Physical Therapist Schools | Get Your Physical Therapy Degree – La Fayette KY

How to Select a Physical Therapist School near La Fayette 42254

La Fayette KY physical therapy school student with volunteerEarning a physical therapy degree near La Fayette KY is an essential first step to beginning a fulfilling career in the health care industry. Physical therapists (PT) help individuals who have been debilitated as a result of illness or injury regain function and mobility. But before they can practice and provide treatment for the rehabilitation of patients, they need to get the necessary education and training. A PT must also become licensed in all states, a large number requiring that the licensee earn a physical therapy degree from an accredited school. So prior to choosing a physical therapy school, it’s important to research the ones you are looking at to make sure they will supply a quality education and comply with your state’s licensing criteria. What you should not do is choose a college simply because it happens to be the nearest to your home or it has the most affordable tuition. There are other significant qualifications that must be considered along with location and cost. But before we discuss what those qualifications are and what questions you should ask, we’ll cover what a physical therapist does and the options for education.

What Do Physical Therapists Do?

La Fayette KY physical therapist helping patient walkPhysical therapists practice in varying locations, including La Fayette KY hospitals, health clinics, assisted living facilities, rehab centers and health clubs. What the facilities all have in common is that they are equipped for diagnosing and rehabilitating patients. As earlier 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 resolve the mobility problems and lessen or eliminate any pain. They also strive to stop any progression of the disability. Though the causes of disability requiring physical therapy are numerous, they include:

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

Licensed physical therapists work in close association with other La Fayette KY medical professionals, including chiropractors, physicians, dentists and nurses. They may also supervise several physical therapy assistants who work under them in diagnosing and treating their patients. Something 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 kneel, crouch and stand for prolonged periods of time on a daily basis.

Physical Therapy Degrees

La Fayette KY physical therapist applying acupuncture to patientThere are three physical therapy degrees offered for students to pursue at the undergraduate and graduate levels. Of these options, the one degree that is available to become 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 brief summaries of degree levels that are offered in the La Fayette KY area:

  • Associate Degrees train students to become physical therapy assistants, or can be the first step toward earning a more advanced degree. Candidates must have earned a high school diploma or equivalent to qualify for enrollment. The programs are most often provided by community colleges, and require 2 years to complete. An internship or other form of clinical training is usually a component of the course of study.
  • Bachelor’s Degrees are developed as pre-physical therapist training to ready candidates to advance to the doctoral level. Although they are not a requirement to be qualified for the doctoral program, they are an integral initial step to practicing as a PT. As with the majority of bachelor’s degrees, they normally take four years to complete and commonly include an internship program of a minimum of 500 hours.
  • Doctorate Degrees are mandated if you want to become a licensed practicing 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 overall commitment 7 years in the majority of cases. Clinical training is an intregal element along with the extensive classroom and lab instruction. Consequently the fulfillment 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 eliminated and is no longer attainable in the United States. Some 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 Therapy Online Colleges

woman attending physical therapy school online in La Fayette KYWhile not as prevalent as the more traditional alternatives, there are a number of accredited online physical therapist programs available, more so at the graduate level. Due to the hands-on nature of the training, clinical lab work and internships are incorporated with the online classes. This requires that the student live close to the school campus or in proximity of a sponsored internship. However, the online portion of the curriculum can be accessed within the comfort and convenience of the student’s La Fayette KY home. Online programs are not only partially more accessible, but in many instances more affordable. Tuition may be significantly lower than comparable on-campus alternatives, and expenditures for commuting are reduced. And many of the online programs are accredited by the CAPTE, assuring a quality education. These advantages may make the online option the ideal choice for those students that are dedicated enough to learn at home.

Questions to Ask Physical Therapist Schools

At this point you probably have come to decision regarding some of your initial queries, such as the kind of physical therapist degree you intend to obtain, where you want to attend classes, and how much you can afford to invest in your education. But since there are so many PT schools within the La Fayette KY area and across Kentucky, you’ll have to research additional qualifications as well so as to further reduce your list of college choices. Furthermore, you need to be sure that you choose the program that is best for you. That’s the reason we have collected a list of important questions that you must ask the physical therapy colleges you are thinking about. Ask all of the competing colleges these questions before making an ultimate decision.

Is the Physical Therapy School Accredited?  Find out if the schools you are considering have earned 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 program, it can also receive accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council. It’s imperative that both the physical therapy program and school you select are accredited, not simply the school. Additionally, verify 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 may be required for state licensing and even for getting student loans or financial aid.

