How to Select a Physical Therapy Program near Mc Rae 72102
Earning a physical therapist degree near Mc Rae AR is a critical first step to beginning a rewarding career in the health care field. Physical therapists (PT) help patients who have been debilitated due to illness or injury gain back function and mobility. But before they can practice and work with the rehabilitation of patients, they need to receive the appropriate education and training. A PT must also become licensed in every state, many mandating that the licensee hold a physical therapy degree from an accredited college. So prior to choosing a physical therapy school, it’s essential to evaluate the ones you are considering to make certain they will provide a superior education and meet your state’s licensing standards. What you do not want to 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 considered in addition to cost and location. But before we cover what those qualifications are and the questions you should be asking, we’ll cover what a physical therapist does and what the educational options are.
What Does a Physical Therapist Do?
Physical therapists practice in diverse locations, including Mc Rae AR private practices, hospitals, 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 suffering from a lack of mobility and often pain due to injury or illness. After patient diagnosis, they develop a program of treatment to deal with the mobility problems and reduce or eradicate any pain. They also try to stop any progression of the disability. Although the causes of disability requiring physical therapy are abundant, they include:
- Osteoporosis and Arthritis
- Car or motor cycle accidents
- Cardiac arrest.
- Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.
- Fire injuries.
- Knee Replacement.
- Multiple Sclerosis.
Licensed physical therapists practice in close association with other Mc Rae AR health professionals, including chiropractors, physicians, dentists and nurses. They may also oversee 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 profession, it is rather physically demanding. Physical therapists often lift patients and heavy equipment, and kneel, crouch and stand for prolonged periods of time on a daily basis.
Physical Therapy Degrees Available
There are 3 physical therapist degree options available for individuals to pursue at the graduate and undergraduate levels. Of these options, the only degree that is available to practice as 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. Following are brief summaries of degrees that are available in the Mc Rae AR area:
- Associate Degrees train students to be physical therapy assistants, or can be the first step toward earning a more advanced degree. Candidates must have obtained a high school diploma or GED to qualify for enrollment. The programs are usually made available by junior or community colleges, and take about two years for completion. An internship or other form of clinical training is typically a portion of the curriculum.
- Bachelor’s Degrees are designed as pre-physical therapy education to ready candidates to advance to the doctoral level. Although they are not required to be a candidate for the doctoral program, they are an essential preliminary step to becoming a PT. As with most bachelor’s degrees, they typically take 4 years to finish and usually include an internship program of a minimum of 500 hours.
- Doctorate Degrees are required 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). In addition to the bachelor’s degree, the doctoral takes 3 years to complete, making the overall investment of time 7 years in most cases. Clinical or practical training is an intregal component along with the extensive lab and classroom instruction. Therefor the fulfillment of an internship is required, not just for graduation but in some 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 attainable in the USA. A number of licensed 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 Schools Online
Although not as prevalent as the on campus options, there are some accredited online physical therapy degrees available, even more 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 near the college campus or nearby an available internship. However, the online part of the curriculum may be accessed within the comfort and convenience of the student’s Mc Rae AR residence. Online schools are not only partially more accessible, but in a number of cases more economical. Tuition may be somewhat less than similar on campus alternatives, and expenses for commuting are minimized. And many of the online schools are accredited by the CAPTE, ensuring a quality education. These advantages can make the online option the best choice for those students that are disciplined enough to learn at home.
What to Ask Physical Therapy Programs
At this point you undoubtedly have come to decision concerning a few of your preliminary questions, including the kind of physical therapy degree you intend to attain, where you want to attend classes, and how much you can afford to invest in your education. But considering there are numerous PT schools within the Mc Rae AR area and across Arkansas, you’ll need to look into other qualifications as well so as to further narrow your list of school choices. Also, you want to make certain that you enroll in the school that is ideal for you. That’s the reason we have collected a list of important questions that you must ask the physical therapy programs you are thinking about. Ask each of the potential schools these questions prior to making a final selection.
Is the Physical Therapy Program Accredited? Find out if the colleges you are considering 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 college, it can also obtain accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council. It’s imperative that both the physical therapist school and program you enroll in are accredited, not just the school. Additionally, verify that the accreditation is through a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting organization. Besides ensuring that you obtain a quality education, accreditation may be mandated for state licensing and even for securing student loans or financial assistance.
What is the School’s Standing? In addition to accreditation, it’s essential that the school and program you pick have exceptional reputations within the physical therapist profession. There are multiple ways you can investigate a PT college’s reputation, starting with requesting references from employers that they refer their students to. You may also check online rating services and reviews and ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. Call several Mc Rae AR physical therapist centers or other healthcare facilities that you may be interested in working for and ask if they can offer any insight about your school options. It may also be a good idea to check with the Arkansas Attorney General and school licensing authority to see if any complaints have been submitted against the schools.
