Health Careers Enrollment Center after meeting the following requirements:

  • High School Diploma/GED
  • Students enrolled in the Physical Therapist Assisting program must be at least 18 years old.
  • Completion of a total of 40 hours of work, volunteering and/or observation in at least two (2) different types of physical therapy settings under the supervision of a Physical Therapist or Physical Therapist Assistant. These hours must be documented on our Experience Verification Form.  These hours must be completed within the 2 year period prior to the date of your application.
  • An overall GPA of 2.7 must be achieved and be maintained. Only accredited college and university credits as listed will be accepted. Overall GPA is calculated based on all previous college coursework completed through the semester prior to the date of application. (Note: all courses listed in the PTA program curriculum sequence, must be completed with a grade of "C" or better for graduation)
  • Non-native English speaking applicants:  Admission into Cuyahoga Community College is premised on a complete and accurate initial application to the College, including, if applicable, proof of English Language Proficiency Requirements for admission as indicated on the English Language Proficiency Requirements for Admissions to the College, and available on the web at:
    To be accepted into any selective admission programs, students must successfully complete English as a Second Language (ESL) course/s, as referenced above,  if deemed necessary by the College at the time of enrollment.  Admission is conditioned upon achieving the necessary grade point average (GPA), English language proficiency requirements and any specific pre-requisite courses, and by meeting program accreditation or licensing requirements as evidenced in the Program Handbook for the specific program.
  • Complete the following courses with "C" grade or higher:
BIO-2331Anatomy and Physiology I (or BIO-2330) 14
PTAT-1000Introduction to Patient Care1
MA-1020Medical Terminology I 13
MATH-0955Beginning Algebra ( or appropriate score on Math Placement Test to place into MATH-1240)6
Select one of the following:3
College Composition I 1
Honors College Composition I

  Total GPA for these 4 courses (ENG-1010, BIO-2331, PTAT-1000, and MA-1020) must be 3.0 or above.

Other Information

  • 24 students accepted per year
  • All science courses must have been completed within the past 10 years.
  • Candidates must achieve a minimum of a 3.0 cumulative grade point average (GPA) based on a 4.0 scale for the following core courses (or transfer of comparable courses from another college or university). All admissions requirement courses must have a grade of "C" or better and eligibility for MATH-1240 (or higher level). Admissions requirement courses are ENG-1010, BIO-2331, PTAT-1000, and MA-1020. Students may only repeat an admission requirement course one time to improve their grade and a "W" counts as an attempt.
  • For students applying for admission to the PTA program, we can choose not to consider grades that negatively impact the students overall GPA, if those grades are at least 8 years old. In this case, we will not accept any prerequisite coursework from that time frame from a Tri-C transcript, or from an entire transcript from another institution, even if portions of that coursework meets current program prerequisite requirements. 
  • Criminal background check required.
  • All courses listed in the PTA program curriculum sequence must be completed with a "C" or better for graduation. 

Program Learning Outcomes

This program is designed to prepare students to demonstrate the following learning outcomes:

  1. Safely administer effective treatment interventions as defined by the Physical Therapist’s plan of care, adjusting to the patient’s physical, emotional, and cultural responses; instructs and educates the patient, family and/or caregivers in continued care and injury prevention.
  2. Educate others regarding the role and scope of practice of the Physical Therapist Assistant in the implementation of the plan of care as established by the supervising Physical Therapist and communicate patient’s status to the physical therapist.
  3. Obtain pertinent data; recognize changes and/or responses of patient conditions and environmental hazards that jeopardize safety; modify intervention within the plan of care and takes appropriate action.
  4. Act professionally and ethically according to the APTA Code of Ethics and Standard of Conduct including social responsibility, commitment to patients and consumer needs, lifelong learning, and the physical therapy profession.
  5. Identify and document operational performance improvements and provide accurate and timely information for billing and reimbursement purposes.
  6. Communicate verbally, non-verbally and in writing with members of health care team in an appropriate, culturally sensitive, effective and capable manner.
  7. Complete thorough, accurate, logical, concise, timely and legible manual and electronic documentation that follows guidelines and specific documentation formats required by state practice acts, the practice setting, and other regulatory agencies.
  8. Sit for licensure examination.

Suggested Semester Sequence

Plan of Study Grid
Program Admissions Requirements SemesterCredit Hours
BIO-2331 Anatomy and Physiology I 4
PTAT-1000 Introduction to Patient Care 1
MA-1020 Medical Terminology I 3
Select one of the following: 3
College Composition I
Honors College Composition I
 Credit Hours11
First Semester
BIO-2341 Anatomy and Physiology II 4
MATH-1240 Contemporary Mathematics 3
PTAT-1100 Introduction to Physical Therapist Assisting 2
PTAT-1300 Functional Anatomy 4
PTAT-1312 Fundamentals of Physical Therapy 3
PTAT-1320 Introduction to Therapeutic Exercise 2
 Credit Hours18
Second Semester
PTAT-1401 Clinical Pathophysiology 2
PTAT-1411 Physical Therapy Procedures 3
PTAT-1420 Therapeutic Exercise 3
PTAT-2341 Psychosocial issues in Physical Therapy 2
Select one of the following: 3
College Composition II
Honors College Composition II
Select one of the following: 3
General Psychology
Honors General Psychology
 Credit Hours16
Summer Session
PTAT-2940 Field Experience I 1 1
 Credit Hours1
Third Semester
HTEC-1120 Critical Thinking in Healthcare 1
HTEC-1610 Introduction to Pharmacology 2
PTAT-2200 Physical Therapy in Acute Care Setting 2
PTAT-2301 Long Term Physical Therapy Rehabilitation Procedures 4
PTAT-2310 Pediatric Physical Therapy 2
PTAT-2330 Geriatric Physical Therapy 2
 Credit Hours13
Fourth Semester
PTAT-2840 Clinical Practicum I 2 2
PTAT-2850 Clinical Practicum II 2 2
PTAT-2970 Practicum Seminar 1
 Credit Hours5
 Total Credit Hours64

Full-time placement at an off-campus clinical site for five consecutive weeks.


Full-time placement at an off-campus clinical site for six consecutive weeks.

MATH-1140, MATH-1141, MATH-1200, MATH-1270, and MATH-1280 can no longer count towards fulfilling the college-level mathematics requirement.  These courses were re-classified as developmental mathematics by the state of Ohio in 2016.  Tri-C established a 5-year transitioning window for students who had completed these courses prior to 2016 to apply them towards meeting graduation requirements, which expired in Summer 2021. It is highly recommended to see a counselor to determine the appropriate math required for your current major.