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

How to Choose a Physical Therapist Degree Program near Frontenac 66763

Frontenac KS physical therapy school student with volunteerEarning a physical therapist degree near Frontenac KS is an essential first step to launching a rewarding career in the healthcare field. Physical therapists (PT) help individuals who have been debilitated due to injury or illness regain mobility and function. But before they may legally practice and work with the rehabilitation of patients, they must get the necessary training and education. A PT must additionally be licensed in all states, many mandating that the licensee receive a physical therapy degree from an accredited school. So prior to selecting a physical therapy school, it’s important to research those you are considering to ensure they will furnish a superior education and comply with your state’s licensing criteria. What you do not want to do is choose a college simply because it happens to be the closest to your home or it has the most affordable tuition. There are other significant qualifications that must be considered besides cost and location. 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?

Frontenac KS physical therapist helping patient walkPhysical therapists practice in a variety of settings, such as Frontenac KS hospitals, health clinics, rehabilitation centers, nursing homes and sports facilities. What the facilities all share in common is that they are equipped for diagnosing and rehabilitating patients. As earlier touched on, physical therapists help patients that are struggling with a lack of mobility and in many cases pain caused by illness or injury. After patient diagnosis, they create a course of treatment to resolve the mobility issues and lessen or eradicate any pain. They also endeavor to prevent any advancement of the disability. Although the causes of disability requiring physical therapy are numerous, they include:

  • Arthritis or Osteoporosis
  • Motor vehicle accidents
  • Strokes.
  • Cardiac arrest.
  • Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.
  • Burn injuries.
  • Hip Replacement.
  • Sciatica.
  • Multiple Sclerosis.

Licensed physical therapists work in close affiliation with other Frontenac KS medical specialists, including chiropractors, physicians, registered nurses and dentists. They may also manage one or more physical therapy assistants who work under them assisting with diagnosing and treating their patients. One thing to bear in mind for anyone considering getting into the physical therapy profession, it is quite physically demanding. Physical therapists regularly lift patients and heavy equipment, and stand, crouch and kneel for long periods of time on a daily basis.

Physical Therapist Degrees Available

Frontenac KS physical therapist applying acupuncture to patientThere are three physical therapist degrees available for students to enroll in at the graduate and undergraduate levels. Of these choices, the only degree that is attainable to practice as a physical therapist is the doctorate. Undergraduate degrees emphasize either preparing 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 available in the Frontenac KS area:

  • Associate Degrees train students to be physical therapy assistants, or can be used as a stepping stone to a more advanced degree. Candidates must have a high school diploma or GED to be accepted for enrollment. The programs are most often provided by junior or community colleges, and require 2 years to complete. Clinical training, which may be in the form of an internship is usually part of the course of study.
  • Bachelor’s Degrees are created as pre-physical therapy training to prep candidates to advance to the doctoral level. While they are not required to be a candidate for the doctoral program, they are an important initial step to becoming a PT. As with the majority of bachelor’s degrees, they normally take 4 years to finish and commonly include an internship program of a minimum of 500 hours.
  • Doctorate Degrees are a requirement if you want to become a practicing licensed physical therapist. The degree program also must 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 total investment of time seven years in most cases. Practical or clinical training is an important component along with the extensive classroom and lab instruction. Consequently the completion of an internship is mandated, not just for graduation but in several states for licensing as well.

The Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) has taken the place of the Master’s of Physical Therapy (MPT), which has been phased out and is no longer attainable in the USA. A number of licensed physical therapists holding a master’s or even a bachelor’s degree were “grandfathered” in before the current licensing mandate for a doctorate was instituted.

Physical Therapy Online Colleges

woman attending physical therapy school online in Frontenac KSWhile not as prevalent as the on-campus options, there are a number of accredited online physical therapy programs available, even more at the graduate level. Because of the hands-on nature of the training, internships and clinical lab work are incorporated with the online classes. This requires that the student live near the college campus or in proximity of a sponsored internship. Fortunately, the online part of the course of study can be accessed within the comfort and convenience of the student’s Frontenac KS residence. Online schools are not only to some extent more accessible, but in many instances more economical. Tuition might be significantly less than similar on-campus alternatives, and costs for commuting are minimized. And many of the online programs are accredited by the CAPTE, ensuring a quality education. These benefits can make the online alternative the best choice for those students that are motivated enough to attend classes at home.

Questions to Ask Physical Therapist Colleges

By now you undoubtedly have come to decision regarding a few of your preliminary questions, such as the kind of physical therapist degree you would like to obtain, where you want to attend classes, and how much you can afford to spend for your education. But considering there are numerous PT schools within the Frontenac KS area and across Kansas, you’ll need to explore additional qualifications as well in order to further reduce your list of college options. Furthermore, you want to be sure that you choose the college that is ideal for you. That’s the reason we have put together a list of important questions that you need to ask the physical therapy schools you are reviewing. Ask each of the potential colleges these questions before making a final decision.

Is the Physical Therapist College Accredited?  Ask if the programs you are considering have received accreditation from a regional or a national 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 can also obtain accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council. It’s important that both the physical therapist school and program you choose are accredited, not just the school. Also, verify that the accreditation is from a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency. In addition to ensuring that you obtain a quality education, accreditation may be required for state licensing as well as for securing student loans or financial assistance.

What is the School’s Reputation? Along with accreditation, it’s imperative that the college and program you select have outstanding reputations within the physical therapist community. 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 search for online rating services and reviews and ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. Get in touch with some Frontenac KS physical therapist centers or other medical care facilities that you may have an interest in working for and ask if they can give you any recommendations about your college options. It may also be prudent to contact the Kansas Attorney General and school licensing authority to find out if any complaints have been filed against the colleges.

What is the Program’s Job Placement Rate? There are a two important statistics that you need to find out about all of the physical therapy schools you are reviewing. First is their graduation rate. A lower rate might mean that students left because of displeasure with the program, the teachers, or both. Once the students have graduated, what percentage of them are being hired with the support of the college’s job placement program, particularly in the Frontenac KS area? If a program has a higher job placement rate, it suggests that its reputation within the medical care field is good or perhaps exceptional. It also confirms that the school has a broad network of contacts to help students gain internships or employment upon graduation.

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

Are Internship Programs Provided? Inquire if the physical therapist schools you are evaluating have partnerships with Frontenac KS hospitals or clinics for internship programs. Not only are internships an excellent way to get hands on training in a clinical environment, they are additionally a requirement for the majority of PT programs and state licensing. As an ancillary benefit, they may help graduates and students establish professional connections in the Frontenac healthcare community and assist with job placement once licensed.

What Size are the Classes ? Unless you are the type of person that likes to sit way in the back of the classroom or hide in the crowd, you will probably prefer a smaller class size. Small classes allow for more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the physical therapist colleges you are reviewing 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 decision. This will also give you an opportunity to converse with some of the instructors and students to get their perspectives regarding the pharmacy technician program also.

Where is the School Located? For a number of students, the physical therapy college they choose will have to be within driving distance of their Frontenac KS home. Those who have chosen 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 importance. One thing 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 have to pay a higher tuition. State colleges often 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 Aid Provided? Most DPT schools offer some form of financial assistance to their prospective students. Inquire if the schools you are looking at have a financial aid department and find out what type of aid is offered. At a minimum they should help in getting a student loan or any scholarships you might qualify for. Some physical therapy schools provide scholarships, while others provide work programs. So before you eliminate a school because the tuition is beyond your budget, learn what financial assistance might be available.

Can the School Accommodate your Schedule? And finally you must verify that the physical therapy college you finally pick can provide the class schedule you need. This is particularly important if you decide to continue working while attending school. If you must schedule evening or weekend classes in the Frontenac KS area, verify that they are offered. If you can only attend part-time, find out if that is an option and how many courses or credit hours you would have to carry. Also, learn what the procedure is for making up any classes that you may miss due to illness, work or family emergencies.

Earning Your Physical Therapy Degree near Frontenac Kansas?

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

Frontenac, Kansas

During the last decade of the nineteenth century and in the early twentieth century the town was populated primarily by immigrant families from eastern and southeastern Europe, predominantly Sicilian, Italian, and Slavic people from the Austro-Hungarian Empire. Its maximum population neared 4,000. It housed various ethnic lodges and drinking parlors despite the state's increasingly severe ban on the distribution, sale, and manufacture of alcoholic beverages.[citation needed]

Frontenac is located at 37°27′16″N 94°41′43″W / 37.45444°N 94.69528°W / 37.45444; -94.69528 (37.454465, -94.695185)[14] in the Cherokee Lowlands, at the western edge of the Ozarks. According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 5.06 square miles (13.11 km2), of which, 4.97 square miles (12.87 km2) is land and 0.09 square miles (0.23 km2) is water.[1]

The climate in this area is characterized by hot, humid summers and generally mild to cool winters. According to the Köppen Climate Classification system, Frontenac has a humid subtropical climate, abbreviated "Cfa" on climate maps.[15]

Enroll in the Right Physical Therapist College near Frontenac KS

Choosing the right physical therapy program is a necessary initial decision you must make to start a rewarding career in the healthcare field. As we have discussed in this article, the DPT or PT degree program and school you decide on should both have exceptional reputations and accreditation. But there are other critical questions that you need to ask concerning your college of choice also. As you start your search for a physical therapy college, keep in mind that numerous factors will lead you to your ultimate decision. You may want to visit different campuses to view their facilities and speak with current DPT students. While there, ask yourself this critical question: will this college 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 appropriate selection. And with the proper education and training, you can fulfill your dream of becoming a licensed physical therapist in Frontenac KS.

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