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

How to Find the Right Physical Therapy Program near Washington 66968

Washington KS physical therapy school student with volunteerReceiving a physical therapist degree near Washington KS is a critical first step to launching a fulfilling career in the health care field. Physical therapists (PT) help individuals who have been debilitated due to illness or injury regain function and mobility. But before they can practice and provide treatment for the rehabilitation of patients, they must get the appropriate education and training. A PT must also be licensed in all states, many mandating that the licensee hold a physical therapy degree from an accredited school. So before choosing a physical therapy school, it’s essential to research those you are thinking about to make certain they will provide a quality education and meet your state’s licensing criteria. What you should not do is select a school simply because it happens to be the closest to your home or it has the lowest tuition. There are other relevant qualifications that need to 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 is a Physical Therapist’s Job Description?

Washington KS physical therapist helping patient walkPhysical therapists work in a variety of settings, such as Washington KS private practices, hospitals, rehabilitation centers, nursing homes and sports facilities. What the facilities all share in common is that they have the equipment for diagnosing and rehabilitating patients. As earlier touched on, physical therapists help patients that are suffering from a lack of mobility and frequently pain due to illness or injury. After patient diagnosis, they create a program of treatment to resolve the mobility issues and reduce or eliminate any pain. They also endeavor to stop any advancement of the disability. While the causes of disability necessitating physical therapy are abundant, they include:

  • Osteoporosis and Arthritis
  • Car or motor cycle accidents
  • Head injuries.
  • Cardiac arrest.
  • Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.
  • Fire injuries.
  • Hip Replacement.
  • Fibromyalgia.
  • Multiple Sclerosis.

Licensed physical therapists work in close affiliation with other Washington KS health specialists, including chiropractors, physicians, registered nurses and dentists. They can also manage several physical therapy assistants who work for them assisting with the diagnosis and treatment of their patients. One thing to bear in mind for anyone thinking about getting into the physical therapy field, it is rather physically demanding. Physical therapists regularly lift patients and heavy equipment, and stand, crouch and kneel for prolonged periods of time on a daily basis.

Physical Therapy Degree Options

Washington KS physical therapist applying acupuncture to patientThere are three physical therapist degrees offered for individuals to pursue at the undergraduate and graduate levels. Of these options, the only degree that is offered to practice as a physical therapist is the doctorate. Undergraduate degrees focus on either training students to become a physical therapy assistant (PTA) or prepping them to progress to the doctoral level. Below are short descriptions of degrees that are offered in the Washington KS area:

  • Associate Degrees prepare students to be physical therapy assistants, or can be the first step toward earning a more advanced degree. Applicants must have earned a high school diploma or equivalent to qualify for enrollment. The programs are usually provided by community colleges, and take about two years to complete. An internship or other form of clinical training is normally a component of the curriculum.
  • Bachelor’s Degrees are created as pre-physical therapy education to prep students to move up to the doctoral level. Although they are not a requirement to be qualified for the doctoral program, they are an integral preliminary step to practicing as a PT. Similar to the majority of bachelor’s degrees, they normally take four years to complete and usually include an internship program of at least 500 hours.
  • Doctorate Degrees are mandated if you want to become a practicing licensed 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 3 years to complete, making the overall investment of time 7 years in the majority of cases. Practical or clinical training is an important element along with the extensive lab and classroom instruction. Therefor the completion of an internship is required, not only for graduation but in a number of 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 available in the USA. A number of practicing physical therapists holding a master’s or in some cases a bachelor’s degree were “grandfathered” in prior to the existing licensing requirement for a doctorate was instituted.

Physical Therapy Online Programs

woman attending physical therapy school online in Washington KSWhile not as prevalent as the on campus alternatives, there are a number of accredited online physical therapist programs available, even more at the graduate level. Because of the hands-on structure of the training, internships and clinical lab work are integrated with the online classes. This requires that the student live near the school campus or in proximity of a sponsored internship. Fortunately, the online portion of the curriculum may be accessed within the convenience and comfort of the student’s Washington KS home. Online programs are not only to some extent more accessible, but in a number of cases more economical. Tuition might be somewhat less than similar on-campus options, and costs for commuting are reduced. And many of the online programs are accredited by the CAPTE, assuring a quality education. These advantages can make the online alternative the ideal choice for those students that are dedicated enough to learn at home.

Topics to Ask Physical Therapist Programs

At this point you most likely have come to decision concerning several of your initial questions, like the kind of physical therapy degree you intend to attain, where you prefer to attend classes, and how much you can afford to spend for your education. But because there are so many PT schools within the Washington KS area and throughout Kansas, you’ll have to explore other qualifications as well so as to further narrow your list of college options. Moreover, you want to make certain that you enroll in the college that is right for you. That’s the reason we have collected a list of essential questions that you must ask the physical therapy colleges you are reviewing. Ask all of the competing schools these questions before making a final selection.

Is the Physical Therapist School Accredited?  Find out if the schools you are considering have received accreditation from a regional or a national agency. 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 select an online school, it can also obtain 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. Also, make sure that the accreditation is through a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting organization. In addition to ensuring that you receive a quality education, accreditation may be mandated for state licensing as well as for securing student loans or financial aid.

