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Physical Therapist Assistant Interview Questions

To help you prepare for your Physical Therapist Assistant interview, here are 30 interview questions and answer examples.

Physical Therapist Assistant was written by and updated on May 29th, 2017. Learn more here.

Question 1 of 30

How many years of long term care experience do you have?

How to Answer

As a Physical Therapist Assistant you may have experience with long term care. You provide assistance with daily life, including eating, bathing, dressing, general mobility, and any other day to day tasks. If you haven't had the opportunity to assist those who need long term care from chronic illnesses, disabilities, and other conditions just let the interviewer know that you are excited to get the opportunity to and to learn.



Written by Heather Douglass

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30 Physical Therapist Assistant Interview Questions & Answers

  • 1. How many years of long term care experience do you have?

      How to Answer

      As a Physical Therapist Assistant you may have experience with long term care. You provide assistance with daily life, including eating, bathing, dressing, general mobility, and any other day to day tasks. If you haven't had the opportunity to assist those who need long term care from chronic illnesses, disabilities, and other conditions just let the interviewer know that you are excited to get the opportunity to and to learn.



      Written by Heather Douglass

      1st Answer Example

      "I was fortunate enough to perform my internship in an assisted living facility. I enjoyed providing care and interacting with the patients on a daily basis."

      Written by Heather Douglass

      2nd Answer Example

      "I do not have any experience with long term care but it is something I've wanted to be a part of. Currently I work in an outpatient setting and I rarely see patients more than a few times. I enjoy reconnecting with patients each time and because of this I think I would enjoy long term care."

      Written by Heather Douglass

  • 2. What is your experience with Orthopedic physical therapy?

      How to Answer

      As a Physical Therapist Assistant specializing in Orthopedic Physical Therapy you work alongside a Physical Therapist treating patients after orthopedic surgery, sprains, strains, bursitis and deformities like scoliosis. Tell the interviewer about your work history taking part in treating patients with Orthopedic issues.



      Written by Heather Douglass

      1st Answer Example

      "I haven't had the opportunity to treat too many serious Orthopedic issues but I look forward to utilizing my education and learning alongside my peers."

      Written by Heather Douglass

  • 3. What is your experience with Integumentary physical therapy?

      How to Answer

      As a Physical Therapist Assistant you my have the opportunity to work with patients needing Integumentary physical therapy. Tending to wounds, burns, wound irrigations, dressings and topical agents to remove the damaged or contaminated tissue and promote tissue healing are ways you may assist the Physical Therapist.



      Written by Heather Douglass

      1st Answer Example

      "I'm often the one on our team that provides instruction on edema control and how to properly use compression garments with our burn victims."

      Written by Heather Douglass

  • 4. What is your ideal work environment?

      How to Answer

      Tell the interviewer about qualities and attributes of the people and environments that you thrive in. Are you motivated by the positive attitudes of others? Do you thrive when your boss empowers you by giving you autonomy over decisions? It's important to know what you need and what you want out of a work situation.



      Written by Heather Douglass

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  • 5. Tell me about your experience working in teams.

      How to Answer

      This question is being asked of you to see how well you work with others. When answering this question you will want to say positive and upbeat- even if you don't like working in a team environment.



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  • 6. What is your greatest achievement?

      How to Answer

      When answering this question it's best to make this a professional achievement. To meet your greatest achievement tell the interviewer about the goals you set for yourself. It shows you take initiative. It shows you can follow through. It also shows that you are ambitious.



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  • 7. Share a time when you willingly took on additional responsibilities.

      How to Answer

      This question is to gauge if you could take on additional responsibilities if need be. If your co-worker is going on maternity leave for 7 weeks would you be able to take on her patient workload? If a manager was needed on the night shift could you take on the role? Share the leadership qualities with the interviewer that you posses and assure them that you could step up to the plate if needed.



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  • 8. Are you efficient with your time?

      How to Answer

      Time management is an essential skill in any workplace. As a Physical Therapist Assistant you have to prioritize your work and use your time wisely each day. Using your time wisely also means determining what tasks need to be done first, how to avoid distractions and how to get things done when new priorities pop up. Tell the interviewer how you prioritize your day.



