How to Choose the Right Physical Therapy Training Program near Scottdale Georgia
Getting a physical therapy degree near Scottdale GA is an important first step to launching a rewarding career in the healthcare industry. 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 work with the rehabilitation of patients, they must acquire the appropriate training and education. A PT must additionally be licensed in every state, many requiring that the licensee receive a physical therapy degree from an accredited college. So prior to enrolling in a physical therapy school, it’s necessary to research those you are considering to make sure they will provide a superior education and comply with your state’s licensing criteria. What you should not do is choose a school simply because it happens to be the closest to your residence or it has the most affordable tuition. There are other important qualifications that need to be evaluated along with cost and location. But before we talk about what those qualifications are and the questions you should be asking, we’ll cover what a physical therapist does and what the educational options are.
What is a Physical Therapist?
Physical therapists practice in varying locations, such as Scottdale GA private practices, hospitals, assisted living facilities, rehab centers and health clubs. What the facilities all share in common is that they are equipped for diagnosing and rehabilitating patients. As earlier touched on, physical therapists help people that are struggling with a lack of mobility and in many cases pain caused by illness or injury. After patient diagnosis, they create a course of treatment to address the mobility issues and reduce or eradicate any pain. They also try to stop any advancement of the disability. Though the causes of disability requiring physical therapy are abundant, they include:
- Osteoporosis and Arthritis
- Car or motor cycle accidents
- Heart attacks
- Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
- Fire injuries
- Hip Replacement
- Cerebral Palsy
Licensed physical therapists practice in close partnerships with other Scottdale GA health specialists, including chiropractors, physicians, registered nurses and dentists. They can also supervise several physical therapy assistants who work for them in diagnosing and treating their patients. Something to bear in mind for anyone thinking about going into the physical therapy profession, it is rather physically demanding. Physical therapists often lift heavy equipment as well as patients, and kneel, crouch and stand for extended periods of time on a daily basis.
Physical Therapist Degrees Offered
There are 3 physical therapy degree options available for students to pursue at the graduate and undergraduate levels. Of these alternatives, the only degree that is attainable to become a physical therapist is the doctorate. Undergraduate degrees focus on either training students to become a physical therapy assistant (PTA) or preparing them to advance to the doctoral level. Following are short summaries of degree levels that are offered in the Scottdale GA area:
- Associate Degrees prepare students to be physical therapy assistants, or may be the first step toward earning a more advanced degree. Applicants must have obtained a high school diploma or GED to qualify for enrollment. The degrees are most often made available by community colleges, and require two years for completion. An internship or other form of clinical training is typically a portion of the program.
- Bachelor’s Degrees are designed as pre-physical therapy training 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 integral preliminary step to practicing as a PT. Similar to most bachelor’s degrees, they generally require four years to complete and often include an internship program of a minimum of 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). In addition to the bachelor’s degree, the doctoral takes three years to complete, making the overall commitment 7 years in the majority of cases. Practical or clinical training is an intregal component along with the substantial classroom and lab instruction. Therefor the completion of an internship is mandated, not just for graduation but in a number of states for licensing as well.
The Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) has replaced the Master’s of Physical Therapy (MPT), which has been phased out and is no longer attainable in the USA. Some licensed physical therapists having a master’s or even a bachelor’s degree were “grandfathered” in before the current licensing requirement for a doctorate was instituted.
Physical Therapist Online Schools
Although not as common as the on-campus alternatives, there are a number of accredited online physical therapist programs available, more so at the graduate level. Because of the hands-on nature 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 in proximity of an available internship. Fortunately, the online part of the course of study can be accessed within the convenience and comfort of the student’s Scottdale GA home. Online schools are not only partially more accessible, but in many cases more affordable. Tuition may be significantly less than comparable on-campus alternatives, and expenditures 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 right choice for those students that are disciplined enough to attend classes at home.
Topics to Ask Physical Therapist Programs
At this point you probably have come to decision regarding a few of your preliminary queries, like the kind of physical therapist degree you intend to obtain, where you prefer to attend classes, and how much you can afford to invest in your education. But since there are so many PT schools within the Scottdale GA area and throughout Georgia, you’ll have to explore other qualifications as well in order to further narrow your list of school choices. Moreover, you need to make certain that you select the school that is right for you. That’s why we have compiled a list of important questions that you must ask the physical therapist schools you are considering. Ask each of the competing colleges these questions prior to making an ultimate decision.
Is the Physical Therapy College Accredited? Find out if the schools you are reviewing have received accreditation from a regional or a national 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 select an online college, it may also receive accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council. It’s essential that both the physical therapy program and school you select are accredited, not just the school. Also, verify that the accreditation is from a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting organization. Along with guaranteeing that you obtain an excellent education, accreditation may be required for state licensing and even for getting student loans or financial assistance.
