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

How to Select a Physical Therapy Program near Stockton 67669

Stockton KS physical therapy school student with volunteerReceiving a physical therapist degree near Stockton KS is an essential first step to starting a fulfilling career in the healthcare 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 provide treatment for the rehabilitation of patients, they must receive the proper 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 choosing a physical therapy school, it’s essential to investigate the ones you are thinking about to make sure they will supply a superior education and satisfy your state’s licensing requirements. What you do not want to do is choose a college simply because it happens to be the nearest to your home or it has the lowest tuition. There are other significant qualifications that need to be evaluated 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?

Stockton KS physical therapist helping patient walkPhysical therapists work in diverse settings, such as Stockton KS hospitals, health clinics, assisted living facilities, rehab centers and health clubs. What the facilities all share in common is that they are equipped for diagnosing and rehabilitating patients. As earlier mentioned, physical therapists help patients that are struggling with a lack of mobility and often pain due to illness or injury. After patient diagnosis, they develop a course of treatment to address the mobility problems and reduce or eliminate any pain. They also try to stop any advancement of the disability. Although the causes of disability necessitating physical therapy are numerous, they include:

  • Arthritis or Osteoporosis
  • Motor vehicle accidents
  • Strokes.
  • Heart attacks.
  • Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.
  • Burn injuries.
  • Knee Replacement.
  • Sciatica.
  • Multiple Sclerosis.

Licensed physical therapists practice in close association with other Stockton KS medical professionals, including doctors, chiropractors, dentists and nurses. They may also oversee several physical therapy assistants who work for them in the diagnosis and treatment of their patients. One thing to keep in mind for anyone considering entering the physical therapy field, it is quite physically demanding. Physical therapists routinely lift patients and heavy equipment, and stand, crouch and kneel for extended periods of time on a daily basis.

Physical Therapist Degrees

Stockton KS physical therapist applying acupuncture to patientThere are 3 physical therapy degree options offered for individuals to enroll in at the graduate and undergraduate levels. Of these alternatives, the single 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 prepping them to progress to the doctoral level. Following are brief summaries of degrees that are offered in the Stockton KS area:

  • Associate Degrees train students to be physical therapy assistants, or can be the first step toward earning a more advanced degree. Applicants must have a high school diploma or equivalent to qualify for enrollment. The degrees are most often provided by community or junior colleges, and take about 2 years to complete. An internship or other form of clinical training is normally a portion of the course of study.
  • Bachelor’s Degrees are designed as pre-physical therapy education to prepare students to move up to the doctoral level. Although they are not required to be a candidate for the doctoral program, they are an important preliminary step to practicing as a PT. Similar to most bachelor’s degrees, they typically take 4 years to complete and usually include an internship program of a minimum of 500 hours.
  • Doctorate Degrees are required 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). In addition to the bachelor’s degree, the doctoral takes three years to finish, making the overall commitment seven years in most cases. Clinical training is an essential component along with the considerable classroom and lab instruction. Therefor the completion of an internship is required, not only for graduation but in some 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 available in the United States. A number of licensed physical therapists holding a master’s or in some cases a bachelor’s degree were “grandfathered” in before the existing licensing mandate for a doctorate was implemented.

Physical Therapist Online Schools

woman attending physical therapy school online in Stockton KSAlthough not as common as the on campus alternatives, there are a number of accredited online physical therapy degrees offered, even more at the graduate level. Because of the hands-on structure of the training, clinical lab work and internships are combined with the online classes. This necessitates that the student live near the college campus or nearby an available internship. However, the online part of the course of study may be accessed within the comfort and convenience of the student’s Stockton KS residence. Online schools are not only partially more accessible, but in many cases more affordable. Tuition can be significantly less than comparable 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 can make the online alternative the ideal choice for those students that are disciplined enough to learn at home.

What to Ask Physical Therapy Schools

At this point you probably have made a decision regarding several of your preliminary questions, including the type of physical therapist degree you would like to earn, where you want to attend classes, and how much money you can afford to spend for your education. But because there are so many PT colleges within the Stockton KS area and throughout Kansas, you’ll have to explore additional qualifications also in order to further narrow your list of school options. Furthermore, you want to make sure that you enroll in the college that is best for you. That’s the reason we have put together a list of critical questions that you need to ask the physical therapy colleges you are considering. Ask each of the potential schools these questions before making a final decision.

