How to Enroll In a Physical Therapist Degree Program near Luverne 36049
Obtaining a physical therapy degree near Luverne AL is an important first step to beginning a fulfilling career in the medical care field. Physical therapists (PT) help patients who have been debilitated as a result of illness or injury regain mobility and function. But before they may legally practice and work with the rehabilitation of patients, they need to receive the appropriate training and education. A PT must additionally become licensed in every state, many mandating that the licensee hold a physical therapy degree from an accredited school. So prior to enrolling in a physical therapy school, it’s necessary to research those you are looking at to make certain they will provide a superior education and comply with your state’s licensing criteria. What you do not want to do is select a college simply because it happens to be the nearest to your residence or it has the most affordable tuition. There are other important qualifications that need to be considered along with location and cost. But before we talk about 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 a variety of settings, including Luverne AL private practices, hospitals, assisted living facilities, rehab centers and health clubs. What the facilities all share in common is that they have the equipment for the diagnosis and rehabilitation treatment of patients. As earlier mentioned, physical therapists help people that are struggling with a lack of mobility and in many cases pain caused by injury or illness. After patient diagnosis, they develop a program of treatment to address the mobility problems and reduce or eliminate any pain. They also strive to stop any advancement of the disability. Although the causes of disability necessitating physical therapy are abundant, they include:
- Osteoporosis and Arthritis
- Motor vehicle accidents
- Head injuries.
- Cardiac arrest.
- Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.
- Fire injuries.
- Hip Replacement.
- Cerebral Palsy.
Licensed physical therapists practice in close affiliation with other Luverne AL health specialists, including chiropractors, physicians, dentists and nurses. They may also supervise several physical therapy assistants who work for them assisting with diagnosing and treating their patients. One thing to take note of for anyone considering entering the physical therapy field, it is rather physically demanding. Physical therapists regularly lift heavy equipment as well as patients, and kneel, crouch and stand for long periods of time on a daily basis.
Physical Therapist Degrees Offered
There are 3 physical therapist degrees available for students to pursue at the graduate and undergraduate levels. Of these choices, the one degree that is offered to become a physical therapist is the doctorate. Undergraduate degrees concentrate on either training students to become a physical therapy assistant (PTA) or readying them to progress to the doctoral level. Following are short descriptions of degree levels that are offered in the Luverne AL area:
- Associate Degrees prepare students to practice as physical therapy assistants, or may be the first step toward earning a more advanced degree. Applicants must have a high school diploma or equivalent to qualify for enrollment. The degrees are most often made available by community or junior colleges, and take about two years for completion. Clinical training, which may be in the form of an internship is typically a portion of the course of study.
- Bachelor’s Degrees are developed as pre-physical therapy training to ready students to advance to the doctoral level. Although they are not required to be eligible for the doctoral program, they are an essential first step to becoming a PT. As with the majority of bachelor’s degrees, they normally take four years to finish and commonly incorporate an internship program of a minimum of 500 hours.
- Doctorate Degrees are required if you want to become a licensed practicing 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 overall investment of time seven years in most cases. Clinical training is an important element in addition to the extensive classroom and lab instruction. Therefor the completion of an internship is required, not just for graduation but in some 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 available in the United States. Some licensed physical therapists having a master’s or even a bachelor’s degree were “grandfathered” in prior to the present licensing mandate for a doctorate was implemented.
Physical Therapy Programs Online
While not as common as the more traditional alternatives, there are a number of accredited online physical therapist degrees offered, even more at the graduate level. Due to 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 school campus or nearby an available internship. Fortunately, the online segment of the program can be accessed within the convenience and comfort of the student’s Luverne AL home. Online schools are not only partially more accessible, but in a number of cases more economical. Tuition may be significantly lower than comparable on campus alternatives, and costs for commuting are minimized. And many of the online programs are accredited by the CAPTE, assuring a quality education. These benefits may make the online alternative the best choice for those students that are disciplined enough to attend classes at home.
Subjects to Ask Physical Therapy Programs
At this point you probably have come to decision regarding some of your preliminary questions, including the type of physical therapist degree you want to attain, where you want to attend classes, and how much money you can afford to invest in your education. But because there are so many PT schools within the Luverne AL area and throughout Alabama, you’ll need to research additional qualifications as well so as to further reduce your list of school choices. Moreover, you want to make sure that you pick the program that is ideal for you. That’s why we have put together a list of essential questions that you need to ask the physical therapy schools you are considering. Ask all of the potential schools these questions prior to making an ultimate decision.
Is the Physical Therapy Program Accredited? Find out if the colleges you are reviewing have received accreditation from a regional or a national organization. As earlier mentioned, 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 may also obtain accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council. It’s imperative that both the physical therapy program and school you select are accredited, not simply the school. Also, check that the accreditation is from a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization. In addition to guaranteeing that you obtain an excellent education, accreditation may be required for state licensing and even for securing student loans or financial assistance.
