Physical Therapist Schools | Get Your Physical Therapy Degree – Whitesburg KY

How to Pick a Physical Therapy Degree Program near Whitesburg 41858

Whitesburg KY physical therapy school student with volunteerReceiving a physical therapist degree near Whitesburg KY is an essential first step to beginning a fulfilling career in the healthcare industry. Physical therapists (PT) help individuals who have been disabled as a result of illness or injury regain mobility and function. But before they may legally practice and provide treatment for the rehabilitation of patients, they must get the proper training and education. A PT must additionally become licensed in all states, many requiring that the licensee receive a physical therapy degree from an accredited school. So before choosing a physical therapy school, it’s necessary to evaluate the ones you are considering to make certain they will supply a superior education and satisfy your state’s licensing requirements. What you should not do is choose a college simply because it happens to be the nearest to your home or it has cheapest tuition. There are other relevant qualifications that must be evaluated in addition to location and cost. 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 Does a Physical Therapist Do?

Whitesburg KY physical therapist helping patient walkPhysical therapists work in diverse locations, such as Whitesburg KY hospitals, health clinics, rehabilitation centers, nursing homes 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 individuals that are experiencing a lack of mobility and often pain caused by illness or injury. After diagnosing a patient, they develop a program of treatment to deal with the mobility problems and lessen or eliminate any pain. They also try to stop any advancement of the disability. Though the causes of disability necessitating physical therapy are abundant, they include:

  • Osteoporosis and Arthritis
  • Car or motor cycle accidents
  • Head injuries.
  • Heart attacks.
  • Sports injuries.
  • Fire injuries.
  • Knee Replacement.
  • Fibromyalgia.
  • Multiple Sclerosis.

Licensed physical therapists work in close affiliation with other Whitesburg KY health specialists, including doctors, chiropractors, registered nurses and dentists. They can also supervise several physical therapy assistants who work for them assisting with diagnosing and treating their patients. One thing to bear in mind for anyone considering going into the physical therapy field, it is quite physically demanding. Physical therapists often lift patients and heavy equipment, and kneel, crouch and stand for extended periods of time on a daily basis.

Physical Therapy Degree Options

Whitesburg KY physical therapist applying acupuncture to patientThere are three physical therapy degrees offered for students to enroll in at the undergraduate and graduate levels. Of these choices, the one degree that is attainable to become a physical therapist is the doctorate. Undergraduate degrees focus on either preparing students to become a physical therapy assistant (PTA) or preparing them to advance to the doctoral level. Below are brief summaries of degrees that are offered in the Whitesburg KY area:

  • Associate Degrees educate students to be physical therapy assistants, or may be used as a stepping stone to a more advanced degree. Applicants must have a high school diploma or equivalent to qualify for enrollment. The programs are typically made available by community colleges, and require two years to complete. An internship or other form of clinical training is normally a portion of the program.
  • Bachelor’s Degrees are created as pre-physical therapy training to prep candidates to advance to the doctoral level. While they are not a requirement to be a candidate for the doctoral program, they are an important first step to practicing as a PT. Similar to most bachelor’s degrees, they typically require 4 years to complete and usually include an internship program of at least 500 hours.
  • Doctorate Degrees are a requirement in order to become a practicing licensed physical therapist. The degree program also must 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 complete, making the total commitment 7 years in most cases. Clinical training is an intregal element along with the considerable classroom and lab instruction. Therefor the fulfillment of an internship is mandated, not solely 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. Some licensed physical therapists holding a master’s or even a bachelor’s degree were “grandfathered” in before the current licensing requirement for a doctorate was implemented.

Physical Therapist Online Colleges

woman attending physical therapy school online in Whitesburg KYAlthough not as prevalent as the on campus alternatives, there are some accredited online physical therapy degrees available, more so at the graduate level. Due to the hands-on structure of the training, clinical lab work and internships are combined with the online classes. This necessitates that the student live close to the school campus or in proximity of a sponsored internship. Fortunately, the online portion of the course of study may be accessed within the convenience and comfort of the student’s Whitesburg KY home. Online schools are not only to some extent more accessible, but in many instances more economical. Tuition can be somewhat less than similar on-campus alternatives, and expenses for commuting are reduced. And many of the online programs are accredited by the CAPTE, ensuring a quality education. These benefits can make the online option the ideal choice for those students that are dedicated enough to attend classes at home.

Topics to Ask Physical Therapy Colleges

By now you most likely have made a decision concerning a few of your preliminary questions, like the kind of physical therapy degree you want to earn, where you prefer to attend classes, and how much you can afford to spend for your education. But because there are numerous PT schools within the Whitesburg KY area and throughout Kentucky, you’ll need to explore additional qualifications also in order to further reduce your list of college options. Furthermore, you want to make certain that you pick the college that is best for you. That’s why we have collected a list of critical questions that you must ask the physical therapist colleges you are thinking about. Ask all of the competing schools these questions before making a final decision.

