How to Choose the Right Physical Therapy School near Pearson Georgia
Earning a physical therapy degree near Pearson GA is an important first step to starting a fulfilling career in the health care industry. Physical therapists (PT) help individuals who have been incapacitated as a result of illness or injury regain mobility and function. But before they can practice and provide treatment for the rehabilitation of patients, they need to acquire the appropriate training and education. A PT must additionally be licensed in every state, many requiring that the licensee hold a physical therapy degree from an accredited college. So prior to selecting a physical therapy school, it’s necessary to investigate the ones you are looking at to make sure they will furnish a superior 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 closest to your residence or it has cheapest tuition. There are other relevant qualifications that must be evaluated along with cost and location. But before we discuss 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?
Physical therapists work in a variety of settings, including Pearson GA private practices, hospitals, rehabilitation centers, nursing homes and sports facilities. What the facilities all have in common is that they are equipped for the diagnosis and rehabilitation treatment of patients. As earlier stated, physical therapists help people that are suffering from a lack of mobility and in many cases pain caused by injury or illness. After diagnosing a patient, they design a program of treatment to deal with the mobility problems and reduce or eliminate any pain. They also try to prevent any advancement of the disability. Though the causes of disability requiring physical therapy are numerous, they include:
- Osteoporosis and Arthritis
- Motor vehicle accidents
- Head injuries
- Cardiac arrest
- Sports injuries
- Fire injuries
- Knee Replacement
- Cerebral Palsy
Licensed physical therapists work in close affiliation with other Pearson GA health professionals, including chiropractors, physicians, dentists and nurses. They may also oversee several physical therapy assistants who work under them in diagnosing and treating their patients. One thing to bear in mind for anyone thinking about getting into the physical therapy field, it is quite physically demanding. Physical therapists often lift patients and heavy equipment, and kneel, crouch and stand for long periods of time on a daily basis.
Physical Therapist Degree Options
There are 3 physical therapist degrees offered for students to enroll in at the graduate and undergraduate levels. Of these alternatives, the single degree that is attainable to become a physical therapist is the doctorate. Undergraduate degrees emphasize either training students to become a physical therapy assistant (PTA) or preparing them to advance to the doctoral level. Following are brief descriptions of degree levels that are offered in the Pearson 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 equivalent to be accepted for enrollment. The degrees are most often offered by junior or community colleges, and require two years for completion. An internship or other form of clinical training is usually part of the course of study.
- Bachelor’s Degrees are developed as pre-physical therapy education to ready candidates to move up to the doctoral level. Although they are not required to be eligible for the doctoral program, they are an important preliminary step to becoming a PT. As with the majority of bachelor’s degrees, they typically take four years to complete and usually include an internship program of at least 500 hours.
- Doctorate Degrees are a requirement if you want to become a licensed practicing 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 overall investment of time seven years in most cases. Clinical or practical training is an intregal element along with the substantial lab and classroom instruction. Consequently the completion of an internship is mandated, not solely for graduation but in several states for licensing also.
The Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) has taken the place of the Master’s of Physical Therapy (MPT), which has been phased out and is no longer available in the United States. A number of practicing physical therapists holding a master’s or even a bachelor’s degree were “grandfathered” in before the current licensing requirement for a doctorate was implemented.
Physical Therapist Programs Online
While not as common as the on-campus alternatives, there are some accredited online physical therapy programs offered, more so at the graduate level. Due to the hands-on nature of the training, clinical lab work and internships are combined with the online classes. This necessitates that the student live close to the college campus or nearby a sponsored internship. However, the online part of the program may be accessed within the convenience and comfort of the student’s Pearson GA residence. Online programs are not only to some extent more accessible, but in a number of instances more economical. Tuition may be somewhat less than comparable on-campus options, and expenditures for commuting are minimized. And a number of the online schools are accredited by the CAPTE, guaranteeing a quality education. These benefits can make the online option the best choice for those students that are dedicated enough to learn at home.
What to Ask Physical Therapy Schools
By now you undoubtedly have made a decision regarding several of your preliminary queries, including the kind of physical therapist degree you intend to earn, where you want to attend classes, and how much you can afford to spend for your education. But since there are so many PT schools within the Pearson GA area and across Georgia, you’ll have to research additional qualifications also so as to further narrow your list of college choices. Also, you need to be sure that you enroll in the program that is ideal for you. That’s the reason we have collected a list of essential questions that you need to ask the physical therapy programs you are reviewing. Ask all of the competing colleges these questions prior to making an ultimate selection.
Is the Physical Therapist School Accredited? Find out if the schools you are looking at have received accreditation from a national or a regional organization. As earlier stated, 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 can also obtain accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council. It’s essential that both the physical therapist program and school you enroll in are accredited, not simply the school. Additionally, check that the accreditation is from a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization. In addition to ensuring that you obtain a quality education, accreditation may be required for state licensing as well as for getting student loans or financial aid.