What is the College’s Ranking? In addition to accreditation, it’s imperative that the school and program you choose have exceptional reputations within the physical therapy community. There are several ways you can look into a PT program’s reputation, starting 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 agencies for their reviews also. Call some Luverne AL physical therapy clinics or other medical care facilities that you may be interested in working for and ask if they can provide any recommendations about your college options. It might also be a good idea to check with the Alabama 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 couple of useful statistics that you need to find out about all of the physical therapist schools you are looking at. First is their graduation rate. A lower rate may indicate that students dropped out due to dissatisfaction with the program, the instructors, or both. Once the students have graduated, how many of them are being placed in jobs with the assistance of the school’s job placement program, particularly in the Luverne AL area? If a school has a higher job placement rate, it suggests that its reputation within the health care field is good or even exceptional. It also confirms that the program has a wide network of contacts to help students obtain internships or jobs after graduation.
Does the Program Prepare You For Licensing Requirements? It’s important that the school you choose provides both superior training and a course of study that satisfies the licensing criteria for Alabama or the state where you will be practicing. In each state a passing score is needed on the National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE) in addition to a degree from an accredited physical therapist program. Although licensing requirements fluctuate state by state for PT and PTA graduates, some states require a minimum amount of clinical hours be completed as well as passing scores on supplemental tests.
Are Internships Sponsored? Find out if the physical therapy programs you are evaluating have relationships with Luverne AL hospitals or clinics for internship programs. Not only are internships a terrific means to receive practical training in a clinical environment, they are additionally a requirement for most PT programs and state licensing. As an ancillary benefit, they may assist graduates and students develop professional connections in the Luverne healthcare community and assist with job placement once licensed.
What are the Class Sizes ? Unless you are the type of person that prefers to sit far in the back of the classroom or get lost in the crowd, you will likely want a smaller class size. Smaller classes permit more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the physical therapy colleges you are researching what the average teacher to student ratio is for their classrooms. If practical you may want to monitor one or more classes before making your final decision. This will also give you an opportunity to speak with several of the students and instructors to get their perspectives regarding the pharmacy tech program as well.
Where is the School Located? For a number of students, the physical therapist college they select will have to be within commuting distance of their Luverne AL home. Those who have decided to attend classes online obviously will not have to trouble themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of local internships will be of importance. Something to keep in mind is that if you choose to enroll in a college that is out of state or even out of your local area, you may have to pay a higher tuition. State colleges commonly charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges usually charge a higher tuition for those students that live outside of their districts.
Is Financial Help Offered? The majority of DPT schools provide some type of financial support to their prospective students. Ask if the schools you are looking at have a financial aid department and see what type of help is offered. They at least should help in acquiring a student loan or any scholarships you might qualify for. A number of physical therapy colleges provide scholarships, while others provide 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 last you need to confirm that the physical therapist college you ultimately pick can provide the class schedule you need. This is particularly crucial if you opt to continue working while attending classes. If you need to schedule night or weekend classes in the Luverne AL area, confirm that they are available. If you can only enroll on a part-time basis, check if that is an alternative and how many courses or credit hours you would have to enroll in. Also, learn what the procedure is for making up any classes that you might miss as a result of work, illness or family obligations.
Earning Your Physical Therapy Degree near Luverne Alabama?
If you are planning on attending a Physical Therapy School in the Luverne AL area, the following information may prove to be both interesting and educational regarding the location of your future Alma Mater.
Luverne is a city in and the county seat of Crenshaw County, Alabama, United States. The city describes itself ais "The Friendliest City in the South", a slogan that appears on its "welcome" signs. At the 2010 census the population was 2,800.
Luverne was one of numerous towns developed in the state as a result of railroad construction. It was founded in 1889 in the central part of Crenshaw County, near the Patsaliga River, in association with the construction of the Montgomery and Florida Railroad; it was intended as the terminus. The new railroad station attracted related development and the town grew. It incorporated in 1891. This was a center of timbering in the Piney Woods of southern Alabama, as the land was not fertile enough to be suitable for large-scale cotton plantation agriculture.
By the late 1930s, lynchings of African Americans were increasingly conducted in small groups or in secret, rather than in the former mass public displays. On June 22, 1940, an African-American man named Jesse Thornton was lynched in Luverne for failing to address a white man with the title of "Mister". He was fatally shot and his body was later found in the Patsaliga River. The Equal Justice Initiative documented that the white man Thornton had apparently offended by his Jim Crow infraction was a police officer. This was the only lynching recorded in the county.
Select the Best Physical Therapist College near Luverne AL
Selecting the best physical therapist program is an important first decision you must make to launch a rewarding career in the healthcare profession. As we have discussed in this article, the PT or DPT degree program and college you pick should both have exceptional reputations and be accredited. However there are other important questions that you need to ask regarding your college of choice also. As you start your search for a physical therapist program, keep in mind that many variables will lead you toward your ultimate decision. You might want to go to each of the campuses to see their facilities and speak with current DPT students. While there, ask yourself this important question: will this college help me achieve my goal of becoming a licensed practicing physical therapist? By adhering to our list of supplemental questions, you will have the ability to narrow down the field so you can make the right selection. And with the proper training and education, you can achieve your dream of becoming a licensed physical therapist in Luverne AL.
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