How to Enroll In the Right Physical Therapist School near Lyons Georgia
Obtaining a physical therapist degree near Lyons GA is an essential first step to starting a rewarding career in the medical care field. Physical therapists (PT) help people who have been incapacitated due to illness or injury gain back function and mobility. But before they may legally practice and provide treatment for the rehabilitation of patients, they must receive the appropriate training and education. A PT must additionally become licensed in all states, a large number mandating that the licensee hold a physical therapy degree from an accredited college. So before choosing a physical therapy school, it’s important to research the ones you are looking at to make certain they will supply a quality education and satisfy your state’s licensing requirements. What you do not want to do is enroll in a school simply because it happens to be the nearest to your home or it has the most affordable tuition. There are other relevant qualifications that must be evaluated in addition to cost and location. 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?
Physical therapists practice in varying settings, such as Lyons 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 previously mentioned, physical therapists help patients that are struggling with a lack of mobility and frequently pain caused by injury or illness. After diagnosing a patient, they design a course of treatment to resolve the mobility problems and lessen 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
- Cardiac arrest
- Sports injuries
- Burn injuries
- Knee Replacement
- Cerebral Palsy
Licensed physical therapists work in close affiliation with other Lyons GA medical professionals, including doctors, chiropractors, registered nurses and dentists. They may also manage several physical therapy assistants who work for them assisting with diagnosing and treating their patients. One thing to bear in mind for anyone considering getting into the physical therapy field, it is rather physically demanding. Physical therapists often lift patients and heavy equipment, and stand, crouch and kneel for extended periods of time on a daily basis.
Physical Therapy Degree Options
There are three physical therapist degrees offered for students to enroll in at the undergraduate and graduate levels. Of these options, the single 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 preparing them to advance to the doctoral level. Below are brief explanations of degree levels that are offered in the Lyons GA area:
- Associate Degrees train students to become physical therapy assistants, or may be the first step toward earning a more advanced degree. Applicants must have earned a high school diploma or GED to qualify for enrollment. The degrees are most often provided by community or junior colleges, and take about two years to complete. An internship or other form of clinical training is usually a component of the course of study.
- Bachelor’s Degrees are developed as pre-physical therapist education to ready candidates to progress to the doctoral level. Although they are not a requirement to be a candidate for the doctoral program, they are an important preliminary step to practicing as a PT. As with the majority of bachelor’s degrees, they typically require 4 years to finish and usually incorporate 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 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 total investment of time seven years in the majority of cases. Practical or clinical training is an important element along with the substantial classroom and lab instruction. Therefor the fulfillment of an internship is mandated, not solely for graduation but in a number of 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 offered in the USA. Some licensed physical therapists having a master’s or in some cases a bachelor’s degree were “grandfathered” in before the existing licensing mandate for a doctorate was instituted.
Physical Therapist Degrees Online
While not as common as the on-campus alternatives, there are a number of accredited online physical therapist degrees available, even more 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 a sponsored internship. However, the online segment of the curriculum may be accessed within the convenience and comfort of the student’s Lyons GA home. Online schools are not only to some extent more accessible, but in a number of cases more affordable. Tuition may be significantly less than similar on campus options, and costs for commuting are minimized. And a number of the online programs are accredited by the CAPTE, guaranteeing a quality education. These advantages may make the online alternative the ideal choice for those students that are motivated enough to learn at home.
Subjects to Ask Physical Therapy Programs
At this point you probably have made a decision concerning a few of your initial queries, including the kind of physical therapist degree you want to attain, where you want to attend classes, and how much you can afford to invest in your education. But because there are numerous PT colleges within the Lyons GA area and throughout Georgia, you’ll need to explore other qualifications also in order to further reduce your list of college choices. Also, you need to make certain that you pick the program that is ideal for you. That’s the reason we have put together a list of critical questions that you must ask the physical therapist programs you are considering. Ask all of the potential schools these questions before making a final selection.
Is the Physical Therapist College Accredited? Ask if the schools you are looking at have earned accreditation from a national or a regional organization. As previously 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 may also receive accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council. It’s imperative that both the physical therapy program and school you choose are accredited, not just the school. Additionally, check that the accreditation is from a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency. Besides ensuring that you receive an excellent education, accreditation might be mandated for state licensing and even for securing student loans or financial assistance.
What is the Program’s Ranking? In addition to accreditation, it’s important that the college and program you choose have outstanding reputations within the physical therapy profession. There are multiple ways you can look into a PT program’s reputation, beginning with requesting references from employers that they place their graduates with. You can also check online rating services and reviews and ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. Get in touch with a few Lyons GA physical therapist centers or other healthcare facilities that you might have an interest in working for and ask if they can provide any recommendations about your college options. It may also be a good idea to check with the Georgia Attorney General and school licensing authority to find out if any complaints have been submitted against the schools.
