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Application and Information

Physical Therapist Assistant Program

Information/Application Guide

Effective 26 April 2022, The Physical Therapist Assistant Program /Pikes Peak State College has been granted Candidate for Accreditation status by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE), 3030 Potomac Ave., Suite 100, Alexandria, Virginia 22305-3085; phone: 703-706- 3245; email: accreditation@apta.org). If needing to contact the program/institution directly, please call Joseph Miller, PT, DPT, DSc at 719-502-3486 or email joseph.miller@pikespeak.edu. 
 
Candidate for Accreditation is an accreditation status of affiliation with the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education that indicates the program may matriculate students in technical/professional courses. Achievement of Candidate for Accreditation status does not assure that the program will be granted Initial Accreditation.
 

It is recommended you complete as many pre-requisites prior to applying but it is not required in order to apply.   

Make sure you select returning user and log in to the main application site.  Once you are in the site, make sure to select associate of Applied Science (AAS) Physical Therapist Assistant (PTA).  

You are not reapplying to the college, but you need to go the general application to get to the PTA application.

2023 Application Period has ended.  2024 Information will be posted by end of May.  Requirements will be the same for 2023 except we will have recorded information sessions and live QA sessions that are mandatory in order to get the application link.  Application for 2024 will open 1 December 2023 and close June 1st 2024.

APPLICATION LINK FOR 2024 (must be have a current student account):

2024 PTA Program Application Link

If you are looking to request a course equal or higher level replace a course that is part of the general education or prerequisite, please fill out the course replacement request here.  Once you complete course replacement request, email it to joseph.miller@pikespeak.edu for approval.

 

 

 


Job Description

A person licensed by the Colorado Physical Therapy Board as a physical therapist assistant who assists and is supervised by a physical therapist in the practice of physical therapy and whose activities require an understanding of physical therapy (Colorado Physical Therapy Practice Act, TITLE 12 Professions and Occupations ARTICLE 41 and Department of Regulatory Agency’s 4 CCR 732-1 RULES AND REGULATIONS Physical Therapy)

Physical therapist assistants (PTAs) provide physical therapy services under the direction and supervision of a physical therapist. PTAs help people of all ages who have medical problems, or other health-related conditions that limit their ability to move and perform functional activities in their daily lives. PTAs work in a variety of settings including hospitals, outpatient clinics, home health, nursing homes, schools, sports facilities, and more. PTAs must complete a 2-year associate's degree and are licensed, certified, or registered in most states.  Care provided by a PTA may include teaching patients/clients exercise for mobility, strength and coordination, training for activities such as walking with crutches, canes, or walkers, massage, and the use of physical agents and electrotherapy such as ultrasound and electrical stimulation.

Attitudes and Characteristics of the PTA

The successful PTA is:

Goal 1: Program graduates will serve their community as competent, entry-level physical therapist assistants able to work under the direction and supervision of a physical therapist 

Goal 2:  Program graduates will demonstrate professional and effective communication skills in a culturally competent manner with patients, caregivers, and other health care professionals

Goal 3: Program faculty will provide high quality educational opportunities and a comprehensive curriculum based on a contemporary physical therapy practice  

Goal 4: The program will promote the importance of personal and professional development through faculty modeling, life-long learning opportunities and membership in professional organizations  

Goal 5: Program students will exhibit effective critical thinking and problem-solving skills     

  

Program Information FAQ

No, the program cannot be completed in less than two years since the technical courses are taught sequentially and require two full years for completion. 

A class of up to 20 students will be selected.  A list of alternates is maintained until the Fall I courses begin. 

PPSC’s waitlist is 10 students.  Those on the waitlist not enrolled will need fill out an application the next year.

If the course(s) were completed at a Colorado public college or university, you may find them on the PPSC transfer equivalency chart. For courses not found on this chart, or if the course(s) were completed at a college outside Colorado, work with PPSC records office or the advising office to determine which course(s) will transfer.  Records office transcripts evaluation website: https://www.ppcc.edu/evaluation.

