How to Enroll In a Physical Therapy Program near Bryant 72022
Receiving a physical therapy degree near Bryant AR is a critical first step to starting a rewarding career in the healthcare industry. Physical therapists (PT) help people who have been incapacitated due to injury or illness regain function and mobility. But before they can practice and provide treatment for the rehabilitation of patients, they must acquire the appropriate education and training. A PT must also become licensed in every state, a large number requiring that the licensee hold a physical therapy degree from an accredited school. So prior to choosing a physical therapy school, it’s important to research the ones you are considering to make certain they will deliver a quality education and satisfy your state’s licensing requirements. What you do not want to do is select a college just 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 besides location and cost. But before we discuss 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 Do Physical Therapists Do?
Physical therapists work in a variety of locations, including Bryant AR private practices, hospitals, assisted living facilities, rehab centers and health clubs. What the facilities all have in common is that they are equipped for the diagnosis and rehabilitation treatment of patients. As earlier touched on, physical therapists help individuals that are suffering from a lack of mobility and in many cases pain due to illness or injury. After diagnosing a patient, they create a program of treatment to resolve the mobility problems and reduce or eradicate any pain. They also endeavor 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
- Heart attacks.
- Sports injuries.
- Burn injuries.
- Hip Replacement.
- Multiple Sclerosis.
Licensed physical therapists practice in close association with other Bryant AR medical professionals, including doctors, chiropractors, registered nurses and dentists. They may also supervise several physical therapy assistants who work under them assisting with diagnosing and treating their patients. Something to take note of for anyone considering entering the physical therapy profession, it is quite 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 therapist degree options offered for students to pursue at the undergraduate and graduate levels. Of these choices, the only degree that is available to practice as a physical therapist is the doctorate. Undergraduate degrees focus on either preparing students to become a physical therapy assistant (PTA) or readying them to advance to the doctoral level. Following are brief summaries of degrees that are offered in the Bryant AR area:
- Associate Degrees train students to become physical therapy assistants, or can be the first step toward earning a more advanced degree. Applicants must have a high school diploma or GED to be accepted for enrollment. The degrees are usually offered by community colleges, and take about two years to complete. An internship or other form of clinical training is normally a portion of the curriculum.
- Bachelor’s Degrees are created as pre-physical therapy training to prep students to advance to the doctoral level. While they are not required to be eligible for the doctoral program, they are an integral first step to practicing as a PT. As with most bachelor’s degrees, they typically take four years to complete and usually incorporate an internship program of a minimum of 500 hours.
- Doctorate Degrees are required 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 three years to complete, making the total commitment seven years in most cases. Clinical or practical training is an intregal element in addition to the extensive classroom and lab instruction. Consequently the fulfillment of an internship is mandated, not just for graduation but in several states for licensing as well.
The Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) has replaced the Master’s of Physical Therapy (MPT), which has been eliminated and is no longer available in the USA. Some licensed physical therapists having a master’s or even a bachelor’s degree were “grandfathered” in prior to the present licensing requirement for a doctorate was implemented.
Physical Therapy Degrees Online
Although not as prevalent as the more traditional options, there are many 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 necessitates that the student live near the college campus or in proximity of a sponsored internship. Fortunately, the online part of the course of study may be accessed within the comfort and convenience of the student’s Bryant AR residence. Online schools are not only to some extent more accessible, but in many cases more economical. Tuition might be somewhat less than comparable on campus alternatives, and costs for commuting are minimized. And a number of the online programs are accredited by the CAPTE, assuring a quality education. These advantages may make the online option the ideal choice for those students that are dedicated enough to learn at home.
Questions to Ask Physical Therapist Programs
By now you most likely have made a decision concerning several of your preliminary questions, including the kind of physical therapy degree you want to earn, where you prefer to attend classes, and how much money you can afford to spend for your education. But since there are so many PT colleges within the Bryant AR area and across Arkansas, you’ll need to explore additional qualifications also so as to further narrow your list of college choices. Also, you need to be sure that you choose the school that is best 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 all of the potential colleges these questions prior to making an ultimate selection.
Is the Physical Therapy College Accredited? Find out if the colleges you are looking at have received accreditation from a national or a regional organization. As earlier stated, 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 can also obtain 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 recognized accrediting agency. Besides ensuring that you obtain a quality education, accreditation might be required for state licensing and even for getting student loans or financial aid.
What is the College’s Standing? Along with accreditation, it’s important that the school and program you pick have excellent reputations within the physical therapist community. There are several ways you can investigate a PT college’s reputation, starting with asking for references from employers that they refer their students to. You can also search for online rating services and reviews and ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. Contact several Bryant AR physical therapy centers or other medical care facilities that you might have an interest in working for and ask if they can offer any advice about your school options. It may also be a good idea to check with the Arkansas Attorney General and school licensing authority to see if any complaints have been submitted against the schools.
