• December 20, 2016 Update

    The information below notes changes in the Rules of Practice and Procedure (.pdf); however, it does not delineate all of the recent changes. Programs are reminded that it is their responsibility to adhere to the most current set of Rules and to seek clarification if needed. Of these noted changes to the Rules, some are reflected in Application for Candidacy requirements, and in the AFC Instructions and Forms, and are, therefore, critical to the development of your program. As always, you are encouraged to contact us if you need assistance.

    Staffing Update

    Ellen Price, Lead Specialist for PT programs, will officially retire at the end of December. She will continue to provide service to CAPTE until her replacement has been onboarded during 2017. Ellen has provided 15 years of service to CAPTE and has been instrumental in shaping quality physical therapy education. She will be missed by everyone in the physical therapy education community. We certainly wish her well on her new adventures.

    An offer for Ellen's position has been made with a future announcement to be provided when all details have been completed.

    Change of Guard

    New Commissioners were elected and retiring Commissioners were recognized at the Fall 2016 CAPTE Meeting.

    Please join me in welcoming the new Commissioners:
    Patricia Brown, Central Panel
    Doreen Stiskal, Central Panel
    Kerri Bednarcik, PTA Panel
    Jason Dougherty, PTA Panel
    Cindy Buchanan, PTA Panel
    Diane Clark, PT Panel
    Patricia Trela, PT Panel

    Chair and Vice Chair Elections
    Diana Ploeger was elected Vice Chair of the PTA Panel
    Jan Haas was elected Chair of the PTA Panel
    Bev Johnson was elected Vice Chair of the PT Panel
    Pam Ritzline was elected Chair of the PT Panel
    Beth Marcoux was elected Vice Chair of CAPTE
    Dolly Swisher was elected as Chair of CAPTE

    Do reach out to the retiring Commissioners and thank them for their excellent service to CAPTE:
    Ann Divine — Co-Chair of CAPTE
    Kathy Hastings — Co-Chair of CAPTE
    Sharon Reid — PTA Panel Chair
    Doreen Stiskal — PTA Panel Vice Chair
    Carol Fawcett — PTA Panel
    Bob Post — PT Panel Vice Chair
    Kim Cohee — PT Panel

    Actions Taken at the Fall 2016 CAPTE Meeting

    At its November 4-9, 2016, meeting, the Commission:

    • Made 6 Candidate for Accreditation decisions
    • Made 6 Initial Accreditation status decisions
    • Made 102 accreditation (reaffirm, continue, and substantive change) status decisions (1 program on warning, 7 programs on probation, 0 program show cause, 0 program withdraw, 5 substantive changes)
    • Reviewed information regarding changes in program leadership since November 2015
    • Reviewed the most recent pass rates provided by the Federation of State Boards of Physical Therapy

    The decisions have been posted on the website.

    Bridge Program for Foreign Educated PTs/PTAs Task Force—Final Report

    The task force focused on CAPTE's rules, specifically Rule 9.10: Expansion of Program Accreditation Status to an Additional Program Offering. The task force recommended and CAPTE approved that bridge programs for foreign educated physical therapists and physical therapist assistants would be an expansion of the current entry-level programs. The application for approval of substantive change process would need to be completed according to the respective Rules of Practice and Procedure of CAPTE.

    The Federation of State Boards of Physical Therapy is exploring the opportunity for foreign educated physical therapists and physical therapist assistants to be eligible to sit for the licensure exam without completion of a CAPTE accredited bridge program. If you are interested in more details about this process, please contact FSBPT directly.

    Baccalaureate PTA Degree Task Force

    At the Fall 2015 CAPTE meeting a motion was passed to create a task force to explore the feasibility of allowing Physical Therapist Assistant education programs to offer the option of a bachelor's degree as the entry level degree where allowed by state law and institutional accreditation policies. The task force was convened in Winter/Spring 2016 with a report delivered to CAPTE at the Fall 2016 meeting. After much thoughtful discussion, the task force determined that there not be any change in the entry level degree for the Physical Therapist Assistant (PTA). The primary reasons for this decision were the minimal number of requests for the change, lack of constituent support in available research, potential for confusion of PTA and PT role identity, increased cost of education for the student, and no change in scope of work for the PTA. CAPTE accepted the report.