What is the Program’s Ranking? Along with accreditation, it’s imperative that the college and program you select have excellent reputations within the physical therapist community. There are multiple ways you can look into a PT program’s reputation, starting with asking for 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 as well. Contact some La Fayette KY physical therapy clinics or other medical care facilities that you might have an interest in working for and ask if they can give you any insight about your college selections. It might also be prudent to check with the Kentucky Attorney General and school licensing authority to see if any complaints have been submitted against the schools.

What is the College’s Job Placement Rate? There are a couple of significant statistics that you need to know about all of the physical therapist programs you are reviewing. First is their graduation rate. A low rate may indicate that students left because of dissatisfaction with the program, the teachers, 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 La Fayette KY area? If a program has a higher job placement rate, it suggests that its reputation within the healthcare community is good or even excellent. It also verifies that the school has a wide network of contacts to assist students gain internships or employment after graduation.

Does the School Support Licensing Requirements? It’s important that the school you select provides both superior training and a curriculum that satisfies the licensing criteria for Kentucky or the state where you will be working. In each state a passing score is needed on the National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE) in addition to a degree from an accredited physical therapist program. Although licensing requirements fluctuate state by state for PTA and PT graduates, many states require a minimum amount of clinical hours be completed and passing scores on additional exams.

Are Internships Sponsored? Inquire if the physical therapist schools you are evaluating have associations with La Fayette KY hospitals or clinics for internship programs. Internships are not only an excellent means to get practical experience in a clinical setting, they are additionally a requirement for most PT programs and state licensing. As a supplemental benefit, they may help graduates and students form professional connections in the La Fayette medical community and assist with job placement after licensing.

What are the Class Sizes ? Unless you are the sort of student that likes to sit way in the back of class or get lost in the crowd, you will undoubtedly want a smaller class size. Smaller classes enable more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the physical therapist colleges you are reviewing what the average teacher to student 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 a chance to converse with some of the students and instructors to get their opinions regarding the pharmacy tech program also.

Where is the School Located? For a number of students, the physical therapist school they select will need to be within driving distance of their La Fayette KY home. Individuals who have opted to attend online classes naturally will not have to concern themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of local internships will be of concern. One thing 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 might be required to pay a higher tuition. State colleges typically charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges generally charge a higher tuition to those students that don’t reside within their districts.

Is Financial Support Provided? Most DPT colleges provide some type of financial aid to their prospective students. Ask if the schools you are examining have a financial assistance department and see what kind of assistance is obtainable. At a minimum they should help in acquiring a student loan or any scholarships you may qualify for. A number of physical therapy schools provide scholarships, while others provide work programs. So before you eliminate a program because the tuition is beyond your budget, find out what financial aid may be available.

Can the Program Accommodate your Schedule? And last you must confirm that the physical therapist school you ultimately pick can offer the class schedule you need. This is especially important if you decide to continue working while attending school. If you need to schedule night or weekend classes in the La Fayette KY area, make certain 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 have to carry. Also, find out what the protocol is for making up any classes that you may miss because of illness, work or family obligations.

Earning Your Physical Therapy Degree near La Fayette Kentucky?

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

Fayette County, Kentucky

Fayette County is a county located in the U.S. state of Kentucky. As of the 2010 census, the population was 295,803,[1] making it the second-most populous county in the commonwealth. Its territory, population and government are coextensive with the city of Lexington, which also serves as the county seat.[2]

Fayette County—originally Fayette County, Virginia—was established by the Virginia General Assembly in June 1780, when it abolished and subdivided Kentucky County into three counties: Fayette, Jefferson and Lincoln. Together, these counties and those set off from them later in that decade separated from Virginia in 1792 to become the Commonwealth of Kentucky.

Originally, Fayette County included land which makes up 37 present-day counties and parts of 7 others. It was reduced to its present boundaries in 1799. The county is named for the Marquis de LaFayette, who came to America to support the rebelling English colonies in the American Revolutionary War.[3][4]

Select the Right Physical Therapist Training Program near La Fayette KY

Selecting the ideal physical therapy college is a necessary initial decision you need to make to start a rewarding career in the healthcare field. As we have discussed in this article, the PT or DPT degree program and school you pick should both have outstanding reputations and accreditation. But there are additional relevant questions that you need to ask concerning your school of choice also. As you start your search for a physical therapist college, keep in mind that many factors will lead you to your final decision. You may decide to go to each of the colleges to see their facilities and talk with current DPT students. While there, ask yourself this important question: will this program help me reach my goal of becoming a practicing licensed physical therapist? By adhering to our list of additional questions, you will be able to narrow down the options so you can make the best choice. And with the necessary education and training, you can fulfill your dream to become a licensed physical therapist in La Fayette KY.

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