No, the PTA program courses are arranged over 6 semesters. Your overall time does not change, but you will not have to take as many classes each semester.

Yes.  If you are currently enrolled in one or more of the required courses, you are encouraged to submit your application by the deadline.  These courses are not required to apply but required to begin the program technical phase in the Fall.

Graduation from a physical therapist assistant education program accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE), 3030 Potomac Ave., Suite 100, Alexandria, Virginia 22305-3085; phone; 703-706-3245; accreditation@apta.org is necessary for eligibility to sit for the licensure examination, which is required in all states.

Pike Peak State College is seeking accreditation of a new physical therapist assistant education program from CAPTE.  On 6 December 2021, the program submitted an Application for Candidacy, which is the formal application required in the pre-accreditation stage.  Submission of this document does not assure that the program will be granted Candidate for Accreditation status.  Achievement of Candidate for Accreditation status is required prior to implementation of the technical phase of the program; therefore, no students may be enrolled in technical courses until Candidate for Accreditation status has been achieved.  Further, though achievement of Candidate for Accreditation status signifies satisfactory progress toward accreditation, it does not assure that the program will be granted accreditation.

If required for clinical affiliations, you may have to purchase malpractice insurances.

The student will need to pay for a TB skin test (or its equivalent) before beginning the program(once admitted, students will be notified of deadline to obtain).  The student will be required to pay for a physical exam prior to beginning the program and complete any required immunizations (once admitted, students will be notified a deadline to obtain).  The student will also need to purchase books, supplies and pay for any lab fees assessed.  The student will be responsible for the cost of any transportation needs to and from the College as well as to and from clinical rotation sites.  There are no dormitories available at the College or clinical sites.  Housing costs will be the responsibility of the student.  The student is required to have a current Health Care Provider  Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation  BLS (CPR)  card prior to beginning the program and will be current for the entire two years in the program.  Completion of the CPR course is the responsibility of the student and may carry a student fee.   Background and drug screens  are required before doing clinic hours (Summer II).  

PPSC American Heart Association Course:  https://www.ppcc.edu/health-sciences/AHA-Training

https://www.ppcc.edu/health-sciences/AHA-Training

Then your transcripts must be submitted to the Program Director along with reason why the courses are more than 7 years old.  i.e.  military service, switching careers, and/or stay at home parent going back to school.  The program director, along with the faculty, will address this on a case-by-case basis. 

Then your transcripts must be submitted to the Program Director along with reason why the courses are more than 10 years old.  i.e.  military service, switching careers, and/or stay at home parent going back to school.  The program director, along with the faculty, will address this on a case-by-case basis. 
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Application Process: Application Window For the FAll of 2024 Will be 1 December 2023- 1 June 2024. Must attend a Q and A session. See information session tab for dates and signup information.

Apply to PPSC and declare General AGS as your major or discuss with Health Sciences Advising.

Must meet with Health Science Advisor and have this Verification signed and uploaded to your application

Health Sciences Advising Verification a requirement for application

Complete the Physical Therapist Assistant Program Application Packet and submit to the Physical Therapist Assistant Program Office no later than May 15th.  We suggest you submit your application as soon as possible.  Courses that will be completed in the spring semester may be counted for points toward your application.  PTA application link will be active here once opened and given out at the Q and A sessions only.

PTA 2024 Application window will open 1 December 2023 and close 1 June 2024

INCOMPLETE APPLICATIONS WILL NOT BE CONSIDERED FOR ENTRANCE INTO THE PROGRAM

Complete PPSC placement tests as needed - consult with Admissions or Advising.

OR a completed degree with GPA of at least 2.5 or better.

OR completed equivalent or higher to ENG 1031 or ENG 1021 and MAT 1140

Pre-requisite,previous coursework, and previous degree from download here

Send official college/university and high school transcripts, SAT & ACT scores as well as any CLEP, IB or AP scores to the Registration and Records Office. (PPSC transcripts will already be on file)

Minimum unweighted 2.5 GPA from high school transcripts OR cumulative of college work (at least 12 credits)

If you are looking to request a course equal or higher level replace a course that is part of the general education or prerequisite, please fill out the course replacement request here.  Once you complete course replacement request, email it to joseph.miller@pikespeak.edu for approval.

