Physical Therapist Assistant

Accreditation

The Physical Therapist Assistant program is pending approval by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC).

Mississippi Delta Community College is seeking accreditation of a new physical therapist assistant education program from Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE). On December 1, 2018, the program will be submitting an Application for Candidacy, which is the formal application required in the pre-accreditation stage. Submission of this document does not assure that the program will be granted Candidate for Accreditation status. Achievement of Candidate for Accreditation status is required prior to implementation of the technical phase of the program; therefore, no students may be enrolled in technical courses until Candidate for Accreditation status has been achieved. Further, though achievement of Candidate for Accreditation status signifies satisfactory progress toward accreditation, it does not assure that the program will be granted accreditation.

Graduation from a Physical Therapist Assistant education program accredited by the CAPTE is necessary for eligibility to sit for the PTA licensure examination which is required for practice in each state. CAPTE will be scheduled to make an onsite visit prior to the graduation date of the inaugural class. Following that site visit, but before the program graduation date, CAPTE will render its decision regarding granting the program full accreditation status. The first licensure examination date for which PTA program graduates would be eligible to sit in Mississippi will be the 2nd week in July. Should the graduate choose to wait until the next quarter to take the licensure exam, the 2nd available opportunity will be the 1st week in October. Graduates may opt to obtain a temporary 90-day licensure to practice in Mississippi to use until the licensure exam is taken. Again, temporary licenses are optional, and you can seek more information about Mississippi Board of Physical Therapy licensure regulations and about the licensure examination dates and process on these two links: https://www.msbpt.ms.gov/secure/index.asp and https://www.fsbpt.org.

CAPTE is an accrediting agency that is nationally recognized by the US Department of Education (USDE) and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA). CAPTE grants specialized accreditation status to qualified entry-level education programs for physical therapists and physical therapist assistants. The process to file a complaint with CAPTE is located under the "Complaints" tab. The general contact information for CAPTE is:

Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education
1111 North Fairfax Street
Alexandria, VA  22314
(703) 706-3245
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Contingency Plan

Should the program fail to achieve candidacy for accreditation status, students will not be admitted to the program.  The institution will keep students informed of the program status and its progress towards remediation and/or subsequent attempts to achieve candidacy for accreditation.

Once the program has achieved candidacy for accreditation status, students will be admitted, and the program will work towards achieving initial and full accreditation. Currently, the program is on a cycle that will allow CAPTE to make a full accreditation determination for this program in Spring 2021 just prior to graduation of the first cohort of students. If the program fails to achieve full accreditation with initial attempts, the institution and program will ask CAPTE for full accreditation reconsideration by providing more detailed information to CAPTE in the area(s) deemed deficient. If CAPTE grants the program full accreditation following remediation, the students will officially graduate as of the date on which full accreditation is granted. If the program is not successful in remediation attempts to achieve full accreditation, the institution will work with students to pursue other options academic options.  Other options may include working with other accredited health sciences programs on campus or working with other PTA programs in the state which may have policies and procedures that allow them to accept transfer students in good standing.