Physical Therapist Schools | Get Your Physical Therapy Degree – Clifton KS

How to Choose a Physical Therapist School near Clifton 66937

Clifton KS physical therapy school student with volunteerEarning a physical therapist degree near Clifton KS is a critical first step to starting a rewarding career in the medical care field. Physical therapists (PT) help people who have been incapacitated due to illness or injury regain mobility and function. But before they can practice and work with the rehabilitation of patients, they need to obtain the appropriate education and training. A PT must also become licensed in every state, many mandating that the licensee receive a physical therapy degree from an accredited school. So before selecting a physical therapy school, it’s essential to evaluate the ones you are thinking about to ensure they will deliver a quality education and satisfy your state’s licensing criteria. What you should not 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 evaluated along with location and cost. But before we talk about what those qualifications are and what questions you should ask, we’ll address what a physical therapist does and the options for education.

What is a Physical Therapist’s Job Description?

Clifton KS physical therapist helping patient walkPhysical therapists work in diverse settings, such as Clifton KS hospitals, health clinics, assisted living facilities, rehab centers and sports facilities. What the facilities all have in common is that they are equipped for the diagnosis and rehabilitation treatment of patients. As previously touched on, physical therapists help people that are struggling with a lack of mobility and in many cases pain due to illness or injury. After patient diagnosis, they create a program of treatment to address the mobility issues and reduce or eradicate any pain. They also try to prevent any progression of the disability. Although the causes of disability necessitating physical therapy are abundant, they include:

  • Arthritis or Osteoporosis
  • Car or motor cycle accidents
  • Strokes.
  • Heart attacks.
  • Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.
  • Fire injuries.
  • Knee Replacement.
  • Fibromyalgia.
  • Multiple Sclerosis.

Licensed physical therapists practice in close partnerships with other Clifton KS health specialists, including chiropractors, physicians, registered nurses and dentists. They may also manage one or more physical therapy assistants who work under them assisting with the diagnosis and treatment of their patients. One thing to take note of for anyone thinking about entering the physical therapy profession, it is rather physically demanding. Physical therapists routinely lift patients and heavy equipment, and kneel, crouch and stand for long periods of time on a daily basis.

Physical Therapist Degrees

Clifton KS physical therapist applying acupuncture to patientThere are three physical therapy degree options offered for individuals to pursue at the graduate and undergraduate levels. Of these alternatives, the single degree that is offered 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. Following are brief explanations of degrees that are offered in the Clifton KS area:

  • Associate Degrees prepare students to be physical therapy assistants, or can be the first step toward earning a more advanced degree. Applicants must have earned a high school diploma or equivalent to qualify for enrollment. The programs are typically provided by community or junior colleges, and require 2 years for completion. An internship or other form of clinical training is usually a portion of the course of study.
  • Bachelor’s Degrees are developed as pre-physical therapy training to ready candidates to advance to the doctoral level. Although they are not a requirement to be eligible for the doctoral program, they are an integral first step to practicing as a PT. As with the majority of bachelor’s degrees, they typically require 4 years to finish and usually include 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). In addition to the bachelor’s degree, the doctoral takes three years to finish, making the overall investment of time 7 years in the majority of cases. Practical or clinical training is an important element in addition to the considerable classroom and lab instruction. Therefor the fulfillment of an internship is mandated, not just 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 United States. Some practicing physical therapists holding a master’s or in some cases a bachelor’s degree were “grandfathered” in prior to the current licensing requirement for a doctorate was instituted.

Physical Therapist Degrees Online

woman attending physical therapy school online in Clifton KSAlthough not as common as the on campus alternatives, there are some accredited online physical therapist degrees offered, even more at the graduate level. Because of the hands-on nature of the training, internships and clinical lab work are integrated with the online classes. This requires that the student live close to the college campus or nearby a sponsored internship. However, the online portion of the course of study can be accessed within the comfort and convenience of the student’s Clifton KS home. Online programs are not only to some extent more accessible, but in many cases more affordable. Tuition can be significantly lower than comparable on campus alternatives, and expenditures 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 option the ideal choice for those students that are motivated enough to learn at home.

Questions to Ask Physical Therapist Colleges

By now you undoubtedly have made a decision regarding a few of your preliminary queries, including the type of physical therapy degree you intend to earn, where you want to attend classes, and how much you can afford to spend for your education. But because there are numerous PT colleges within the Clifton KS area and across Kansas, you’ll need to explore additional qualifications also so as to further narrow your list of school options. Also, you want to be sure that you select the program that is right for you. That’s why we have put together a list of essential questions that you must ask the physical therapist programs you are reviewing. Ask each of the competing schools these questions prior to making a final selection.

Is the Physical Therapy Program Accredited?  Ask if the programs you are looking at have received accreditation from a national or a regional agency. As previously stated, if you are pursuing a doctorate the program must be accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE). If you choose an online college, it may also obtain accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council. It’s essential that both the physical therapist program and school you choose are accredited, not simply the school. Also, make sure that the accreditation is from a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization. Along with guaranteeing that you obtain a quality education, accreditation may be required for state licensing and even for getting student loans or financial aid.

