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

How to Select a Physical Therapy School near Wamego 66547

Wamego KS physical therapy school student with volunteerObtaining a physical therapy degree near Wamego KS is an important first step to beginning a fulfilling career in the medical care industry. Physical therapists (PT) help individuals who have been disabled due to illness or injury regain mobility and function. But before they can practice and provide treatment for the rehabilitation of patients, they need to acquire the proper education and training. A PT must also become licensed in all states, many requiring that the licensee hold a physical therapy degree from an accredited college. So before choosing a physical therapy school, it’s necessary to research the ones you are thinking about to make certain they will deliver a superior education and comply with your state’s licensing standards. What you do not want to do is enroll in a college simply because it happens to be the nearest to your residence or it has the lowest tuition. There are other significant qualifications that must be evaluated in addition to cost and location. But before we cover what those qualifications are and what questions you should ask, we’ll address what a physical therapist does and what the educational options are.

What Do Physical Therapists Do?

Wamego KS physical therapist helping patient walkPhysical therapists work in diverse locations, such as Wamego KS private practices, hospitals, rehabilitation centers, nursing homes 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 mentioned, physical therapists help patients that are experiencing a lack of mobility and frequently pain due to illness or injury. After diagnosing a patient, they design a program of treatment to deal with the mobility issues and lessen or eliminate any pain. They also try to prevent any progression of the disability. While the causes of disability necessitating physical therapy are abundant, they include:

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

Licensed physical therapists practice in close affiliation with other Wamego KS health specialists, including doctors, chiropractors, registered nurses and dentists. They can also supervise one or more physical therapy assistants who work for them in diagnosing and treating their patients. One thing to take note of for anyone thinking about getting into the physical therapy field, it is quite physically demanding. Physical therapists routinely lift patients and heavy equipment, and stand, crouch and kneel for prolonged periods of time on a daily basis.

Physical Therapist Degrees Offered

Wamego KS physical therapist applying acupuncture to patientThere are 3 physical therapist degree options available for students to enroll in at the graduate and undergraduate levels. Of these choices, the single degree that is attainable to practice as 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. Below are brief summaries of degrees that are available in the Wamego KS area:

  • Associate Degrees educate students to become physical therapy assistants, or may be the first step toward earning a more advanced degree. Candidates must have obtained a high school diploma or equivalent to be accepted for enrollment. The degrees are typically made available by community or junior colleges, and take about 2 years to complete. An internship or other form of clinical training is usually a component of the curriculum.
  • Bachelor’s Degrees are created as pre-physical therapist training to ready students to advance to the doctoral level. Although they are not a requirement to be eligible for the doctoral program, they are an essential initial step to becoming a PT. Similar to the majority of bachelor’s degrees, they normally require four 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 practicing licensed physical therapist. The degree program also must 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 total investment of time seven years in most cases. Practical or clinical training is an essential element in addition to the substantial classroom and lab instruction. Consequently 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 eliminated and is no longer attainable in the USA. A number of licensed physical therapists having a master’s or even a bachelor’s degree were “grandfathered” in prior to the current licensing mandate for a doctorate was instituted.

Physical Therapy Colleges Online

woman attending physical therapy school online in Wamego KSAlthough not as prevalent as the on campus options, there are some accredited online physical therapist programs available, even more at the graduate level. Because of the hands-on structure of the training, clinical lab work and internships are incorporated with the online classes. This requires that the student live close to the college campus or nearby a sponsored internship. However, the online segment of the program may be accessed within the comfort and convenience of the student’s Wamego KS residence. Online programs are not only to some extent more accessible, but in a number of instances more affordable. Tuition can be significantly less than similar on campus alternatives, and expenses for commuting are reduced. And a number of the online schools are accredited by the CAPTE, guaranteeing a quality education. These advantages may make the online alternative the ideal choice for those students that are motivated enough to learn at home.

What to Ask Physical Therapy Colleges

At this point you probably have made a decision regarding some of your preliminary queries, including the type of physical therapist degree you want to attain, where you prefer to attend classes, and how much money you can afford to invest in your education. But since there are so many PT colleges within the Wamego KS area and throughout Kansas, you’ll have to look into other qualifications as well so as to further narrow your list of college choices. Furthermore, you need to make sure that you pick the program that is right for you. That’s why we have compiled a list of important questions that you must ask the physical therapy colleges you are considering. Ask each of the competing colleges these questions prior to making an ultimate selection.

Is the Physical Therapy College Accredited?  Ask if the schools you are looking at have earned accreditation from a national or a regional organization. As previously mentioned, if you are pursuing a doctorate the program must be accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE). If you select an online program, it can also receive accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council. It’s imperative that both the physical therapy school and program you select are accredited, not just the school. Additionally, make sure that the accreditation is through a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency. Along with ensuring that you obtain a quality education, accreditation might be mandated for state licensing and even for getting student loans or financial assistance.

