Jul 22, 2024  
2023-2024 College Catalog 
2023-2024 College Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Physical Therapist Assistant

Location(s): Perkinston Campus

(Perkinston Campus)

“Effective October 29, 2019, Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College has been granted Candidate for Accreditation status by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (3030 Potomac Ave., Suite 100, Alexandria, VA, 22305-3085; phone: 703-706-3245; email: accreditation@apta.org). If needing to contact the program/institution directly, please call 601-528-8482 or email eric.shawl@mgccc.edu.

Candidate for Accreditation is a pre-accreditation status of affiliation with the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education that indicates the program is progressing toward accreditation and may matriculate students in technical/professional courses. Candidate for Accreditation is not an accreditation status nor does it assure eventual accreditation.”

The Physical Therapist Assistant (PTA) program is a 2-year program of study that prepares students to perform physical therapy interventions under the supervision of a physical therapist. PTA’s can practice in hospitals, outpatient clinics, rehabilitation centers, extended care facilities, home health agencies and other health care settings.  Graduates of this program will be awarded an Associate of Applied Science — Physical Therapist Assistant and will be eligible to sit for the National Physical Therapy Exam to become a licensed PTA.

*Graduation from a physical therapist assistant education program accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE), 1111 North Fairfax Street, Alexandria, VA 22314; phone; 703-706-3245; accreditation@apta.org is necessary for eligibility to sit for the licensure examination, which is required in all states.

Mission Statement

The mission of the MGCCC PTA Program is to provide a comprehensive curriculum based on contemporary physical therapy practice through superior instruction within an atmosphere of shared accountability in the teaching/learning process between program faculty and students.  The PTA Program is committed to providing the community with professional, skilled and ethically entry level Physical Therapist Assistants able to work under the direction and supervision of a physical therapist.

PTA Program Goals

  1. The PTA Program will prepare graduates for employment as entry-level physical therapist assistants able to work in a professional and ethical manner under the direction and supervision of a physical therapist.
  2. The PTA Program will prepare graduates to exhibit effective critical thinking and problem-solving skills in the clinical environment
  3. The PTA Program will prepare graduates to communicate in an effective and culturally competent manner with patients and caregivers from a wider variety of backgrounds.
  4. PTA Program faculty will provide superior instruction and a learning atmosphere based on shared accountability to enhance student learning within a curriculum based on contemporary physical therapy practice.

Admission Procedure

  1. Make application and be accepted to Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College. Application can be completed online.
  2. Submit copies of official transcripts of all schools attended to the Office of Admissions. All transcripts must be reviewed by the Office of Admission for determination of course credits.
  3. Meet all Academic Requirements (listed below) and complete any program pre-requisites or Entry Requirements.
  4. After successful completion and submission of ALL academic and entry requirements (See section below), the student is eligible to complete the Physical Therapist Assistant Supplemental Application for Program Admission.                                              

To complete and submit the online Supplemental Application:

  1. Visit Web Services
  2. Select Student
  3. Select School of Nursing and Health Professions Supplemental Application                 

Thereafter, the applicant MUST read the guidelines carefully.  In order to complete and submit the application, college admission and ALL pre-requisite requirements are required.

Supplemental Application Deadline Dates:  November 1
(If deadline falls on a weekend, holiday, or closing, the deadline is 5 p.m. on the next college business day). ALL required test scores, transcripts, and entry items (CBC, pre-orientation, etc.) must be completed with results placed in Banner (MGCCC’s computer information system) by the appropriate college employee prior to the deadline. In addition, any outstanding college holds must be clear in order for the applicant to complete and submit the supplemental program application. Incomplete applications will not be considered.  (MGCCC reserves the right to review additional supplemental applications following the posted deadline).