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  • 9. Why are you the best candidate for us?

      How to Answer

      With this question, the interviewer is asking you to explain why you are a good fit for their company. If you cannot properly answer this question, it can appear that you are not confident or serious about the position. Highlight your best skills that relate to the position you are applying for. If you have received any awards or recognitions for your accomplishments in relatable positions, mention them. Show enthusiasm about joining and contributing to the company. This is your chance to sell yourself so make it good.

      Written by Heather Douglass

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  • 10. Are you a good listener?

      How to Answer

      Sometimes being a good listener is a better skill to have than being a good presenter. Tell the interviewer that your a good listener especially with your patients. Listening to their concerns, pains and stories is what makes you a successful Physical Therapist Assistant.



      Written by Heather Douglass

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  • 11. What have you done in the past year to become a better Physical Therapist Assistant?

      How to Answer

      As a Physical Therapist Assistant you know it is important to stay current with your skills as you may not have the opportunity to utilize them every day. Do you make a point to work along side a Physical Therapist to learn from them and ask questions? Do you take online CE's to keep up with your skills? Tell the interview about a few things you are doing to stay current and improve your skills.

      Written by Heather Douglass

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  • 12. How do you handle stubborn patients who do not want to listen to your instruction?

      How to Answer

      Patients that are in pain or ones that are getting discouraged will sometimes become stubborn and not want to continue treatment. As a Physical Therapist Assistant how do you encourage your patients to continue and and stop being stubborn? Share a time with the interviewer where you had to work with a stubborn patient.



      Written by Heather Douglass

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  • 13. What was the most memorable patient you ever worked with?

      How to Answer

      As a Physical Therapist Assistant you have the potential to build a lasting relationship with your patients. Tell the interviewer about a patient that made an impact on you. Did they make you want to become a better therapist? Did they simply make you smile each time they came in because they were such a pleasure to work with?

      Written by Heather Douglass

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  • 14. What would you do if a patient you had been working with started refusing to work with you?

      How to Answer

      As a Physical Therapist Assistant you may run into a situation where a patient you've worked with for awhile has decided they want a new therapist. Would you approach the patient and ask why they've requested a new therapist? Would you let it go and go about your day? Your personality type will determine whether or not you confront the situation or not.

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  • 15. What has been your most difficult situation in your experience as a Physical Therapist Assistant and how did you handle it?

      How to Answer

      The interviewer wants to hear about a particular situation that challenged you as a Physical therapist Assistant. The interviewer can see that you are qualified by reading your resume, now they want to make sure that you have the people skills needed to do the job.



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  • 16. Why did you choose to become a Physical Therapist Assistant?

      How to Answer

      This question is being asked to hear more about your work and why you decided to become a Physical Therapist Assistant. Tell the interviewer how being a Physical Therapist Assistant is very rewarding. You work with patients one-on-one, see them progress through treatment and know that you are really making a difference in their lives. Whether your assisting a patient with a problem that is a result of injury or disease your role is to fosters the patient's return to maximal function. Talk about your current experience or where you see the career field going in the future. Be upbeat and positive and you'll be sure to knock this one out of the park.

      Written by Heather Douglass

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  • 17. What is your greatest strength?

      How to Answer

      This is one of the most common questions asked during an interview so you need to have your answer memorized. To determine your strengths, think of the job related skills that others compliment you on. Are you a patient person? Good listener? Provide amazing customer service?



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  • 18. Are you comfortable working with all age groups?

      How to Answer

      As a Physical Therapist Assistant you have had the opportunity to work with all age groups. Do you enjoy working with children because of their inquisitive minds and sense of humor? Can you relate with them best? Are you most comfortable working with adults because they are able to communicate a bit easier with you? Because your job is hands on with all age groups be sure to tell the interviewer that- follow it up with your favorite group to work with if you'd like.



      Written by Heather Douglass

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  • 19. How do you work differently with an older patient

      How to Answer

      As a Physical Therapist Assistant you have to adjust your style of therapy quite often. Working with older patients require a softer approach than a man in his 30's in good health. Tell the interviewer about a time you successfully rehabilitated an older patient. What steps did you take and how did you adjust your regular style of treatment?