Video Link Here

Q and A Session Dates and Times (all sessions are virtual) sign up at Info Session site:  Signup for Physical Therapist Assistant Information Session.

Event Summary (elluciancrmrecruit.com)

Apply for Financial Assistance – Submit the FAFSA and apply for scholarships or VA benefits through Military and Veterans.

Prospective students need two recommendations one from an employer and one from teacher/faculty/mentor.  Prospective students need to have known the recommenders for at least 1 year.   Exceptions must be discussed and approved by the program director.  Recommendation forms can be downloaded on this website.  Forms must be emailed directly to the program from the recommending individual.   

Click here to download recommendation form

Complete hours of observation time with a PT or PTA in at least two different types of facilities.  Write an essay about the hours completed and submit the essay.  Essay must include Type of settings observed, top 5 things learned about Physical Therapy Practice, 1-3 things you did not like about the observation and why, and 2-3 skills needed for physical therapy practice based on observations. 

Observation Essay Scoring

  • Answer at least 1 requirement appropriately, moderate punctuation and grammar issue – 1 point
  • Answer at least 2 requirements with moderate punctuation and grammar issues- 2 points
  • Answer at 3 requirements with minor punctuation and grammar issues- 3 points
  • Answer at 3 requirements with minor punctuation and grammar issues- 4 points
  • Answer at least 4 requirements with minor punctuation or grammar issues-5 points

Answer at least 4 requirements with minimal punctuation or grammar issues- 6 points

Click here to download Essay form

Complete 20 hours of volunteer service hours in the last 3 years (May 2021 through February May 2024). Service hours can be obtained through religious or community organizations.  If you are having difficulty locating volunteer opportunities, please contact the PTA director through email.  Hours may not include your observation hours with a PT/PTA.  Submit signed Service/Volunteer Hour Form with your application. 

Additional points will be award for volunteer hours over 30 hours

Service Hours

  • 30 hours = 1 points
  • 40 hours = 2 points
  • 50 hours = 3 points
  • 60 hours = 4 points
  • 70 hours = 5 points

80 hours = 6 points

Click here to download Service Hour Tracking Form

No work experience is required for application, but related work experience as Physical Therapy tech or aide, Athletic Trainer, Exercise Physiologist, Massage therapist, or CNA qualifies the applicant for additional points on their application.  The hours must be completed in the past 5 years (June 2019 – May 2024) and the work experience must be documented on the Employment Verification Form.

Work Experience – not required for application

  • 200 hours = 2 points
  • 250 hours = 3 points
  • 300 hours = 4 points
  • 350 hours = 5 points

400 hours or greater = 6 points

Click here to download the Work Experience Tracking Form

Prerequisite for entry into the program include ENG 1021 or ENG 1031, MAT 1140 or higher, HPR 1039, PHY 1105, and BIO 2101 (BIO 1111 is a prerequisite or test out-contact BIO department). These courses are not required to apply but are required before starting the technical phase in the fall and must be passed with a C or better according to PPSC grading policy.  Additionally, general education and other courses as listed in the scoring sheet below can be used to gain extra points on your application.   Course must be completed by March 1st 2023.

Points for courses are awarded based on grade earned.

A = 6 points          B= 4 points            C= 2 points

Medical Terminology (HPR 1039)

General Biology with a Lab I (BIO 1111)

Career Math or higher (MATH 1140 or higher)

English Composition ENGL 1021 or Technical Writing ENGL 1031

General Psychology (PSYC 1001)

Human Anatomy & Physiology I (BIO 2101

Human Anatomy & Physiology II (BIO 2102)

Public Speaking or Interpersonal Communication (COM 1150 or COM 1250)

Conceptual Physics with a lab or higher (PHY 1105)

Sociology or additional Psychology Course

Business Administration Course

Additional Science Course: Chemistry, Physics, Biology

Health, Nutrition, or Wellness course

Any courses more than 10 years old must have Program Directors approval to use without retaking courses.

