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

How to Enroll In a Physical Therapy Training Program near Norton 67654

Norton KS physical therapy school student with volunteerEarning a physical therapy degree near Norton KS is an essential first step to beginning a fulfilling career in the health care field. Physical therapists (PT) help people who have been incapacitated as a result of injury or illness gain back mobility and function. But before they may legally practice and provide treatment for the rehabilitation of patients, they need to get the appropriate training and education. 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 enrolling in a physical therapy school, it’s necessary to research the ones you are considering to make certain they will deliver a superior education and meet your state’s licensing standards. What you do not want to do is choose a school just because it happens to be the closest to your residence or it has the most affordable tuition. There are other important qualifications that need to be considered besides cost and location. But before we cover what those qualifications are and what questions you should ask, we’ll cover what a physical therapist does and the options for education.

What is a Physical Therapist’s Job Description?

Norton KS physical therapist helping patient walkPhysical therapists practice in diverse settings, including Norton KS hospitals, health clinics, assisted living facilities, rehab centers and sports facilities. What the facilities all share in common is that they are equipped for the diagnosis and rehabilitation treatment of patients. As previously touched on, physical therapists help patients that are suffering from a lack of mobility and frequently pain due to injury or illness. After diagnosing a patient, they develop a program of treatment to resolve the mobility problems 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:

  • Osteoporosis and Arthritis
  • Motor vehicle accidents
  • Head injuries.
  • Heart attacks.
  • Sports injuries.
  • Fire injuries.
  • Hip Replacement.
  • Sciatica.
  • Multiple Sclerosis.

Licensed physical therapists practice in close association with other Norton KS medical professionals, including chiropractors, physicians, registered nurses and dentists. They may also supervise one or more physical therapy assistants who work under them in diagnosing and treating their patients. One thing to take note of for anyone considering going into the physical therapy field, it is rather physically demanding. Physical therapists routinely lift heavy equipment as well as patients, and stand, crouch and kneel for long periods of time on a daily basis.

Physical Therapist Degree Options

Norton KS physical therapist applying acupuncture to patientThere are 3 physical therapy degrees available for individuals to pursue at the undergraduate and graduate levels. Of these choices, the single degree that is attainable to become a physical therapist is the doctorate. Undergraduate degrees concentrate on either training students to become a physical therapy assistant (PTA) or prepping them to progress to the doctoral level. Below are short summaries of degrees that are available in the Norton KS area:

  • Associate Degrees prepare students to become physical therapy assistants, or may be used as a stepping stone to a more advanced degree. Applicants must have earned a high school diploma or equivalent to qualify for enrollment. The degrees are most often provided by community or junior colleges, and require two years to complete. An internship or other form of clinical training is normally part of the course of study.
  • Bachelor’s Degrees are developed as pre-physical therapist education to prep students to advance to the doctoral level. Although they are not a requirement to be qualified for the doctoral program, they are an essential preliminary step to becoming a PT. As with the majority of bachelor’s degrees, they normally require 4 years to complete and usually incorporate an internship program of at least 500 hours.
  • Doctorate Degrees are a requirement if you want 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 three years to complete, making the overall investment of time seven years in the majority of cases. Practical or clinical training is an important component in addition to the extensive lab and classroom instruction. Therefor the completion of an internship is required, not solely for graduation but in some states for licensing also.

The Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) has replaced the Master’s of Physical Therapy (MPT), which has been phased out and is no longer offered in the USA. A number of practicing physical therapists having a master’s or in some cases a bachelor’s degree were “grandfathered” in prior to the present licensing mandate for a doctorate was implemented.

Physical Therapist Schools Online

woman attending physical therapy school online in Norton KSAlthough not as common as the on-campus alternatives, there are many accredited online physical therapy programs offered, even more 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 requires that the student live close to the college campus or in proximity of an available internship. However, the online segment of the course of study can be accessed within the comfort and convenience of the student’s Norton KS residence. Online schools are not only partially more accessible, but in a number of cases more affordable. Tuition can be significantly lower than similar on campus options, and expenses for commuting are minimized. And a number of the online schools are accredited by the CAPTE, assuring a quality education. These benefits may make the online alternative the best choice for those students that are dedicated enough to learn at home.

Topics to Ask Physical Therapy Programs

By now you undoubtedly have made a decision regarding several of your preliminary queries, such as the kind of physical therapy degree you want to obtain, where you prefer to attend classes, and how much you can afford to invest in your education. But since there are so many PT schools within the Norton KS area and throughout Kansas, you’ll need to explore other qualifications also so as to further narrow your list of college choices. Furthermore, you need to make sure that you choose the college that is right for you. That’s the reason we have put together a list of important questions that you must ask the physical therapy programs you are reviewing. Ask all of the competing colleges these questions prior to making an ultimate decision.

Is the Physical Therapy Program Accredited?  Find out if the colleges you are looking at have earned accreditation from a regional or a national organization. As earlier mentioned, 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 earn accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council. It’s imperative that both the physical therapist program and school you enroll in are accredited, not just the school. Additionally, check that the accreditation is from a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency. Besides guaranteeing that you obtain a quality education, accreditation might be mandated for state licensing as well as for securing student loans or financial aid.

