Physical Therapy School Category: Physical Therapist Assistant Programs
General Program Description
The Physical Therapist Assistant (PTA) program consists of 29 credit hours of general education and required specialized elective courses that must be completed according to the program sequence or prior to acceptance into the program. Annual entry in the fall semester begins the technical core courses consisting of 45 credits. The 74 credit integrated curriculum plan for the Associate in Science Physical Therapist Assistant Degree includes courses of humanities, natural sciences, mathematics, social and behavioral sciences, and physical therapy technical courses of functional anatomy/kinesiology, patient care skills, clinical pathology, clinical orthopedics, therapeutic modalities and exercises, clinical neurology, and advanced physical therapy treatment techniques enhance the social, cultural, and intellectual development of the student to meet the needs of the health care delivery system. Upon completion of the didactic and clinical components of the program, students are eligible to apply for Florida licensure to take the Florida Jurisprudence Examination and the licensing examination given by the Federation of State Boards of Physical Therapy http://www.fsbpt.org Students are expected to follow the guidelines established by the Florida Board of Physical Therapy and Florida Department of Health Division Medical Quality Assurance at http://www.doh.state.fl.us/mqa to obtain licensure as a physical therapist assistant in the state of Florida.
The clinical education component of the program consists of 765 hours of supervised clinical learning experiences spent in various diverse health care facilities including hospitals, wellness and fitness centers, home health agencies, private practices, skilled nursing homes, public schools and extended-care facilities, including clinical class conferences with faculty. Three integrated clinical experiences over 2 years build student knowledge from a part-time (14 hours per week/6 weeks and 23 hours per week/15 weeks) to a full-time experience (40 hours per week/7.5 weeks).
There are two full-time and five adjunct (part-time) faculty members. The faculty to student ratio is 1:24 (lecture and lab) and/or 1:12 during complex skill instruction during laboratory sessions.
Indian River State College (IRSC) has a total enrollment of over 32,000 students. The PTA program admits 24 students to the technical portion of the curriculum each fall semester.
The minimum requirement for consideration is a high school diploma from an accredited high school or GED. The following courses are recommended at the high school level: math through algebra II; 4 years of science including biology, anatomy and physiology; and English composition. IRSC accepts ACT, SAT, or the P.E.R.T. for appropriate placement in classes. Students who do not meet the minimum required test scores for college-level courses must take college preparatory courses. Applicants are evaluated by an Admissions Committee and are admitted on a competitive basis. Factors utilized in the selection process by the Admissions Committee include, but not necessarily limited to: academic record and applicant’s motivation and knowledge of the field. Applicants must attend a PTA Information Session and must submit documentation of 20 hours of observation, volunteer service, and/or paid employment in physical therapy departments. In addition, applicants must complete an IRSC Application and a Health Sciences Program Application. Final acceptance into the program is contingent upon satisfactory results from a physical examination, drug screen, and Florida Department of Law Enforcement background check. PTA Program Application Booklets are available upon request or can be downloaded through IRSC’s website: www.irsc.edu
72% of admitted students graduate from program. (3-year average, 2010-2012); 93% of graduates passed the licensure exam (3-year average, 2009-2011) [As reported by the Federation of State Boards of Physical Therapy, 2/21/2012, web site: www.fsbpt.org]; and 100% of graduates reporting were employed within 6 months (3-year average, 2009-2011).
Tuition, fees and financial aid
Tuition for the 2012-13 academic year is $103.83 per credit hour for Florida residents and $390.49 per credit hour for non-Florida residents. IRSC makes available to eligible students a variety of federal, state, and local scholarships, grants, work opportunities, and loans. Applications are available from the IRSC Financial Aid Office.
Indian River State College has earned a statewide and national reputation for excellence. Dedicated to the success of each student, IRSC offers over 150 programs leading to Bachelor’s Degrees, Associate Degrees, Technical Certificates and Applied Technology Diplomas. Continuing a 50-year tradition of responsiveness to community needs, IRSC is committed to advancing the educational, cultural, career training, workforce, and economic development of its surrounding area and has a reputation for quality that inspires over 32,000 people to enroll in classes each year. IRSC is recognized as a key partner in the continuing development of the Research Coast region and as a national model for innovative use of technology in education. IRSC is an equal access, equal opportunity educational institution welcoming students of any age, race, religion, nationality, gender, and physical ability. The open door policy in force at the College guarantees that anyone who holds a high school or high school equivalency diploma will be admitted to the College. Close cooperation among the administration and faculty, a collegial atmosphere of open communication, and concern for the overall success of the student allow IRSC to give its students a high quality education at a reasonable cost. In addition, many financial aid and scholarship programs are readily available to eligible students. IRSC’s Main Campus in Fort Pierce is located in an area of unsurpassed natural beauty, tropical weather, and closeness to the ocean. Open areas and courtyards on campus give students places to gather or study. With Lake Okeechobee to the west, the Indian River Lagoon to the east, and the white sandy beaches of the Atlantic Ocean only minutes away from campus, activities such as swimming, surfing, fishing, scuba, and snorkeling are always within easy access. The cities of Fort Pierce, Vero Beach, Stuart, Okeechobee, and Port St. Lucie offer an array of recreational and cultural events, and leisure time activities such as museums, rodeos, theatre, and professional baseball, shopping and dining. Complementing the Main Campus are branch campuses in Stuart, Vero Beach, Okeechobee, and Port St. Lucie. Also located at the IRSC Main Campus is “The River Hammock,” the student residence facility owned and operated by the Indian River State College Foundation, Inc. Each fully furnished apartment includes a central living room, dining room and kitchen, as well as four private bedrooms and two baths. Open only to students enrolled at IRSC, “The River Hammock” offers convenience, comfort, and an environment conducive to studying – all at an affordable price. On campus, a diverse group of organizations, formal and informal gatherings, and stimulating special events ensure that IRSC students always have the opportunity to explore their interests, discover new ones, and make friends to share them with. Students find that challenges, work, research, study, service, discovery, and fun all have a place at IRSC.
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