What is the College’s Reputation? In addition to accreditation, it’s essential that the school and program you pick have excellent reputations within the physical therapist profession. There are several ways you can look into a PT college’s reputation, starting with requesting references from employers that they place their graduates with. You may also search for online reviews and rating services and ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. Contact a few Wamego KS physical therapy centers or other medical care facilities that you may have an interest in working for and ask if they can give you any advice about your college selections. It may also be a good idea to contact the Kansas Attorney General and school licensing authority to find out if any complaints have been filed against the schools.

What is the College’s Job Placement Rate? There are a couple of useful statistics that you need to find out about each of the physical therapist schools you are looking at. First is their graduation rate. A lower rate may suggest that students left due to displeasure with the program, the teachers, or both. After the students have graduated, what percentage of them are being hired with the support of the college’s job placement program, particularly in the Wamego KS area? If a school has a higher job placement rate, it suggests that its reputation within the medical care field is good or even exceptional. It also confirms that the school has a wide network of contacts to assist students get internships or employment upon graduation.

Does the Program Support Licensing Requirements? It’s important that the school you choose provides both exceptional training and a course of study that supports the licensing criteria for Kansas or the state where you will be working. In every state a passing score is needed on the National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE) along with a degree from an accredited physical therapy school. While licensing requirements fluctuate state by state for PT and PTA graduates, some states require a minimum number of clinical hours be performed as well as passing scores on additional tests.

Are Internships Sponsored? Inquire if the physical therapist schools you are assessing have associations with Wamego KS hospitals or clinics for internship programs. Not only are internships an excellent manner to obtain hands on experience in a clinical environment, they are also a requirement for most PT programs and state licensing. As an ancillary benefit, they may help students and graduates establish professional relationships in the Wamego medical community and help with job placement after licensing.

How Large are the Classes ? Unless you are the kind of student that likes to sit way in the rear of class or hide in the crowd, you will likely want a smaller class size. Smaller classes allow for more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the physical therapist schools you are researching what the typical teacher to student ratio is for their classrooms. If practical you may want to sit in on one or more classes before making your ultimate determination. This will also give you an opportunity to speak with several of the students and instructors to get their perspectives regarding the pharmacy technician program also.

Where is the College Located? For a number of students, the physical therapy school they choose will need to be within commuting distance of their Wamego KS residence. Those who have chosen to attend classes online obviously will not have to trouble themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of area internships will be of importance. One thing to keep in mind is that if you choose to enroll in a college that is out of state or perhaps out of your local area, you may be required to pay a higher tuition. State colleges commonly charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges normally charge a higher tuition to those students that live outside of their districts.

Is Financial Aid Provided? Most DPT schools supply some type of financial assistance to their potential students. Find out if the colleges you are reviewing have a financial aid department and find out what kind of aid is available. They at least should help in getting a student loan or any grants you might be eligible for. A number of physical therapist schools provide scholarships, while others provide work programs. So before you eliminate a program because the tuition is too expensive, learn what financial aid may be available.

Can the Program Accommodate your Schedule? And last you must confirm that the physical therapy school you ultimately pick can offer the class schedule you need. This is especially essential if you choose to continue working while attending classes. If you need to schedule evening or weekend classes in the Wamego KS area, confirm 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 need to enroll in. Also, learn what the procedure is for making up any classes that you may miss because of work, illness or family obligations.

Earning Your Physical Therapy Degree near Wamego Kansas?

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

Wamego, Kansas

Wamego is located at 39°12′15″N 96°18′30″W / 39.20417°N 96.30833°W / 39.20417; -96.30833 (39.204074, -96.308328).[9] According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 2.25 square miles (5.83 km2), of which, 2.21 square miles (5.72 km2) is land and 0.04 square miles (0.10 km2) is water.[1]

Wamego is located at the intersection of U.S. Route 24 and K-99. It is about 14 mi (23 km) east of Manhattan; and about 42 mi (68 km) west-northwest of Topeka. The Kansas River flows along the southern edge of the city.

The climate in this area is characterized by hot, humid summers and generally mild to cool winters. According to the Köppen Climate Classification system, Wamego has a humid subtropical climate, abbreviated "Cfa" on climate maps.[10]

Pick the Best Physical Therapy School near Wamego KS

Deciding on the best physical therapy college is a necessary initial decision you must make to begin a rewarding career in the health care field. As we have discussed in this article, the PT or DPT degree program and school you select should both have exceptional reputations and accreditation. But there are other relevant questions that you need to ask pertaining to your college of choice also. As you begin your search for a physical therapist school, bear in mind that a number of factors will guide you to your final decision. You may decide to visit each of the campuses to see their facilities and speak with active DPT students. While there, ask yourself this critical question: will this school help me reach my goal of becoming a practicing licensed physical therapist? By adhering to our list of additional questions, you will have the ability to narrow down the field so you can make the appropriate choice. And with the necessary training and education, you can achieve your dream of becoming a practicing physical therapist in Wamego KS.

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