Pelvic Therapy Practitioner Certification
The certification available through the Institute is called the Pelvic Therapy Practitioner Certification (PTPC). This certification is awarded to those therapists who successfully apply to sit for the exam and receive a passing score on the computer-administered multiple-choice examination. Clinicians who earn this certification may amend their professional title and all accompanying documentation (CV, business cards, resume) with the letters "PTPC" to distinquish themself as an expert in the field of pelvic rehabilitation.
For the inaugural exam administration, for which applicants may now apply, Herman & Wallace is offering special pricing. Check the PTPC Pricing Chart to learn more. To be eligible to sit for the exam, all applicants must have completed 2000 hours of direct pelvic patient care in the past 8 years, 500 of which must have been completed in the last 2 years. If you have a question about PTPC, do not hesitate to Contact Us.
If you are interestedi in how PTPC compares to other specialization certifications, please see our PTPC and ABPTS Comparison Chart. See below for Frequently Asked Questions about our Certification. We have published a list of resources that an applicant can use to find helpful information about pelvic rehabilitation while studying for the exam.
Questions About Pelvic Therapy Practitioner Certification (PTPC) Eligibility
Do I need to take any particular courses to be eligible for this certification?
No. The PTPC is an indication of your skills as a pelvic therapy specialist, not a certificate of course completion. Those therapists who are qualified to sit for the exam and pass it will be awarded PTPC.
That being said, Herman & Wallace does offer many courses and resources that can help you to prepare for the certification exam. When planning one's continuing education for the year, it would be wise to take into account which courses cover the topics most pertinent to the exam. We are more than happy to provide guidance as to which courses will best prepare you based on your previous experience/courswork.
Can I earn PTPC if I don’t live in the USA?
If you want to sit for the PTPC examination and aren’t a resident of the United States, you are still encouraged to apply. International applications will be considered on a case-by-case basis. There are Kryterion testing centers in most countries around the world.
Am I eligible to sit for the exam?
In order to take the Pelvic Therapy Practitioner Certification exam, candidates must meet the following requirements:
What do I need to do to earn the certification PTPC?
In order to earn PTPC, an applicant must:
What are the eligibilty requirements to apply for PTPC?
To be eligible to sit for the exam, all applicants must have completed 2000 hours of direct pelvic patient care in the past 8 years, 500 of which must have been completed in the last 2 years.
Definition of Pelvic Patient Care
For purposes of this application, pelvic patient care includes hours spent on direct patient care related to conditions of pelvic pain, pelvic girdle dysfunction, conditions of bowel, bladder, and sexual dysfunction that relate, in whole or in part, to the health and function of pelvic structures and the pelvic floor. Other conditions that qualify as direct pelvic patient care may include dysfunctions of the abdomen, thoracolumbar spine, or the lumbo-pelvic-hip complex. These hours can include care for pediatric, adolescent, adult, and aged patients of any gender.
Definition of Direct Patient Care
There is no comprehensive list of activities that encompass direct patient care. A general guideline is that direct patient care includes any time spent by a clinician that has a direct influence on the care of a specific individual patient. This time may be paid, or provided at no cost. While time spent on the examination, evaluation, diagnosis, prognosis, or intervention of an individual absolutely qualifies as direct patient care, there are other activities that applicants may apply toward this requirement. Applicants who have a question about whether or not a certain activity qualifies as direct patient care should contact H&W for a clarification.
All clinicians holding a license as a: Physical Therapist (PT), Physician (MD), Registered Nurse (RN), Occupational Therapist (OT), Doctor of Osteopathy (DO), Advanced Registered Nurse Practitioner (ARNP), or Physician’s Assistant (PA-C) are automatically approved to apply for PTPC. If an individual wishes to sit for the exam who does not hold one of the above licenses, they may request permission to apply to sit for the exam, and will be evaluated on a case by case basis.
Questions About the Pelvic Therapy Practitioner Certification (PTPC) Application
When do I need to submit my application?
We are currently accepting applictions for the inaugural administration of the exam, which be offered Jan 1 - Feb 28th, 2014. Those who wish to sit for the exam during this administration must apply on or before December 31st, 2013.
What is the application cancellation policy?
If an applicant submits an application and application review fee, and decides to no longer pursue certification, they may convert their application review fee toward credit to be used towards a future H&W continuing education course. This credit is valid for 36 months from the date that H&W receives the application review fee. Should the applicant fail to use their credit toward a H&W course within 36 months, H&W will absorb the credit, no refund will be offered, and the applicant may no longer apply said credit toward a continuing education course.
How do I submit my PTPC Application?
It is the applicant’s responsibility to ensure that all forms are completed according to instructions. Mailed-in application forms must be typewritten (printed from a computer). Hand-written applications will not be considered. In addition, it is imperative that the applicants enter their name on the application exactly as it appears on BOTH forms of identification the applicant intends to present at the testing center.
