How to Enroll In a Physical Therapy School near Newville 36353
Earning a physical therapist degree near Newville AL is an essential first step to starting a rewarding career in the healthcare industry. Physical therapists (PT) help people who have been disabled due to illness or injury gain back mobility and function. But before they can practice and work with the rehabilitation of patients, they need to acquire the appropriate training and education. A PT must additionally become licensed in every state, many 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 evaluate those you are considering to ensure they will furnish a quality education and satisfy your state’s licensing standards. What you should not do is select a college just because it happens to be the closest to your home or it has the lowest tuition. There are other significant qualifications that need to be considered 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 Does a Physical Therapist Do?
Physical therapists work in a variety of locations, such as Newville AL hospitals, health clinics, rehabilitation centers, nursing homes and sports facilities. What the facilities all have in common is that they have the equipment for the diagnosis and rehabilitation treatment of patients. As previously stated, physical therapists help patients that are experiencing a lack of mobility and frequently pain due to injury or illness. After diagnosing a patient, they develop a program of treatment to address the mobility issues and reduce or eliminate any pain. They also strive to stop any progression of the disability. While the causes of disability requiring physical therapy are numerous, they include:
- Osteoporosis and Arthritis
- Car or motor cycle accidents
- Head injuries.
- Heart attacks.
- Sports injuries.
- Burn injuries.
- Hip Replacement.
- Cerebral Palsy.
Licensed physical therapists practice in close partnerships with other Newville AL medical professionals, including doctors, chiropractors, registered nurses and dentists. They may also oversee one or more physical therapy assistants who work under them assisting with the diagnosis and treatment of their patients. Something to keep in mind for anyone considering going into the physical therapy profession, it is rather physically demanding. Physical therapists routinely lift patients and heavy equipment, and stand, crouch and kneel for prolonged periods of time on a daily basis.
Physical Therapy Degrees
There are 3 physical therapy degrees offered for students to enroll in at the undergraduate and graduate levels. Of these choices, the only degree that is available to become a physical therapist is the doctorate. Undergraduate degrees concentrate on either preparing students to become a physical therapy assistant (PTA) or prepping them to advance to the doctoral level. Following are brief descriptions of degree levels that are offered in the Newville AL area:
- Associate Degrees educate students to become physical therapy assistants, or may be used as a stepping stone to 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 community or junior colleges, and require 2 years for completion. Clinical training, which may be in the form of an internship is usually part of the course of study.
- Bachelor’s Degrees are developed as pre-physical therapist training to prep students to advance to the doctoral level. Although they are not a requirement to be a candidate for the doctoral program, they are an important initial step to practicing as a PT. Similar to most bachelor’s degrees, they generally take four years to complete and commonly incorporate an internship program of at least 500 hours.
- Doctorate Degrees are mandated in order 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 3 years to finish, making the overall commitment seven years in most cases. Clinical training is an important element along with the substantial lab and classroom instruction. Therefor the completion of an internship is required, not solely for graduation but in some 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 eliminated and is no longer attainable in the United States. Some practicing physical therapists holding a master’s or in some cases a bachelor’s degree were “grandfathered” in before the current licensing requirement for a doctorate was instituted.
Physical Therapist Programs Online
While not as prevalent as the more traditional options, there are a number of accredited online physical therapy programs available, more so at the graduate level. Because of the hands-on structure of the training, internships and clinical lab work are incorporated with the online classes. This requires that the student live close to the college campus or in proximity of a sponsored internship. However, the online portion of the curriculum can be accessed within the convenience and comfort of the student’s Newville AL residence. Online programs are not only to some extent more accessible, but in many instances more economical. Tuition can be significantly less than comparable on-campus alternatives, and expenses for commuting are minimized. And a number of the online schools are accredited by the CAPTE, assuring a quality education. These advantages may make the online alternative the ideal choice for those students that are dedicated enough to learn at home.
Questions to Ask Physical Therapist Colleges
By now you most likely have made a decision regarding a few of your initial queries, such as the type of physical therapy degree you want to obtain, where you want to attend classes, and how much money you can afford to invest in your education. But because there are numerous PT schools within the Newville AL area and throughout Alabama, you’ll need to research other qualifications also in order to further reduce your list of school choices. Also, you need to make sure that you pick the program that is best for you. That’s why we have compiled a list of essential questions that you must ask the physical therapy colleges you are thinking about. Ask all of the competing schools these questions prior to making an ultimate selection.
Is the Physical Therapist Program Accredited? Find out if the programs you are looking at have earned accreditation from a national or a regional organization. As previously 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 choose an online school, it may also receive accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council. It’s imperative that both the physical therapist program and school you enroll in are accredited, not just the school. Also, make sure that the accreditation is from a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization. Along with ensuring that you receive 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 Reputation? In addition to accreditation, it’s imperative that the school and program you choose have outstanding reputations within the physical therapy community. There are several ways you can look into a PT program’s reputation, beginning with requesting references from employers that they refer their students to. You may also search for online reviews and rating services and ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. Contact some Newville AL physical therapy clinics or other medical care facilities that you might have an interest in working for and ask if they can give you any recommendations about your school options. It may also be prudent to check with the Alabama Attorney General and school licensing authority to find out if any complaints have been filed against the colleges.