      Written by Heather Douglass

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  • 20. What is your greatest weakness?

      How to Answer



      This is one of the most common interview answers so you need to have this one memorized. Don't choose a weakness that will make the interviewer hesitant to hire you but a weakness that can be improved upon to make it a strength.



      Written by Heather Douglass

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  • 21. Tell me about a time you provided excellent patient care.

      How to Answer

      The interviewer is looking for a particular story. It's a great idea to have a few stories in your back pocket for your interview to show how you personally impacted your patients treatment. When you share your story be sure to follow it with feedback that was provided to you either by the patient that you helped or a co-worker that applauded your care.

      Written by Heather Douglass

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  • 22. Tell me why it is important to have patience as a Physical Therapist Assistant.

      How to Answer

      Becoming impatient with your co-workers or yourself at work is not only counterproductive, it can also be bad for your health. Stress and anxiety in the workplace can lead to conditions such as heart disease and high blood pressure, so it's in your interests to keep a lid on things. Answer this question calm, cool and collective. Showing irritation or impatience during your interview will make it seem like you are hard to work with.



      Written by Heather Douglass

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  • 23. How do you manage responsibilities?

      How to Answer

      During some point in your career you may be in a leadership position. If the position you are interviewing for is a leadership position be sure to relay your leadership style as well as the way you manage your responsibilities clear throughout the interview. Are you a to-do list type of person? do you delegate your duties and responsibilities?



      Written by Heather Douglass

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  • 24. Have you ever had a situation where you had a number of alternatives to choose from? How did you go about choosing one?

      How to Answer

      Your day as a Physical Therapist Assistant can be full of patients and administrative work. Figuring out a balance between the two so one doesn't suffer is sometimes difficult to do. How do you go about prioritizing your work and choosing to work on one thing at a time. Tell the interviewer about a time you were faced with different solutions and how you came up with the one. What was the outcome? Why was it successful?



      Written by Heather Douglass

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  • 25. How do you manage your work stress?

      How to Answer

      Working within the medical career field you may encounter work stress. Tell the interviewer how you deal with your stress and use it to your advantage to motivate you. A little stress within the workplace can motivate you and keep things from getting boring. Managing your stress so it doesn't make you unhappy and unproductive is important. Tell the interviewer about a time you faced a stressful work situation and how you handled it.

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  • 26. Why should we consider you for this position?

      How to Answer

      This question is your chance to sell yourself to the interviewer. Tell the interviewer about your professional skills, education and goals as a Physical Therapist Assistant. Bring something unique to the table to set yourself apart from the rest. How do you plan on making an impact at the work place? Keep your answer to 30-45 seconds. Make it big and wow the interviewers.

      Written by Heather Douglass

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  • 27. Do you see yourself becoming a Physical Therapist in the future?

      How to Answer

      If becoming a Physical Therapist isn't on your priority list don't stress out about how to answer this question. If you're new to this position tell the interviewer that you'd like to stay put for a few years and become an expert Physical Therapist Assistant.



      Written by Heather Douglass

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  • 28. How would you describe your communication skills?

      How to Answer

      Your type of communication style will tell the interviewer what it will be like to work with you. Is your communication style passive and you go with the flow? Are you aggressive and try to dominate all communication? When answering this question tap into your inner assertive communication style. Having an assertive communication style is the least abrasive or hard to work with.



      Written by Heather Douglass

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  • 29. Are you comfortable with giving patients instruction on how to perform an exercise?

      How to Answer

      As a Physical Therapist Assistant you are right along side the patient working through their treatment plan. Being able to give clear and precise instructions is important in your job. Patients look to you to be the subject matter expert and to know exactly how to help them perform the required exercises.

      Written by Heather Douglass

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  • 30. How are your observation skills?

      How to Answer

      As a Physical Therapist Assistant, sharp observations skills are a must. Tell the interviewer you ability to give 100% to your patient and observe their movement during treatment and use the details observed to plan their treatment plans. Did your observations skills and quick thinking prevent a patient from falling? Feel free to share a story when your observations skills played a part in your treatment with a patient.

      Written by Heather Douglass

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