Applicants wishing to send in a physical application should mail the completed application forms, applicable review fee, and hard copy application processing fee described in Section 3.5 below in a single mailing to:
Herman & Wallace
Applications for the inuagural Jan 1 - Feb 28th, 2014 exam administration must submit their applications on or before December 31st, 2013.
How do I submit my hours of direct pelvic patient care?
The PTPC application contains a worksheet that applicants must fill out to report their hours of direct pelvic patient care. No additional documentation is required beyond this worksheet upon submission of an application.
How much does it cost to apply for to sit for the exam?
For questions about PTPC pricing, see the PTPC Pricing Chart.
Questions About the Pelvic Therapy Practitioner Certification (PTPC) Exam
What is the examination cancellation policy?
If after submitting an examination fee, an applicant wishes, for any reason, not to sit for the inaugural exam administration, the applicant may request a refund of their examination fee by both:
A. Contacting H&W via email or web form submission. In order for H&W to honor such a request, the request must be received more than 72 business hours from the applicant’s scheduled exam appointment date and time, AND
B. Calling Kryterion HOST Location Test Taker Scheduling Support at 1-800-403-6199 or 1-602-659-4708. The call must be made more than 72 business hours from the applicant’s scheduled exam appointment date and time
If the applicant has yet to schedule a testing date, the request for cancellation must be received within 10 days of the final day of the testing window
Upon receipt of email or web form submission notification to cancel an examination administration, and so long as that notification is received by the aforementioned deadlines, the applicant may select one of the following options:
1. To receive a refund for 85% of the exam fee,
2. Convert 100% of their examination fee (no financial penalty to the applicant) to credit for H&W continuing education courses or downloadable products. This credit is valid for 36 months from the date that H&W receives the examination fee. Should the applicant fail to use their credit toward a H&W course within 36 months, H&W will absorb the credit, no refund will be offered, and the applicant may no longer apply the credit toward a continuing education course, OR
3. As long as the applicant has not already delayed exam administration according to the terms of section 3.7, the applicant may elect to delay sitting for the inaugural exam, and wait until the next exam administration. In this case, H&W will hold their inaugural exam fee and apply it toward exam administration in the following year. If the applicant has yet to attend a H&W continuing education course, the applicant may elect to convert a fraction of their exam fee into credit for a H&W continuing education course and the balance toward the “having attended one or more H&W continuing education courses” exam fee for the exam administration in 2014 or 2015. Should the sum of the price of the continuing education course(s) the applicants attends and the exam fee debited against the applicants balance be less than the exam fee originally paid by the applicant, the difference of the sum of “the price of the continuing education course(s) and the exam fee” and the original exam fee paid by the applicant shall be converted to credit be be used toward future H&W continuing education courses and/or downloadable products.
Where is the PTPC Exam offered?
The PTPC examination will be offered at all Kryterion Testing Host locations.
You can find the nearest Kryterion testing center to you by visiting this URL: http://kryteriononline.com/host_locations/.
If I take the exam and do not pass, may I retake the exam?
If an applicant sits for the exam and does not receive a passing score, the applicant must submit an application for re-examination to be eligible to sit for the next scheduled exam administration. Applications for re-examination are only eligible for the exam administration immediately following the exam administration in which the applicant did not receive a passing score. Applicants who did not receive a passing score, and did not submit an application for re-examination, may re-apply to sit for future examination administrations but they must submit a new application and application review fee, just as any normal application must.
How much does the exam cost?
For questions about PTPC pricing, see the PTPC Pricing Chart.
Does H&W accommodate test takers with disabilities?
H&W complies with the Americans with Disabilities Act, and will work with its testing partners to provide reasonable accommodations for those who have disabilities and request accommodations. Requests for examination accommodations must be attached to PTPC applications. Please download and complete the Request for Special Testing Accommodations form.
On what dates will the exam be offered?
The inaugural examination administration will be administered at testing centers worldwide. The testing window for this exam administration will begin on Jan 1 2014, and remain open until February 28th, 2014.
The cut-off date for applications to sit for the Jan 1 - Feb 28th, 2014 exam administration is December 31st.
What kind of questions will be on the exam?
THe PTPC exam will cover Knoweldge and Skills related to evaluating and treating pelvic floor dysfunction in men and women throughou the life cycle. The exam is multiple-choice, and each question will have four possible answers (A,B,C, or D) with only one option being the correct answer. There is no written portion of the exam.
The test blue print breaks down accordingly (the % is the percentage of questions on the exam which will focus on this knowledege domain)
Anatomy - 15%
Physiology - 20%
Pathophysiology - 20%
Pharmacology - 5%
Medical Interventions and Test - 5%
Tests and Measures - 5%
Interventions - 20%
Professional and Legal Requirements - 5%
Across all topic areas listed above, 25-30% of the exam items will require the applicant to read a hypothetical patient case scenario and answer questions based on their analysis of the case scenario.
How should I prepare for the exam?
H&W does not presently offer a PTPC preparatory course. There are no continuing education courses that applicants must attend in order to apply for PTPC, such a requirement would be a violation of psychometric best practices.
Those applicants who indicate on their application that they are interested in joining a study group will be put in touch with other applicants who have expressed a similar interest so that they may form a study group.
Once an applicant is approved to sit for the exam, H&W will send them a copy of the results of the Job Task Analysis, as well as a copy of the test blueprint which contains a detailed list of knowledge and skill statements. All of the questions on the examination must measure one or more of the knowledge and skills in the test blueprint document
How will the exam be administered?
Once an applicant is approved to sit for the exam and H&W has received the applicant's examination fee, H&W will send the applicant a voucher number via email. Applicants must have this voucher number before contacting a Kryterion Host Locations to schedule a testing appointment. Appointments are assigned on a first-come, first-served basis; therefore, applicants should schedule an appointment as soon as possible after receiving a voucher number. Delays in scheduling may result in an applicant not being able to make an appointment at a preferred test site or preferred test date. Applicants should report any problems in scheduling a testing appointment to Kryterion as soon as possible.
Kryterion Host Locations can be located by checking this link: http://kryteriononline.com/host_locations/
PTPC examination are administered by computerized testing. The examination questions are presented on computers and applicants provide their responses using a mouse or keyboard. Approved applicants should contact Kryterion as soon as possible once they have their voucher code to schedule a testing appointment. Applicants may take the test on any day that it is offered during the testing window, provided that there is space at the Kryterion test center of choice.
Applicants will have 300 minutes to complete the inaugural exam. Applicants may take short restroom breaks while sitting for the exam, however the 300 minute time limit will not stop during such breaks. Applicants will not be allowed to access any cell phones, computers, tablets, books, or any personal items during such restroom breaks.
Test Center Administrators are required to report any irregular behavior by an applicant during the examination. Evidence of unethical behavior, cheating or subversion of the exam will result in the applicant being deemed inelligible for certification and his/her fees will not be refunded.
Passing applicants may begin using the credential designation after their name on business cards, email signatures, and professional correspondence. Passing applicants will also receive an official certificate identifying them as a Certified Pelvic Therapist Practitioner.
Applicants raw exam scores are not reported on the score reports to prevent misuse of the scores.
Other Questions About Pelvic Therapy Practitioner Certification (PTPC)
Is there a prep course available?
At this time, H&W does not offer a prep course for PTPC. Based on interest, this is something we hope to offer for later forms of the exam.
Is there a study guide available?
Those who apply to sit for the exam and whose applications are accepted will be sent the following study materials:
How long is the certification valid?
The PTPC Certification is valid for 10 years, and all licensed therapists who wish to renew their certification will need to re-take the examination ten years after they are first certified.
What is the difference between Herman & Wallace's PTPC and the ABPTS Specialization on Women’s Health?
Both the PTPC and the specialization exam are forms of professional certifications. You do not have to choose one over the other as they are two different distinctions (PTPC is developed and offered by H&W, the WCS was developed by the ABPTS). The PTPC is a certification of practical and didactic expertise pertaining to pelvic floor dysfunction. The specialization exam is a didactic exam that encompasses all aspects of women’s health physical therapy. You can be both PTPC and specialized in women’s health just like you can be a Certified Manual Therapist (MTC) and an Orthopedic Clinical Specialist (OCS).
Certifications offered by the APTA are only available to Physical Therapists, whereas Heramn & Wallace's PTPC certification will be available to the professionals qualified to take courses through the Inatitute.
For a full breakdown on the differences between PTPC and Specializations available from ABPTS, please see this comparison chart.
What is the difference between a certificate, certification and specialization?
There is an important difference between a certificate and a certification or credential. Certificates are not held to the objective standards required of other types of credentialing. Credentialing is the umbrella term that includes the concepts of accreditation, licensure, registration and professional certification.
A Certificate of Attendance is issued after an individual attends or participates in a particular continuing education course. No knowledge is assessed and the recipient is not required to demonstrate competence according to professional standards.
A Knowledge-Based Certificate recognizes a relatively narrow scope of specialized knowledge used in performing tasks required by the profession. It is issued after the individual passes an assessment instrument.
Professional Certification is the voluntary process by which a non-governmental entity grants a time-limited recognition to an individual after verifying that he or she has met predetermined and standardized criteria. It is the vehicle a profession uses to differentiate among its members. The holder is called a certificant. Herman & Wallace's Pelvic Therapy Practitioner Certification falls into this category of credential.
Specialization is a term related to the professional certifications offered by the ABPTS.
*Adapted from the "NOCA Guide to Understanding Credentialing Concepts"