How to Find the Right Physical Therapist Program near Casa Grande Arizona
Receiving a physical therapist degree near Casa Grande AZ is an important first step to beginning a rewarding career in the health care industry. Physical therapists (PT) help patients who have been debilitated due to illness or injury regain mobility and function. But before they can practice and provide treatment for the rehabilitation of patients, they need to get the appropriate training and education. A PT must additionally become licensed in all states, a large number requiring that the licensee hold a physical therapy degree from an accredited college. So before choosing a physical therapy school, it’s essential to research those you are looking at to make certain they will provide a quality education and meet your state’s licensing standards. What you do not want to do is choose a college just because it happens to be the closest to your residence or it has the lowest tuition. There are other relevant qualifications that must be evaluated along with location and cost. But before we talk about what those qualifications are and what questions you should ask, we’ll cover what a physical therapist does and the options for education.
What Does a Physical Therapist Do?
Physical therapists work in a variety of locations, including Casa Grande AZ private practices, hospitals, rehabilitation centers, nursing homes and sports facilities. What the facilities all share in common is that they have the equipment for diagnosing and rehabilitating patients. As earlier stated, physical therapists help patients that are suffering from a lack of mobility and frequently pain caused by illness or injury. After patient diagnosis, they design a program of treatment to address the mobility issues and reduce or eliminate any pain. They also endeavor to stop any progression of the disability. Though the causes of disability requiring physical therapy are numerous, they include:
- Arthritis or Osteoporosis
- Motor vehicle accidents
- Head injuries
- Heart attacks
- Sports injuries
- Burn injuries
- Knee Replacement
- Multiple Sclerosis
Licensed physical therapists practice in close affiliation with other Casa Grande AZ medical specialists, including chiropractors, physicians, registered nurses and dentists. They may also oversee several physical therapy assistants who work under them assisting with diagnosing and treating their patients. Something to keep in mind for anyone thinking about going into the physical therapy profession, it is rather physically demanding. Physical therapists routinely lift patients and heavy equipment, and kneel, crouch and stand for long periods of time on a daily basis.
Physical Therapy Degree Options
There are three physical therapy degree options offered for individuals to enroll in at the graduate and undergraduate levels. Of these options, the one degree that is attainable to become a physical therapist is the doctorate. Undergraduate degrees target either training students to become a physical therapy assistant (PTA) or preparing them to progress to the doctoral level. Below are brief summaries of degree levels that are offered in the Casa Grande AZ area:
- Associate Degrees educate students to become physical therapy assistants, or can be used as a stepping stone to a more advanced degree. Applicants must have obtained a high school diploma or GED to be accepted for enrollment. The programs are most often made available by community colleges, and require 2 years for completion. Clinical training, which may be in the form of an internship is typically part of the course of study.
- Bachelor’s Degrees are developed as pre-physical therapy training to prepare students to progress to the doctoral level. While they are not a requirement to be eligible for the doctoral program, they are an important preliminary step to becoming a PT. As with most bachelor’s degrees, they normally take four years to finish and often incorporate an internship program of a minimum of 500 hours.
- Doctorate Degrees are a requirement if you want to become a licensed practicing physical therapist. The degree program also must be accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE). In addition to the bachelor’s degree, the doctoral takes 3 years to complete, making the overall commitment 7 years in most cases. Clinical training is an essential element in addition to the extensive lab and classroom instruction. Therefor the fulfillment of an internship is mandated, not solely for graduation but in several states for licensing as well.
The Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) has replaced the Master’s of Physical Therapy (MPT), which has been phased out and is no longer offered in the United States. Some licensed physical therapists having a master’s or in some cases a bachelor’s degree were “grandfathered” in prior to the existing licensing mandate for a doctorate was implemented.
Physical Therapy Programs Online
Although not as prevalent as the more traditional alternatives, there are many accredited online physical therapy degrees available, even more at the graduate level. Due to the hands-on nature of the training, internships and clinical lab work are combined with the online classes. This requires that the student live close to the college campus or in proximity of a sponsored internship. However, the online segment of the course of study may be accessed within the convenience and comfort of the student’s Casa Grande AZ home. Online schools are not only partially more accessible, but in a number of cases more affordable. Tuition can be somewhat less than similar on campus options, and expenses for commuting are minimized. And many of the online programs are accredited by the CAPTE, assuring a quality education. These advantages may make the online option the ideal choice for those students that are disciplined enough to attend classes at home.
What to Ask Physical Therapist Colleges
By now you undoubtedly have made a decision regarding several of your initial queries, including the type of physical therapy degree you would like to earn, where you want to attend classes, and how much money you can afford to spend for your education. But because there are so many PT colleges within the Casa Grande AZ area and throughout Arizona, you’ll need to explore additional qualifications as well so as to further reduce your list of college choices. Moreover, you want to make certain that you select the college that is right for you. That’s why we have put together a list of essential questions that you must ask the physical therapy programs you are reviewing. Ask each of the potential colleges these questions prior to making an ultimate decision.
Is the Physical Therapist Program Accredited? Find out if the schools you are looking at have received accreditation from a regional or a national agency. As earlier mentioned, if you are pursuing a doctoral degree the program must be accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE). If you enroll in an online school, it can also obtain accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council. It’s imperative that both the physical therapy school and program you choose are accredited, not just the school. Also, make sure that the accreditation is through a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency. In addition to guaranteeing that you obtain an excellent education, accreditation might be required for state licensing as well as for getting student loans or financial aid.
What is the College’s Reputation? Along with accreditation, it’s important that the college and program you pick have outstanding reputations within the physical therapy community. There are a number of ways you can research a PT school’s reputation, beginning with requesting references from employers that they place their graduates with. You can also search for online rating services and reviews and ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. Contact a few Casa Grande AZ physical therapist clinics or other healthcare facilities that you may have an interest in working for and ask if they can give you any insight about your program options. It might also be a good idea to contact the Arizona Attorney General and school licensing authority to find out if any complaints have been submitted against the colleges.