If you have earned a degree previously with at least a GPA of 2.5 or better then point will be awarded according to the table below.  Only the highest degree earned will be counted. 

Earned Associate’s Degree (GPA 2.5 or better)

3 points

Earned Bachelor’s Degree (GPA 2.5 or better)

6 points

Earned Master’s Degree (GPA 2.5 or better)

10 points

 

Initial and complete technical standard sheet. If you are unable to perform any of these standards with or without accommodations, you will not be eligible for admission to the program.  The Physical Therapist Assistant Program works closely with PPSC Accessibility Services to serve the needs of students with disabilities. Individuals who have questions regarding reasonable accommodations should contact PPSC Accessibility Services.

Download Technical Standards form here to fill out and upload to application.

Applicants will be required to take the Allied Health TEAS VII test. Must be completed by 01 March 2023.

Minimum qualifying TEAS Score

  • Overall score in the proficient range or above (minimum 60% overall-Score of 55% or higher may be accepted-contact PTA Program)
  • Students can take the Allied Health TEAS at PPSC’s Testing Center and register through testing center website.
  • Submit Application and Qualifying Allied Health TEAS Score to the PTA Program (scores must be within the last 2 years)
  • Allied Health TEAS VII Test Click on Testing Center/Certification Testing Website for more information

Application will be scored with the point system according to this table below:

Criteria and Scoring for Admission into the PTA Program

Interviews will be conducted for the top 30 (20 accepted and 10 waitlist) highest scoring candidates after applications are submitted and scored.  Interviews will be used to gather information to predict retention and success as well as help each student with success in the program The interview questions will address grit, college readiness, and resiliency.  

  • A criminal background check and drug test are required upon acceptance to the program (completed by the start of Fall I). 
    • A fee and the applicant’s social security number are required for the background check.
    • Accepted Students will be referred to PPSC Human Resources to schedule background checks and drug tests.
  • Prior to enrollement qualified applicants who have been accepted into the PTA Program must submit a current CPR Health Care Provider card,  and a completed physical examination.
  • Students must meet the following immunization requirements prior to the first clinical or an official vaccination exemption (Summer II):
    • Two-step TB skin test • Tetanus-diphtheria-Pertussis (Tdap) within the last 10 years)
    • Measles/Mumps/Rubella vaccinations or serological confirmation of immunity
    • Varicella vaccination or serological confirmation of immunity
    • Additional vaccination may be required before clinical internships
    • Three-injection hepatitis B vaccination series or serologic confirmation to hepatitis B virus (this series can take up to 6 months to complete). 
    • OSHA Training
    • Health insurance coverage may be required for some clinical rotations (more information to come)

1. Schedule to attend an information session

2. Please talk to a medical sciences advisor

  • To see which degree options to enroll in to complete prerequisites and still qualify for VA or financial aide.   
  • To see which course work you should take.
  • To see whether you need to contact the PTA program directly

ALL INTERESTED STUDENTS ARE STRONGLY ENCOURAGED TO MAKE AN APPOINTMENT IN THE  ADVISING AND TESTING DEPARTMENT  FOR ACADEMIC ADVISING AS SOON AS THE DECISION IS MADE TO APPLY FOR ADMISSION.

This program is not a concurrent enrollment program and student must have graduated high school prior to start of technical course work (first Fall) and have the prerequisites complete (prerequisites can be taken concurrent enrollement).

 Click Here to Download Application and Advising Sheet

PTA working

 

ADVISING AND TESTING DEPARTMENT

Colorado Community College System BP 19-60 Prohibition of Discrimination, Harassment, or Retaliation.

This policy applies to all employees, students, volunteers, guests, contractors and visitors within CCCS.

Individuals affiliated with the Colorado Community College System, including its Colleges (CCCS or System) shall not discriminate or harass on the basis of sex, gender, race, color, age, creed, national or ethnic origin, ancestry, physical or mental disability, familial status, veteran or military status, pregnancy status, religion, genetic information, gender expression, gender identity, sexual orientation, or any other protected category under applicable local, state or federal law (also known as “civil rights laws”), in connection with employment practices or educational programs and activities (including in admissions). Individuals shall not retaliate against any person who opposes discrimination, harassment, or retaliation, or participates in any complaint or investigation process.