What is the School’s Job Placement Rate? There are a couple of important statistics that you should find out about each of the physical therapist programs you are reviewing. First is their graduation rate. A lower rate might indicate that students left because of dissatisfaction with the program, the teachers, or both. Once the students have graduated, what percentage of them are being placed in jobs with the help of the college’s job placement program, particularly in the Newville AL area? If a school has a high job placement rate, it suggests that its reputation within the medical care community is good or perhaps outstanding. It also affirms that the program has a large network of contacts to help students gain internships or employment upon graduation.
Does the Program Support Licensing Requirements? It’s essential that the program 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 required on the National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE) along with a degree from an accredited physical therapy program. Although licensing requirements fluctuate state by state for PTA and PT graduates, many states require a minimum number of clinical hours be performed and passing scores on supplemental tests.
Are Internships Sponsored? Ask if the physical therapy programs you are assessing have partnerships with Newville AL hospitals or clinics for internship programs. Internships are not only an excellent way to obtain hands on 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 help graduates and students form professional relationships in the Newville health care community and assist with job placement after licensing.
How Big are the Classes ? Unless you are the sort of student that prefers to sit way in the back of class or get lost in the crowd, you will likely prefer a small class size. Smaller classes allow for more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the physical therapy schools you are looking at what the typical student to teacher ratio is for their classes. If practical you may want to monitor one or more classes before making your ultimate decision. This will also give you a chance to talk with a few of the instructors and students to get their perspectives regarding the pharmacist technician program also.
Where is the School Located? For a lot of students, the physical therapist school they pick will need to be within commuting distance of their Newville AL home. Those who have chosen to attend classes online obviously will not have to worry 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 choose to enroll in a school that is out of state or perhaps out of your local area, you might need to pay a higher tuition. State colleges generally charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges usually charge a higher tuition to those students that don’t reside within their districts.
Is Financial Help Provided? The majority of DPT colleges supply some form of financial support to their prospective students. Ask if the schools you are reviewing have a financial aid office and find out what kind of assistance is offered. At a minimum they should help in getting a student loan or any scholarships you might qualify for. A number of physical therapy colleges provide scholarships, while others offer work programs. So before you eliminate a college because the tuition is too expensive, ask what financial aid might be available.
Can the School Accommodate your Schedule? And finally you must confirm that the physical therapist school you ultimately choose can furnish the class schedule you need. This is particularly important if you decide to continue working while you attend school. If you need to schedule evening or weekend classes in the Newville AL area, verify that they are offered. If you can only attend part-time, find out if that is an alternative and how many courses or credit hours you would need to enroll in. Also, ask what the procedure is for making up any classes that you might miss due to illness, work or family emergencies.
Earning Your Physical Therapy Degree near Newville Alabama?
If you are planning on attending a Physical Therapy School in the Newville AL area, the following information may prove to be both interesting and educational regarding the location of your future Alma Mater.
James Madison Wells founded a village called "Wells" c. 1882. When the Abbeville Southern Railroad laid tracks through the town in 1893, its name was changed to "Wells Station". The post office was built in 1894. Wells Station incorporated as "Newville" in 1903.
The town of Newville became prosperous with merchants, banks, lodges, doctors, churches, Newville High School, Rosenwald High School, societies, a newspaper, a depot, sawmills, cotton gins, mule stables and all the elements required by a developing town. Newville's slow decline commenced after the Great Depression due to farm mechanization and loss of commerce.
James M. and Catherine Wells donated one-half acre of land in 1887 for the site of the church and cemetery. The oldest known grave is that of William Y. Kirkland who died April 10, 1891. The church paid W.M. Harris fifty dollars in 1901 for two and one-half acres of land for the cemetery. In 1947, burial spaces were sold for 25 center per square foot. Nancy Price gave the church one acre of land for the cemetery in 1958. There are over 700 marked and unmarked graves. The Newville Cemetery was listed on the Alabama Historic Cemetery Register in 2005.
Enroll in the Ideal Physical Therapy Degree Program near Newville AL
Deciding on the ideal physical therapy program is an important first decision you have to make to begin a fulfilling career in the medical field. As we have discussed in this article, the DPT or PT degree program and school you select should both have excellent reputations and accreditation. However there are additional important questions that you need to ask regarding your college of choice also. As you commence your search for a physical therapist college, keep in mind that many factors will lead you toward your ultimate decision. You might want to visit each of the colleges to view their facilities and talk with current DPT students. While there, ask yourself this critical question: will this school help me reach my goal of becoming a licensed practicing physical therapist? By adhering to our list of additional questions, you will have the ability to narrow down the options so you can make the right choice. And with the proper education and training, you can fulfill your dream of becoming a licensed physical therapist in Newville AL.
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