Graduate Physical Therapy Programs Jonesboro GA

How to Enroll In the Right Physical Therapy College near Jonesboro Georgia

Jonesboro GA physical therapist in pool with patientObtaining a physical therapy degree near Jonesboro GA is a critical first step to launching a rewarding career in the medical care field. Physical therapists (PT) help people who have been disabled as a result of injury or illness gain back mobility and function. But before they can practice and provide treatment for the rehabilitation of patients, they must acquire the proper education and training. A PT must additionally become licensed in all states, many mandating that the licensee hold a physical therapy degree from an accredited school. So before enrolling in a physical therapy school, it’s necessary to evaluate the ones you are thinking about to ensure they will supply a quality education and satisfy your state’s licensing criteria. What you do not want to do is choose a college just because it happens to be the closest to your home or it has the most affordable tuition. There are other significant qualifications that need to be considered in addition to location and cost. But before we discuss what those qualifications are and what questions you should ask, we’ll cover what a physical therapist does and what the educational options are.

What Do Physical Therapists Do?

Jonesboro GA physical therapy patient learning to walkPhysical therapists practice in diverse locations, such as Jonesboro GA hospitals, health clinics, rehabilitation centers, nursing homes and health clubs. What the facilities all have in common is that they are equipped for the diagnosis and rehabilitation treatment of patients. As previously touched on, physical therapists help individuals that are suffering from a lack of mobility and often pain due to illness or injury. After diagnosing a patient, they design a program of treatment to resolve the mobility issues and lessen or eliminate any pain. They also strive to stop any progression of the disability. While the causes of disability requiring physical therapy are abundant, they include:

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

Licensed physical therapists practice in close association with other Jonesboro GA medical professionals, including doctors, chiropractors, dentists and nurses. They can also manage one or more physical therapy assistants who work under 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 rather physically demanding. Physical therapists regularly lift heavy equipment as well as patients, and stand, crouch and kneel for prolonged periods of time on a daily basis.

Physical Therapy Degrees Available

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

  • Associate Degrees educate students to be 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 equivalent to be accepted for enrollment. The degrees are usually made available by community colleges, and take about two 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 designed as pre-physical therapy education to ready students to advance to the doctoral level. While they are not required to be qualified for the doctoral program, they are an integral first step to becoming a PT. As with most bachelor’s degrees, they generally require 4 years to complete and usually include an internship program of at least 500 hours.
  • Doctorate Degrees are mandated if you want 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 three years to finish, making the total investment of time 7 years in most cases. Clinical training is an intregal element along with the extensive classroom and lab instruction. Consequently the fulfillment of an internship is mandated, not solely for graduation but in several states for licensing also.

The Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) has replaced the Master’s of Physical Therapy (MPT), which has been eliminated and is no longer attainable in the United States. Some practicing physical therapists holding a master’s or in some cases a bachelor’s degree were “grandfathered” in prior to the current licensing mandate for a doctorate was implemented.

Physical Therapy Online Programs

student attending physical therapy degree program online in Jonesboro GAAlthough not as prevalent as the more traditional options, there are some accredited online physical therapy programs available, more so at the graduate level. Because of the hands-on structure of the training, clinical lab work and internships are integrated with the online classes. This requires that the student live close to the school campus or in proximity of an available internship. However, the online segment of the curriculum may be accessed within the comfort and convenience of the student’s Jonesboro GA residence. Online programs are not only to some extent more accessible, but in many cases more affordable. Tuition might be somewhat lower than comparable on-campus options, and expenditures for commuting are minimized. And a number of the online programs are accredited by the CAPTE, assuring a quality education. These benefits can make the online alternative the right choice for those students that are motivated enough to learn at home.

Questions to Ask Physical Therapy Programs

Questions to ask Jonesboro GA physical therapy schoolsAt this point you undoubtedly have come to decision regarding several of your initial queries, such as the kind of physical therapy degree you intend to obtain, where you want to attend classes, and how much money you can afford to invest in your education. But considering there are so many PT schools within the Jonesboro GA area and throughout Georgia, you’ll need to research other qualifications as well in order to further narrow your list of school options. Moreover, you want to be sure that you pick the program that is ideal for you. That’s why we have collected a list of critical questions that you need to ask the physical therapist colleges you are reviewing. Ask all of the potential colleges these questions prior to making an ultimate decision.

Is the Physical Therapy Program Accredited?  Find out if the programs you are reviewing have received accreditation from a regional or a national organization. As previously stated, if you are pursuing a doctorate 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 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 recognized accrediting organization. Besides ensuring that you obtain an excellent education, accreditation might be required for state licensing and even for securing student loans or financial assistance.

