How to Enroll In the Right Physical Therapy College near Grayson Georgia
Earning a physical therapist degree near Grayson GA is an important first step to launching a rewarding career in the healthcare field. Physical therapists (PT) help patients who have been debilitated as a result of illness or injury gain back function and mobility. But before they can practice and provide treatment for the rehabilitation of patients, they need to receive the necessary training and education. A PT must additionally be licensed in all states, many mandating that the licensee earn a physical therapy degree from an accredited school. So prior to selecting a physical therapy school, it’s important to evaluate the ones you are thinking about to ensure they will provide a quality education and meet your state’s licensing criteria. What you do not want to do is enroll in a school just because it happens to be the nearest to your residence or it has the most affordable tuition. There are other relevant qualifications that need to be evaluated in addition to location and cost. But before we talk about what those qualifications are and what questions you should ask, we’ll address what a physical therapist does and the options for education.
What Does a Physical Therapist Do?
Physical therapists work in varying locations, such as Grayson GA hospitals, health clinics, assisted living facilities, rehab centers and sports facilities. What the facilities all share in common is that they are equipped for the diagnosis and rehabilitation treatment of patients. As earlier mentioned, physical therapists help people that are experiencing a lack of mobility and often pain caused by illness or injury. After diagnosing a patient, they create a program of treatment to resolve the mobility problems and reduce or eradicate any pain. They also try 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
- Heart attacks
- Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
- Fire injuries
- Hip Replacement
- Multiple Sclerosis
Licensed physical therapists practice in close affiliation with other Grayson GA health specialists, including doctors, chiropractors, registered nurses and dentists. They can also supervise one or more physical therapy assistants who work under them in the diagnosis and treatment of their patients. One thing to keep in mind for anyone considering going into the physical therapy profession, it is rather physically demanding. Physical therapists regularly lift patients and heavy equipment, and kneel, crouch and stand for prolonged periods of time on a daily basis.
Physical Therapy Degrees Offered
There are 3 physical therapy degrees available for students to pursue at the undergraduate and graduate levels. Of these choices, the only degree that is available to become a physical therapist is the doctorate. Undergraduate degrees focus on either training students to become a physical therapy assistant (PTA) or prepping them to progress to the doctoral level. Below are short summaries of degrees that are available in the Grayson GA area:
- Associate Degrees train students to be physical therapy assistants, or can be the first step toward earning a more advanced degree. Applicants must have obtained a high school diploma or GED to be accepted for enrollment. The degrees are typically made available by community colleges, and take about 2 years to complete. Clinical training, which may be in the form of an internship is normally part of the course of study.
- Bachelor’s Degrees are designed as pre-physical therapy education to prep students to advance to the doctoral level. Although they are not required to be a candidate for the doctoral program, they are an essential first step to becoming a PT. Similar to the majority of bachelor’s degrees, they typically require 4 years to finish and usually include an internship program of at least 500 hours.
- Doctorate Degrees are a requirement in order to become a licensed practicing physical therapist. The degree program must also 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 finish, making the overall commitment 7 years in the majority of cases. Clinical training is an important element along with the considerable classroom and lab instruction. Consequently the completion of an internship is required, not just for graduation but in a number of 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 available in the USA. Some practicing physical therapists having a master’s or even a bachelor’s degree were “grandfathered” in prior to the existing licensing requirement for a doctorate was implemented.
Physical Therapist Degrees Online
While not as common as the more traditional options, there are many accredited online physical therapy degrees offered, even more at the graduate level. Due to the hands-on structure of the training, clinical lab work and internships are incorporated with the online classes. This necessitates that the student live near the school campus or in proximity of a sponsored internship. However, the online part of the curriculum may be accessed within the comfort and convenience of the student’s Grayson GA home. Online programs are not only to some extent more accessible, but in a number of cases more affordable. Tuition can be somewhat lower than similar on campus alternatives, and expenses for commuting are minimized. And a number of the online programs are accredited by the CAPTE, ensuring a quality education. These benefits may make the online option the best choice for those students that are disciplined enough to attend classes at home.
Topics to Ask Physical Therapist Schools
By now you undoubtedly have made a decision regarding several of your initial questions, such as the kind of physical therapist degree you want to attain, where you want to attend classes, and how much you can afford to spend for your education. But considering there are so many PT colleges within the Grayson GA area and across Georgia, you’ll need to explore additional qualifications also so as to further reduce your list of school options. Also, you want to make certain that you choose the program that is ideal for you. That’s the reason we have collected a list of critical questions that you must ask the physical therapy schools you are considering. Ask all of the potential schools these questions prior to making a final selection.
Is the Physical Therapy College Accredited? Find out if the programs you are looking at have earned accreditation from a national or a regional 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 select an online school, it may also receive accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council. It’s important that both the physical therapy school and program you enroll in are accredited, not simply the school. Also, verify that the accreditation is from a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting organization. In addition to ensuring that you obtain an excellent education, accreditation may be mandated for state licensing as well as for securing student loans or financial aid.
