1. Resume Examples
  2. Physical Therapist Assistant
Written by Charlotte GraingerCharlotte Grainger

Physical Therapist Assistant Resume Example & Writing Guide

Working in physical therapy gives you the opportunity to make a real difference to patients’ lives. If you already have the skills and expertise, it’s time to land the job. Read our guide to help you write an interview-winning physical therapist assistant resume from scratch.
4.3
Average rating
75 people’ve already rated it
Physical Therapist Assistant Resume Example & Writing Guide
Edit This Resume

If you want a career where you can have a significant impact on people’s lives, physical therapy may be it. As a physical therapist assistant, you will work hard to support patients as they improve their mobility, navigate their recovery, and manage their pain. 

It may be a tall order but all of your hard work pays off when you make a difference to a patient’s quality of life. However, before you can get started in this demanding career, you need to land the job. You have to convince the hiring manager that you have what it takes. That’s where having a stellar physical therapist assistant resume comes into play. 

To get your foot in the door, you need an application that highlights your unique talents and experience. It’s all about proving that you can rise to the challenge. Luckily, you’ve come to the right place. In this guide, we will cover what you need to know to get started.

Resume guide for a physical therapist assistant resume

Level-up your next application with Resume.io. Our guides and resume examples span 500+ professions. Plus, our resume builder makes creating a winning application a cinch. 

This PTA resume guide and corresponding physical therapist assistant resume example will cover the following:

  • How to write a physical therapist assistant resume
  • Choosing the right resume format for a physical therapist assistant
  • Advice on adding your contact details
  • How to maximize the impact of your summaries
  • Adding your physical therapist assistant experience
  • Listing education and relevant experience
  • Picking the right resume design/layout
  • The physical therapist assistant market and what salary you can expect.

How to write a physical therapist assistant resume

First things first, you need to know what to include in your physical therapist assistant resume. Your PTA resume should contain the following elements:

You only have one chance to make the right first impression. Eye-tracking studies show that hiring managers spend just seven seconds looking at each resume that comes their way. In that short amount of time, you have to grab their attention and give them a reason to keep reading. 

First up, you need to figure out what your “hook”—or your unique selling proposition—is. Chances are, the recruiter has seen hundreds of near identical resumes. Applicants looking to land a role as a physical therapy assistant likely have the same experience and skills you have. So, what is it that sets you apart from the crowd? What expertise or talent do you have that others are unlikely to possess? You should lead with whatever gem you pinpoint here. 

Don’t make the mistake of merely talking about the tasks and duties you have previously undertaken. There’s nothing remotely impressive about the fact that you did what you were supposed to do in your former positions. Instead, talk about the impact your actions had and your professional accomplishments. Since you work directly with patients, try to take things from a human angle. Tell the story of how you positively impacted a patient’s life, for example. 

You should also make sure that you tailor your physical therapist assistant resume for each new role. It’s no secret that you may be applying for multiple positions at once. You have to cast your net as wide as possible. However, recruiters can spot a “copy and pasted” resume instantly. If you haven’t taken the time to adapt your application to the vacancy, it will be a red flag for them.

Expert tip

Optimize your resume for the ATS! 

Many recruiters now use ATS screening software to filter incoming resumes. The program ranks each new application by how well it meets the criteria of the job. 

Before you submit your next application, take the time to optimize your resume. You can do this by aligning your resume with the job posting. Highlight specific words or phrases that the hiring manager uses and weave them throughout the body of your next resume. 

Choosing the right resume format for physical therapist assistants

To engage the hiring manager, your physical therapist assistant resume needs to be clear, concise, and easy to read. If it looks complicated, the reader will instantly “switch off”. 

Choosing the right resume format is half of the battle here. As a general rule, we recommend using the reverse chronological order for most resumes. So long as you have had a linear career path, this approach allows you to share your experiences in a straightforward way. 

Of course, there are always exceptions to every rule. If you are a career hopper or you’ve recently graduated, for example, you may prefer to use a functional format instead. This structure places more emphasis on your skills than it does your work experience. 

Regardless of which approach you decide to use, your PTA resume should never look complicated. Avoid this faux pas by using a modern layout that allows the content of your physical therapist assistant resume to shine. 

Include your contact information

Before we get down to the content your resume should include, let’s do a bit of admin. You need to ensure that the hiring manager can quickly see your contact information. Include these important details as part of your header. Here’s what you need to list there: 

  • Full name & title. Include both your first and last name plus the title of the job at hand.
  • Professional email address. Make sure you use an email address that is professional. For example, it’s safest to use one that includes your first and last name.
  • Phone number. Ensure that you include a phone number where you can be reached.
  • Location. You only need to include your city and state here. Don’t both with your full address. If you are willing to relocate for the role, you should note that detail here.
  • LinkedIn. Should you have an active LinkedIn profile, you can include a link to it, too.

