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A Physical Therapist Assisting Degree You Can Earn Online In Just 2 Years

Northern Arizona University offers an entirely online bachelor’s degree in Health Sciences – Physical Therapist Assisting that can prepare you for a career as a physical therapist assistant. This online degree program will sharpen your skills in rehabilitating servicing for improving patient function, pain relief, and health maintenance. Build on your associate degree when you earn your Physical Therapist Assisting degree online from one of Arizona’s premier public universities. 

Note: As a degree completion program, you must hold or be pursuing an associate degree in physical therapist assisting to qualify for this program.

Prepare To Work As A Physical Therapist Assistant

Increase your salary potential as a physical therapist assistant in Arizona to more than $41,000 with an accredited degree in Health Sciences – Physical Therapist Assisting from NAU. Job growth for physical therapist assistants is expected to increase by 45% through 2020, making this one of the fastest-growing healthcare jobs.

Professional possibilities as a physical therapist assistant can be found at these Arizona healthcare settings:

  • County Health Departments
  • Doctor's Offices
  • Hospitals
  • Indian Health Services
  • Private Physical Therapy Practices
  • Rehabilitation Facilities

Catalog Information

Learn more about the program options by viewing the catalog information below. Catalog information is displayed for the 2017-2018 academic year.

Health Sciences - Physical Therapist Assisting

Campus Locations

globe This program is available Online
Degree Information
Online
In-Person
Blended
BS
120 units
Maximum Transfer Units
90
120
Additional Admission Requirements - Additional Application

University Requirements

  • To receive a bachelor's degree at Northern Arizona University, you must complete at least 120 units of credit that minimally includes a major, the liberal studies requirements, and university requirements as listed below.

    • All of Northern Arizona University's liberal studies, diversity, junior-level writing, and capstone requirements.
    • All requirements for your specific academic plan(s).
    • At least 30 units of upper-division courses, which may include transfer work.
    • At least 30 units of coursework taken through Northern Arizona University, of which at least 18 must be upper-division courses (300-level or above). This requirement is not met by credit-by-exam, retro-credits, transfer coursework, etc.
    • A cumulative grade point average of at least 2.0 on all work attempted at Northern Arizona University.
    The full policy can be viewed here.

     

Overview

In addition to University Requirements:

  • Students may transfer up to 90 units of community college and/or university credit from regionally accredited institutions of higher education

  • At least 30 units of major requirements at NAU

  • Up to 9 units of major prefix courses may be used to satisfy Liberal Studies requirements; these same courses may also be used to satisfy major requirements

  • Elective courses, if needed, to reach an overall total of at least 120 units

Please note that you may be able to use some courses to meet more than one requirement. Contact your advisor for details.

Minimum Units for Completion 120
Major GPA 2.0
Mathematics Required MAT 114
Additional Admission Requirements Required
Some online/blended coursework Required
Progression Plan Link View Progression Plan

Purpose Statement

The online B.S. Health Sciences Physical Therapist Assisting program provides an innovative "upside-down 2+2" curriculum that prepares students to advance their careers in health-related fields. These programs are specifically designed for students who have completed their associate’s degree in an allied health discipline from a regionally-accredited program and who have successfully obtained the related professional license.  Our programs provide students with foundational knowledge of health promotion, disease promotion concepts, and understanding of the interconnectedness of personal, family, organizational, community, and societal health.  Our students will use this knowledge to work collaboratively to provide comprehensive patient-centered care. While completing this degree, students will expand their critical thinking, problem solving, and decision making skills and enhance their ability to communicate effectively with others in order to provide excellent care for their patients.  We specialize in preparing students in enhancing their careers with an understanding of the importance of leadership and interprofessional teamwork among health professionals, as well as skills to sustain personal health and well-being.

