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Frequently Asked Questions


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How does the FCCPT determine educational equivalence? What tool will the FCCPT use for my review?
The FCCPT uses the CWT 5 developed by the FSBPT for all reviews, as the federal requirement for USCIS purposes (Type I) is to meet current educational standards. Then, if a jurisdiction accepts a tool based upon year of graduation we will do a second review specifically for the state. The applicant will get two reports. To determine if the state you are applying to accepts the tool based upon year of graduation go to www.fsbpt.org and select "Licensure Reference Guide" from the "Top Resources" listed at the bottom of the home page.

View the CWT 5.

Does the FSBPT decision to change to fixed-date testing affect FCCPT services?
No. The decision by the Federation of State Boards of Physical Therapy (FSBPT) to change to fixed-date testing does NOT affect the services of the FCCPT.
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Will FCCPT request personal information via e-mail?
FCCPT will NEVER send an applicant an email asking for personal information. The only time you will have to present your information is when you call our organization so that we can confirm your identity. Please use caution when providing your personal information to anyone through email or on the internet.

How are semester credits assigned on the coursework tool?
The FCCPT converts all foreign educational units to the US equivalent to a semester credit. In the US an average semester of study equates to 16 credits. Thus, other unit systems are converted to the same 16 credits for 16 weeks of study. The conversions vary based upon the country of education and in some cases the way that a university reports units of study.

If FCCPT determines that my education is not substantially equivalent to current U.S. standards, does this mean that I will not be given a license even if I am already licensed in another jurisdiction?
The decision to grant a license is at the discretion of the jurisdiction. FCCPT's educational credentials review is only an advisory report. The report indicates the deficiencies in the educational comparison. You may choose to supplement the educational documents based upon the review, and apply for a re-evaluation.

Does the FCCPT issue my visa?
No, the FCCPT will issue a Health Care Worker Certificate, (Type I). This is only a part of the requirements for application to the USCIS for a visa. See www.uscis.gov for information about visas.

Does the FCCPT issue Alternate Identification Numbers (AIN)?
No. To obtain the application for an Alternate Identification Number to be able to take the NPTE, you should visit the Federation of State Boards of Physical Therapy website at www.fsbpt.org.

I am a U.S. citizen and am thinking about going to a foreign physical therapy school; what will I need to do to work in the U.S. when I am finished?
When you graduate you will have to follow the same requirements for licensure as any foreign educated PT. We can not predict what the educational standards will be in the future, so you should choose carefully what program you would wish to apply to. They should meet the current standards, but be prepared to take additional coursework as requirements change.

I am a U.S. citizen and graduated from a U.S. program and would like to practice PT in a foreign country. Will the FCCPT review my credentials?
The FCCPT is an agency that evaluates foreign educational programs and compares them to the U.S. standards of PT education. If you are interested in working in another country you should contact the regulatory agency in that country, or you may be able to get contact information about from the World Confederation of Physical Therapy www.wcpt.org.

Can I apply simultaneously for USCIS, licensure and FCCPT?
Suggestions for obtaining licensure and immigration

  1. Applicant chooses the state in which they wish to work.
  2. The applicant learns about state licensing requirements, application procedures, and which credentialing agencies are accepted by that state.
  3. The applicant determines which type of work visa/permit will be needed and begins to process of application to USCIS.
  4. Applicant applies to a credential evaluation agency for evaluation of educational credentials.
  5. The credential evaluation agency reviews the applicant’s documents and determines whether the applicant’s education is substantially equivalent to first professional PT degree in the United States.
  6. The credential evaluation agency sends the final report to the applicant and to state licensing authority.
  7. The state licensing authority reviews application for license (including the credential evaluation report) and determines whether or not to permit the applicant to sit for the NPTE.
  8. The state makes a decision as to whether the applicant can sit for the NPTE.
  9. If approved, the applicant sits for NPTE.
    1. If not approved, the applicant must supplement education to meet state requirements.
    2. A re-evaluation of the educational credentials may be required.
  10. When the applicant passes the NPTE, most state boards approve the license.
    1. Some may require a period of supervised practice before being licensed.
    2. Some require a Social Security Number before they issue the license.
  11. If the applicant fails the NPTE, they must retake exam until they earn a passing score.

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