How to Enroll In the Right Physical Therapist School near Rochelle Georgia
Receiving a physical therapist degree near Rochelle GA is a critical first step to starting a fulfilling career in the health care industry. Physical therapists (PT) help individuals who have been disabled as a result of injury or illness regain function and mobility. But before they may legally practice and work with the rehabilitation of patients, they must receive the appropriate training and education. A PT must additionally become licensed in every state, a large number requiring that the licensee earn a physical therapy degree from an accredited school. So prior to choosing a physical therapy school, it’s necessary to investigate the ones you are thinking about to make sure they will supply a quality education and comply with your state’s licensing requirements. What you do not want to do is choose a college simply because it happens to be the nearest to your residence or it has cheapest tuition. There are other important qualifications that need to be considered in addition to cost and location. But before we cover what those qualifications are and the questions you should be asking, we’ll address what a physical therapist does and the options for education.
What Does a Physical Therapist Do?
Physical therapists work in varying settings, such as Rochelle GA private practices, hospitals, rehabilitation centers, nursing homes and sports facilities. What the facilities all share in common is that they are equipped for diagnosing and rehabilitating patients. As previously touched on, physical therapists help people that are struggling with 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 issues and lessen or eliminate any pain. They also strive to stop any advancement of the disability. Although the causes of disability requiring physical therapy are numerous, they include:
- Osteoporosis and Arthritis
- Motor vehicle accidents
- Cardiac arrest
- Sports injuries
- Burn injuries
- Hip Replacement
- Cerebral Palsy
Licensed physical therapists work in close partnerships with other Rochelle GA health professionals, including chiropractors, physicians, registered nurses and dentists. They may also manage several physical therapy assistants who work under them in 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 heavy equipment as well as patients, and stand, crouch and kneel for prolonged periods of time on a daily basis.
Physical Therapist Degrees Available
There are 3 physical therapist degree options available for individuals to enroll in at the graduate and undergraduate levels. Of these options, the single degree that is offered 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 explanations of degree levels that are available in the Rochelle GA area:
- Associate Degrees train students to become physical therapy assistants, or may be the first step toward earning a more advanced degree. Candidates must have a high school diploma or equivalent to qualify for enrollment. The programs are most often provided by community or junior colleges, and require two years for completion. Clinical training, which may be in the form of an internship is normally part of the curriculum.
- Bachelor’s Degrees are designed as pre-physical therapist training to prepare candidates to progress to the doctoral level. Although they are not a requirement to be qualified for the doctoral program, they are an important preliminary step to practicing as a PT. As with the majority of bachelor’s degrees, they generally take four years to finish and usually include an internship program of a minimum of 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). After earning the bachelor’s degree, the doctoral takes three years to complete, making the overall investment of time seven years in most cases. Clinical or practical training is an important element in addition to the extensive classroom and lab instruction. Therefor the fulfillment of an internship is required, 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 attainable in the United States. A number of licensed physical therapists having 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 Therapist Online Degrees
While not as prevalent as the on-campus options, there are many accredited online physical therapy degrees offered, more so at the graduate level. Because of the hands-on nature of the training, internships and clinical lab work are incorporated with the online classes. This necessitates that the student live near the college campus or in proximity of a sponsored internship. Fortunately, the online segment of the program can be accessed within the comfort and convenience of the student’s Rochelle GA residence. Online schools are not only to some extent more accessible, but in many cases more affordable. Tuition might be significantly lower than comparable on-campus options, and costs for commuting are minimized. And many of the online schools are accredited by the CAPTE, assuring a quality education. These benefits may make the online alternative the best choice for those students that are dedicated enough to learn at home.
Topics to Ask Physical Therapist Programs
At this point you probably have come to decision concerning several of your initial queries, like the kind of physical therapist degree you would like to obtain, where you prefer to attend classes, and how much you can afford to spend for your education. But because there are numerous PT schools within the Rochelle GA area and throughout Georgia, you’ll need to look into additional qualifications also in order to further narrow your list of college choices. Moreover, you need to be sure that you choose the program that is ideal for you. That’s the reason we have put together a list of essential questions that you need to ask the physical therapist schools you are reviewing. Ask each of the potential colleges these questions prior to making an ultimate selection.
Is the Physical Therapy School Accredited? Find out if the schools you are considering have earned accreditation from a regional or a national agency. 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 choose an online program, it can also obtain accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council. It’s imperative that both the physical therapy school and program you select are accredited, not simply the school. Additionally, make sure that the accreditation is through a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization. Besides guaranteeing that you obtain an excellent education, accreditation might be required for state licensing and even for getting student loans or financial aid.