What is the Program’s Ranking? Along with accreditation, it’s imperative that the school and program you pick have excellent reputations within the physical therapist profession. There are several ways you can look into a PT school’s reputation, beginning with asking for references from employers that they place their graduates with. You can also search for online rating services and reviews and ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. Contact some Jonesboro GA physical therapist clinics or other health care facilities that you may be interested in working for and ask if they can give you any insight about your college selections. It may also be a good idea to contact the Georgia Attorney General and school licensing authority to see 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 should know about all of the physical therapist programs you are reviewing. One is their graduation rate. A low rate might suggest that students dropped out because of dissatisfaction with the program, the teachers, or both. After the students have graduated, what percentage of them are being hired with the help of the college’s job placement program, particularly in the Jonesboro GA area? If a program has a high job placement rate, it’s an indication that its reputation within the health care community is good or even excellent. It also affirms that the program has a broad network of contacts to help students gain internships or employment after graduation.

Does the College Prepare You For Licensing Requirements? It’s important that the program you enroll in furnishes both exceptional training and a curriculum that satisfies the licensing requirements for Georgia or the state where you will be working. In every state a passing score is required on the National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE) as well as a degree from an accredited physical therapist program. While licensing requirements fluctuate state by state for PT and PTA graduates, some states require a minimum amount of clinical hours be completed as well as passing scores on supplemental exams.

Are Internship Programs Sponsored? Ask if the physical therapist programs you are interested in have relationships with Jonesboro GA clinics or hospitals for internship programs. Internships are not only a great means to receive hands on experience in a clinical setting, they are also a requirement for the majority of PT programs and state licensing. As a secondary benefit, they can assist students and graduates develop professional connections in the Jonesboro health care community and help with job placement once licensed.

How Big are the Classes ? Unless you are the kind of person that likes to sit way in the back of the classroom or get lost in the crowd, you will probably prefer a small class size. Small classes permit more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the physical therapy colleges you are looking at what the typical student to teacher ratio is for their classes. If practical you may want to sit in on one or more classes before making your final determination. This will also give you a chance to converse with some of the instructors and students to get their opinions regarding the pharmacy tech program as well.

Where is the School Located? For a number of students, the physical therapy college they decide on will need to be within driving distance of their Jonesboro GA home. Those who have chosen to attend online classes 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 program that is out of state or even out of your local area, you might be required to pay a higher tuition. State colleges typically charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges usually charge a higher tuition for those students that live outside of their districts.

Is Financial Aid Offered? Most DPT colleges provide some type of financial support to their potential students. Find out if the schools you are looking at have a financial aid office and see what type of assistance is obtainable. At a minimum they should help in securing a student loan or any grants you might be eligible for. A number of physical therapist colleges provide scholarships, while others provide work programs. So before you eliminate a school because the tuition is too expensive, find out what financial aid may be available.

Can the Program Accommodate your Schedule? And last you must confirm that the physical therapist school you ultimately select can furnish the class schedule you need. This is especially essential if you opt to continue working while you attend school. If you need to schedule night or weekend classes in the Jonesboro GA area, verify that they are available. If you can only attend part-time, check if that is an alternative and how many credit hours or courses you would need to carry. Also, learn what the procedure is for making up any classes that you might miss as a result of illness, work or family obligations.

Enrolling in a Physical Therapy Program near Jonesboro Georgia?

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

Jonesboro, Georgia

The city's name was originally spelled Jonesborough. During the Civil War, the final skirmish in the Atlanta Campaign was fought here south of Atlanta, cutting off the city and forcing the mayor of Atlanta to surrender at Marietta in early September 1864. The final fall of Atlanta in the Battle of Jonesborough ended up being a decisive point in the nation's history, propelling Abraham Lincoln to re-election two months later, and continuing the war until the Confederacy finally surrendered the following year.

As of the census[2] of 2000, there were 3,829 people, 1,466 households, and 1,023 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,477.4 people per square mile (570.8/km²). There were 1,561 housing units at an average density of 602.3 per square mile (232.7/km²). The racial composition of the city was 72.79% African American, 20.63% White, 0.21% Native American, 0.73% Asian, 0.31% Pacific Islander, 3.45% from other races, and 1.88% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 7.55% of the population. In the past 2 years that population has doubled to about 15.86%.

There were 1,466 households out of which 34.1% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 38.6% were married couples living together, 25.6% had a female householder with no husband present, and 30.2% were non-families. 25.5% of all households were made up of individuals and 11.5% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.60 and the average family size was 3.09.

Graduate Physical Therapy Programs Jonesboro GA

Selecting the ideal physical therapist program is an important first decision you need to make to launch a fulfilling career in the healthcare field. As we have covered in this article, the PT or DPT degree program and school you choose should both have outstanding reputations and accreditation. But there are additional critical questions that you should ask pertaining to your school of choice also. You originally come to this website because of your interest in getting information on Graduate Physical Therapy Programs. However, as you start your search for a physical therapist program bear in mind that a number of factors will lead you toward your final decision. You may decide to go to each of the schools to view their facilities and speak with active DPT students. While there, ask yourself this important question: will this program help me accomplish my goal of becoming a licensed practicing physical therapist? By adhering to our list of supplemental questions, you will be able to narrow down the field so you can make the best choice. And with the necessary education and training, you can fulfill your dream of becoming a licensed physical therapist in Jonesboro GA.

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