 

Criteria and Scoring for Admission to the PTA Program

Courses Maximum Points Possible Points Earned

Required elements for consideration

Criteria Submitted 
Cumulative GPA of 2.5 or greater  
Recommendations  
Placement Test or Alternative  
20 service-learning hours  

 

All Items complete All Items must be complete

Points for courses are awarded based on grade earned.

A = 6 points     B= 4 points      C= 2 points

Medical Terminology (HPR 1039)

6 points  

General Biology with a Lab I (BIO 1111)

6 points  

Career Math or higher (MATH 1140 or higher)

6 points  

English Composition ENG 1021 or Technical Writing ENG 1031

6 points  

General Psychology (PSY 1001)

6 Points  

Human Anatomy & Physiology I (BIO 2101)

6 Points  

Human Anatomy & Physiology II (BIO 2102)

6 Points  

Public Speaking or Interpersonal Communication (COM 1150 or COM 1250)

6 Points  

Conceptual Physics with a lab or higher (PHY 1105)

6 Points  

Sociology or additional Psychology Course

6 Points  

Business Administration CourseAdditional Science Course: Chemistry, Physics, Biology

6 Points  

Health, Nutrition, or Wellness course

6 Points  

Earned Associate’s Degree (GPA 2.5 or better)

6 Points  

Earned Bachelor’s Degree (GPA 2.5 or better)

6 Points  

Earned Master’s Degree (GPA 2.5 or better)

6 Points  

Service Hours

  • 30 hours = 1 points
  • 40 hours = 2 points
  • 50 hours = 3 points
  • 60 hours = 4 points
  • 70 hours = 5 points
  • 80 hours = 6 points
6 Points  

Observation Essay

  • Answer at least 1 requirement appropriately, moderate punctuation and grammar issue – 1 point
  • Answer at least 2 requirements with moderate punctuation and grammar issues- 2 points
  • Answer at 3 requirements with minor punctuation and grammar issues- 3 points
  • Answer at 3 requirements with minor punctuation and grammar issues- 4 points
  • Answer at least 4 requirements with minor punctuation or grammar issues-5 points
  • Answer at least 4 requirements with minimal punctuation or grammar issues- 6 points
6 Points  

Work Experience – not required for application

  • 200 hours = 2 points
  • 250 hours = 3 points
  • 300 hours = 4 points
  • 350 hours = 5 points
  • 400 hours or greater = 6 points
6 Points  

Recommendation (The average of the two recommendations)

  • Below 30= 0 points
  • 30-32 =1 point
  • 33-35 =2 points
  • 36-38= 3 points
  • 39-41 = 4 points
  • 42-43= 5 points
  • 44=6 points
6 points  
TOTAL

__/118+TEAS test

 

Allied Health TEAS VII Test

Category Score Points (Score x0.2)
Total Score 60 or better required N/A
Reading    
Math    
Science    
English     
Total ADD total points not score  

 

Varies  
Interview top 30 candidates  Complete  

 

 

TECHNICAL STANDARDS FOR THE PTA PROGRAM: 

These technical standards  are related to essential career and licensing requirements and set forth the standards requisite to admission or participation in the Physical Therapist Assistant  Program. Technical standards are the skills and attributes expected of students.  Technical standards apply to classroom, laboratories, and clinical settings.  The Physical Therapist Assistant Program works closely with PPSC Accessibility Services to serve the needs of students with disabilities. Individuals who have questions regarding reasonable accommodations should contact PPSC Accessibility Services.

If you are unable to perform any of these standards with or without accommodations, you will not be eligible for admission to the program

 

A.  ARE YOU ABLE TO:

YES

NO

1.      Stand for 60+ minutes (up to 4 hours) on a tiled or carpeted surface?

 

 

2.      Sit for 50 minutes on a chair at a table or desk?

 

 

3.      Ambulate unassisted to include these functions: walk 600 feet one way on a tiled or carpeted surface? Turn to either direction on a tiled or carpeted surface? Walk backwards for up to 10 feet on a tiled or carpeted surface?  