What is the Program’s Standing? Along with accreditation, it’s imperative that the school and program you pick have excellent reputations within the physical therapy community. There are several ways you can look into a PT school’s reputation, beginning with asking for 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 as well. Get in touch with several Clifton KS physical therapy centers or other medical care facilities that you might be interested in working for and ask if they can provide any advice about your school selections. It might also be prudent to check with the Kansas Attorney General and school licensing authority to see if any complaints have been submitted against the schools.

What is the Program’s Job Placement Rate? There are a couple of useful statistics that you need to know about each of the physical therapy colleges you are reviewing. First is their graduation rate. A lower rate may mean that students left due to dissatisfaction with the program, the teachers, or both. After the students have graduated, how many of them are being hired with the help of the college’s job placement program, particularly in the Clifton KS area? If a college has a higher job placement rate, it’s an indication that its reputation within the health care field is good or even exceptional. It also affirms that the program has a broad network of contacts to assist students get internships or employment after graduation.

Does the Program Prepare You For Licensing Requirements? It’s imperative that the program you select provides both exceptional training and a course of study that supports the licensing requirements for Kansas or the state where you will be practicing. In every state a passing score is needed on the National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE) in addition to a degree from an accredited physical therapist college. Although licensing requirements vary state by state for PT and PTA graduates, many states require a minimum number of clinical hours be performed as well as passing scores on supplemental exams.

Are Internships Provided? Find out if the physical therapist schools you are evaluating have associations with Clifton KS hospitals or clinics for internship programs. Not only are internships an excellent means to obtain hands on training in a clinical environment, they are also a requirement for the majority of PT programs and state licensing. As a secondary benefit, they can help graduates and students establish professional connections in the Clifton healthcare community and help with obtaining employment once licensed.

How Big are the Classes ? Unless you are the type of student that likes to sit way in the rear of the classroom or get lost in the crowd, you will likely prefer a smaller class size. Smaller classes allow for more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the physical therapist schools 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 a chance to converse with several of the students and instructors to get their perspectives regarding the pharmacy technician program as well.

Where is the School Located? For a lot of students, the physical therapy college they decide on will have to be within travelling distance of their Clifton KS residence. Those who have decided to attend online classes obviously will not have to concern themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of local internships will be of concern. One thing to consider is that if you decide to enroll in a college that is out of state or even out of your local area, you might need to pay a higher tuition. State colleges usually charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges often charge a higher tuition for those students that live outside of their districts.

Is Financial Aid Offered? The majority of DPT colleges provide some type of financial aid to their potential students. Inquire if the colleges you are reviewing have a financial aid office and find out what kind of help is obtainable. They at least should help in obtaining a student loan or any scholarships you might qualify for. A number of physical therapist colleges provide scholarships, while others offer work programs. So before you eliminate a school because the tuition is too expensive, find out what financial aid may be available.

Can the Program Accommodate your Schedule? And last you need to confirm that the physical therapy college you finally select can provide the class schedule you need. This is particularly essential if you choose to continue working while you attend classes. If you need to schedule night or weekend classes in the Clifton KS area, verify that they are offered. If you can only enroll on a part-time basis, find out if that is an option and how many courses or credit hours you would have to enroll in. Also, find out what the protocol is for making up any classes that you may miss due to work, illness or family obligations.

Earning Your Physical Therapy Degree near Clifton Kansas?

If you are planning on attending a Physical Therapy School in the Clifton KS area, the following information may prove to be both interesting and educational regarding the location of your future Alma Mater.

Clifton, Kansas

Clifton is located at 39°34′1″N 97°16′48″W / 39.56694°N 97.28000°W / 39.56694; -97.28000 (39.567063, -97.279982).[11] According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 0.41 square miles (1.06 km2), all of it land.[1] The city is located next to Vining.

As of the census[2] of 2010, there were 554 people, 232 households, and 145 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,351.2 inhabitants per square mile (521.7/km2). There were 262 housing units at an average density of 639.0 per square mile (246.7/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 98.6% White, 0.4% African American, 0.2% Native American, 0.5% from other races, and 0.4% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.1% of the population.

There were 232 households of which 26.3% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 53.9% were married couples living together, 5.6% had a female householder with no husband present, 3.0% had a male householder with no wife present, and 37.5% were non-families. 34.5% of all households were made up of individuals and 19.8% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.30 and the average family size was 2.99.

Enroll in the Best Physical Therapist Training Program near Clifton KS

Picking the best physical therapist program is a necessary first decision you have to make to begin a fulfilling career in the health care field. As we have covered in this article, the DPT or PT degree program and school you enroll in should both have excellent reputations and accreditation. But there are additional important questions that you should ask pertaining to your school of choice as well. As you commence your search for a physical therapist college, keep in mind that a number of variables will guide you to your final decision. You might want to visit each of the campuses to see their facilities and speak to active DPT students. While there, ask yourself this critical question: will this school help me achieve my goal of becoming a practicing licensed physical therapist? By following our list of supplemental questions, you will be able to narrow down the options so you can make the best choice. And with the necessary education and training, you can fulfill your dream of becoming a licensed physical therapist in Clifton KS.

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