Physical Therapist Interview Questions

The goal for a successful interview for Physical Therapist is to impress the employer with their in-depth knowledge of anatomy, physiology, and kinesiology, demonstrate their ability to create effective treatment plans that address the patient's specific needs, and showcase their interpersonal skills that can aid in building trust with patients and colleagues.

Want to Unlock the Secrets of Job Interviews?
Conducting job interviews is a critical task that requires preparation, structure, and a clear understanding of what you are looking for in a candidate.
Start evaluating candidates

Situational interview questions

  • Imagine a patient comes to you with a knee injury, but they are also suffering from anxiety and are reluctant to engage in physical therapy. How would you approach treatment and motivate the patient?
  • Suppose you are treating a patient with chronic low back pain, but they are not seeing improvements despite following their prescribed exercise routine. What steps would you take to reassess their treatment plan and find alternative solutions?
  • Imagine you are working with a patient with a recent stroke, and they are struggling to regain mobility in their arm. How would you adapt your treatment approach to address the specific challenges posed by this condition?
  • Suppose a patient presents with balance issues, but you are having difficulty identifying the underlying cause. What steps would you take to assess and diagnose the problem, and how would you approach treatment once the cause is identified?
  • Imagine a patient who has undergone a knee surgery and is experiencing significant pain during physical therapy sessions. How would you adapt your approach to balance their need to progress with their treatment plan with their discomfort and pain?

Soft skills interview questions

  • How do you communicate with your patients when delivering complex medical information? Can you describe your approach to making sure patients fully understand their treatment plans?
  • Can you tell us about a time when you had to handle a difficult patient who was frustrated or anxious about their recovery? How did you approach the situation and what was the outcome?
  • Can you describe a time when you had to work collaboratively with other healthcare professionals to ensure the best outcome for a patient? How did you navigate differing opinions or approaches?
  • Tell us about your experience working with patients from diverse backgrounds. How have you adapted your communication and treatment strategies to meet their unique needs?
  • How do you stay organized and manage competing priorities when working with a large volume of patients? Can you provide an example of how you have successfully prioritized patient needs while also managing administrative tasks and documentation?

Role-specific interview questions

  • How do you assess and diagnose a patient's musculoskeletal dysfunction, and what are some treatment options you might suggest?
  • Can you discuss your experience working with patients who have suffered from a stroke or other neurological condition, and the rehabilitation methods used to improve their mobility and function?
  • What do you consider when designing a comprehensive home exercise program for a patient with a sports injury, and how do you ensure it is both effective and safe?
  • How do you approach treating chronic pain in your patients, and what techniques or modalities do you utilize to help manage their symptoms?
  • Can you describe your experience working with pediatric patients, and some strategies you use to create a comfortable and supportive environment for them during therapy sessions?

STAR interview questions

1. Can you describe a situation where you had to work with a patient who had a difficult case and needed specialized care? What was your task in this situation, and what actions did you take to address their needs? What were the final results of your work with this patient?

2. In your previous role as a physical therapist, what was the most challenging case you worked on? Can you walk us through the situation, your task in this specific case, the actions you took to address it, and what results you achieved?

3. Tell us about a time when a patient you were working with wasn't making sufficient progress, despite your best efforts. How did you address the situation, and what did you do differently to improve their outcomes? What was the final result?

4. Have you ever encountered an emergency in the clinic or hospital where you needed to act quickly and decisively to help a patient? Can you walk us through the situation, the task at hand, the actions you took to help the patient, and what outcomes or results you achieved?

5. Can you share an example of a particularly complex case you worked on in your role as a physical therapist? What was your task in this situation, and what actions did you take to develop and implement a treatment plan? What results did you achieve?

Do you use a modern recruitment software? If not, you're missing out. See how your life can be easier. Start your free 14-day TalentLyft trial.

Start my free trial