About the Board

What is the Physical Therapy Board of California?

In 1953 the Physical Therapy Examining Committee was created by Chapter 1823, statutes of 1953 (AB1001). While the name has been changed to the Physical Therapy Board of California (PTBC), the charge to the PTBC by the legislature has been protecting the public from the incompetent, unprofessional and criminal practice of physical therapy since its inception. The PTBC is one of approximately thirty regulatory entities which exist under the organizational structure of the Department of Consumer Affairs (DCA). The PTBC has a close and cooperative relationship with DCA.

The PTBC consists of seven members (four licensed physical therapists and three public members) who serve four-year terms (a maximum of two terms). The Governor appoints the four licensed physical therapists and one public member. The Senate Rules Committee and the Speaker of the Assembly each appoint one public member. Board members are required to complete a Form 700 – Conflict of Interest Statement, and they are required to submit this statement to the Fair Political Practices Commission each year. Additionally, the board members are required to complete ethics training every two years.

The PTBC appoints an executive officer as its administrator. The executive officer serves solely in the interest of the consumers of physical therapy services in California, as does the PTBC. The executive officer oversees the board's staff and ensures that all of its programs function efficiently and effectively.

The PTBC is funded through license and application fees. The board receives no General Fund monies from the State of California.

Licensed physical therapists may practice physical therapy independently. To become licensed, one must possess a post baccalaureate degree in physical therapy, pass the national physical therapy examination (NPTE), and pass the California Law Examination (CLE). Foreign educated physical therapists must also successfully complete a period of clinical service after passing the NPTE.

Licensed physical therapist assistants assist a physical therapist in the practice of physical therapy. To become licensed, one must possess an associate's degree in physical therapy or qualify by meeting the equivalency requirements. A physical therapist assistant works under the supervision of a licensed physical therapist.

Physical therapy aide is an unlicensed person who performs designated routine physical therapy tasks under the direct and immediate supervision of a licensed physical therapist.

What Services does the PTBC Provide to Consumers?

The PTBC is a California State government agency, which licenses and disciplines physical therapist and physical therapist assistants. The PTBC provides three principal types of consumer services: verifies education and background prior to licensure, provides information about the practice of physical therapy by physical therapists and physical therapist assistants, and investigates complaints against physical therapists and physical therapist assistants.
The PTBC is not a referral source. That is, we cannot direct you to a physical therapist in your community.

What is the Mission and Vision of the Physical Therapy Board of California?


To advance and protect the interests of the people of California by the effective administration of the Physical Therapy Practice Act.


The standard for consumer protection in physical therapy.