How to Pick a Physical Therapist College near Strasburg 80136
Getting a physical therapy degree near Strasburg CO is an essential first step to launching a rewarding career in the health care field. Physical therapists (PT) help patients who have been disabled due to injury or illness regain function and mobility. But before they may legally practice and provide treatment for the rehabilitation of patients, they need to get the appropriate education and training. A PT must also be licensed in all states, a large number requiring that the licensee receive a physical therapy degree from an accredited school. So before selecting a physical therapy school, it’s essential to investigate those you are thinking about to ensure they will provide a superior education and satisfy your state’s licensing standards. What you do not want to do is select a school just because it happens to be the closest to your residence or it has the most affordable tuition. There are other relevant qualifications that need to 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 is a Physical Therapist’s Job Description?
Physical therapists practice in diverse settings, including Strasburg CO private practices, hospitals, assisted living facilities, rehab centers and health clubs. What the facilities all share in common is that they have the equipment for diagnosing and rehabilitating patients. As previously touched on, physical therapists help individuals that are experiencing a lack of mobility and frequently pain due to illness or injury. After patient diagnosis, they develop a program of treatment to deal with the mobility problems and lessen or eradicate any pain. They also try to stop any progression of the disability. Although the causes of disability requiring physical therapy are numerous, they include:
- Osteoporosis and Arthritis
- Car or motor cycle accidents
- Head injuries.
- Heart attacks.
- Sports injuries.
- Fire injuries.
- Hip Replacement.
- Multiple Sclerosis.
Licensed physical therapists work in close affiliation with other Strasburg CO medical professionals, including doctors, chiropractors, registered nurses and dentists. They can also supervise several physical therapy assistants who work under them assisting with the diagnosis and treatment of their patients. One thing to keep in mind for anyone considering 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 extended periods of time on a daily basis.
Physical Therapist Degrees Available
There are 3 physical therapist degree options available for individuals to enroll in at the graduate and undergraduate levels. Of these options, the only degree that is available to become a physical therapist is the doctorate. Undergraduate degrees concentrate 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 degree levels that are available in the Strasburg CO area:
- Associate Degrees train students to practice as 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 typically made available by community colleges, and require two years to complete. An internship or other form of clinical training is normally part of the course of study.
- Bachelor’s Degrees are created as pre-physical therapist education to prepare candidates to advance to the doctoral level. While they are not a requirement to be qualified for the doctoral program, they are an integral preliminary step to becoming a PT. As with most bachelor’s degrees, they normally take 4 years to complete and often include an internship program of a minimum of 500 hours.
- Doctorate Degrees are required 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 seven years in most cases. Clinical or practical training is an essential element along with the extensive lab and classroom instruction. Therefor the fulfillment of an internship is required, not solely for graduation but in a number of states for licensing as well.
The Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) has replaced the Master’s of Physical Therapy (MPT), which has been phased out and is no longer offered in the United States. Some practicing physical therapists holding a master’s or in some cases a bachelor’s degree were “grandfathered” in prior to the current licensing mandate for a doctorate was instituted.
Physical Therapy Online Programs
While not as prevalent as the on-campus alternatives, there are some accredited online physical therapist degrees 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 necessitates that the student live near the school campus or nearby an available internship. However, the online portion of the course of study may be accessed within the convenience and comfort of the student’s Strasburg CO home. Online schools are not only partially more accessible, but in many cases more affordable. Tuition can be significantly less than similar on-campus options, and costs for commuting are minimized. And many of the online programs are accredited by the CAPTE, assuring a quality education. These benefits can make the online alternative the ideal choice for those students that are disciplined enough to attend classes at home.
Topics to Ask Physical Therapist Programs
At this point you probably have made a decision concerning some of your preliminary questions, like the kind of physical therapist degree you would like to attain, where you want to attend classes, and how much money you can afford to spend for your education. But considering there are so many PT schools within the Strasburg CO area and across Colorado, you’ll need to look into additional qualifications as well in order to further narrow your list of school options. Furthermore, you want to make sure that you enroll in the program that is best for you. That’s why we have compiled a list of critical questions that you need to ask the physical therapist schools you are thinking about. Ask all of the competing colleges these questions prior to making a final decision.
Is the Physical Therapist Program Accredited? Find out if the colleges you are reviewing have earned accreditation from a national or a regional organization. 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 enroll in an online college, it may also obtain accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council. It’s important that both the physical therapist school and program you select are accredited, not just the school. Also, make sure that the accreditation is from a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting organization. In addition to ensuring that you obtain a quality education, accreditation might be mandated for state licensing and even for securing student loans or financial assistance.
What is the College’s Reputation? Along with accreditation, it’s imperative that the school and program you pick have outstanding reputations within the physical therapist profession. There are several ways you can investigate a PT college’s reputation, starting 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 as well. Get in touch with some Strasburg CO physical therapy centers or other medical care facilities that you may have an interest in working for and ask if they can provide any insight about your college selections. It may also be prudent to check with the Colorado Attorney General and school licensing authority to see if any complaints have been submitted against the colleges.