What is the Program’s Standing? In addition to accreditation, it’s imperative that the school and program you select have outstanding reputations within the physical therapy profession. There are multiple ways you can look into a PT school’s reputation, beginning with requesting references from employers that they refer their students to. You can also search for online rating services and reviews and ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. Get in touch with a few Washington KS physical therapy centers or other healthcare facilities that you might have an interest in working for and ask if they can give you any advice about your program 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 Percentage? There are a two significant statistics that you need to know about each of the physical therapy colleges you are considering. One is their graduation rate. A lower rate may suggest that students dropped out because of dissatisfaction with the program, the instructors, or both. After the students have graduated, what percentage of them are being hired with the help of the school’s job placement program, particularly in the Washington KS area? If a program has a high job placement rate, it suggests that its reputation within the medical care community is good or even outstanding. It also verifies that the school has a large network of contacts to assist students gain internships or jobs after graduation.

Does the Program Prepare You For Licensing Requirements? It’s imperative that the program you select provides both exceptional 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 required on the National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE) as well as a degree from an accredited physical therapy college. While licensing requirements vary state by state for PTA and PT graduates, some states require a minimum amount of clinical hours be performed and passing scores on supplemental tests.

Are Internship Programs Offered? Find out if the physical therapy colleges you are evaluating have relationships with Washington KS clinics or hospitals for internship programs. Not only are internships a great way to get hands on training in a clinical environment, they are also a requirement for most PT programs and state licensing. As an ancillary benefit, they can assist students and graduates develop professional relationships in the Washington healthcare community and help with obtaining employment after licensing.

What Size are the Classes ? Unless you are the kind of person that prefers to sit way in the back of the classroom or get lost in the crowd, you will undoubtedly want a smaller class size. Small classes allow for more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the physical therapist colleges you are considering what the average student to teacher ratio is for their classrooms. If practical you may prefer to sit in on one or more classes before making your final decision. This will also give you an opportunity to converse with some of the instructors and students to get their opinions regarding the pharmacist tech program as well.

Where is the College Located? For a lot of students, the physical therapy school they pick will need to be within commuting distance of their Washington KS home. Individuals who have opted to attend online classes obviously will not have to worry themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of local internships will be of importance. Something to bear in mind is that if you choose to enroll in a school that is out of state or perhaps out of your local area, you may be required to pay a higher tuition. State colleges generally charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges often charge a higher tuition for those students that live outside of their districts.

Is Financial Aid Offered? Most DPT schools provide some form of financial assistance to their potential students. Find out if the colleges you are considering have a financial assistance department and see what kind of assistance is offered. They at least should help in securing a student loan or any grants you might qualify for. Some physical therapist colleges offer scholarships, while others offer work programs. So before you eliminate a school because the tuition is too expensive, ask what financial assistance might be available.

Can the Program Accommodate your Schedule? And finally you must confirm that the physical therapy program you finally choose can offer the class schedule you need. This is particularly important if you decide to continue working while you attend school. If you must schedule evening or weekend classes in the Washington KS area, check that they are available. If you can only attend part-time, check if that is an alternative and how many credit hours or courses you would need to enroll in. Also, ask what the procedure is for making up any classes that you might miss as a result of work, illness or family emergencies.

Earning Your Physical Therapy Degree near Washington Kansas?

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

Washington, Kansas

Washington was established in spring 1860, and in the same year named county seat.[8] Until the end of the American Civil War it was protected by two stockaded buildings, the Washington Company House and Woolbert's Stockade Hotel.[9][10]

Washington is 39°N 97°W / 39°N 97°W / 39; -97 (39.816877, -97.052503).[12] According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 0.91 square miles (2.36 km2), of which 0.87 square miles (2.25 km2) is land and 0.04 square miles (0.10 km2) is water.[1]

As of the census[2] of 2010, there were 1,131 people, 512 households, and 311 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,300.0 inhabitants per square mile (501.9/km2). There were 582 housing units at an average density of 669.0 per square mile (258.3/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 97.8% White, 0.3% African American, 0.1% Native American, 0.2% Asian, 0.4% from other races, and 1.2% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 2.3% of the population.

Select the Ideal Physical Therapy College near Washington KS

Picking the right physical therapy school is a necessary initial decision you have to make to start a gratifying career in the health care profession. As we have addressed in this article, the DPT or PT degree program and college you enroll in should both have outstanding reputations and accreditation. But there are additional important questions that you need to ask pertaining to your college of choice also. As you start your search for a physical therapist college, keep in mind that numerous factors will lead you toward your ultimate decision. You might want to visit each of the colleges to view their facilities and talk to active DPT students. While there, ask yourself this critical question: will this school help me realize my goal of becoming a practicing licensed physical therapist? By adhering to our list of supplemental questions, you will be able to narrow down the options so you can make the right choice. And with the proper training and education, you can accomplish your dream of becoming a licensed physical therapist in Washington KS.

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