What is the College’s Ranking? Along with accreditation, it’s important that the college and program you select have outstanding reputations within the physical therapy profession. There are multiple ways you can research a PT program’s reputation, starting with requesting references from employers that they refer their students to. You can also check online rating services and reviews and ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. Call several Norton KS physical therapist clinics or other healthcare facilities that you may be interested in working for and ask if they can give you any insight about your program options. It may also be prudent to contact the Kansas Attorney General and school licensing authority to see if any complaints have been submitted against the colleges.

What is the College’s Job Placement Percentage? There are a two significant statistics that you need to know about all of the physical therapist programs you are considering. One is their graduation rate. A lower rate may suggest that students left due to dissatisfaction with the program, the teachers, or both. Once the students have graduated, what percentage of them are being hired with the assistance of the college’s job placement program, particularly in the Norton KS area? If a school has a high job placement rate, it’s an indication that its reputation within the medical care community is good or perhaps exceptional. It also verifies that the school has a wide network of contacts to assist students get internships or jobs upon graduation.

Does the Program Prepare You For Licensing Requirements? It’s imperative that the college you choose furnishes both exceptional training and a curriculum that supports the licensing criteria for Kansas or the state where you will be working. In each state a passing score is needed on the National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE) along with a degree from an accredited physical therapy program. While licensing requirements vary state by state for PT and PTA graduates, some states require a minimum amount of clinical hours be completed and passing scores on additional exams.

Are Internships Sponsored? Find out if the physical therapy programs you are assessing have associations with Norton KS hospitals or clinics for internship programs. Not only are internships a great manner to obtain practical 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 develop professional relationships in the Norton medical community and help with job placement after licensing.

What are the Class Sizes ? Unless you are the type of person that likes to sit way in the rear of class or get lost in the crowd, you will undoubtedly prefer a small class size. Smaller classes allow for more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the physical therapist colleges you are looking at 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 determination. This will also give you an opportunity to talk with several of the instructors and students to get their opinions regarding the pharmacist tech program as well.

Where is the School Located? For many students, the physical therapist school they decide on will need to be within travelling distance of their Norton KS home. Those who have chosen to attend classes online 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 keep in mind is that if you decide to enroll in a college that is out of state or even out of your local area, you may have to pay a higher tuition. State colleges typically charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges commonly charge a higher tuition for those students that live outside of their districts.

Is Financial Help Provided? The majority of DPT colleges provide some form of financial assistance to their potential students. Ask if the colleges you are looking at have a financial assistance department and find out what kind of aid is obtainable. They at least should help in obtaining a student loan or any scholarships you may be eligible for. A number of physical therapy colleges offer scholarships, while others offer work programs. So before you eliminate a school because the tuition is beyond your budget, find out what financial assistance may be available.

Can the School Accommodate your Schedule? And finally you must verify that the physical therapist school you finally pick can provide the class schedule you need. This is especially important if you choose to continue working while attending school. If you must schedule night or weekend classes in the Norton KS area, check that they are available. If you can only attend part-time, verify if that is an option and how many credit hours or courses you would have 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 Norton Kansas?

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

Norton, Kansas

Norton is located at 39°50′0″N 99°53′27″W / 39.83333°N 99.89083°W / 39.83333; -99.89083 (39.833338, -99.890899).[11] According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 1.93 square miles (5.00 km2), all land.[1] The city is situated on the north side of Prairie Dog Creek in Norton County. Before the Bureau of Reclamation constructed Keith Sebelius Lake in 1963, Norton was prone to frequent flooding. The construction of the Dam has since resolved the problem and created the current reservoir that sits 2.5 miles (4.0 km) southwest of Norton.[12] The Nebraska border is located 11 miles (18 km) north of the city.

As of the census[2] of 2010, there were 2,928 people, 1,290 households, and 763 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,517.1 inhabitants per square mile (585.8/km2). There were 1,465 housing units at an average density of 759.1 per square mile (293.1/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 96.8% White, 0.2% African American, 0.1% Native American, 0.4% Asian, 0.5% from other races, and 1.9% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 3.3% of the population.

There were 1,290 households of which 26.3% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 46.5% were married couples living together, 9.3% had a female householder with no husband present, 3.3% had a male householder with no wife present, and 40.9% were non-families. 36.1% of all households were made up of individuals and 18.3% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.20 and the average family size was 2.86.

Choose the Ideal Physical Therapist Training Program near Norton KS

Picking the right physical therapy program is an important initial decision you must make to launch a rewarding career in the health care profession. As we have discussed in this article, the DPT or PT degree program and college you choose should both have excellent reputations and accreditation. However there are other important questions that you need to ask regarding your college of choice as well. As you start your search for a physical therapy program, keep in mind that numerous variables will guide you toward your ultimate decision. You might want to visit each of the colleges to see their facilities and speak with active DPT students. While there, ask yourself this critical question: will this program help me realize my goal of becoming a licensed practicing physical therapist? By adhering to our list of supplemental questions, you will have the ability to narrow down the options so you can make the ideal selection. And with the necessary education and training, you can accomplish your dream to become a licensed physical therapist in Norton KS.

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