 

 

4.      Lift and carry varying weights and equipment of up to 20 lbs.?

 

 

5.      Lift equipment such as a folded walker or crutches of approximately 8 lbs. to shoulder level and then carry same up to 30 feet?

 

 

6.      Lift a weakened or flaccid extremity of 20-30 lbs. above shoulder height?

 

 

7.      Assist patients from a back-lying position to sitting on the edge of the bed (and vice versa) with varying degrees of assistance working with up to 250 lbs.

 

 

8.      Assist patients to transfer from surface to surface with varying amount of assistance?

 

 

9.      Maintain your standing balance in awkward positions (such as when you are handling equipment, using assistive devices, working with patients)?

 

 

10.   Bend, stoop, or couch to reach a low object frequently?

 

 

11.   Twist your trunk (spine) from side to side frequently?

 

 

12.   Rotate your hand/wrist to turn knobs frequently

 

 

13.   Reach overhead occasionally?      

 

 

14.   Reach forward frequently?      

 

 

15.   Reach side to side frequently?

 

 

16.   Maneuver equipment and patients in tight areas?

 

 

17.   Handle various sized objects (e.g. machine components, electrodes, gel bottles, assistive devices, exercise equipment, etc.)?

 

 

18.   Manipulate small objects such as dials, switches, buttons, push pins on assistive device extenders, gown ties, etc.?

 

 

 

B. OTHER DEMANDS OF TRAINING IN THIS PROFESSION. ARE YOU ABLE TO:

YES

NO

1.      SEE: read printed information; read control panels; observe patient skin before, during and after treatment; observe patient coloration before, during and after treatment; verify patient identification; read patient assessment information; observe that the work area is free of obstacles, etc.?

 

 

2.      HEAR: clinical and classroom instructor directions; patient questions/comments one on one and otherwise; health team members comments/ questions or directions one on one and otherwise; emergency call bells, timers, etc.?

 

 

3.      SPEAK: provide feedback to the instructors; give instructions to patients/family members; verify patient identification; provide direction in emergency situations, make group presentations, etc. in English?

 

 

 


The PTA program ACCE makes all clinical assignments. Clinical internship placements are designed to expose the student to different physical therapy settings. This exposure will assist the student’s attainment of the skills needed for entry level practice as a Physical Therapist Assistant.   

All students will complete one full-time 4-week clinical internship during the first summer after their first year in the program. These clinical internships will be in outpatient orthopedics, acute care, skilled nursing facilities, or rural hospital settings. During the last semester of the program all students will complete two full time 6-week clinical internships these clinical internships may be in any of the settings allowed for the first clinical internship, as well as in pediatric, inpatient rehab, neuro or other specialty settings. 

Each student will complete at least one full-time inpatient clinical internship and one outpatient clinical internship. Inpatient settings are defined as inpatient acute, inpatient rehab, or a skilled nursing facility. Students are given an opportunity to state their preferences for placement before assignments for the full-time clinical experiences are finalized. The students’ professional interests and past experience are also given consideration.  

Final clinical internship placements and schedules are determined by the ACCE to ensure students have experiences in a variety of settings with a variety of patient experiences. Students may NOT rearrange clinical assignments. Special situations should be discussed with the ACCE. Students should not contact the clinical facilities to obtain a clinical assignment. If a student contacts the clinical facility directly to arrange a clinical placement, please contact the PTA Program ACCE. Students will be placed only at facilities in which there is a current, unexpired written clinical agreement in place. 

With the exception of parents of dependent children, all students may expect to do at least one of their clinical internships outside the immediate Colorado Springs, CO area. For clinical internship placements, all expenses incurred (transportation, meals, housing, etc.) are the student’s responsibility. 

Students will not be placed at any clinical internship site where they have been employed within the PT setting within the past 2 years