What is the School’s Job Placement Rate? There are a couple of useful statistics that you should know about each of the physical therapist colleges you are considering. One is their graduation rate. A low rate may indicate that students dropped out because of dissatisfaction with the program, the teachers, or both. Once the students have graduated, what percentage of them are being hired with the assistance of the college’s job placement program, particularly in the Lyons GA area? If a college has a high job placement rate, it suggests that its reputation within the healthcare field is good or even exceptional. It also affirms that the program has a broad network of contacts to help students gain internships or employment upon graduation.
Does the College Support Licensing Requirements? It’s important that the program you enroll in provides both excellent 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 required on the National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE) along with a degree from an accredited physical therapist school. While licensing requirements vary state by state for PTA and PT graduates, a number of states require a minimum number of clinical hours be performed as well as passing scores on supplemental tests.
Are Internship Programs Sponsored? Ask if the physical therapist schools you are reviewing have associations with Lyons GA clinics or hospitals for internship programs. Not only are internships an excellent way to get practical experience in a clinical setting, they are additionally a requirement for the majority of PT programs and state licensing. As an ancillary benefit, they may help students and graduates establish professional connections in the Lyons healthcare community and help with job placement once licensed.
How Big are the Classes ? Unless you are the kind of person that prefers to sit far in the back of class or hide in the crowd, you will probably prefer a smaller class size. Smaller classes allow for more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the physical therapy colleges you are looking at what the typical 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 an opportunity to converse with a few of the students and instructors to get their perspectives regarding the pharmacist technician program also.
Where is the School Located? For a number of students, the physical therapy college they select will need to be within driving distance of their Lyons GA home. Those who have opted to attend online classes naturally will not have to trouble themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of area internships will be of concern. One thing to consider is that if you decide to enroll in a college that is out of state or perhaps out of your local area, you might need to pay a higher tuition. State colleges generally charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges generally charge a higher tuition to those students that live outside of their districts.
Is Financial Aid Offered? The majority of DPT colleges supply some form of financial support to their potential students. Ask if the schools you are looking at have a financial aid office and see what kind of assistance is available. They at least should help in obtaining a student loan or any grants you might be eligible for. A number of physical therapy colleges provide scholarships, while others offer work programs. So before eliminating a program because the tuition is beyond your budget, ask what financial aid might be available.
Can the College Accommodate your Schedule? And last you must verify that the physical therapy school you finally choose can provide the class schedule you need. This is especially essential if you opt to continue working while attending classes. If you must schedule night or weekend classes in the Lyons GA area, make sure that they are offered. If you can only attend part-time, find out if that is an alternative and how many courses or credit hours you would have to carry. Also, ask what the protocol is for making up any classes that you may miss because of work, illness or family obligations.
Enrolling in a Physical Therapy Program near Lyons Georgia?
If you are planning on attending a Physical Therapy School in the Lyons GA area, the following information may prove to be both interesting and educational regarding the location of your future campus.
As of the census of 2000, there were 4,169 people, 1,547 households, and 986 families residing in the city. The population density was 557.1 people per square mile (215.2/km²). There were 1,787 housing units at an average density of 238.8 per square mile (92.2/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 59.25% White, 32.38% African American, 0.36% Native American, 0.17% Asian, 0.02% Pacific Islander, 7.22% from other races, and 0.60% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 15.06% of the population.
There were 1,547 households out of which 33.3% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 36.7% were married couples living together, 21.5% had a female householder with no husband present, and 36.2% were non-families. 31.4% of all households were made up of individuals and 12.8% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.55 and the average family size was 3.18.
In the city, the population was spread out with 28.9% under the age of 18, 10.0% from 18 to 24, 27.0% from 25 to 44, 19.7% from 45 to 64, and 14.4% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 33 years. For every 100 females, there were 92.4 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 89.0 males.
Universities That Offer Physical Therapy Lyons GA
Deciding on the right physical therapist program is an important first 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 school you pick should both have exceptional reputations and accreditation. But there are additional relevant questions that you need to ask regarding your college of choice also. You originally come to this website because of your interest in getting information on Universities That Offer Physical Therapy. However, as you begin your search for a physical therapy college bear in mind that a number of factors will guide you toward your final decision. You may decide to go to each of the schools to see their facilities and talk to active DPT students. While there, ask yourself this important question: will this program help me achieve my goal of becoming a licensed practicing physical therapist? By following our list of additional questions, you will have the ability to narrow down the field so you can make the ideal choice. And with the proper education and training, you can fulfill your dream to become a practicing physical therapist in Lyons GA.
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