How Many Years Of College To Become A Physical Therapist Cave Spring GA

How to Pick the Right Physical Therapy Program near Cave Spring Georgia

Cave Spring GA physical therapist in pool with patientObtaining a physical therapy degree near Cave Spring GA is an essential first step to starting a fulfilling career in the healthcare field. Physical therapists (PT) help individuals who have been debilitated as a result of injury or illness gain back mobility and function. But before they can practice and work with the rehabilitation of patients, they must get the proper education and training. A PT must also become licensed in every state, 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 the ones you are thinking about to make sure they will deliver a superior education and meet your state’s licensing criteria. What you do not want to do is enroll in a school simply because it happens to be the closest to your residence or it has cheapest tuition. There are other significant qualifications that must be evaluated along with cost and location. But before we cover what those qualifications are and the questions you should be asking, we’ll address what a physical therapist does and the options for education.

What is a Physical Therapist?

Cave Spring GA physical therapy patient learning to walkPhysical therapists work in a variety of settings, including Cave Spring GA hospitals, health clinics, rehabilitation centers, nursing homes and health clubs. What the facilities all have in common is that they have the equipment for diagnosing and rehabilitating patients. As earlier stated, physical therapists help individuals that are experiencing a lack of mobility and often pain due to injury or illness. After patient diagnosis, they develop a program of treatment to address the mobility problems and lessen or eradicate any pain. They also endeavor to stop any advancement of the disability. While the causes of disability requiring physical therapy are abundant, they include:

  • Arthritis or Osteoporosis
  • Motor vehicle accidents
  • Head injuries
  • Heart attacks
  • Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
  • Fire injuries
  • Hip Replacement
  • Sciatica
  • Cerebral Palsy

Licensed physical therapists practice in close affiliation with other Cave Spring GA medical specialists, including doctors, chiropractors, registered nurses and dentists. They may also manage one or more physical therapy assistants who work for them assisting with the diagnosis and treatment of their patients. One thing to keep in mind for anyone considering entering the physical therapy field, it is quite 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 Degrees Offered

Cave Spring GA physical therpaist welcoming patientThere are 3 physical therapist degrees available for students to enroll in at the undergraduate and graduate levels. Of these choices, the only degree that is available to practice as a physical therapist is the doctorate. Undergraduate degrees concentrate on either training students to become a physical therapy assistant (PTA) or prepping them to progress to the doctoral level. Following are brief descriptions of degrees that are offered in the Cave Spring GA area:

  • Associate Degrees prepare students to be physical therapy assistants, or can be used as a stepping stone to a more advanced degree. Candidates must have a high school diploma or equivalent to qualify for enrollment. The degrees are most often provided by community or junior colleges, and require 2 years for completion. Clinical training, which may be in the form of an internship is normally a portion of the curriculum.
  • Bachelor’s Degrees are created as pre-physical therapist education to prep candidates to advance to the doctoral level. Although they are not required to be a candidate for the doctoral program, they are an essential initial step to becoming a PT. Similar to most bachelor’s degrees, they generally require 4 years to complete and commonly incorporate an internship program of a minimum of 500 hours.
  • Doctorate Degrees are mandated in order to become a practicing licensed 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 total commitment 7 years in most cases. Clinical or practical training is an essential element along with the extensive lab and classroom instruction. Consequently the fulfillment of an internship is required, not just for graduation but in some states for licensing also.

The Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) has replaced the Master’s of Physical Therapy (MPT), which has been phased out and is no longer attainable in the USA. A number of licensed physical therapists holding a master’s or in some cases a bachelor’s degree were “grandfathered” in prior to the existing licensing requirement for a doctorate was instituted.

