How to Choose a Physical Therapist College near Aberdeen 83210
Obtaining a physical therapist degree near Aberdeen ID is an essential first step to launching a fulfilling career in the medical care industry. Physical therapists (PT) help people who have been disabled 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 obtain the necessary education and training. A PT must additionally become licensed in every state, a large number requiring that the licensee earn a physical therapy degree from an accredited college. So before choosing a physical therapy school, it’s necessary to investigate those you are thinking about to make certain they will deliver a quality education and satisfy your state’s licensing standards. What you should not do is choose a college simply because it happens to be the closest to your home or it has the lowest tuition. There are other relevant qualifications that need to be evaluated in addition to location and cost. But before we cover what those qualifications are and the questions you should be asking, we’ll cover what a physical therapist does and the options for education.
What Do Physical Therapists Do?
Physical therapists practice in a variety of locations, including Aberdeen ID hospitals, health clinics, rehabilitation centers, nursing homes and sports facilities. What the facilities all have in common is that they have the equipment for diagnosing and rehabilitating patients. As earlier mentioned, physical therapists help patients that are experiencing a lack of mobility and in many cases pain caused by illness or injury. After patient diagnosis, they design a program of treatment to deal with the mobility problems and reduce or eradicate any pain. They also endeavor to prevent any progression of the disability. Although the causes of disability requiring physical therapy are abundant, they include:
- Osteoporosis and Arthritis
- Car or motor cycle accidents
- Heart attacks.
- Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.
- Burn injuries.
- Knee Replacement.
- Cerebral Palsy.
Licensed physical therapists work in close association with other Aberdeen ID health specialists, including chiropractors, physicians, dentists and nurses. They may also supervise one or more physical therapy assistants who work under them in diagnosing and treating their patients. One thing to bear in mind for anyone considering getting into the physical therapy field, it is rather physically demanding. Physical therapists routinely lift patients and heavy equipment, and stand, crouch and kneel for long periods of time on a daily basis.
Physical Therapy Degrees Offered
There are three physical therapy degree options available for students to enroll in at the graduate and undergraduate levels. Of these alternatives, the one degree that is attainable to become a physical therapist is the doctorate. Undergraduate degrees target either preparing students to become a physical therapy assistant (PTA) or preparing them to progress to the doctoral level. Below are short summaries of degree levels that are available in the Aberdeen ID area:
- Associate Degrees educate students to be physical therapy assistants, or may be used as a stepping stone to a more advanced degree. Candidates must have obtained a high school diploma or equivalent to be accepted for enrollment. The programs are usually provided by junior or community colleges, and require two years to complete. An internship or other form of clinical training is normally a component of the curriculum.
- Bachelor’s Degrees are created as pre-physical therapist education to prep students to progress to the doctoral level. Although they are not a requirement to be a candidate for the doctoral program, they are an integral first step to practicing as a PT. Similar to most bachelor’s degrees, they normally require four years to complete and usually include an internship program of at least 500 hours.
- Doctorate Degrees are required in order 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 3 years to finish, making the overall commitment 7 years in the majority of cases. Clinical training is an essential component along with the considerable classroom and lab instruction. Therefor the fulfillment of an internship is mandated, not only for graduation but in several 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 USA. A number of licensed physical therapists having a master’s or even a bachelor’s degree were “grandfathered” in prior to the existing licensing mandate for a doctorate was instituted.
Physical Therapy Online Colleges
While not as common as the on-campus alternatives, there are many accredited online physical therapist programs offered, even more at the graduate level. Because of the hands-on nature of the training, internships and clinical lab work are combined with the online classes. This necessitates that the student live close to the school campus or in proximity of an available internship. Fortunately, the online segment of the curriculum may be accessed within the comfort and convenience of the student’s Aberdeen ID residence. Online programs are not only to some extent more accessible, but in a number of cases more economical. Tuition can be significantly lower than comparable on-campus options, and expenses for commuting are minimized. And a number of the online programs are accredited by the CAPTE, ensuring a quality education. These benefits may make the online alternative the right choice for those students that are disciplined enough to learn at home.
Topics to Ask Physical Therapy Programs
By now you undoubtedly have made a decision concerning a few of your initial queries, like the kind of physical therapist degree you would like to attain, where you prefer to attend classes, and how much you can afford to spend for your education. But considering there are so many PT schools within the Aberdeen ID area and across Idaho, you’ll have to look into additional qualifications as well in order to further narrow your list of school options. Furthermore, you want to make certain that you enroll in the school that is right for you. That’s the reason we have compiled a list of critical questions that you must ask the physical therapy programs you are thinking about. Ask each of the competing colleges these questions before making a final decision.