Don’t include:

  • Date of birth. The hiring manager should not know how old you are as this can lead to age discrimination.
  • Other personal details. Don’t include your passport number, social security number, marital status, etc.
Do

Adam Smart 

Physical Therapist Assistant 

Newark, New Jersey 

08172199219 

[email protected]

Don't

Adam Smart 

Physical Therapist Whizkid 

10 Small Lane, Newark, New Jersey 

08172199219 

[email protected]

Make use of a summary

This is a people-focused role. As a physical therapist assistant, you will work directly with patients, supporting them in their recovery. When a hiring manager is looking to fill this caring role, they need to make sure that they choose a smart and empathetic applicant. 

Your resume summary gives you the unique opportunity to make your case. What is it that you have that other candidates may lack? As we have already mentioned, you may want to lean on your USP here. However, you can also add a couple of additional points into the mix. 

It’s not just what you write that matters, it’s how you write it too. Your professional summary needs to be engaging and hard-hitting. You can use action verbs in the past or present tense when describing your achievements. These words draw the reader in and show that you were active in your experiences, rather than having them merely happen to you.

Where possible, add specific details. It’s a well-established marketing principle that including minor information can make messaging more memorable. If you want to stick out in the hiring manager’s mind, be sure to tell them a human-centric story that they won’t forget quickly.  

You can find adaptable physical therapist assistant resume examples summary below:   

Entry-level adaptable resume summary/profile example

Recent physical therapy graduate ready to kickstart a rewarding career in an assistant position. Possessing a strong foundation of therapeutic skills and a willingness to learn and develop in the right professional setting. Enthusiastic about supporting patients in their physical wellness journeys while providing top-notch guidance. 

Copied!
Mid-level adaptable resume summary/profile example

Seasoned physical therapist assistant with 5+ years at a private practice. Skilled in therapeutic exercise prescription, manual therapy techniques, and modalities. Confident in supporting those with musculoskeletal, neurological, and cardiopulmonary conditions. Proven track record of providing excellent care and support to a variety of patients.

Copied!
Senior-level adaptable resume summary/profile example

Highly-experienced physical therapist assistant with 10+ years working in hospital and private practice settings. Confident in conducting thorough patient assessments, developing individualized treatment plans, while simultaneously implementing evidence-based interventions. Specializing in the treatment of neurological disorders and pain management. 

Copied!

Remember to tailor your resume summary to meet the needs of the vacancy. The more aligned your application is with the hiring manager’s criteria, the better your chances of an interview.

Outline your physical therapist assistant work experience

If you are using the reverse chronological order, you will list your most recent role at the top of the page. As you work your way down in this section, you should move backward in time. In each case, you need to highlight your position name, company, and the years of employment.

Expert tip

How far back should your resume go?

When you are writing your physical therapist assistant resume, you may wonder how far back in time it needs to go. The answer is between 10 and 15 years, or around three or four positions. You simply need to give the reader a taste of your most recent experience. 

Equally, you should only include positions that are directly relevant to the vacancy. For instance, you shouldn't include your short stint as a barista at your local Starbucks. That position has nothing to do with your desire to land a role as a physical therapist assistant.

When you have covered the basics, it’s time to add some color to each of the positions you’ve listed. You can do this using a bullet-pointed format. For each position, think about what your most notable achievements were and list them while specifying the details of the event. You can use the tried-and-tested STAR method to get this right and give your points some structure. 

Since space is limited, you will need to keep your word count low. One of the ways that you can do this is by omitting the use of any “I” openers. That means that you don’t need to start your sentences with “I have,” “I did,” or “I am”. Leave these words out and get straight to the point. 

Here are some examples of the type of bullet points you may want to include: 

  • “Evaluated 30+ patient assessments each month and tailored therapeutic plans for each newly admitted patient”
  • “Collaborated with interdisciplinary teams to create well-rounded care plans and facilitate smooth transitions between departments”
  • “Continuously achieved or exceeded patient development milestones while providing individualized guidance to family members”

While the above statements may appear long, they each include a level of detail that will compel the reader. It’s not advisable to include vague statements or meaningless sentences. When the hiring manager is reviewing your application, they want you to get down to the nitty-gritty details. For that reason, you should never be afraid to hone in on the impact your actions had.

Physical Therapist Assistant adaptable work experience

Physical Therapist Assistant at Axis Medical Center, Minneapolis 
January 2021 - Present 

  • Provide prescribed treatments for average patient load of 25 cases per day
  • Observe patient performance and report findings to PT manager
  • Consult with occupational therapists and nurses to coordinate treatment plans
  • Maintain detailed patient treatment records meeting HIPAA compliance

 

Physical Therapist Technician at Beach Cities Physical Therapy, Hermosa Beach 

  • Prepared therapy areas and assisted patients with 40+ exercise machines
  • Educated patients on stretching, posture, and at-home fitness routines
  • Modified caregiver instructions based on diagnoses and treatment goals
Copied!

