How Long It Takes To Become A Physical Therapist Homerville GA

How to Find the Right Physical Therapy College near Homerville Georgia

Homerville GA physical therapist in pool with patientGetting a physical therapist degree near Homerville GA is an essential first step to starting a rewarding career in the health care field. Physical therapists (PT) help individuals who have been disabled as a result of injury or illness regain mobility and function. But before they may legally practice and provide treatment for the rehabilitation of patients, they must receive the necessary education and training. A PT must additionally become licensed in every state, many mandating that the licensee earn a physical therapy degree from an accredited school. So prior to selecting a physical therapy school, it’s essential to investigate the ones you are considering to ensure they will provide a quality education and comply with your state’s licensing standards. What you do not want to do is select a school just because it happens to be the closest to your home or it has cheapest tuition. There are other relevant qualifications that need to be considered besides 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 is a Physical Therapist?

Homerville GA physical therapy patient learning to walkPhysical therapists work in diverse locations, including Homerville GA hospitals, health clinics, rehabilitation centers, nursing homes and health clubs. What the facilities all share in common is that they have the equipment for the diagnosis and rehabilitation treatment of patients. As earlier touched on, physical therapists help individuals that are suffering from a lack of mobility and frequently pain due to injury or illness. After diagnosing a patient, they create a program of treatment to address the mobility problems and reduce or eradicate any pain. They also endeavor to prevent any advancement of the disability. While the causes of disability necessitating physical therapy are numerous, they include:

  • Arthritis or Osteoporosis
  • Car or motor cycle accidents
  • Head injuries
  • Heart attacks
  • Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
  • Fire injuries
  • Hip Replacement
  • Sciatica
  • Cerebral Palsy

Licensed physical therapists work in close partnerships with other Homerville GA health specialists, including doctors, chiropractors, dentists and nurses. They can also oversee several physical therapy assistants who work under them assisting with the diagnosis and treatment of their patients. Something to keep in mind for anyone thinking about getting into the physical therapy field, it is quite physically demanding. Physical therapists regularly lift patients and heavy equipment, and stand, crouch and kneel for prolonged periods of time on a daily basis.

Physical Therapist Degree Options

Homerville GA physical therpaist welcoming patientThere are 3 physical therapy degree options offered for students to enroll in at the undergraduate and graduate levels. Of these choices, the single degree that is offered to become a physical therapist is the doctorate. Undergraduate degrees concentrate on either preparing students to become a physical therapy assistant (PTA) or preparing them to advance to the doctoral level. Below are brief explanations of degrees that are available in the Homerville GA area:

  • Associate Degrees educate students to be physical therapy assistants, or may be the first step toward earning a more advanced degree. Candidates must have a high school diploma or GED to be accepted for enrollment. The programs are most often made available by community or junior colleges, and require 2 years to complete. 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 ready candidates to progress to the doctoral level. While 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 typically require 4 years to finish and commonly include an internship program of a minimum of 500 hours.
  • Doctorate Degrees are required 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). After earning the bachelor’s degree, the doctoral takes 3 years to finish, making the overall investment of time 7 years in the majority of cases. Clinical training is an important element in addition to the considerable lab and classroom instruction. Therefor the completion of an internship is mandated, not only for graduation but in some states for licensing as well.

The Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) has taken the place of the Master’s of Physical Therapy (MPT), which has been eliminated and is no longer available 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 requirement for a doctorate was implemented.

Physical Therapist Schools Online

student attending physical therapy degree program online in Homerville GAWhile not as common as the on campus alternatives, there are some accredited online physical therapist programs available, even more at the graduate level. Because of the hands-on structure of the training, internships and clinical lab work are integrated with the online classes. This necessitates that the student live close to the college campus or nearby an available internship. Fortunately, the online part of the program may be accessed within the convenience and comfort of the student’s Homerville GA home. Online schools are not only partially more accessible, but in many cases more economical. Tuition might be significantly less than similar on campus options, and expenses for commuting are reduced. And a number of the online programs are accredited by the CAPTE, assuring a quality education. These advantages may make the online option the best choice for those students that are dedicated enough to learn at home.

Topics to Ask Physical Therapy Schools

Questions to ask Homerville GA physical therapy schoolsAt this point you undoubtedly have made a decision regarding some of your preliminary questions, such as the type of physical therapist degree you want to attain, where you want to attend classes, and how much money you can afford to invest in your education. But considering there are numerous PT colleges within the Homerville GA area and throughout Georgia, you’ll need to look into other qualifications also so as to further narrow your list of school choices. Also, you need to make sure that you choose the college that is right for you. That’s the reason we have compiled a list of critical questions that you must ask the physical therapist schools you are considering. Ask each of the competing colleges these questions before making an ultimate selection.

Is the Physical Therapist Program Accredited?  Find out if the colleges you are reviewing have earned accreditation from a regional or a national agency. 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 choose an online college, it can also obtain accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council. It’s imperative that both the physical therapist program and school you choose are accredited, not just the school. Additionally, make sure that the accreditation is from a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting organization. Besides ensuring that you obtain a quality education, accreditation may be required for state licensing and even for securing student loans or financial aid.

What is the Program’s Reputation? Along with accreditation, it’s essential that the school and program you select have exceptional reputations within the physical therapy community. There are several ways you can investigate a PT school’s reputation, beginning with asking for references from employers that they refer their students to. You may also check online rating services and reviews and ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. Call a few Homerville GA physical therapist centers or other health care facilities that you might be interested in working for and ask if they can give you any advice about your school options. It may also be prudent to check with the Georgia Attorney General and school licensing authority to find out if any complaints have been submitted against the colleges.

What is the College’s Job Placement Percentage? There are a two significant statistics that you need to know about each of the physical therapist schools you are reviewing. One is their graduation rate. A low rate might mean that students left because of dissatisfaction with the program, the teachers, or both. Once the students have graduated, what percentage of them are being hired with the help of the college’s job placement program, particularly in the Homerville GA area? If a program has a higher job placement rate, it’s an indication that its reputation within the medical care field is good or even outstanding. It also confirms that the school has a wide network of contacts to help students get internships or employment after graduation.

Does the Program Prepare You For Licensing Requirements? It’s important that the program you select provides both exceptional training and a course of study that satisfies the licensing requirements for Georgia or the state where you will be practicing. In each state a passing score is needed on the National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE) along with a degree from an accredited physical therapist program. Although licensing requirements vary state by state for PTA and PT graduates, a number of states require a minimum amount of clinical hours be performed and passing scores on additional tests.

Are Internships Offered? Ask if the physical therapy programs you are interested in have relationships with Homerville GA clinics or hospitals for internship programs. Not only are internships a terrific manner to obtain hands on experience in a clinical setting, they are additionally a requirement for most PT programs and state licensing. As a supplemental benefit, they can help graduates and students develop professional connections in the Homerville medical community and assist with obtaining employment after licensing.

How Large are the Classes ? Unless you are the sort of person that likes to sit far in the rear of class or hide in the crowd, you will likely prefer a small class size. Smaller classes allow for more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the physical therapist schools you are reviewing what the typical teacher to student ratio is for their classrooms. If practical you may prefer to sit in on one or more classes before making your final determination. This will also give you an opportunity to speak with a few of the instructors and students to get their opinions regarding the pharmacy technician program as well.

Where is the School Located? For a number of students, the physical therapy school they decide on will have to be within travelling distance of their Homerville GA residence. Those who have decided to attend classes online naturally will not have to concern themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of area internships will be of importance. One thing to consider is that if you choose to enroll in a college that is out of state or even out of your local area, you may have to pay a higher tuition. State colleges normally charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges frequently charge a higher tuition to those students that don’t reside within their districts.

Is Financial Support Provided? Most DPT schools offer some type of financial aid to their potential students. Find out if the schools you are looking at have a financial assistance department and find out what kind of assistance is available. At a minimum they should help in getting a student loan or any grants you may qualify for. A number of physical therapist colleges offer scholarships, while others offer work programs. So before eliminating a program because the tuition is beyond your budget, learn what financial assistance may be available.

Can the Program Accommodate your Schedule? And finally you must verify that the physical therapy program you ultimately select can furnish the class schedule you need. This is especially crucial if you decide to continue working while you attend classes. If you need to schedule evening or weekend classes in the Homerville GA area, make certain that they are available. If you can only enroll on a part-time basis, find out if that is an alternative and how many credit hours or courses you would have to enroll in. Also, learn 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 Homerville Georgia?

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

Homerville, Georgia

Homerville is a city in Clinch County, Georgia, United States. The population was 2,456 at the 2010 census,[4] a decrease of 12.38% from its population of 2,803 in 2000. The city is the county seat of Clinch County.[5] Homerville was incorporated February 15, 1869.

Clinch County was created on February 14, 1850, by an act of the Georgia General Assembly, and was named for General Duncan Lamont Clinch, a decorated United States brigadier general and Georgia congressman who had recently died. Clinch, Georgia's 95th county, was formed from land originally inhabited by the Oconee people and consolidated portions of Ware County and Lowndes County. The act creating the county named Elijah Mattox, Simon W. Nichol, Timothy Kirkland, Benjamin Sirmans, and John J. Johnson as commissioners charged with selecting a county seat and constructing a courthouse.

The designated commissioners quickly settled on a site just southwest of the present-day Homerville, and in memory of President James K. Polk decided to name the county seat "Polk". Two years later, however, the Georgia General Assembly inexplicably changed the name of the county seat to "Magnolia", just as the county's first courthouse was completed. The first courthouse was quite small and was destroyed in 1856 when a citizen, presumably dissatisfied with legal proceedings brought against him, decided to destroy the courthouse by fire.

How Long It Takes To Become A Physical Therapist Homerville GA

Choosing the best physical therapist school is a necessary initial decision you need to make to begin a gratifying career in the healthcare field. As we have addressed in this article, the PT or DPT degree program and college you decide on should both have outstanding reputations and be accredited. But there are additional important 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 How Long It Takes To Become A Physical Therapist. However, as you begin your search for a physical therapist college bear in mind that a number of variables will guide you toward your final decision. You may want to visit each of the campuses to view their facilities and talk to active DPT students. While there, ask yourself this critical question: will this college help me accomplish my goal of becoming a licensed practicing physical therapist? By adhering to our list of supplemental questions, you will have the ability to narrow down the field so you can make the ideal selection. And with the necessary training and education, you can fulfill your dream to become a practicing physical therapist in Homerville GA.

Additional Therapeutic Locations in Georgia

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