Physical Therapy Online Colleges

student attending physical therapy degree program online in Cave Spring GAAlthough not as prevalent as the more traditional alternatives, there are many accredited online physical therapy programs offered, more so at the graduate level. Due to the hands-on nature of the training, internships and clinical lab work are integrated with the online classes. This requires that the student live near the school campus or in proximity of an available internship. Fortunately, the online part of the program may be accessed within the convenience and comfort of the student’s Cave Spring GA residence. Online programs are not only to some extent more accessible, but in many instances more economical. Tuition might be significantly less than comparable on campus alternatives, and expenses for commuting are minimized. And many of the online programs are accredited by the CAPTE, guaranteeing a quality education. These benefits can make the online alternative the right choice for those students that are dedicated enough to attend classes at home.

Questions to Ask Physical Therapist Colleges

Questions to ask Cave Spring GA physical therapy schoolsAt this point you undoubtedly have come to decision concerning several of your initial queries, such as the type of physical therapist degree you want to earn, where you prefer to attend classes, and how much money you can afford to spend for your education. But since there are numerous PT schools within the Cave Spring GA area and throughout Georgia, you’ll need to research other qualifications as well so as to further narrow your list of college options. Furthermore, you need to make certain that you pick the school that is ideal for you. That’s the reason we have put together a list of important questions that you must ask the physical therapy schools you are reviewing. Ask all of the competing schools these questions before making an ultimate decision.

Is the Physical Therapist Program Accredited?  Ask if the colleges you are considering have earned accreditation from a regional or a national organization. As previously mentioned, if you are pursuing a doctorate the program must be accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE). If you select an online school, it may also earn accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council. It’s important that both the physical therapy program and school you enroll in are accredited, not simply the school. Also, check that the accreditation is through a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting organization. Along with ensuring that you receive a quality education, accreditation may be required for state licensing and even for getting student loans or financial aid.

What is the School’s Ranking? In addition to 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 look into a PT college’s reputation, starting with asking for references from employers that they refer their students to. You can also check online reviews and rating services and ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. Contact some Cave Spring GA physical therapist centers or other healthcare facilities that you might have an interest in working for and ask if they can provide any insight about your program options. It may also be prudent to contact the Georgia Attorney General and school licensing authority to find out if any complaints have been filed against the colleges.

What is the School’s Job Placement Rate? There are a two relevant statistics that you need to find out about all of the physical therapy schools you are considering. First is their graduation rate. A low rate may mean that students dropped out due to displeasure with the program, the teachers, or both. After the students have graduated, how many of them are being hired with the help of the college’s job placement program, particularly in the Cave Spring GA area? If a program has a higher job placement rate, it suggests that its reputation within the medical care field is good or perhaps excellent. It also confirms that the college has a wide network of contacts to help students obtain internships or employment upon graduation.

Does the Program Support Licensing Requirements? It’s important that the college you choose provides both superior training and a curriculum that supports the licensing requirements for Georgia or the state where you will be practicing. In each state a passing score is required on the National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE) in addition to a degree from an accredited physical therapist college. While licensing requirements differ state by state for PTA and PT graduates, many states require a minimum amount of clinical hours be completed as well as passing scores on additional exams.

Are Internship Programs Sponsored? Ask if the physical therapist schools you are interested in have partnerships with Cave Spring GA clinics or hospitals for internship programs. Not only are internships an excellent manner to receive practical training in a clinical setting, they are also a requirement for the majority of PT programs and state licensing. As an ancillary benefit, they may help graduates and students develop professional relationships in the Cave Spring healthcare community and assist with obtaining employment once licensed.

What are the Class Sizes ? Unless you are the type of person that prefers to sit way in the rear of the classroom or get lost in the crowd, you will probably want a small class size. Small classes enable more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the physical therapy colleges you are reviewing what the typical teacher to student ratio is for their classrooms. If practical you may want to monitor one or more classes before making your ultimate decision. This will also give you an opportunity to converse with several of the students and instructors to get their perspectives regarding the pharmacist tech program as well.

