Rev. May 1, 2020
Essential Functions: Physical Therapist Assistant Program
Berkshire Community College seeks to provide equal access to its programs, services and activities for all
people. The Essential Functions of a student enrolled in the Physical Therapist Assistant Program
requires that the student, with or without reasonable accommodations, must be able to:
Example of Technical Standard
Critical Thinking/ Problem
• Collect, interpret and integrate information and make decisions.
• Read and comprehend relevant information.
• Identify cause/effect relationships in the provision of health care.
• Respond calmly and effectively to emergencies.
• Use effective teaching, learning and test taking strategies.
• Embody the spirit of cooperation and collegiality, employing basic
conflict management skills as situations require.
• Establish positive, supportive, effective and harmonious relationships in
diverse settings, with diverse patient/client and colleagues.
Social Coping Skills
• Respond appropriately to stressful environments or during impending
• Concentrate on professional duties without distraction in all settings.
• Set priorities and perform all aspects of therapy services in fast-paced
academic and clinical situations.
• Cope effectively with psychosocial issues involving illness, disability and
death without hindering effective performance of duties.
• Communicate effectively in English using verbal, non-verbal and written
cognize, interpret and respond to non-verbal behavior.
• Demonstrate adequate coordination, balance speed and agility to assist
and safely manage patients who are walking on level and unlevel terrain
to include: stairs, ramps, grass/gravel, curbs, and diverse home flooring.
ve, adjust and position patients or equipment which involves
bending, stooping freely to the floor, reaching overhead, lifting, pulling
or guiding a weight of 200
• Maintain and/or transition between postures that may include,
standing, kneeling, walking and crawling for up to 90 minutes without
nipulate devices with sufficient dexterity bimanually
• Manipulate small nuts/bolts, and equipment settings with sufficient
hand strength and dexterity.
• Visual–recognize and interpret facial expressions and body language
and patient posture, identify normal and abnormal patterns of
movement, discriminate color changes and interpret and assess the
ronment up to 20 feet; read or set parameters on physical therapy
• Auditory–recognize and respond to soft voices or voices under
protective garb, auditory timers, equipment/emergency alarms, and
vely use devices for the measurement of vital sign and breather
sounds. Be able to hear patients and respond to patient critical
when not in direct line of site.
ctile – palpate a pulse and detect changes or abnormalities of surface
texture, skin temperature, body segment contour, muscle tone and joi