Sep 10, 2014
So I have been going for being a Physical Therapist at a 4 yr college and have just decided i want to do Physical Therapist Assistant instead...I'm kind of lost right now so any help is appreciated.
I've been reading up on admissions for different schools for PTA and I know I need observation hours...How do i go about that? Just call/walk in hospitals and ask if any PTs are allowing observers? and How do i record that I've been observed, just have them sign any piece of paper?
I'm just really lost and now finding out I want to do this sooo late...any help is appreciated thank you


2+ Year Member
Aug 6, 2014
Pre-Health (Field Undecided)
You can call and/or email a variety of spots depending on your location. First order of business: compliment the business/hospital's reputation while also sounding confident yet eager to learn and work. Make it clear that you are willing to work and not just be a thorn in their side. This field attracts a wide array of students, let them know you are not another average joe. I'd check out outpatient clinics first as most hospitals have some sort of volunteering program and orientation you have to go through in order to be cleared to observe their setting.
Dec 2, 2013
Pre-Physical Therapy
Contact the volunteer office of hospitals near you and see if they have openings in their rehabilitation department/floor. Once you've made a good impression, ask a PT if you can observe them. You can also call outpatient clinics/SNF and see if they allow students to observe.


5+ Year Member
Apr 22, 2013
Physical Therapist
There have been dozens of threads on this same question, if you search for them you should find lots of helpful information. Also, as this is primarily a pre-PT forum, you will be getting information about doing observations primarily for PT school. I don't know if the process for getting into PTA school differs, but you will need to look into it carefully. For example, do you need to observe a PTA, or is a PT fine. How do the observation hours get verified? For PT it is through PTCAS, but you wouldn't be doing that for PTA programs. All the information you need is out there on the internet.