How to Pick a Physical Therapist Degree Program near Litchfield Park 85340
Earning a physical therapy degree near Litchfield Park AZ is an important first step to starting a rewarding career in the healthcare field. Physical therapists (PT) help individuals who have been disabled 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 obtain the appropriate education and training. A PT must additionally be licensed in every state, many mandating that the licensee earn a physical therapy degree from an accredited college. So prior to enrolling in a physical therapy school, it’s necessary to investigate those you are considering to make certain they will furnish 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 residence or it has cheapest tuition. There are other significant qualifications that need to be considered in addition to location and cost. But before we talk about what those qualifications are and the questions you should be asking, we’ll address what a physical therapist does and the options for education.
What Does a Physical Therapist Do?
Physical therapists practice in diverse settings, such as Litchfield Park AZ hospitals, health clinics, rehabilitation centers, nursing homes and health clubs. What the facilities all have in common is that they have the equipment for diagnosing and rehabilitating patients. As earlier touched on, physical therapists help people that are suffering from a lack of mobility and in many cases pain due to injury or illness. After patient diagnosis, they develop a program of treatment to deal with the mobility issues and lessen or eliminate any pain. They also try to stop any progression of the disability. Though the causes of disability requiring physical therapy are numerous, they include:
- Osteoporosis and Arthritis
- Motor vehicle accidents
- Cardiac arrest.
- Sports injuries.
- Fire injuries.
- Knee Replacement.
- Cerebral Palsy.
Licensed physical therapists practice in close affiliation with other Litchfield Park AZ health specialists, including chiropractors, physicians, dentists and nurses. They may also supervise one or more physical therapy assistants who work for them in the diagnosis and treatment of their patients. One thing to bear in mind for anyone considering entering the physical therapy field, it is rather physically demanding. Physical therapists routinely lift heavy equipment as well as patients, and stand, crouch and kneel for long periods of time on a daily basis.
Physical Therapist Degrees
There are three physical therapist degree options offered for individuals to pursue at the graduate and undergraduate levels. Of these alternatives, the single degree that is offered to become a physical therapist is the doctorate. Undergraduate degrees focus on either training students to become a physical therapy assistant (PTA) or readying them to progress to the doctoral level. Below are brief descriptions of degrees that are offered in the Litchfield Park AZ area:
- Associate Degrees educate students to become physical therapy assistants, or may be used as a stepping stone to a more advanced degree. Applicants must have obtained a high school diploma or equivalent to qualify for enrollment. The degrees are usually made available by community or junior colleges, and take about 2 years for completion. An internship or other form of clinical training is usually part of the program.
- Bachelor’s Degrees are developed as pre-physical therapy education to ready candidates to move up to the doctoral level. While they are not required to be a candidate for the doctoral program, they are an integral first step to practicing as a PT. As with the majority of bachelor’s degrees, they typically take 4 years to complete and often include an internship program of at least 500 hours.
- Doctorate Degrees are required 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). After earning the bachelor’s degree, the doctoral takes three years to finish, making the total investment of time 7 years in the majority of cases. Clinical or practical training is an important element in addition to the considerable classroom and lab instruction. Consequently the fulfillment of an internship is required, not just for graduation but in some states for licensing also.
The Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) has replaced the Master’s of Physical Therapy (MPT), which has been eliminated and is no longer attainable in the USA. A number of licensed physical therapists having a master’s or in some cases a bachelor’s degree were “grandfathered” in before the present licensing mandate for a doctorate was implemented.
Physical Therapy Online Colleges
While not as common as the more traditional alternatives, there are a number of accredited online physical therapist programs available, more so 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 college campus or in proximity of an available internship. Fortunately, the online segment of the course of study can be accessed within the comfort and convenience of the student’s Litchfield Park AZ residence. Online schools are not only to some extent more accessible, but in a number of cases more affordable. Tuition might be significantly lower than comparable on-campus alternatives, and costs for commuting are reduced. And a number of the online schools are accredited by the CAPTE, ensuring a quality education. These benefits may make the online option the best choice for those students that are dedicated enough to attend classes at home.