What is the School’s Reputation? Along with accreditation, it’s essential that the school and program you choose have exceptional reputations within the physical therapy profession. There are a number of ways you can look into a PT school’s reputation, beginning with asking for references from employers that they refer their students to. You may also search for online reviews and rating services and ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. Contact several Grayson GA physical therapy centers or other health care facilities that you may be interested in working for and ask if they can provide any insight about your school options. It may also be prudent to contact the Georgia 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 Rate? There are a couple of significant statistics that you should know about all of the physical therapy programs you are looking at. First is their graduation rate. A low rate may mean that students left because of displeasure with the program, the teachers, or both. After the students have graduated, how many of them are being hired with the assistance of the school’s job placement program, particularly in the Grayson GA area? If a school has a higher job placement rate, it suggests that its reputation within the healthcare community is good or even excellent. It also affirms that the program has a wide network of contacts to help students get internships or jobs upon graduation.
Does the School Support Licensing Requirements? It’s essential that the school you select provides both excellent training and a curriculum that supports the licensing criteria for Georgia or the state where you will be working. In each state a passing score is required on the National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE) in addition to a degree from an accredited physical therapy program. Although licensing requirements fluctuate state by state for PTA and PT graduates, many states require a minimum amount of clinical hours be performed as well as passing scores on supplemental exams.
Are Internships Provided? Inquire if the physical therapist programs you are reviewing have partnerships with Grayson GA clinics or hospitals for internship programs. Internships are not only a terrific way to obtain practical training in a clinical environment, they are additionally a requirement for most PT programs and state licensing. As a secondary benefit, they can assist students and graduates develop professional connections in the Grayson medical community and assist with job placement once licensed.
What Size are the Classes ? Unless you are the kind of person that likes to sit way in the back of the classroom or hide in the crowd, you will probably prefer a smaller class size. Small classes allow for more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the physical therapist colleges you are researching what the average teacher to student ratio is for their classes. If practical you may prefer to sit in on one or more classes before making your ultimate determination. This will also give you a chance to converse with a few of the students and instructors to get their perspectives regarding the pharmacist technician program also.
Where is the Program Located? For many students, the physical therapist school they choose will need to be within driving distance of their Grayson GA residence. Those who have chosen to attend online classes naturally will not have to trouble themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of local internships will be of importance. One thing to consider is that if you choose to enroll in a program that is out of state or perhaps out of your local area, you might have to pay a higher tuition. State colleges often charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges frequently charge a higher tuition for those students that don’t reside within their districts.
Is Financial Assistance Provided? The majority of DPT colleges supply some form of financial aid to their prospective students. Inquire if the colleges you are examining have a financial aid department and find out what type of assistance is obtainable. They at least should help in getting a student loan or any scholarships you might be eligible for. A number of physical therapy schools offer scholarships, while others offer work programs. So before you eliminate a college because the tuition is beyond your budget, learn what financial aid might be available.
Can the Program Accommodate your Schedule? And finally you need to verify that the physical therapist college you ultimately choose can furnish the class schedule you need. This is particularly essential if you decide to continue working while you attend classes. If you need to schedule evening or weekend classes in the Grayson GA area, check that they are available. If you can only attend part-time, find out if that is an option and how many courses or credit hours you would have to enroll in. Also, ask what the procedure is for making up any classes that you might miss as a result of illness, work or family emergencies.
Enrolling in a Physical Therapy Program near Grayson Georgia?
If you are planning on attending a Physical Therapy School in the Grayson GA area, the following information may prove to be both interesting and educational regarding the location of your future campus.
Grayson is located southeast of the center of Gwinnett County at 33°53′36″N 83°57′20″W / 33.89333°N 83.95556°W / 33.89333; -83.95556 (33.893306, -83.955420).Georgia State Route 20 is the main highway through town, leading north 5 miles (8 km) into Lawrenceville, the county seat, and southeast five miles to Loganville. Georgia State Route 84 (Grayson Parkway) leads southwest five miles to Snellville. According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 2.53 square miles (6.55 km2), of which 2.47 square miles (6.40 km2) is land and 0.06 square miles (0.15 km2), or 2.30%, is water.
Grayson suffered a damaging tornado on June 27, 1994, killing a 10-year-old girl. The city has been benefitting from exurban growth in eastern Gwinnett County, especially in the late 1990s and through the 2000s.
The city government of Grayson consists of a mayor and four council members. The current mayor is Allison Wilkerson, and the city council includes Bob Foreman, Laurie Anderson, James Gillespie, and Linda Jenkins.
Top Physical Therapy Graduate Schools Grayson GA
Selecting the best physical therapy program is an important first decision you need to make to launch a fulfilling career in the healthcare profession. As we have addressed in this article, the DPT or PT degree program and school you decide on should both have excellent reputations and accreditation. But there are additional critical questions that you should ask pertaining to your school of choice as well. You originally come to this website because of your interest in getting information on Top Physical Therapy Graduate Schools. However, as you commence your search for a physical therapy program bear in mind that a number of variables will guide you toward your ultimate decision. You may want to go to each of the colleges to see their facilities and talk to active DPT students. While there, ask yourself this critical question: will this program help me achieve my goal of becoming a practicing licensed physical therapist? By adhering to our list of additional questions, you will be able to narrow down the options so you can make the best selection. And with the proper education and training, you can achieve your dream of becoming a practicing physical therapist in Grayson GA.
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