Is the Physical Therapist College Accredited? Find out if the programs you are looking at have received accreditation from a regional or a national organization. As earlier stated, 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 program, it may also earn accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council. It’s important that both the physical therapist school and program 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 organization. Besides guaranteeing 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 School’s Reputation? Along with accreditation, it’s essential that the school and program you pick have excellent reputations within the physical therapist profession. There are a number of 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 check online rating services and reviews and ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. Contact a few Aberdeen ID physical therapy clinics or other healthcare facilities that you might be interested in working for and ask if they can offer any recommendations about your program selections. It may also be prudent to contact the Idaho Attorney General and school licensing authority to see if any complaints have been submitted against the schools.
What is the College’s Job Placement Percentage? There are a two important statistics that you should find out about all of the physical therapy colleges you are considering. First is their graduation rate. A low rate might suggest that students left because of 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 college’s job placement program, particularly in the Aberdeen ID area? If a school has a high job placement rate, it suggests that its reputation within the health care community is good or even excellent. It also confirms that the college has a large network of contacts to assist students get internships or jobs after graduation.
Does the School Prepare You For Licensing Requirements? It’s imperative that the program you select provides both excellent training and a curriculum that supports the licensing requirements for Idaho or the state where you will be practicing. In every state a passing score is required 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 PT and PTA graduates, some states require a minimum number of clinical hours be performed and passing scores on supplemental exams.
Are Internship Programs Provided? Find out if the physical therapy programs you are assessing have associations with Aberdeen ID hospitals or clinics for internship programs. Not only are internships a terrific means to obtain hands on experience in a clinical environment, they are additionally a requirement for the majority of PT programs and state licensing. As an ancillary benefit, they can assist students and graduates develop professional connections in the Aberdeen health care community and help with obtaining employment once licensed.
How Big are the Classes ? Unless you are the kind of person that prefers to sit far in the rear of class or hide in the crowd, you will probably want a smaller class size. Small classes enable more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the physical therapist schools you are looking at 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 converse with some of the instructors and students to get their perspectives regarding the pharmacist tech program also.
Where is the School Located? For many students, the physical therapist school they choose will need to be within driving distance of their Aberdeen ID home. Those who have opted 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. Something to consider is that if you decide to enroll in a school that is out of state or perhaps out of your local area, you may be required to pay a higher tuition. State colleges often charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges frequently charge a higher tuition to those students that live outside of their districts.
Is Financial Support Offered? The majority of DPT colleges supply some type of financial assistance to their prospective students. Find out if the schools you are considering have a financial aid office and see what kind of help is available. At a minimum they should help in acquiring a student loan or any grants you might be eligible for. Some physical therapy colleges offer scholarships, while others provide work programs. So before you eliminate a college because the tuition is too expensive, find out what financial aid might be available.
Can the College Accommodate your Schedule? And finally you must verify that the physical therapist college you finally select can furnish the class schedule you need. This is particularly essential if you decide to continue working while you attend classes. If you must schedule night or weekend classes in the Aberdeen ID area, make certain that they are offered. If you can only attend part-time, check if that is an option and how many credit hours or courses you would need to enroll in. Also, learn what the procedure is for making up any classes that you might miss because of work, illness or family obligations.
Earning Your Physical Therapy Degree near Aberdeen Idaho?
If you are planning on attending a Physical Therapy School in the Aberdeen ID area, the following information may prove to be both interesting and educational regarding the location of your future Alma Mater.
Aberdeen is located at 42°56′36″N 112°50′22″W / 42.94333°N 112.83944°W / 42.94333; -112.83944 (42.943405, -112.839322), at an elevation of 4,403 feet (1,342 m) above sea level. According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 1.03 square miles (2.67 km2), all of it land.
As of the census of 2010, there were 1,994 people, 615 households, and 466 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,935.9 inhabitants per square mile (747.5/km2). There were 667 housing units at an average density of 647.6 per square mile (250.0/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 60.2% White, 0.1% African American, 0.7% Native American, 0.1% Asian, 37.5% from other races, and 1.5% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 54.1% of the population.
There were 615 households of which 49.6% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 59.0% were married couples living together, 10.6% had a female householder with no husband present, 6.2% had a male householder with no wife present, and 24.2% were non-families. 20.0% of all households were made up of individuals and 10.7% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 3.24 and the average family size was 3.79.
Select the Ideal Physical Therapy School near Aberdeen ID
Choosing the best physical therapy college is a necessary first decision you need to make to begin a fulfilling career in the healthcare field. As we have covered in this article, the DPT or PT degree program and college you select should both have outstanding reputations and accreditation. But there are additional relevant questions that you should ask regarding your school of choice also. As you begin your search for a physical therapy school, bear in mind that numerous variables will lead you toward your final decision. You might want to go to different schools to see their facilities and talk with current DPT students. While there, ask yourself this critical question: will this college help me reach my goal of becoming a practicing licensed physical therapist? By following our list of additional questions, you will be able to narrow down the field so you can make the right selection. And with the proper education and training, you can accomplish your dream of becoming a practicing physical therapist in Aberdeen ID.
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