Academic and Entry Requirements

  • Achieve a minimum Composite ACT Score of 18
  • Have a minimum cumulative (GPA) of 2.5 on college work with no grade less than “C” on any Academic Core* courses in the current PTA curriculum. (Courses may be re-taken and highest score will be used)
  • Complete pre-requisites. Student must complete BIO 2514 - Anatomy and Physiology I & BIO 2524 - Anatomy and Physiology II prior to making application.
  • Register for and complete the HESI A2 Exam HESI Exam Dates 2019-2020  
  • Student must complete and document 40 hours of Clinical Observation in the field of Physical Therapy.  The following form PTA Clinical Observation Form  should be completed by the practitioner under which you observed.  Receipt of this form by the deadline is required for applicants to be eligible for admission.  Follow instructions on form for submission.                                                       
  • Review the online mandatory Pre-School of Nursing and Health Professions Orientation Session prior to completing the supplemental application for program ranking.  The session can be viewed anytime and anywhere you have access to the internet.  The Power Point presentation gives you valuable information on topics common to all School of Nursing and Health Professions programs at MGCCC.   Even without the ability to speak directly or interact immediately with a School of Nursing and Health Professions advisor, the session speaks to frequently asked questions from program entrance to completion.  In order to receive credit for viewing the session, follow the steps below.  The information is approximately one (1) hour in length.      

To complete this requirement, do the following:

  1. Visit Web Services
  2. Select Student
  3. Select School of Nursing and Health Professions Supplemental Application Orientation Session.                                                                                     
  4. In order to receive credit, you must review the entire session.
  5. Click survey complete so that your log-in information will be recorded in the college’s BANNER system.  
  • Comply with Mississippi law requiring a Criminal Background History Check with Fingerprinting through the Mississippi Department of Health. All students making application to a School of Nursing and Health Professions program at MGCCC are required to obtain a clear or acceptable Criminal Background Check from the MGCCC Campus Police Department at HC, JC, Perkinston, or GC Campus.  The criminal background check policy (including testing dates and times) can be viewed at School of Nursing and Health Professions Criminal Background Check Policy .

Selection Process

Program openings are filled based on Selective Admission; applicants are ranked based on their individual achievement test scores and prior college course work. Student ranking for entry into the Physical Therapist Assistant program is based on the GPA, ACT composite, and the HESI Entry Exam. Program enrollment is a floating number which can fluctuate each year based on availability of clinical rotation slots. Students are selected according to the following criteria:

  • Academic Core GPA – 10%
  • Cumulative GPA – 30%
  • ACT Composite – 30%
  • HESI A2 Exam – 30%

Physical Therapist Assistant Program Policies

  • All students are required to submit to substance testing in accordance with the substance testing policy and procedures for the School of Nursing and Health Professions.  View the School of Nursing and Health Professions Substance Testing Policy  
  • The School of Nursing and Health Professions requires proof of Immunizations and/or CPR. Submission of all required documents will begin following program acceptance. Failure to meet the requirements will result in withdrawal/dismissal.
  • Upon admission to the Physical Therapist Assistant Program, students must maintain a 2.5 GPA on the required courses and complete each course with a C or better.
  • Adherence to additional clinical affiliation requirements may be necessary depending on clinical rotation placement. (i.e. hospital orientation, HIPPA training, CPR certification).
  • The School of Nursing and Health Professions Student Manual can be viewed here  

Physical Therapist Assisting Program Expenses – Non Refundable (Cost may be subject to change)

Prior to Entering Program

  • Criminal Background Check $65 - $80 (MGCCC Campus Police)

Once Admitted into Program

  • General MGCCC Tuition and Fees
  • Career and Technical Program Fee $50 per credit hour
  • Pre-admission Physical Exam and Immunizations $200 - $300                                              
  • Books $1000 - $1200 (plus rental fees, if applicable)                                                                   
  • Substance Testing $29 -$35 per semester                           
  • Liability Insurance $12 -$15 per semester
  • Additional purchase items, supplies $50 - $100                    
  • Uniform, Accessories $200 - $300
  • National Board Exam Application Fee $215 - $300

Costs may be subject to change