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Physical Therapist guiding a patient through an exercise


Ethical Conduct

Earning the Public's Trust

Why should we care about ethics? When you become a physical therapist (PT) or physical therapist assistant (PTA), you will start to assume a more autonomous role in healthcare. Ethical judgments are going to play an increasingly important role in the gamut of clinical decision making. Unethical behavior usually results in a loss of trust among the public.


Recalling Exam Questions is Unethical

Soliciting recalled questions from individuals who have previously taken the National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE®) is unethical for several reasons:

  • You are breaking the public's trust

    You are expected to pass the test based on your own merit without assistance. The members of the public who will entrust you with their well-being expect that you are a trustworthy and competent individual.

  • You are committing an illegal act

    The purpose of the NPTE is to protect the public by ensuring that candidates for licensure have achieved entry-level competence. By asking previous test takers to share questions with you, you are committing an illegal act and are undermining the very purpose of the examination.

  • You are encouraging illegal acts

    By soliciting questions from previous test takers, you are encouraging such persons to commit illegal acts.


Gain a Better Understanding of Ethics as it Applies to Physical Therapy

Review the following resources: