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

How to Choose a Physical Therapist Training Program near Mankato 66956

Mankato KS physical therapy school student with volunteerGetting a physical therapy degree near Mankato KS is an essential first step to launching a rewarding career in the healthcare industry. Physical therapists (PT) help patients who have been incapacitated due to illness or injury gain back mobility and function. 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 additionally become licensed in all states, a large number requiring that the licensee receive a physical therapy degree from an accredited college. So before selecting a physical therapy school, it’s important to evaluate those you are thinking about to make certain they will provide a quality education and satisfy your state’s licensing standards. What you should not do is choose a college just because it happens to be the nearest to your residence or it has the lowest tuition. There are other important qualifications that need to be considered along with location and cost. But before we talk about 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 Does a Physical Therapist Do?

Mankato KS physical therapist helping patient walkPhysical therapists practice in a variety of settings, such as Mankato KS hospitals, health clinics, assisted living facilities, rehab centers and health clubs. What the facilities all have in common is that they have the equipment for diagnosing and rehabilitating patients. As previously stated, physical therapists help patients that are struggling with a lack of mobility and frequently pain caused by illness or injury. After diagnosing a patient, they develop a program of treatment to resolve the mobility issues and lessen or eradicate any pain. They also endeavor to stop any advancement of the disability. While the causes of disability requiring physical therapy are numerous, they include:

  • Arthritis or Osteoporosis
  • Car or motor cycle accidents
  • Strokes.
  • Cardiac arrest.
  • Sports injuries.
  • Burn injuries.
  • Hip Replacement.
  • Sciatica.
  • Cerebral Palsy.

Licensed physical therapists work in close association with other Mankato KS health professionals, including doctors, chiropractors, dentists and nurses. They may also supervise several physical therapy assistants who work for them assisting with diagnosing and treating their patients. One thing to take note of for anyone thinking about going into the physical therapy field, it is rather 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 Therapy Degrees Available

Mankato KS physical therapist applying acupuncture to patientThere are 3 physical therapy degree options available for students to enroll in at the undergraduate and graduate levels. Of these alternatives, the one degree that is available to become a physical therapist is the doctorate. Undergraduate degrees focus on either preparing students to become a physical therapy assistant (PTA) or readying them to progress to the doctoral level. Below are short descriptions of degree levels that are available in the Mankato KS area:

  • Associate Degrees train students to become physical therapy assistants, or may be the first step toward earning a more advanced degree. Candidates must have a high school diploma or equivalent to be accepted for enrollment. The degrees are most often made available by junior or community colleges, and take about 2 years for completion. An internship or other form of clinical training is usually a portion of the program.
  • Bachelor’s Degrees are developed as pre-physical therapist education to ready candidates to advance to the doctoral level. While they are not a requirement to be eligible for the doctoral program, they are an important preliminary step to becoming a PT. Similar to the majority of bachelor’s degrees, they generally take 4 years to finish and usually incorporate an internship program of a minimum of 500 hours.
  • Doctorate Degrees are a requirement 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 complete, making the total investment of time seven years in most cases. Clinical or practical training is an intregal component along with the extensive classroom and lab instruction. Therefor the completion of an internship is required, 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 phased out and is no longer attainable in the USA. A number of licensed physical therapists having a master’s or in some cases a bachelor’s degree were “grandfathered” in before the current licensing mandate for a doctorate was instituted.

Physical Therapist Online Schools

woman attending physical therapy school online in Mankato KSAlthough 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 nature of the training, clinical lab work and internships are combined with the online classes. This necessitates that the student live close to the college campus or nearby a sponsored internship. However, the online portion of the program can be accessed within the convenience and comfort of the student’s Mankato KS home. Online programs are not only partially more accessible, but in a number of cases more economical. Tuition may be significantly lower than similar on campus alternatives, and expenditures for commuting are reduced. And a number of the online programs are accredited by the CAPTE, ensuring a quality education. These advantages may make the online alternative the right choice for those students that are motivated enough to attend classes at home.

Topics to Ask Physical Therapy Programs

At this point you undoubtedly have come to decision concerning some of your preliminary questions, including the type of physical therapy degree you intend to earn, where you want to attend classes, and how much money you can afford to invest in your education. But considering there are numerous PT schools within the Mankato KS area and across Kansas, you’ll need to explore additional qualifications as well in order to further narrow your list of school choices. Furthermore, you need to be sure that you pick the school that is right for you. That’s why we have compiled a list of essential questions that you must ask the physical therapy programs you are reviewing. Ask each of the potential colleges these questions prior to making a final decision.

Is the Physical Therapist Program Accredited?  Ask if the schools you are looking at have earned accreditation from a regional or a national 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 can also earn accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council. It’s important that both the physical therapist school and program you select are accredited, not just the school. Additionally, make sure that the accreditation is from a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting organization. In addition to ensuring that you obtain an excellent education, accreditation might be required for state licensing and even for getting student loans or financial assistance.