What is the Program’s Ranking? Along with accreditation, it’s imperative that the school and program you pick have outstanding reputations within the physical therapist profession. There are a number of ways you can research a PT school’s reputation, starting with asking for references from employers that they refer their students to. You can also search for online reviews and rating services and ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. Get in touch with some Rochelle GA physical therapist clinics or other healthcare facilities that you might be interested in working for and ask if they can offer any advice about your program 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 filed against the colleges.
What is the College’s Job Placement Percentage? There are a two useful statistics that you need to find out about all of the physical therapy schools you are looking at. One is their graduation rate. A low rate might indicate that students left due to displeasure with the program, the teachers, or both. After the students have graduated, how many of them are being placed in jobs with the help of the school’s job placement program, particularly in the Rochelle GA area? If a college has a higher job placement rate, it suggests that its reputation within the medical care community is good or even excellent. It also verifies that the school has a broad network of contacts to assist students gain internships or employment after graduation.
Does the Program Support Licensing Requirements? It’s essential that the college you select provides both excellent training and a course of study that supports the licensing criteria 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 therapy program. Although licensing requirements differ state by state for PT and PTA graduates, some states require a minimum number of clinical hours be completed as well as passing scores on supplemental tests.
Are Internships Sponsored? Inquire if the physical therapy schools you are assessing have partnerships with Rochelle GA clinics or hospitals for internship programs. Not only are internships an excellent manner to obtain hands on training in a clinical setting, they are also a requirement for the majority of PT programs and state licensing. As a secondary benefit, they can help students and graduates develop professional relationships in the Rochelle healthcare community and help with job placement after licensing.
How Large are the Classes ? Unless you are the sort of student that likes to sit way in the back of the classroom or get lost in the crowd, you will undoubtedly prefer a small class size. Small classes enable more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the physical therapy schools you are considering what the average student to teacher ratio is for their classrooms. If practical you may want to sit in on one or more classes before making your ultimate determination. This will also give you a chance to speak with some of the students and instructors to get their opinions regarding the pharmacist tech program also.
Where is the School Located? For a lot of students, the physical therapy college they decide on will need to be within commuting distance of their Rochelle GA home. Those who have decided to attend classes online obviously will not have to concern themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of area internships will be of importance. Something 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 have to pay a higher tuition. State colleges normally charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges usually charge a higher tuition for those students that don’t reside within their districts.
Is Financial Assistance Provided? The majority of DPT schools provide some type of financial assistance to their prospective students. Inquire if the colleges you are reviewing have a financial assistance department and find out what type of aid is available. They at least should help in obtaining a student loan or any grants you might be eligible for. Some physical therapist colleges offer scholarships, while others offer work programs. So before eliminating a college because the tuition is beyond your budget, ask what financial aid may be available.
Can the Program Accommodate your Schedule? And finally you must verify that the physical therapist program you finally pick can offer the class schedule you need. This is particularly crucial if you choose to continue working while you attend school. If you need to schedule evening or weekend classes in the Rochelle GA area, make sure 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 carry. Also, find out what the procedure is for making up any classes that you may miss because of illness, work or family obligations.
Enrolling in a Physical Therapy Program near Rochelle Georgia?
If you are planning on attending a Physical Therapy School in the Rochelle 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 1,415 people, 552 households, and 379 families residing in the city. The population density was 754.3 people per square mile (290.6/km²). There were 642 housing units at an average density of 342.3 per square mile (131.8/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 46.08% White, 52.79% African American, 0.35% Native American, 0.35% from other races, and 0.42% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.84% of the population.
There were 552 households out of which 31.0% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 42.0% were married couples living together, 23.2% had a female householder with no husband present, and 31.3% were non-families. 28.8% of all households were made up of individuals and 12.5% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.56 and the average family size was 3.14.
In the city, the population was spread out with 29.2% under the age of 18, 8.8% from 18 to 24, 24.5% from 25 to 44, 23.7% from 45 to 64, and 13.9% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 36 years. For every 100 females, there were 83.8 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 77.7 males.
Colleges With A Physical Therapy Program Rochelle GA
Selecting the ideal physical therapy college is a necessary first decision you need to make to begin a rewarding career in the healthcare field. As we have discussed in this article, the DPT or PT degree program and school you enroll in should both have excellent reputations and accreditation. But there are other important 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 Colleges With A Physical Therapy Program. However, as you begin your search for a physical therapist school bear in mind that numerous factors will guide you toward your ultimate decision. You may decide to go to different colleges to view their facilities and speak with active DPT students. While there, ask yourself this critical question: will this school help me reach my goal of becoming a practicing licensed physical therapist? By adhering to our list of supplemental questions, you will have the ability to narrow down the options so you can make the best choice. And with the proper education and training, you can accomplish your dream of becoming a licensed physical therapist in Rochelle GA.
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