Include the relevant key skills that make you a great physical therapist assistant

If you want to land your next physical therapist assistant role, you will need a healthy mixture of hard and soft skills. Hiring managers are seeking candidates who have the therapeutic know-how to get the job done and also those who are compassionate and empathetic. 

When it comes to writing your skills section, you need to ensure that you tick both boxes. Mention some core soft skills for starters. These may include talents such as communication skills, empathy, interpersonal skills, organizational skills, and time-keeping. 

Of course, you should also list a selection of hard skills that apply directly to the role. These may include therapeutic exercise, individualized treatment planning, manual therapy techniques, high-level record keeping, and orthotic and prosthetic management, among others.  

Expert tip

Check the job listing when writing your skills section! 

The exact wording you use matters. That’s because there are many different ways to say the same thing. For example, “treatment plan creation” and “individualized treatment planning” are–at heart—the same thing. It’s only the phrasing that differs here. 

If you want to make sure that your resume gets past the ATS, you need to be smart. That means using the same words that the hiring manager has used in the job advert. Making this small change could be the difference between getting an interview and getting rejected.

If you need some extra support coming up with the right skills for your next resume, we have you covered. Our resume builder provides several pre-written key skills to choose from with proficiency ranges you can set.

Here’s what the skills box looks like in our physical therapist assistant resume template. 

Key Skills and Proficiencies

Physical Therapy
Exercise Program
Manual Therapy
Training
Communication

Of course, your skills section isn’t the only place you should highlight your talents. Be sure to also include mention of your skills in the rest of your resume content. You can highlight it within your resume summary and the bullet points beneath each of your job titles, for instance. 

Detail your education & relevant physical therapist assistant certifications

Next up, you need to fill out the education section of your physical therapist assistant resume. This is relatively straightforward. You should include information about your high school or college education as you might on any other type of application. 

However, before you can start working in this field, you will need to gain a certificate from a Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education-accredited course. When you have done that, you will also need to obtain licensure so that you can legally work in the field. 

Make sure that you clearly state your relevant certificates on your resume. Aside from the essential criteria we have outlined above, you may also want to include any: 

  • Additional training. If you have had training in a specific area of physical therapy, for example, you should add it in here.
  • Certificates. Have you completed any extra certificates that are relevant to the industry? If so, you might want to highlight them within your education section.
  • Awards. Should you have achieved any awards during your career so far, they will set you apart from the crowd. Don’t be afraid to outline them in this part of your resume.
Physical Therapist Assistant adaptable education

Associate of Science in Physical Therapist Assistant, Santa Monica College, Santa Monica 
September 2016 - May 2018

Copied!

Pick the right resume layout and design for a physical therapist assistant resume

When creating your physical therapist assistant resume, your experience is the main event. Don’t be lured into using a jazzy resume design that will ultimately detract from the content of the document. Using an overly stylized resume will only distract the reader. Moreover, too many colors, patterns, or conflicting style points will make your resume look complicated. 

Instead, you should opt for a minimalist approach. That means that your resume should look clear and not have too many stylistic flairs. While you can include some color here, be wary of going overboard. You should also pick out one or two font types to use throughout the document. Making these layout decisions before you start the process is the way to go here. 

White space is a must when it comes to designing resumes. Leaving a small amount of space between sections, and even paragraphs, helps to increase the readability of the document.  You want to make the hiring manager’s job as easy as possible. Don’t forget this simple rule. 

Want to take all of the hassle out of creating your next resume? Using one of our resume templates is the answer. We have a wide selection of options from Simple and Modern to Professional and Creative. Take a look at the options and see which works for your needs.

Physical Therapist Assistant resume (text only)

Profile

Compassionate and dedicated physical therapist assistant with 3 years of experience working with geriatric, pediatric, and orthopedic patient populations. Excels in designing creative treatment plans, explaining therapeutic exercises, and motivating patients of all ages and abilities. 

 

Employment History

Physical Therapist Assistant at Axis Medical Center, Minneapolis 
January 2021 - Present 

  • Provide prescribed treatments for average patient load of 25 cases per day
  • Observe patient performance and report findings to PT manager
  • Consult with occupational therapists and nurses to coordinate treatment plans
  • Maintain detailed patient treatment records meeting HIPAA compliance

 

Physical Therapist Technician at Beach Cities Physical Therapy, Hermosa Beach 

  • Prepared therapy areas and assisted patients with 40+ exercise machines
  • Educated patients on stretching, posture, and at-home fitness routines
  • Modified caregiver instructions based on diagnoses and treatment goals

 

Education

Associate of Science in Physical Therapist Assistant, Santa Monica College, Santa Monica 
September 2016 - May 2018

 

Skills

  • Joint Mobilization
  • Therapeutic Exercise
  • Gait Training
  • Documentation
  • Patient Education
Copied!