Student Learning Outcomes

  • Graduates will demonstrate writing and communication skills required for effective health care practice.
    • Learn and apply wiki technology to create research-based resources in transformational practices.
    • Implement various methods, techniques and activities designed to reduce or manage stress.
    • Research, prepare, and present a scholarly paper regarding a topic in mind-body health critically review classmates' research papers for writing, style, and content.
    • Critically review classmates' research papers for writing, style, and content.
    • Perform individual research of epidemiologic literature on a disease topic of the student’s choice in an international context and evaluate its potential application to U.S. public health situations.
  • Graduates will demonstrate understanding of the interconnectedness of personal, family, organizational, community, and societal health.
    • Demonstrate evidence of informational knowledge of the effects of attitudes, emotions, and relationships in the mind-body-spirit relationship to health.
    • Report on possible personal and professional applications of transformational practices explore the relationship between individual transformational change and societal change.
    • Describe the stress-related consequences of personality and temperament.
    • Recognize and interpret the influence of political, socioeconomic, cultural, and environmental influences on disease and population statistics. 
    • Analyze and synthesize issues related to course topics in leadership skills and inter-professional teamwork identified during the observational experiences
    • Submit a summative portfolio of important concepts and skills acquired throughout the degree program (foundational knowledge of health promotion and disease prevention concepts, professional communication skills necessary in health care settings, knowledge of health disparities, knowledge and skills needed for personal health and well-being, leadership and inter-professional teamwork concepts in health-related settings.
  • Graduates will demonstrate understanding of health disparities.
    • Recognize and interpret the influence of political, socioeconomic, cultural, and environmental influences on disease and population statistics. 
    • Apply critical thinking and analysis skills to discussion of these topics as they relate to epidemiologic investigations in various community contexts.
    • Descriptive epidemiology (person, place, and time) and contexts of disease occurrence.
    • Distinctions among selected measures of disease, including morbidity and mortality data, incidence and prevalence, and overall and secondary attack rates.
    • Disease/condition surveillance, screening, and reporting.
    • Demonstrate knowledge of health disparities related to access to health care, geographic location, and ability to pay for health care, both within the U.S. and internationally.
    • Research, analyze, and compare the USA's health care delivery system to that of a selected international country.
  • Graduates will demonstrate awareness and skills needed to sustain personal health and well-being.
    • Demonstrate evidence of informational knowledge of the effects of attitudes, emotions, and relationships in the mind-body-spirit relationship to health.
    • Review and analyze research regarding practices in transformational change.
    • Report on possible personal and professional applications of transformational practices.
    • Explore the relationship between individual transformational change and societal change.
    • Describe the stress-related consequences of personality and temperament.
    • Describe the role that physical exercise plays in reducing the stress response.
    • Evaluate various methods, techniques and activities designed to reduce or manage stress.

Details

Additional Admission Requirements
  • Admission requirements over and above admission to NAU are required.
  • To be eligible for this academic plan, students must be admitted to, enrolled in, or be graduates from an associate's degree program at a regionally accredited community college or university in an allied health discipline corresponding with your certification/licensure:
    • Physical therapist assisting
  • Additionally, a 2.5 or higher cumulative GPA in your associate's degree is required for admission to this degree plan.

Major Requirements
  • Northern Arizona University will accept up to 90 units of transfer credit toward the completion of this degree.  

    Take the following 30 units with a Grade of "C" or better in each course:

    Health sciences courses (30 units)

  • In addition, complete the Physical Therapist Assisting requirement from a nationally accredited program at a regionally accredited community college or university in physical therapist assisting. This block includes courses that meet the requirements for graduation and for national certification or licensure in the discipline.

  • Note: Prior to beginning the HS 460C capstone course, students must have completed their Associate's degree and hold a current certificate or licensure in Physical Therapist Assisting. The student is also required to have a current cumulative GPA of 2.5 or higher to be eligible to enroll in HS 460C.

General Electives
  • Additional coursework is required, if, after you have met the previously described requirements, you have not yet completed a total of 120 units of credit. 

    You may take these remaining courses from any academic areas, using these courses to pursue your specific interests and goals. We encourage you to consult with your advisor to select the courses that will be most advantageous to you. (Please note that you may also use prerequisites or transfer credits as electives if they weren't used to meet major, minor, or liberal studies requirements.)

  • Note: Prior to beginning the HS 460C capstone course, students must have completed their Associate's degree and hold a current certificate or licensure in Allied Health. The student is also required to have a current cumulative GPA of 2.5 or higher to be eligible to enroll in HS 460C

Additional Information
  • Be aware that some courses may have prerequisites that you must also take. For prerequisite information click on the course or see your advisor.
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Department Information
Learn more about this program and the Department of Health Sciences.