Where is the College Located? For a lot of students, the physical therapy school they choose will have to be within driving distance of their Cave Spring GA home. Individuals who have opted 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 choose to enroll in a school that is out of state or perhaps out of your local area, you may be required to pay a higher tuition. State colleges often charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges often charge a higher tuition for those students that live outside of their districts.

Is Financial Aid Provided? The majority of DPT colleges supply some type of financial support to their potential students. Inquire if the schools you are reviewing have a financial aid office and find out what type of help is obtainable. At a minimum they should help in acquiring a student loan or any scholarships you may be eligible for. A number of physical therapy schools offer scholarships, while others provide work programs. So before you eliminate a program because the tuition is too expensive, find out what financial assistance may be available.

Can the Program Accommodate your Schedule? And finally you need to confirm that the physical therapist college you finally pick can offer the class schedule you need. This is especially important if you decide to continue working while you attend school. If you need to schedule night or weekend classes in the Cave Spring GA area, check that they are available. If you can only enroll on a part-time basis, verify if that is an option and how many courses or credit hours you would need to enroll in. Also, find out what the procedure is for making up any classes that you may miss due to work, illness or family emergencies.

Enrolling in a Physical Therapy Program near Cave Spring Georgia?

If you are planning on attending a Physical Therapy School in the Cave Spring GA area, the following information may prove to be both interesting and educational regarding the location of your future campus.

Cave Spring, Georgia

Cave Spring is a city in Floyd County, Georgia, United States. It is located 16 miles (26 km) southwest of Rome, the county seat. The population of Cave Spring was 1,200 at the 2010 census,[4] up from 975 at the 2000 census. It is part of the Rome, Georgia Metropolitan Statistical Area.

The town was named after the cave and water spring located in Rolater Park.[5] The cave has impressive stalagmites and the legendary "Devil's Stool" formation. The spring water has won awards for purity and taste. Many visitors bring jugs to fill at the spring and take home for drinking.

Cave Spring is located in southwestern Floyd County at 34°6′32″N 85°20′10″W / 34.10889°N 85.33611°W / 34.10889; -85.33611 (34.108912, -85.336018).[6]U.S. Route 411 passes through the city, leading northeast to Rome and west 46 miles (74 km) to Gadsden, Alabama. The Alabama border is 5 miles (8 km) west of Cave Spring. Georgia State Route 100 leads north from Cave Spring 12 miles (19 km) to Coosa and southeast 11 miles (18 km) to Cedartown.

How Many Years Of College To Become A Physical Therapist Cave Spring GA

Picking the best physical therapist college is an important first decision you have to make to launch a fulfilling career in the health care profession. As we have covered in this article, the PT or DPT degree program and school you choose should both have excellent reputations and accreditation. However there are additional important questions that you should ask concerning your college of choice also. You originally come to this website because of your interest in getting information on How Many Years Of College To Become A Physical Therapist. However, as you begin your search for a physical therapist program keep in mind that a number of variables will lead you toward your ultimate decision. You may want to visit different colleges to see their facilities and talk with active DPT students. While there, ask yourself this critical question: will this school help me realize my goal of becoming a practicing licensed physical therapist? By following our list of additional questions, you will have the ability to narrow down the options so you can make the right selection. And with the necessary education and training, you can accomplish your dream of becoming a practicing physical therapist in Cave Spring GA.

Additional Therapeutic Locations in Georgia

  • Training For Physical Therapy Union City GA
  • School PTA Alamo GA
  • Private Physical Therapy Schools Norcross GA
  • How To Become A Licensed Physical Therapist Louisville GA
  • Physical Therapy Education Programs Carnesville GA
  • Universities With Physical Therapy Undergraduate Programs Meansville GA
  • Training To Become A Physical Therapist Winston GA
  • Education And Training For Physical Therapist Shellman GA
  • Graduate Programs For Physical Therapy Mountain City GA
  • Colleges That Specialize In Physical Therapy Watkinsville GA
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