physical therapist stretching patient

Physical Therapy Aide Certificate of Achievement

The East Los Angeles Physical Therapy Aide Certificate of Achievement program will provide students with the education, training, and hands on experience needed to enter into the physical therapy (PT) field. This certification is an entry level program designed for students interested in the field. The physical therapy aide is generally responsible for carrying out the non-technical duties of physical therapy, such as preparing treatment areas, ordering devices and supplies, and transporting patients. Under the direction of the physical therapist or physical therapy assistant, an aide will provide services that help improve mobility, relieve pain, and prevent or limit permanent physical disabilities of patients suffering from injuries or disease. The physical therapy aide may be employed in a variety of settings including: hospitals, rehabilitation centers, nursing homes, home care agencies, outpatient clinics, community health centers, and sports medicine clinics.

Frequently Asked Questions

The Physical Therapy Aide program takes 1 year (2-semesters; Fall - Spring) to complete with a full-time schedule. It is a total of 22.5 units. With a part-time schedule it will take approximately 2 years to complete. A few classes may be offered during the fall/spring semesters and winter/summer intersessions.

A high school diploma or GED is required to become a physical therapy aide. There is no licensing requirement for physical therapy aides in California. A physical therapy aide is an unlicensed person who may be utilized by a physical therapist in his or her practice by performing non-patient related tasks, or by performing patient related tasks. Generally, clinics and physical therapy offices offer hands-on training, however completing a program and/or courses will give you an advantage when it comes to job placement.

It is recommended that physical therapy aides possess the following skills, to succeed in this field:

  • Be an active listener with the ability to hear and carry out a physical therapist's/physical therapist assistant's precise instruction.
  • An ability to read other people's cues and react accordingly.
  • A strong desire to help others.
  • An ability to keep treatment rooms neat and orderly.
  • An ability to weigh different options and take decisive action.
  • Be physical strong to move equipment and transfer patients.

If you have an interest in health and wellness, and you possess these qualities, a career in the physical therapy may be the right fit for you.

The Physical Therapy Aide program prepares you with the proper skills, science and evidence-based information plus hands-on experience in our labs.

Internships are available for all students. You must obtain permission from a faculty advisor before registering. Internships are typically offered as 1-unit courses. Talk to your Kinesiology professor for more information.

Yes. The Associate's Degree in Kinesiology for Transfer (KIN AA-T) and the Associate’s Degree in Physical Education (PE AA) at ELAC prepares students to transfer to a 4-year university and major in Kinesiology.

Program Requirements

This certificate requires students to meet the following requirements

Complete the core courses outlined below (22.0 units)

Required Core KIN MAJ 125 Introduction to Physical Therapy Aide 3
  HEALTH 12 Safety Education and First Aid 3
  KIN MAJ 115 Techniques of Instruction- Strength Training 1.5
  KIN MAJ 116 Introduction to Exercise Physiology 3
  KIN MAJ 128 Care and Prevention of Athletic Injuries 3
  HLTHOCC 062 Skill Set for the Health Care Professional 2
  HLTHOCC 063 Basic Medical Terminology, Pathophysiology and Pharmacology for the Health Care Professional 2
  HLTHOCC 065 Fundamentals for the Health Care Professional 2.5
  HEALTH 049 Basic Life Support Skills Certification 1
  KIN MAJ 131 Kinesiology Internship Experience 1

PT Aide Certificate Advisor
Tony Diaz 
(323) 415-4150

Join the Physical Therapy Club

Contact: Tony Diaz 
(323) 415-4150