Is the Physical Therapist College Accredited?  Find out if the programs you are considering have earned accreditation from a national or a regional organization. As earlier 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 select an online school, it can also obtain accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council. It’s imperative that both the physical therapist program and school you choose are accredited, not simply the school. Additionally, make sure that the accreditation is from a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting organization. Along with guaranteeing that you obtain an excellent 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 select have exceptional reputations within the physical therapy community. There are a number of ways you can look into a PT college’s reputation, beginning with asking for 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 as well. Call several Stockton KS physical therapy centers or other healthcare facilities that you may be interested in working for and ask if they can provide any recommendations about your school selections. It might also be a good idea to check with the Kansas Attorney General and school licensing authority to see if any complaints have been filed against the schools.

What is the College’s Job Placement Rate? There are a two useful statistics that you should find out about each of the physical therapist colleges you are looking at. First is their graduation rate. A low rate may mean that students left due to displeasure with the program, the teachers, or both. Once the students have graduated, how many of them are being placed in jobs with the help of the school’s job placement program, particularly in the Stockton 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 broad network of contacts to assist students obtain internships or jobs after graduation.

Does the College Prepare You For Licensing Requirements? It’s imperative that the program you enroll in furnishes both excellent training and a course of study that satisfies the licensing criteria 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) as well as a degree from an accredited physical therapy program. While licensing requirements differ state by state for PTA and PT graduates, a number of states require a minimum amount of clinical hours be completed and passing scores on additional tests.

Are Internships Offered? Find out if the physical therapist colleges you are assessing have partnerships with Stockton KS hospitals or clinics for internship programs. Internships are not only a great way to get hands on training in a clinical setting, they are additionally a requirement for most PT programs and state licensing. As a secondary benefit, they may help graduates and students develop professional connections in the Stockton medical community and assist with job placement after licensing.

What are the Class Sizes ? Unless you are the type of person that prefers to sit way in the back of the classroom or get lost in the crowd, you will likely prefer a smaller class size. Small classes allow for more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the physical therapist colleges you are looking at what the average teacher to student ratio is for their classrooms. If practical you may want to sit in on one or more classes before making your final decision. This will also give you an opportunity to talk with a few of the instructors and students to get their perspectives regarding the pharmacist tech program as well.

Where is the College Located? For a number of students, the physical therapy school they pick will need to be within driving distance of their Stockton KS residence. Students who have opted to attend classes online naturally will not have to worry themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of area internships will be of concern. One thing to consider is that if you choose to enroll in a program that is out of state or perhaps out of your local area, you may have to pay a higher tuition. State colleges normally charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges usually charge a higher tuition to those students that don’t reside within their districts.

Is Financial Support Offered? The majority of DPT colleges offer some type of financial support to their prospective students. Inquire if the colleges you are reviewing have a financial aid department and see what kind of help is available. At a minimum they should help in getting a student loan or any scholarships you might be eligible for. Some physical therapist schools provide scholarships, while others provide work programs. So before you eliminate a school because the tuition is beyond your budget, learn what financial aid may be available.

Can the School Accommodate your Schedule? And last you must verify that the physical therapy school you finally choose can offer the class schedule you need. This is particularly essential if you decide to continue working while you attend school. If you must schedule night or weekend classes in the Stockton KS area, verify that they are available. If you can only attend part-time, check if that is an alternative and how many courses or credit hours you would need to enroll in. Also, find out what the protocol is for making up any classes that you might miss because of work, illness or family emergencies.

Earning Your Physical Therapy Degree near Stockton Kansas?

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

Stockton, Kansas

Stockton was founded in 1872.[8] A large share of the first settlers were cattle dealers, or stockmen, and they named their new home Stocktown, or as it soon became Stockton.[9] Stockton was incorporated as a city in 1879.[10]

Stockton is located on the natural trail up the valley of the South Solomon River and where the military supply trail from Fort Kearney, Nebraska, to Fort Hays, Kansas, crossed the South Solomon River. Stockton survived & grew during the thirteen years from founding until the arrival of the railroad in 1885.[citation needed]

Stockton is located at 39°26′11″N 99°16′18″W / 39.43639°N 99.27167°W / 39.43639; -99.27167 (39.436328, -99.271641).[12] According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 2.23 square miles (5.78 km2), all of it land.[1]

Select the Right Physical Therapy College near Stockton KS

Deciding on the right physical therapy college is an important first decision you have to make to launch a rewarding career in the healthcare field. As we have discussed in this article, the DPT or PT degree program and school you select should both have exceptional reputations and be accredited. However there are additional critical questions that you need to ask regarding your school of choice as well. As you commence your search for a physical therapy school, keep in mind that numerous factors will guide you toward your ultimate decision. You might want to visit different campuses to view their facilities and talk with current DPT students. While there, ask yourself this critical question: will this program help me realize my goal of becoming a practicing licensed physical therapist? By following our list of additional questions, you will have the ability to narrow down the options so you can make the appropriate selection. And with the necessary education and training, you can accomplish your dream of becoming a licensed physical therapist in Stockton KS.

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