How to Choose a Physical Therapy Training Program near Tyrone 30290
Obtaining a physical therapy degree near Tyrone GA is an important first step to launching a fulfilling career in the healthcare field. Physical therapists (PT) help people who have been debilitated due to illness or injury regain function and mobility. But before they may legally practice and provide treatment for the rehabilitation of patients, they must get the necessary education and training. A PT must also be licensed in all states, many requiring that the licensee receive a physical therapy degree from an accredited school. So prior to selecting a physical therapy school, it’s essential to research those you are looking at to make certain they will deliver a superior education and satisfy your state’s licensing criteria. What you should not do is enroll in a school just because it happens to be the closest to your home or it has cheapest tuition. There are other relevant qualifications that need to be considered besides location and cost. But before we talk about what those qualifications are and the questions you should be asking, we’ll address what a physical therapist does and what the educational options are.
What is a Physical Therapist’s Job Description?
Physical therapists work in diverse settings, such as Tyrone GA hospitals, health clinics, rehabilitation centers, nursing homes and health clubs. What the facilities all share in common is that they have the equipment for diagnosing and rehabilitating patients. As earlier touched on, physical therapists help people that are experiencing a lack of mobility and in many cases pain due to injury or illness. After diagnosing a patient, they create a course of treatment to deal with the mobility issues and reduce or eliminate any pain. They also strive to prevent any progression of the disability. While the causes of disability necessitating physical therapy are abundant, they include:
- Osteoporosis and Arthritis
- Car or motor cycle accidents
- Cardiac arrest.
- Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.
- Burn injuries.
- Hip Replacement.
- Multiple Sclerosis.
Licensed physical therapists work in close association with other Tyrone GA health professionals, including chiropractors, physicians, registered nurses and dentists. They may also manage one or more physical therapy assistants who work under them in diagnosing and treating their patients. Something to keep in mind for anyone thinking about entering the physical therapy profession, it is rather physically demanding. Physical therapists routinely lift heavy equipment as well as patients, and stand, crouch and kneel for extended periods of time on a daily basis.
Physical Therapist Degrees Available
There are three physical therapy degree options offered for individuals to pursue at the undergraduate and graduate levels. Of these choices, the only degree that is attainable to become a physical therapist is the doctorate. Undergraduate degrees focus on either preparing students to become a physical therapy assistant (PTA) or preparing them to progress to the doctoral level. Below are short explanations of degrees that are offered in the Tyrone GA area:
- Associate Degrees prepare students to be physical therapy assistants, or may be the first step toward earning a more advanced degree. Candidates must have a high school diploma or GED to qualify for enrollment. The programs are most often offered by community or junior colleges, and take about two years for completion. An internship or other form of clinical training is typically a component of the program.
- Bachelor’s Degrees are created as pre-physical therapy training to ready students to progress to the doctoral level. While they are not a requirement to be qualified for the doctoral program, they are an important preliminary step to becoming a PT. Similar to the majority of bachelor’s degrees, they typically require 4 years to complete and often incorporate an internship program of a minimum of 500 hours.
- Doctorate Degrees are a requirement in order 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 complete, making the overall commitment 7 years in the majority of cases. Clinical or practical training is an important component along with the extensive lab and classroom instruction. Consequently the completion of an internship is mandated, not only 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 offered in the USA. Some practicing physical therapists having a master’s or even a bachelor’s degree were “grandfathered” in before the present licensing mandate for a doctorate was instituted.
Physical Therapy Programs Online
While not as common as the on campus options, there are some accredited online physical therapy programs available, even more at the graduate level. Due to the hands-on structure of the training, clinical lab work and internships are integrated with the online classes. This requires that the student live close to the school campus or in proximity of an available internship. Fortunately, the online portion of the course of study may be accessed within the convenience and comfort of the student’s Tyrone GA residence. Online schools are not only to some extent more accessible, but in a number of instances more affordable. Tuition may be significantly lower than comparable on-campus alternatives, and costs for commuting are reduced. And a number of the online schools are accredited by the CAPTE, assuring a quality education. These benefits may make the online option the ideal choice for those students that are dedicated enough to attend classes at home.
Questions to Ask Physical Therapist Programs
By now you undoubtedly have made a decision concerning some of your preliminary queries, such as the kind of physical therapy degree you would like to attain, where you want to attend classes, and how much money you can afford to invest in your education. But since there are so many PT schools within the Tyrone GA area and throughout Georgia, you’ll have to research other qualifications also so as to further narrow your list of school options. Moreover, you need to make certain that you choose the college that is ideal for you. That’s the reason we have collected a list of important questions that you need to ask the physical therapy programs you are thinking about. Ask each of the potential colleges these questions before making an ultimate selection.
Is the Physical Therapy School Accredited? Find out if the programs you are reviewing have earned accreditation from a national or a regional agency. 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 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 enroll in are accredited, not just the school. Additionally, make sure that the accreditation is through a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency. Besides guaranteeing that you receive a quality education, accreditation might be required for state licensing and even for getting student loans or financial aid.