What is the School’s Job Placement Percentage? There are a two relevant statistics that you need to find out about all of the physical therapy colleges you are considering. First is their graduation rate. A lower rate may suggest that students dropped out because of dissatisfaction with the program, the teachers, or both. Once the students have graduated, how many of them are being hired with the help of the college’s job placement program, particularly in the Casa Grande AZ area? If a school has a high job placement rate, it suggests that its reputation within the health care field is good or perhaps exceptional. It also affirms that the school has a wide network of contacts to help students gain internships or jobs upon graduation.
Does the School Prepare You For Licensing Requirements? It’s imperative that the school you choose furnishes both exceptional training and a curriculum that supports the licensing requirements for Arizona or the state where you will be working. In each state a passing score is needed on the National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE) in addition to a degree from an accredited physical therapy program. While licensing requirements differ state by state for PT and PTA graduates, some states require a minimum amount of clinical hours be completed and passing scores on supplemental exams.
Are Internship Programs Sponsored? Find out if the physical therapist colleges you are assessing have associations with Casa Grande AZ clinics or hospitals for internship programs. Internships are not only a great manner to receive practical training in a clinical setting, they are additionally a requirement for most PT programs and state licensing. As a secondary benefit, they can assist students and graduates form professional relationships in the Casa Grande health care community and help with job placement after licensing.
What are the Class Sizes ? Unless you are the sort of student that prefers to sit way in the back of the classroom or hide in the crowd, you will likely prefer a small class size. Small classes allow for more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the physical therapy schools you are researching what the typical student to teacher ratio is for their classrooms. If practical you may want to sit in on one or more classes before making your ultimate decision. This will also give you an opportunity to speak with several of the students and instructors to get their perspectives regarding the pharmacist tech program as well.
Where is the School Located? For a number of students, the physical therapist college they select will need to be within commuting distance of their Casa Grande AZ residence. Those who have decided to attend classes online obviously will not have to concern themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of local internships will be of concern. Something to bear in mind is that if you decide to enroll in a school that is out of state or perhaps out of your local area, you might have to pay a higher tuition. State colleges normally charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges generally charge a higher tuition for those students that live outside of their districts.
Is Financial Help Offered? Most DPT colleges supply some type of financial support to their potential students. Inquire if the schools you are examining have a financial aid office and find out what kind of assistance is available. They at least should help in acquiring a student loan or any scholarships you may qualify for. Some physical therapist schools provide scholarships, while others provide work programs. So before eliminating a program because the tuition is beyond your budget, find out what financial aid may be available.
Can the College Accommodate your Schedule? And last you must confirm that the physical therapy school you finally select can furnish the class schedule you need. This is especially crucial if you opt to continue working while attending classes. If you must schedule night or weekend classes in the Casa Grande AZ area, check that they are offered. If you can only enroll on a part-time basis, find out if that is an option and how many credit hours or courses you would need to enroll in. Also, find out what the procedure is for making up any classes that you may miss due to illness, work or family emergencies.
Enrolling in a Physical Therapy Program near Casa Grande Arizona?
If you are planning on attending a Physical Therapy School in the Casa Grande AZ area, the following information may prove to be both interesting and educational regarding the location of your future campus.
Casa Grande, Arizona
Casa Grande (O'odham: Wainom Wo:g) is a city in Pinal County, approximately halfway between Phoenix and Tucson in the U.S. state of Arizona. According to U.S. Census estimates, the population of the city is 55,477 as of 2017. It is named after the Casa Grande Ruins National Monument, which is actually located in Coolidge. "Casa Grande" is Spanish for "big house". Among resident English speakers, there is no consensus on how to pronounce the city’s name. 
Casa Grande was founded in 1879 during the Arizona mining boom, specifically due to the presence of the Southern Pacific Railroad. In January 1880, the community of Terminus, meaning "end-of-the-line," was established despite consisting of just five residents and three buildings. In September 1880, railroad executives renamed the settlement Casa Grande, after the Hohokam ruins at the nearby Casa Grande Ruins National Monument. Casa Grande grew slowly, and suffered several setbacks both in 1886 and 1893, when fires ravaged the town, destroying all wooden housing structures within it. When the mining boom slowed in the 1890s, the town was nearly abandoned, but with the advent of agriculture, the town remained alive and well, and was eventually incorporated in 1915.
According to historian David Leighton, during World War II, from 1942 to 1945, a Japanese-American relocation camp was set up outside of Casa Grande, known as the Gila River War Relocation Center. Two notable people that were interned there were future actor Pat Morita and baseball player Kenichi Zenimura, who constructed a baseball field and set up a league in the relocation camp.
Physical Therapy Studies Casa Grande AZ
Deciding on the right physical therapy school is a necessary initial decision you have to make to begin a rewarding career in the health care field. As we have discussed in this article, the PT or DPT degree program and college you enroll in should both have outstanding reputations and accreditation. But there are additional relevant questions that you should ask concerning your school of choice also. You originally come to this website because of your interest in getting information on Physical Therapy Studies. However, as you begin your search for a physical therapist college keep in mind that many factors will guide you to your final decision. You may want to visit different colleges to see their facilities and talk with current DPT students. While there, ask yourself this critical question: will this program help me reach my goal of becoming a practicing licensed physical therapist? By adhering to our list of additional questions, you will have the ability to narrow down the options so you can make the best selection. And with the proper education and training, you can fulfill your dream to become a licensed physical therapist in Casa Grande AZ.
Additional Therapeutic Locations in Arizona
Business Results 1 - 10 of 47