Is the Physical Therapy Program Accredited?  Ask if the programs you are looking at have earned accreditation from a national or a regional organization. As earlier stated, if you are pursuing a doctorate the program must be accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE). If you enroll in an online program, it may also receive accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council. It’s imperative that both the physical therapist program and school you choose are accredited, not just the school. Additionally, check that the accreditation is through a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting organization. In addition to guaranteeing that you obtain an excellent education, accreditation might be required for state licensing and even for getting student loans or financial assistance.

What is the Program’s Standing? In addition to accreditation, it’s essential that the college and program you pick have outstanding reputations within the physical therapy community. There are a number of ways you can research a PT college’s reputation, starting with requesting references from employers that they refer their students to. You may also search for online rating services and reviews and ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. Contact several Whitesburg KY physical therapist centers or other health care facilities that you may have an interest in working for and ask if they can provide any recommendations about your program selections. It might also be a good idea to contact the Kentucky Attorney General and school licensing authority to find out if any complaints have been filed against the colleges.

What is the College’s Job Placement Percentage? There are a two useful statistics that you need to know about each of the physical therapy programs you are reviewing. One is their graduation rate. A low rate might mean that students left because of displeasure with the program, the instructors, or both. After the students have graduated, how many of them are being hired with the help of the school’s job placement program, particularly in the Whitesburg KY area? If a program has a higher job placement rate, it suggests that its reputation within the healthcare field is good or even outstanding. It also affirms that the program has a large network of contacts to assist students obtain internships or employment after graduation.

Does the School Prepare You For Licensing Requirements? It’s important that the school you select provides both exceptional training and a curriculum that supports the licensing criteria for Kentucky or the state where you will be working. 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 school. Although licensing requirements differ state by state for PT and PTA graduates, a number of states require a minimum amount of clinical hours be completed as well as passing scores on additional tests.

Are Internships Offered? Ask if the physical therapist schools you are evaluating have partnerships with Whitesburg KY hospitals or clinics for internship programs. Not only are internships a great manner to get hands on experience in a clinical environment, they are additionally a requirement for most PT programs and state licensing. As an ancillary benefit, they can help students and graduates establish professional connections in the Whitesburg health care community and help with obtaining employment after licensing.

How Big are the Classes ? Unless you are the type of person that prefers to sit way in the rear of class or get lost in the crowd, you will likely want a smaller class size. Smaller classes permit more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the physical therapy colleges you are looking at what the average teacher to student ratio is for their classrooms. If practical you may want to monitor one or more classes before making your ultimate determination. This will also give you an opportunity to talk with a few of the instructors and students to get their opinions regarding the pharmacy tech program also.

Where is the Program Located? For a number of students, the physical therapist school they pick will have to be within driving distance of their Whitesburg KY home. Individuals 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 choose to enroll in a school that is out of state or perhaps out of your local area, you may have to pay a higher tuition. State colleges often 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 Aid Provided? Most DPT schools provide some type of financial aid to their prospective students. Inquire if the schools you are reviewing have a financial aid office and see what type of help is offered. At a minimum they should help in obtaining a student loan or any scholarships you may be eligible for. Some physical therapist schools provide scholarships, while others offer work programs. So before eliminating a school because the tuition is too expensive, ask what financial aid might be available.

Can the School Accommodate your Schedule? And last you must confirm that the physical therapist college you ultimately choose can offer the class schedule you need. This is especially crucial if you choose to continue working while you attend classes. If you need to schedule evening or weekend classes in the Whitesburg KY area, confirm that they are available. If you can only enroll on a part-time basis, find out if that is an option and how many credit hours or courses you would need to enroll in. Also, find out 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 Whitesburg Kentucky?

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

Whitesburg, Kentucky

Whitesburg is a home rule-class city in and the county seat of Letcher County, Kentucky, United States.[2] The population was 2,139 at the 2010 census. It was named for C. White, a state politician.[3]

Whitesburg is home to Appalshop, a multi-disciplinary arts and education center founded in 1969 which produces original films, video, theater, music and spoken-word recordings, radio, photography, multimedia, and books. WMMT (FM) 88.7 (Mountain Community Radio), was founded by Appalshop in 1985.

Whitesburg's major newspaper is The Mountain Eagle. Founded by Nehemiah Webb in 1907, the weekly paper has been owned by the Gish family of Letcher County since 1956. The Eagle has won numerous awards for its coverage of strip mining and its environmental effects, education, and political corruption.[4]

Choose the Best Physical Therapy Degree Program near Whitesburg KY

Selecting the right physical therapist college is an important first decision you have to make to launch a rewarding career in the healthcare profession. As we have discussed in this article, the PT or DPT degree program and college you choose should both have outstanding reputations and accreditation. But there are other critical questions that you need to ask regarding your school of choice as well. As you commence your search for a physical therapist college, keep in mind that numerous factors will lead you toward your final decision. You might want to visit each of the schools to see their facilities and speak with active DPT students. While there, ask yourself this important question: will this school help me reach my goal of becoming a licensed practicing physical therapist? By adhering to our list of additional questions, you will be able to narrow down the options so you can make the right choice. And with the necessary education and training, you can achieve your dream to become a practicing physical therapist in Whitesburg KY.

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