What is the Program’s Ranking? In addition to accreditation, it’s imperative that the school and program you pick have outstanding reputations within the physical therapist community. There are a number of 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 search for online rating services and reviews and ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. Call some Scottdale GA physical therapist clinics or other medical care facilities that you might be interested in working for and ask if they can give you any insight about your college selections. It might 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 College’s Job Placement Rate? There are a two significant statistics that you need to find out about each of the physical therapist colleges you are looking at. One is their graduation rate. A low rate might mean that students dropped out due to 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 Scottdale GA area? If a school has a higher job placement rate, it suggests that its reputation within the medical care field is good or even outstanding. It also verifies that the college has a large 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 school you select provides both superior training and a curriculum that supports the licensing criteria 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 therapy program. While licensing requirements vary state by state for PTA and PT graduates, many states require a minimum amount of clinical hours be performed and passing scores on additional tests.
Are Internships Provided? Find out if the physical therapy colleges you are interested in have relationships with Scottdale GA clinics or hospitals for internship programs. Not only are internships an excellent way to get practical experience in a clinical setting, they are also a requirement for most PT programs and state licensing. As an ancillary benefit, they can help graduates and students develop professional relationships in the Scottdale medical community and assist with obtaining employment after licensing.
What are the Class Sizes ? Unless you are the sort of student that likes to sit far in the rear of the classroom or get lost in the crowd, you will undoubtedly prefer a smaller class size. Smaller classes allow for more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the physical therapy schools you are researching 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 ultimate determination. This will also give you a chance to talk with some of the instructors and students to get their opinions regarding the pharmacy technician program also.
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 Scottdale GA residence. Students who have chosen to attend online classes obviously will not have to trouble themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of area internships will be of importance. Something to bear in mind is that if you decide to enroll in a school that is out of state or even out of your local area, you might need to pay a higher tuition. State colleges normally charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges commonly charge a higher tuition to those students that don’t reside within their districts.
Is Financial Assistance Provided? The majority of DPT colleges provide some type of financial aid to their prospective students. Ask if the colleges you are looking at have a financial aid office and find out what type of aid is offered. At a minimum they should help in securing a student loan or any grants you might qualify for. A number of physical therapist colleges offer scholarships, while others provide work programs. So before you eliminate a program because the tuition is too expensive, ask what financial assistance may be available.
Can the School Accommodate your Schedule? And last you must confirm that the physical therapy school you ultimately pick can furnish the class schedule you need. This is particularly important if you decide to continue working while attending classes. If you need to schedule evening or weekend classes in the Scottdale GA area, check that they are offered. If you can only attend part-time, verify if that is an alternative and how many credit hours or courses you would have to carry. Also, learn what the protocol is for making up any classes that you might miss because of illness, work or family emergencies.
Enrolling in a Physical Therapy Program near Scottdale Georgia?
If you are planning on attending a Physical Therapy School in the Scottdale GA area, the following information may prove to be both interesting and educational regarding the location of your future campus.
Scottdale, aka SCD is located at 33°47′40″N 84°15′44″W / 33.79444°N 84.26222°W / 33.79444; -84.26222 (33.794337, -84.262110). The unincorporated community is centered on East Ponce de Leon Avenue, between Decatur and Clarkston. The northern boundary is Stone Mountain Freeway; the eastern boundary is Interstate 285; the western boundary is roughly DeKalb Industrial Blvd.; and the southern boundary is roughly the city limits of Avondale Estates. The ZIP code for Scottdale is 30079.
According to the 2010 census, there were 10,631 people residing in the CDP. The racial makeup of the CDP was 29.9% White, 37.7% African American, 0.20% Native American, 23.0% Asian, 0.01% Pacific Islander, 2.3% from other races, and 3.8% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 5.3% of the population. 12.7% of the population are Asian Indians. As of the census of 2000, there were 9,803 people, 4,010 households, and 2,201 families residing in the CDP. The population density was 2,818.2 people per square mile (1,087.6/km²). There were 4,236 housing units at an average density of 1,217.8/sq mi (470.0/km²). The racial makeup of Scottdale was 48.6% Black, 37.1% White, 0.19% Native American, 9.60% Asian, 0.18% Pacific Islander, 1.7% from other races, and 2.65% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 4.5% of the population.
There were 4,010 households out of which 67.3% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 29.8% were married couples living together, 69.1% had a female householder with no husband present, and 45.1% were non-families. 18.5% of all households were made up of individuals and 5.5% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.44 and the average family size was 3.15.
Colleges That Offer Physical Therapy Degrees Scottdale GA
Choosing the best physical therapist school is an important initial decision you must make to launch a rewarding career in the health care profession. As we have covered in this article, the PT or DPT degree program and college you select should both have exceptional reputations and be accredited. But there are other important questions that you need to ask pertaining to your school of choice also. You originally come to this website because of your interest in getting information on Colleges That Offer Physical Therapy Degrees. However, as you start your search for a physical therapy school bear in mind that many factors will guide you to your final decision. You might want to visit different campuses to see their facilities and speak to active DPT students. While there, ask yourself this critical question: will this program help me achieve my goal of becoming a practicing licensed physical therapist? By following our list of additional questions, you will be able to narrow down the options so you can make the right selection. And with the proper education and training, you can fulfill your dream to become a licensed physical therapist in Scottdale GA.
Additional Therapeutic Locations in Georgia
Business Results 1 - 10 of 416