What is the College’s Ranking? Along with accreditation, it’s important that the school and program you pick have outstanding reputations within the physical therapy profession. There are a number of ways you can look into a PT college’s reputation, beginning with requesting references from employers that they refer their students to. You may also check online rating services and reviews and ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. Call a few Mankato KS physical therapist centers or other health care facilities that you may be interested in working for and ask if they can give you any insight about your program selections. It may also be prudent to check with the Kansas 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 Percentage? There are a two significant statistics that you should know about each of the physical therapist colleges you are reviewing. One is their graduation rate. A low rate might suggest that students left because of displeasure with the program, the teachers, or both. Once the students have graduated, how many of them are being placed in jobs with the support of the school’s job placement program, particularly in the Mankato KS area? If a college has a higher job placement rate, it suggests that its reputation within the medical care field is good or perhaps excellent. It also verifies that the program has a wide network of contacts to help students obtain internships or employment after graduation.

Does the School Prepare You For Licensing Requirements? It’s essential that the school you enroll in furnishes both exceptional training and a curriculum that satisfies the licensing requirements for Kansas or the state where you will be practicing. In each state a passing score is required on the National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE) in addition to a degree from an accredited physical therapy school. Although licensing requirements differ state by state for PTA and PT graduates, many states require a minimum number of clinical hours be completed as well as passing scores on additional tests.

Are Internships Offered? Find out if the physical therapy colleges you are reviewing have associations with Mankato KS clinics or hospitals for internship programs. Not only are internships a terrific manner to obtain practical experience in a clinical setting, they are also a requirement for most PT programs and state licensing. As a supplemental benefit, they may help students and graduates form professional connections in the Mankato health care community and assist with job placement once licensed.

How Big are the Classes ? Unless you are the kind of person that prefers to sit way in the back of class or hide in the crowd, you will likely prefer a small class size. Small classes enable more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the physical therapist colleges you are considering what the typical student to teacher ratio is for their classrooms. If practical you may prefer to monitor one or more classes before making your final decision. This will also give you an opportunity to speak with some of the instructors and students to get their opinions regarding the pharmacy tech program also.

Where is the Program Located? For a number of students, the physical therapist college they select will need to be within commuting distance of their Mankato KS residence. Individuals who have decided to attend online classes obviously will not have to trouble themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of area internships will be of concern. Something to consider is that if you choose to enroll in a college that is out of state or perhaps out of your local area, you might be required to pay a higher tuition. State colleges usually charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges usually charge a higher tuition for those students that don’t reside within their districts.

Is Financial Aid Provided? Most DPT schools offer some form of financial aid to their potential students. Find out if the colleges you are examining have a financial assistance department and find out what type of aid is available. They at least should help in getting a student loan or any scholarships you may qualify for. Some physical therapy colleges provide scholarships, while others provide work programs. So before eliminating a program because the tuition is beyond your budget, find out what financial aid might be available.

Can the School Accommodate your Schedule? And finally you must verify that the physical therapist program you ultimately choose can furnish the class schedule you need. This is especially important if you choose to continue working while attending classes. If you must schedule night or weekend classes in the Mankato KS area, make certain that they are offered. If you can only attend part-time, check if that is an alternative and how many credit hours or courses you would need to carry. Also, find out what the protocol is for making up any classes that you may miss as a result of work, illness or family obligations.

Earning Your Physical Therapy Degree near Mankato Kansas?

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

Mankato, Kansas

Mankato is located at 39°47′14″N 98°12′33″W / 39.78722°N 98.20917°W / 39.78722; -98.20917 (39.787220, -98.209274).[11] According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 1.01 square miles (2.62 km2), all land.[1]

As of the census[2] of 2010, there were 869 people, 405 households, and 242 families residing in the city. The population density was 860.4 inhabitants per square mile (332.2/km2). There were 486 housing units at an average density of 481.2 per square mile (185.8/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 97.0% White, 0.3% African American, 0.3% Native American, 0.5% Asian, 0.5% from other races, and 1.4% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.0% of the population.

There were 405 households of which 22.0% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 50.9% were married couples living together, 6.4% had a female householder with no husband present, 2.5% had a male householder with no wife present, and 40.2% were non-families. 37.5% of all households were made up of individuals and 18.8% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.08 and the average family size was 2.71.

Enroll in the Right Physical Therapist Degree Program near Mankato KS

Choosing the right physical therapy college is an important initial decision you must make to begin a gratifying career in the healthcare field. As we have addressed in this article, the PT or DPT degree program and school you decide on should both have exceptional reputations and be accredited. However there are other relevant questions that you should ask pertaining to your college of choice as well. As you begin your search for a physical therapist school, keep in mind that many variables will guide you toward your final decision. You might decide to go to different schools to view their facilities and talk with active DPT students. While there, ask yourself this important question: will this program help me reach my goal of becoming a licensed practicing physical therapist? By adhering to our list of supplemental questions, you will be able to narrow down the options so you can make the ideal choice. And with the necessary training and education, you can accomplish your dream of becoming a licensed physical therapist in Mankato KS.

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