What is the Program’s Reputation? In addition to accreditation, it’s essential that the college and program you choose have exceptional reputations within the physical therapy community. There are multiple ways you can investigate a PT school’s reputation, beginning with requesting references from employers that they place their graduates with. You can also search for online reviews and rating services and ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. Get in touch with several Tyrone GA physical therapist clinics or other health care facilities that you may have an interest in working for and ask if they can provide any recommendations about your college selections. It may also be prudent to contact 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 couple of significant statistics that you should find out about all of the physical therapy programs you are considering. First is their graduation rate. A lower rate may mean that students left because of displeasure with the program, the teachers, or both. After the students have graduated, how many of them are being hired with the assistance of the college’s job placement program, particularly in the Tyrone GA area? If a school has a higher job placement rate, it suggests that its reputation within the health care community is good or perhaps excellent. It also affirms that the college has a broad network of contacts to assist students obtain internships or jobs after graduation.
Does the School Support Licensing Requirements? It’s imperative that the school you select provides both excellent training and a curriculum that satisfies the licensing criteria for Georgia or the state where you will be working. In each state a passing score is needed on the National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE) in addition to a degree from an accredited physical therapy school. While licensing requirements differ state by state for PTA and PT graduates, a number of states require a minimum number of clinical hours be completed as well as passing scores on additional tests.
Are Internship Programs Provided? Find out if the physical therapy colleges you are reviewing have associations with Tyrone GA clinics or hospitals for internship programs. Internships are not only a great way to get hands on experience in a clinical environment, they are additionally a requirement for most PT programs and state licensing. As a supplemental benefit, they may help students and graduates form professional connections in the Tyrone health care community and help with obtaining employment after licensing.
What are the Class Sizes ? Unless you are the sort of student that prefers to sit far in the back of the classroom or get lost in the crowd, you will probably prefer a smaller class size. Smaller classes enable more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the physical therapy schools you are looking at what the average student to teacher ratio is for their classes. If practical you may prefer to sit in on one or more classes before making your final determination. This will also give you a chance to talk with several of the students and instructors to get their opinions regarding the pharmacy technician program also.
Where is the Program Located? For a lot of students, the physical therapy college they decide on will need to be within travelling distance of their Tyrone GA home. Those who have chosen to attend online classes obviously will not have to worry themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of area internships will be of concern. Something to bear in mind is that if you choose to enroll in a program that is out of state or even out of your local area, you might 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 Assistance Offered? Most DPT schools supply some form of financial support to their potential students. Find out if the schools you are considering have a financial assistance office and see what kind of aid is obtainable. At a minimum they should help in getting a student loan or any grants you may qualify for. A number of physical therapist schools offer scholarships, while others offer work programs. So before you eliminate a program because the tuition is too expensive, ask what financial aid might be available.
Can the Program Accommodate your Schedule? And finally you must confirm that the physical therapy program you finally choose can offer the class schedule you need. This is especially important if you opt to continue working while you attend school. If you need to schedule night or weekend classes in the Tyrone GA area, make sure that they are available. If you can only enroll on a part-time basis, check if that is an option and how many courses or credit hours you would need to carry. Also, ask what the protocol is for making up any classes that you may miss due to illness, work or family emergencies.
Earning Your Physical Therapy Degree near Tyrone Georgia?
If you are planning on attending a Physical Therapy School in the Tyrone GA area, the following information may prove to be both interesting and educational regarding the location of your future Alma Mater.
Tyrone is located in the northwest corner of Fayette County at 33°28′25″N 84°35′28″W / 33.47361°N 84.59111°W / 33.47361; -84.59111 (33.473563, -84.591229). It is bordered to the south by Peachtree City and to the west by Coweta County, across Line Creek.
Georgia State Route 74, the Joel Cowan Parkway, passes through Tyrone, leading north 5 miles (8 km) to Interstate 85 on the south side of Fairburn. Downtown Atlanta is 25 miles (40 km) northeast of Tyrone via SR 74 and I-85.
According to the United States Census Bureau, Tyrone has a total area of 12.9 square miles (33.3 km2), of which 12.5 square miles (32.3 km2) is land and 0.4 square miles (1.0 km2), or 2.94%, is water.
Pick the Right Physical Therapist Training Program near Tyrone GA
Deciding on the right physical therapist school is an important initial decision you must make to start a fulfilling career in the medical profession. As we have addressed in this article, the DPT or PT degree program and school you choose should both have outstanding reputations and be accredited. But there are other relevant questions that you need to ask pertaining to your school of choice also. As you commence your search for a physical therapy school, bear in mind that a number of factors will lead you toward your final decision. You may decide to go to each of the campuses to see their facilities and speak to active DPT students. While there, ask yourself this important question: will this school help me achieve my goal of becoming a licensed practicing physical therapist? By adhering to our list of additional questions, you will be able to narrow down the field so you can make the right choice. And with the proper education and training, you can accomplish your dream to become a licensed physical therapist in Tyrone GA.
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