Physical therapist assistant job market and outlook

Whether you’re a seasoned physical therapist assistant or new to the field, the future looks bright. According to the latest information from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, this sector is projected to grow by 19% between 2022 and 2032. That is much faster than average.   

The report also specifies that there were 145,100 jobs in this field in the US as of 2022. What’s more, there are an estimated 24,300 openings for physical therapist assistants every year. Now may be the perfect time to revamp your resume and start applying for roles.  

What type of salary you can expect as a physical therapist assistant

But wait a minute, how much can you expect to make? According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average wage for a physical therapist assistant in May 2022 was $62,770. Of course, how much you make will depend on your credentials and where you work, too.

Key takeaways for building a physical therapist assistant

  1. If you’re compassionate and smart, the world of physical therapy is calling your name.
  2. The sector is set to grow much faster than the average in the US.
  3. Your resume needs to showcase your empathetic side while also highlighting your expertise.

With our online resume builder, you can create an interview-winning application in no time.

Build your resume in 15 minutes
Build your resume in 15 minutes
Use professional field-tested resume templates that follow the exact ‘resume rules’ employers look for.
Create My Resume
Build your resume in 15 minutes
Build your resume in 15 minutes
Use professional field-tested resume templates that follow the exact ‘resume rules’ employers look for.
Create My Resume
4.3
Edit This Resume
Share this article

Beautiful ready-to-use resume templates

Win over employers and recruiters by using one of our 25+ elegant, professionally-designed resume templates. Download to word or PDF.
4.5 out of 5
based on 49,814 reviews on Trustpilot
Use This TemplateStockholm resume template
Stockholm
8,400,000+ users chose this template
Use This TemplateNew York resume template
New York
3,900,000+ users chose this template
Use This TemplateVienna resume template
Vienna
2,100,000+ users chose this template
Use This TemplateSydney resume template
Sydney
1,800,000+ users chose this template
Use This TemplateLondon resume template
London
3,600,000+ users chose this template
Use This TemplateDublin resume template
Dublin
3,800,000+ users chose this template
Use This TemplateMoscow resume template
Moscow
720,000+ users chose this template
Use This TemplateAmsterdam resume template
Amsterdam
1,700,000+ users chose this template
Use This TemplateMadrid resume template
Madrid
1,500,000+ users chose this template
Use This TemplateSantiago resume template
Santiago
1,200,000+ users chose this template
Use This TemplateSingapore resume template
Singapore
700,000+ users chose this template
Use This TemplateOslo resume template
Oslo
570,000+ users chose this template
Use This TemplateCape Town resume template
Cape Town
55,000+ users chose this template
Use This TemplateParis resume template
Paris
530,000+ users chose this template
Use This TemplateBerlin resume template
Berlin
1,400,000+ users chose this template
Use This TemplateGeneva resume template
Geneva
32,000+ users chose this template
Use This TemplateVancouver resume template
Vancouver
500,000+ users chose this template
Use This TemplateTokyo resume template
Tokyo
340,000+ users chose this template
Use This TemplateMilan resume template
Milan
920,000+ users chose this template
Use This TemplateLisbon resume template
Lisbon
220,000+ users chose this template
Use This TemplateBarcelona resume template
Barcelona
480,000+ users chose this template
Use This TemplateCopenhagen resume template
Copenhagen
100,000+ users chose this template
Use This TemplateChicago resume template
Chicago
150,000+ users chose this template
Use This TemplateRio resume template
Rio
200,000+ users chose this template
Use This TemplateRome resume template
Rome
190,000+ users chose this template
Use This TemplateBoston resume template
Boston
110,000+ users chose this template
Use This TemplateRirekisho resume template
Rirekisho
48,000+ users chose this template
Use This TemplateShokumukeirekisho resume template
Shokumukeirekisho
3,100+ users chose this template
Use This TemplateAthens resume template
Athens
86,000+ users chose this template
Use This TemplateBrussels resume template
Brussels
60,000+ users chose this template
Use This TemplatePrague resume template
Prague
12,000+ users chose this template
Use This TemplateShanghai resume template
Shanghai
15,000+ users chose this template
Use This TemplateToronto resume template
Toronto
1,800,000+ users chose this template
This website uses cookies to improve user experience and perform analytics and marketing. By using our website, you consent to all cookies in accordance with our Cookie Policy and Privacy Policy.
Accept Cookies