What is the College’s Job Placement Rate? There are a couple of significant statistics that you need to know about each of the physical therapist colleges you are considering. First is their graduation rate. A lower rate may indicate that students dropped out because of displeasure with the program, the instructors, or both. Once the students have graduated, how many of them are being placed in jobs with the help of the college’s job placement program, particularly in the Strasburg CO area? If a school has a high job placement rate, it’s an indication that its reputation within the health care community is good or perhaps outstanding. It also verifies that the college has a large network of contacts to assist students obtain internships or employment after graduation.
Does the Program Prepare You For Licensing Requirements? It’s essential that the program you select furnishes both excellent training and a course of study that supports the licensing criteria for Colorado or the state where you will be working. In each state a passing score is required on the National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE) in addition to a degree from an accredited physical therapy college. Although licensing requirements fluctuate state by state for PTA and PT graduates, some states require a minimum number of clinical hours be completed and passing scores on supplemental tests.
Are Internship Programs Provided? Find out if the physical therapy colleges you are reviewing have relationships with Strasburg CO hospitals or clinics for internship programs. Internships are not only an excellent means to obtain hands on experience in a clinical setting, they are additionally a requirement for most PT programs and state licensing. As a supplemental benefit, they may assist graduates and students form professional connections in the Strasburg health care community and assist with obtaining employment once licensed.
How Big are the Classes ? Unless you are the sort of person that likes to sit way in the back of class or get lost in the crowd, you will undoubtedly prefer a smaller class size. Smaller classes enable more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the physical therapy colleges you are reviewing what the average student to teacher ratio is for their classrooms. If practical you may want to sit in on one or more classes before making your ultimate decision. This will also give you an opportunity to converse with some of the instructors and students to get their opinions regarding the pharmacy tech program as well.
Where is the School Located? For a lot of students, the physical therapy college they select will need to be within commuting distance of their Strasburg CO residence. Those 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 importance. One thing 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 might be required to pay a higher tuition. State colleges normally charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges commonly charge a higher tuition for those students that don’t reside within their districts.
Is Financial Support Offered? The majority of DPT schools offer some type of financial assistance to their prospective students. Ask if the colleges you are examining have a financial aid department and find out what kind of aid is available. At a minimum they should help in securing a student loan or any grants you might qualify for. A number of physical therapist colleges offer scholarships, while others provide work programs. So before you eliminate a college because the tuition is beyond your budget, find out what financial assistance might be available.
Can the College Accommodate your Schedule? And last you must confirm that the physical therapist school you finally select can offer the class schedule you need. This is especially crucial if you decide to continue working while you attend school. If you need to schedule evening or weekend classes in the Strasburg CO area, check that they are available. If you can only enroll on a part-time basis, check if that is an alternative and how many courses or credit hours you would have to carry. Also, find out what the protocol is for making up any classes that you might miss due to work, illness or family obligations.
Earning Your Physical Therapy Degree near Strasburg Colorado?
If you are planning on attending a Physical Therapy School in the Strasburg CO area, the following information may prove to be both interesting and educational regarding the location of your future Alma Mater.
Strasburg is a census-designated place (CDP) in Adams and Arapahoe counties in the U.S. state of Colorado. The population was 2,447 at the 2010 census, up from 1,402 at the 2000 census. The Strasburg Post Office has the ZIP Code 80136.
Strasburg is located at 39°44′10″N 104°19′43″W / 39.73611°N 104.32861°W / 39.73611; -104.32861 (39.736047, -104.328494). According to the United States Census Bureau, the CDP has a total area of 20.82 square miles (53.93 km2), of which 20.80 square miles (53.86 km2) is land and 0.023 square miles (0.06 km2), or 0.12%, is water.
As of the census of 2000, there were 1,402 people, 503 households, and 393 families residing in the CDP. The population density was 181.1 people per square mile (69.9/km²). There were 532 housing units at an average density of 68.7 per square mile (26.5/km²). The racial makeup of the CDP was 95.44% White, 1.28% African American, 0.57% Native American, 0.21% Asian, 0.07% Pacific Islander, 0.71% from other races, and 1.71% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 2.85% of the population.
Enroll in the Best Physical Therapist Degree Program near Strasburg CO
Selecting the ideal physical therapy college is a necessary first decision you have to make to start a gratifying career in the health care field. As we have covered in this article, the PT or DPT degree program and school you enroll in should both have outstanding reputations and be accredited. However there are additional relevant questions that you should ask regarding your college of choice also. 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 each of the campuses to view their facilities and talk to active DPT students. While there, ask yourself this important question: will this program help me reach my goal of becoming a licensed practicing physical therapist? By following our list of additional questions, you will be able to narrow down the field so you can make the ideal selection. And with the proper training and education, you can fulfill your dream of becoming a licensed physical therapist in Strasburg CO.
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