Essential Skills Required

Students must possess the following abilities or be able to perform the skills using compensatory techniques and/or adaptive devices. These essentials abilities include:

Physical Skills:

  • The ability to safely bend, twist, and lift to assist a patient moving from one surface to another.
  • The ability to apply manual resistance to a patient’s arm, leg or trunk during exercise.
  • The ability to perform chest compressions necessary for CPR.
  • The coordination, balance, and strength to safely guard and protect a patient negotiating stairs with an assistive device.
  • The ability to crouch, kneel, reach, push/pull, and crawl to perform exercises with patients.
  • The ability to climb when instructing or assisting a patient on the stairs.
  • The agility to move quickly to ensure patient safety.
  • The physical capacity to work a 40 hour week during clinical affiliations.
  • Sufficient manual dexterity to safely grasp and manipulate small objects and dials.
  • The ability to identify color changes on the skin.
  • The ability to visually observe and assess a patient 10 feet away.
  • The visual acuity to set and read scales, dials and digital displays on equipment, and to read from the medical record.
  • The ability to respond quickly to a visual or auditory timer.
  • The ability to respond quickly to a patient call button (visual or auditory).
  • The ability to hear heart and lung sounds.
  • The ability to hear and respond to monitors, calls for assistance, timers, and verbal directions.
  • The ability to detect odors such as equipment burning, smoke, spills, environmental hazards, and pathophysiological conditions.
  • The ability to feel pulse, muscle tone, and bony landmarks.
  • The ability to hold and use a writing instrument for documentation.

Cognitive/Behavioral Skills

  • The ability to collect and integrate data about patients to problem solve safely and effectively as a PTA student.
  • The ability to handle the emotional stress of working with patients in need of compassionate health care.
  • The ability to read and comprehend patient information.
  • The ability to prioritize and manage multiple tasks simultaneously.
  • The ability to interact effectively with patients, families, supervisors, and co-workers regardless of their race, sex, color, religion, national origin, ancestry, age, sexual orientation, or disability.
  • The ability to maintain personal hygiene consistent with the close personal contact associated with patient care.
  • To abide by the policies and procedures of CCRI, as detailed in the CCRI Student Handbook, and policies of the Rehabilitative Health Department and PTA Program.
  • To render assistance to individuals of all cultures from across the lifespan without prejudice.
  • To comprehend and effectively communicate in the English language (orally and in writing), using appropriate grammar and vocabulary.
  • The ability to portray professional behavior in all areas, including professional presentation, academic and professional responsibility, ethics, and commitment to learning.

Contact Information

Denise Garrow-Pruitt
Assistant Dean of Allied Health
Flanagan Campus
2140
[email protected]
Tel: 401-333-7442

Martha Vigneault, PT, DPT, MS, MEd, CEEAA
Physical Therapist Assistant
Interim Program Director
PTA Clinic Coordinator
Rehabilitative Health Department
[email protected]
Tel: 401-851-1681

For more information about the program contact:
Deborah Watson, M.Ed.

Associate Director- Enrollment Services
[email protected]
Tel: 401-851-1637


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Last Updated: 2/20/17