What is the School’s Job Placement Percentage? There are a two relevant statistics that you need to find out about each of the physical therapist programs you are reviewing. One is their graduation rate. A lower rate may indicate that students left due to dissatisfaction with the program, the instructors, or both. After the students have graduated, how many of them are being hired with the support of the school’s job placement program, particularly in the Bryant AR area? If a college has a higher job placement rate, it suggests that its reputation within the health care field is good or even excellent. It also verifies that the college has a wide network of contacts to assist students get internships or jobs upon graduation.
Does the College Prepare You For Licensing Requirements? It’s imperative that the college you choose provides both superior training and a course of study that supports the licensing requirements for Arkansas or the state where you will be working. In each 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 fluctuate state by state for PT and PTA graduates, a number of states require a minimum amount of clinical hours be performed and passing scores on supplemental tests.
Are Internships Offered? Inquire if the physical therapist programs you are reviewing have partnerships with Bryant AR clinics or hospitals for internship programs. Not only are internships a great way to get practical training in a clinical environment, they are additionally a requirement for the majority of PT programs and state licensing. As a secondary benefit, they may assist graduates and students develop professional relationships in the Bryant healthcare community and help with job placement after licensing.
What Size are the Classes ? Unless you are the sort of student that prefers to sit far in the rear of class or hide in the crowd, you will undoubtedly prefer a smaller class size. Smaller classes permit more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the physical therapist colleges you are looking at what the typical teacher to student ratio is for their classes. If practical you may prefer to monitor one or more classes before making your ultimate determination. This will also give you an opportunity to talk with a few of the instructors and students to get their perspectives regarding the pharmacy tech program as well.
Where is the School Located? For a lot of students, the physical therapist school they select will have to be within driving distance of their Bryant AR home. Those who have chosen to attend classes online naturally will not have to trouble themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of local internships will be of importance. One thing to consider is that if you decide to enroll in a program that is out of state or perhaps out of your local area, you may need to pay a higher tuition. State colleges normally charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges normally charge a higher tuition for those students that don’t reside within their districts.
Is Financial Support Provided? Most DPT schools offer some type of financial aid to their potential students. Find out if the schools you are looking at have a financial assistance office and find out what type of aid is available. They at least should help in getting a student loan or any grants you might qualify for. Some physical therapist colleges provide scholarships, while others offer work programs. So before you eliminate a program because the tuition is beyond your budget, learn what financial assistance might be available.
Can the Program Accommodate your Schedule? And finally you must verify that the physical therapy program you finally choose can offer the class schedule you need. This is particularly crucial if you opt to continue working while attending classes. If you need to schedule evening or weekend classes in the Bryant AR area, confirm that they are offered. If you can only attend part-time, find out if that is an option 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 because of illness, work or family emergencies.
Earning Your Physical Therapy Degree near Bryant Arkansas?
If you are planning on attending a Physical Therapy School in the Bryant AR area, the following information may prove to be both interesting and educational regarding the location of your future Alma Mater.
Bryant is a city in Saline County, Arkansas, United States and a suburb of Little Rock. According to the 2010 Census, the population of the city was 16,688. It is part of the Little Rock–North Little Rock–Conway Metropolitan Statistical Area.
European settlers establisged themselves along Hurricane Creek in the early 19th century. A skirmish in the area occurred during the American Civil War. Rail service in the 1870s brought development. The town was hard hit by economic struggles in the early 20th century and through the Great Depression. The World War II era saw development as demand for the area's bauxite grew.
As of the census of 2000, there were 9,764 people, 3,601 households, and 2,823 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,076.4 people per square mile (415.6/km²). There were 3,762 housing units at an average density of 414.7 per square mile (160.1/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 95.2% White, 1.5% Black or African American, 0.34% Native American, 1.05% Asian, 0.37% from other races, and 0.84% from two or more races. 1.05% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.
Pick the Best Physical Therapy College near Bryant AR
Deciding on the right physical therapy program is an important initial decision you must make to launch a fulfilling career in the health care field. As we have addressed in this article, the PT or DPT degree program and school you pick should both have outstanding reputations and be accredited. But there are other critical questions that you should ask concerning your college of choice also. As you start your search for a physical therapy school, bear in mind that numerous variables will guide you toward your ultimate decision. You might decide to go to different colleges to view their facilities and speak to active DPT students. While there, ask yourself this critical question: will this college help me accomplish my goal of becoming a practicing licensed physical therapist? By adhering to our list of additional questions, you will be able to narrow down the field so you can make the ideal selection. And with the necessary training and education, you can achieve your dream to become a licensed physical therapist in Bryant AR.
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