    Changes in the Rules

    CAPTE adopted numerous changes to its Rules, some of which are editorial in nature, some of which are clarifying, and some of which are substantive. The changes of most interest to programs include the following.

    Entire document:

    • Deleted any reference to "facsimile"

    Parts 4, 7, 9

    • Added language that adds progress reports for programs with candidacy status

    Parts 4.5(c)(7)(10)(11)(12)

    • Added language to the adverse decision notification stating such decisions are set aside until reconsideration/appeal processes have been completed

    Part 7 Pre-accreditation

    • 7.4(a) Removed one cycle of review for developing programs meaning only 12 new programs will be reviewed per year starting in 2018
    • 7.8(e) Program directors need to be rehired within one month, rather than six months, in order not to lose review cycle
    • 7.14 Added composition of the On-site Review Team

    Part 8 Procedures for Achievement and Maintenance of Accreditation

    • New rule to be added that addresses the USDE expectation that student outcome rates are verified. See below for language to be added to the Rules and Procedures.

    Part 9 Substantive Change

    • 9.5 Clarified review of reportable changes related to staff role
    • 9.8 Permanent increases in class size (10% or more from CAPTE set class size) will require the program to submit an AASC (see below for defining class size)
    • 9.14 New rule allowing for third party comments related to requests for substantive change

    Defining Planned Class Size

    With the rule change related to increases in class size, it is necessary to establish the CAPTE set class size for every program. This class size will be set by the planned class size entered by the program with the 2016 AAR. Going forward, this planned class size will remain constant providing the benchmark for requesting an increase in class size of 10% or more. Should the planned class size entered not be the usual and customary class size for your program, please reach out to the respective program Lead Specialist to determine what, if any, changes should be made and whether an application for approval of a substantive change is required.

    New Rule for Verification of Student Outcome Rates

    Programs will be required to engage an independent third-party to verify the employment data reported in the Accreditation Annual Report (AAR) during the year that the program is required to do an expanded AAR starting in 2018. Further details on the process will be made available to those programs having an expanded AAR due in 2018.

    8.20 Information Required to be Made Public by the Program
    (b) Student Outcomes

    Add as new item (6)

    All student achievement data reported/published for any purpose is expected to reflect an accurate and verifiable portrayal of the program’s performance, which is subject to review for integrity, accuracy, and completeness. CAPTE reserves the right to request that a program provide verification by an external source of a program’s student achievement data that CAPTE relies on, in part, in making an accreditation decision. The program is responsible for any cost related to verification by an external source of a program’s student achievement data.

    The USDE expects outcomes data to be accurate requiring accreditors to have processes in place to verify program reported student outcomes.

    Changes to the Standards and Required Elements

    Based on the hard work of the Accreditation Task Force as well as changes in the accrediting regulatory environment, revisions to the new Standards and Required Elements will be proposed at the Spring 2017 CAPTE meeting. The intent is to provide clarity of CAPTE's expectations as well as create some efficiency in preparing the Self-Study Report. Additionally, the revisions will include any curriculum modifications needed to meet the FSBPT changes proposed for its test blueprint. If the changes are substantive to existing standards/elements, changes can only be implemented after notifying the communities of interest of the proposed changes, providing reasonable opportunity for comment, considering the feedback obtained, and providing sufficient advance notice of implementation. Proposed changes, including the planned effective date, will be circulated to the communities of interest who will be given at least thirty (30) days to provide comment.

    Fee Increase

    Programs are reminded that there is an accreditation fee increase in 2018. The new fee is $4,250. Please be sure to put this increase in the academic budget that includes 2018.

    Archived Updates

    View past CAPTE updates.

  • Last Updated: 12/21/2016
    Contact: accreditation@apta.org