What is the College’s Standing? In addition to accreditation, it’s imperative that the college and program you select have excellent reputations within the physical therapy profession. There are a number of ways you can investigate a PT program’s reputation, starting with asking for references from employers that they refer their students to. You may also check online reviews and rating services and ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. Contact some Pearson GA physical therapy centers or other healthcare facilities that you might be interested 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 see if any complaints have been submitted against the colleges.
What is the School’s Job Placement Percentage? There are a two important statistics that you should know about each of the physical therapist colleges you are considering. One is their graduation rate. A lower rate might suggest that students dropped out because of dissatisfaction with the program, the teachers, or both. After the students have graduated, how many of them are being placed in jobs with the support of the college’s job placement program, particularly in the Pearson GA area? If a college has a high job placement rate, it suggests that its reputation within the healthcare community is good or even exceptional. It also confirms that the college has a broad network of contacts to assist students gain internships or jobs after graduation.
Does the School Support Licensing Requirements? It’s essential that the program you enroll in furnishes both exceptional training and a course of study that satisfies the licensing criteria for Georgia or the state where you will be practicing. In every state a passing score is required on the National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE) in addition to a degree from an accredited physical therapy college. Although licensing requirements vary 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 additional exams.
Are Internships Provided? Inquire if the physical therapy schools you are interested in have associations with Pearson GA clinics or hospitals for internship programs. Internships are not only a terrific means to get hands on training in a clinical environment, they are also a requirement for the majority of PT programs and state licensing. As a supplemental benefit, they may assist graduates and students form professional relationships in the Pearson healthcare community and help with obtaining employment once licensed.
What are the Class Sizes ? Unless you are the sort of student that likes to sit far in the back of class or hide in the crowd, you will undoubtedly want a small class size. Small classes permit more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the physical therapist colleges you are considering 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 final determination. This will also give you a chance to speak with several of the students and instructors to get their opinions regarding the pharmacist technician program also.
Where is the School Located? For a number of students, the physical therapy college they pick will have to be within driving distance of their Pearson GA home. Individuals who have chosen to attend classes online obviously will not have to worry themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of area internships will be of importance. One thing to bear in mind is that if you decide to enroll in a college that is out of state or perhaps out of your local area, you may have to pay a higher tuition. State colleges often charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges generally charge a higher tuition for those students that live outside of their districts.
Is Financial Aid Provided? Most DPT schools provide some form of financial assistance to their potential students. Inquire if the schools you are considering have a financial aid office and find out what kind of aid is available. They at least should help in acquiring a student loan or any scholarships you might be eligible for. A number of physical therapist colleges offer scholarships, while others offer work programs. So before you eliminate a program because the tuition is beyond your budget, learn what financial assistance may be available.
Can the School Accommodate your Schedule? And finally you need to confirm that the physical therapy program you ultimately choose can offer the class schedule you need. This is especially crucial if you decide to continue working while attending classes. If you must schedule evening or weekend classes in the Pearson GA area, confirm that they are available. If you can only enroll on a part-time basis, find out if that is an option and how many credit hours or courses you would have to enroll in. Also, find out what the procedure is for making up any classes that you might miss because of illness, work or family emergencies.
Enrolling in a Physical Therapy Program near Pearson Georgia?
If you are planning on attending a Physical Therapy School in the Pearson GA area, the following information may prove to be both interesting and educational regarding the location of your future campus.
Pearson was founded in 1875 as a depot on the Brunswick and Western Railroad. It was incorporated as a town in 1890 and in 1916 as a city. The community was named after Benajah Pearson, a veteran of the Second Seminole War.
As of the census of 2000, there were 1,805 people, 635 households, and 417 families residing in the city. The population density was 624.1 people per square mile (241.1/km²). There were 742 housing units at an average density of 256.6 per square mile (99.1/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 38.73% White, 38.45% African American, 1.05% Native American, 21.61% from other races, and 0.17% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 28.20% of the population.
There were 635 households out of which 38.0% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 37.8% were married couples living together, 21.6% had a female householder with no husband present, and 34.2% were non-families. 28.8% of all households were made up of individuals and 12.0% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.81 and the average family size was 3.43.
Required Classes For Physical Therapy Pearson GA
Deciding on the ideal physical therapist college is a necessary first decision you need to make to launch a gratifying career in the health care field. As we have addressed in this article, the DPT or PT degree program and college you select should both have excellent reputations and accreditation. However there are additional critical questions that you should ask concerning your school of choice as well. You originally come to this website because of your interest in getting information on Required Classes For Physical Therapy. However, as you begin your search for a physical therapist college bear in mind that a number of variables will lead you toward your ultimate decision. You may decide to go to different schools to see their facilities and speak with current DPT students. While there, ask yourself this important question: will this school help me achieve my goal of becoming a licensed practicing physical therapist? By following our list of supplemental questions, you will be able to narrow down the options so you can make the right selection. And with the necessary training and education, you can accomplish your dream to become a licensed physical therapist in Pearson GA.
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