How to Get PT Certified with the NASM

So you’re thinking about becoming a physical therapist? Excellent choice! The field of physical therapy is growing rapidly, and there is a great demand for qualified professionals. But before you can start helping people recover from injuries and improve their health, you need to become certified. 

In this blog post, we will discuss everything you need to know about the process of getting PT certified with the NASM. We’ll cover topics such as the different certification options available, the application process, and how to prepare for the NASM practice test. Let’s get started!

What Is the NASM Practice Test?

The NASM practice test is a computer-based exam that assesses your knowledge of physical therapy. It is offered by the National Association of Schools of Physical Therapy (NASPT). The test consists of 150 multiple-choice questions, and you will have two hours to complete it.

There are three versions of the NASM practice test: the Basic Level, the Intermediate Level, and the Clinical Level. The Basic Level is for students who have not yet completed their physical therapy education. The Intermediate Level is for students who have completed their physical therapy education but have not yet taken the NASM exam. The Clinical Level is for physical therapists who have already passed the NASM exam and are seeking to become certified in clinical practice.

How to Prepare for the NASM Practice Test

You can prepare for the NASM practice test by studying the content outline published by the National Association of Schools of Physical Therapy. This outline provides a detailed description of the topics that will be covered on the test. You can also find study guides and practice tests online to help you prepare for the exam. 

When you are studying for the test, it is important to focus on the topics that will be covered in each section. The sections of the NASM practice test are as follows:

  • Anatomy and Physiology
  • Kinesiology
  • Exercise Physiology
  • Biomechanics
  • Pathology
  • Pharmacology
  • Psychology

You should also make sure to review the format of the test so that you know what to expect on exam day. The NASM practice test is a computer-based exam, and you will have two hours to complete it. There are 150 multiple-choice questions on the test, and you will need to answer all of them to pass.

What Happens if I Fail the Exam?

If you fail the NASM practice test, you will need to retake it. You can retake the exam as many times as you need to pass, but you will have to pay the registration fee each time.

How Can You Get Certified as a Physical Therapist?

Once you have passed the NASM practice test, you will be eligible to take the physical therapist certification exam. This exam is offered by the American Board of Physical Therapy Specialties (ABPTS).

To be eligible to take the ABPTS exam, you must have a bachelor’s degree in physical therapy from an accredited school and a passing score on the NASM practice test. The ABPTS exam is a three-hour exam that consists of 200 multiple-choice questions. The topics covered on the exam include anatomy, physiology, kinesiology, biomechanics, pathology, pharmacology, and psychology.

You will have four hours to complete the exam, and you will need to answer all of the questions to pass. If you fail the ABPTS exam, you can retake it as many times as necessary to pass. However, you will need to wait at least six months before you can retake the exam.

Once you have passed the ABPTS exam, you will be a certified physical therapist and can start practicing in the United States.

What Are the Different Certification Options Available?

There are two main types of physical therapy certification: the Certified Physical Therapist (CPT) and the Registered Physical Therapist (RPT).

The CPT is the entry-level certification, and you can apply for it after completing your physical therapy education. To be eligible for the CPT, you must have a bachelor’s degree in physical therapy from an accredited school and a passing score on the NASM practice test.

The RPT is the advanced level of certification, and you can apply for it after completing a residency program or obtaining a master’s or doctorate in physical therapy. To be eligible for the RPT, you must have a passing score on the ABPTS exam.

Which Certification Should I Get?

The type of certification you should get depends on your career goals. If you want to work in a hospital or clinical setting, then you will need to get the RPT. However, if you want to work in a private practice or outpatient clinic, then the CPT will suffice.

No matter which certification you choose, you will need to maintain it by completing continuing education courses and paying an annual fee.

Conclusion

In this blog post, we have discussed everything you need to know about getting PT certified with the NASM. We have covered topics such as the different certification options available, the application process, and how to prepare for the NASM practice test.

We hope that this information has been helpful and that you will now be able to start the process of becoming a certified physical therapist. Thanks for reading!

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