What is the College’s Job Placement Percentage? There are a two relevant statistics that you should find out about all of the physical therapy schools you are considering. First is their graduation rate. A low rate might indicate that students dropped out because of dissatisfaction with the program, the teachers, or both. After the students have graduated, how many of them are being placed in jobs with the support of the school’s job placement program, particularly in the Mc Rae AR area? If a school has a higher job placement rate, it’s an indication that its reputation within the medical care community is good or perhaps exceptional. It also affirms that the school has a wide network of contacts to help students obtain internships or jobs upon graduation.
Does the College Support Licensing Requirements? It’s essential that the program you select provides both exceptional training and a curriculum that supports the licensing requirements for Arkansas or the state where you will be working. In each state a passing score is required on the National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE) along with a degree from an accredited physical therapy program. While licensing requirements vary state by state for PT and PTA graduates, a number of states require a minimum amount of clinical hours be completed and passing scores on additional tests.
Are Internships Sponsored? Ask if the physical therapy programs you are evaluating have partnerships with Mc Rae AR hospitals or clinics for internship programs. Not only are internships an excellent way to obtain hands on experience in a clinical environment, they are also a requirement for most PT programs and state licensing. As a secondary benefit, they can assist graduates and students develop professional relationships in the Mc Rae healthcare community and assist with job placement after licensing.
How Large are the Classes ? Unless you are the kind of student that likes to sit far in the rear of the classroom or hide in the crowd, you will undoubtedly want a smaller class size. Small classes enable more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the physical therapy colleges you are reviewing 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 ultimate decision. This will also give you an opportunity to converse with some of the students and instructors to get their opinions regarding the pharmacist tech program also.
Where is the Program Located? For many students, the physical therapy school they select will need to be within driving distance of their Mc Rae AR home. Students who have decided 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 concern. Something to keep in mind is that if you choose to enroll in a college that is out of state or even out of your local area, you may need to pay a higher tuition. State colleges normally charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges generally charge a higher tuition to those students that live outside of their districts.
Is Financial Support Provided? Most DPT schools offer some form of financial assistance to their prospective students. Find out if the colleges you are reviewing have a financial assistance department and find out what type of help is offered. At a minimum they should help in acquiring a student loan or any grants you might qualify for. A number of physical therapist schools offer scholarships, while others offer work programs. So before you eliminate a college because the tuition is beyond your budget, find out what financial aid may be available.
Can the School Accommodate your Schedule? And finally you must verify that the physical therapist program you finally select can provide the class schedule you need. This is particularly essential if you choose to continue working while attending classes. If you need to schedule evening or weekend classes in the Mc Rae AR area, check that they are offered. If you can only attend part-time, find out 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 may miss because of illness, work or family obligations.
Earning Your Physical Therapy Degree near Mc Rae Arkansas?
If you are planning on attending a Physical Therapy School in the Mc Rae AR area, the following information may prove to be both interesting and educational regarding the location of your future Alma Mater.
As of the census of 2000, there were 661 people, 280 households, and 185 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,312.5 people per square mile (510.4/km²). There were 312 housing units at an average density of 619.5/sq mi (240.9/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 95.31% White, 0.45% Black or African American, 0.61% Native American, 1.06% from other races, and 2.57% from two or more races. 4.08% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.
There were 280 households out of which 28.9% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 50.0% were married couples living together, 12.1% had a female householder with no husband present, and 33.9% were non-families. 30.7% of all households were made up of individuals and 17.5% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.36 and the average family size was 2.94.
In the city, the population was spread out with 23.8% under the age of 18, 10.1% from 18 to 24, 25.1% from 25 to 44, 23.4% from 45 to 64, and 17.5% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 38 years. For every 100 females, there were 89.9 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 84.6 males.
Choose the Right Physical Therapist School near Mc Rae AR
Choosing the right physical therapy program is a necessary first decision you must make to begin a fulfilling career in the healthcare field. As we have addressed in this article, the PT or DPT degree program and college you select should both have exceptional reputations and be accredited. But there are additional important questions that you need to ask regarding your school of choice also. As you start your search for a physical therapy college, keep in mind that many factors will lead you toward your final decision. You may want to visit different schools to see their facilities and talk to 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 supplemental questions, you will have the ability to narrow down the options so you can make the right selection. And with the proper education and training, you can achieve your dream of becoming a licensed physical therapist in Mc Rae AR.
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