Subjects to Ask Physical Therapy Programs
At this point you undoubtedly have come to decision regarding a few of your initial queries, like the kind of physical therapy degree you want to obtain, where you prefer to attend classes, and how much money you can afford to invest in your education. But considering there are numerous PT schools within the Litchfield Park AZ area and across Arizona, you’ll have to explore other qualifications also in order to further reduce your list of school options. Furthermore, you want to be sure that you choose the school that is best for you. That’s why we have put together a list of important questions that you need to ask the physical therapy schools you are considering. Ask each of the competing schools these questions prior to making a final decision.
Is the Physical Therapy Program Accredited? Ask if the schools you are looking at have received accreditation from a national or a regional agency. As previously stated, 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 may also receive accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council. It’s important that both the physical therapy program and school you choose are accredited, not simply the school. Also, make sure that the accreditation is through a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting organization. Besides guaranteeing that you obtain a quality education, accreditation might be required for state licensing and even for securing student loans or financial assistance.
What is the College’s Standing? In addition to accreditation, it’s important that the school and program you pick have excellent reputations within the physical therapy community. There are several ways you can look into a PT program’s reputation, beginning 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 also. Call several Litchfield Park AZ physical therapist clinics or other medical care facilities that you might be interested in working for and ask if they can provide any recommendations about your college selections. It may also be a good idea to contact the Arizona Attorney General and school licensing authority to see if any complaints have been submitted against the colleges.
What is the School’s Job Placement Rate? There are a couple of useful statistics that you need to know about all of the physical therapist schools you are looking at. First is their graduation rate. A lower rate may suggest that students dropped out because of displeasure with the program, the instructors, or both. After the students have graduated, what percentage of them are being placed in jobs with the help of the school’s job placement program, particularly in the Litchfield Park AZ area? If a college has a high job placement rate, it’s an indication that its reputation within the medical care community is good or perhaps outstanding. It also affirms that the school has a wide network of contacts to help students gain internships or jobs after graduation.
Does the School Support Licensing Requirements? It’s important that the program you choose provides both exceptional training and a course of study that supports the licensing requirements for Arizona or the state where you will be practicing. 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 college. Although licensing requirements vary state by state for PT and PTA graduates, some states require a minimum amount of clinical hours be performed and passing scores on additional tests.
Are Internships Provided? Find out if the physical therapy schools you are assessing have associations with Litchfield Park AZ hospitals or clinics for internship programs. Internships are not only an excellent means to receive practical experience in a clinical environment, they are also a requirement for the majority of PT programs and state licensing. As a secondary benefit, they can assist graduates and students form professional relationships in the Litchfield Park medical community and assist with job placement after licensing.
How Big are the Classes ? Unless you are the sort of student that prefers to sit far in the back of class or hide in the crowd, you will probably want a small class size. Smaller classes allow for more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the physical therapist colleges you are researching what the average student to teacher ratio is for their classrooms. If practical you may prefer to monitor one or more classes before making your ultimate decision. This will also give you an opportunity to speak with several of the instructors and students to get their opinions regarding the pharmacy tech program also.
Where is the School Located? For a number of students, the physical therapist college they choose will need to be within driving distance of their Litchfield Park AZ residence. 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 local internships will be of importance. One thing to keep in mind is that if you choose to enroll in a program that is out of state or perhaps out of your local area, you might need to pay a higher tuition. State colleges generally charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges normally charge a higher tuition for those students that don’t reside within their districts.
Is Financial Help Provided? The majority of DPT schools supply some type of financial support to their prospective students. Find out if the colleges you are examining have a financial aid office and see what type of assistance is available. At a minimum they should help in acquiring a student loan or any scholarships you may qualify for. Some physical therapy colleges provide scholarships, while others offer work programs. So before eliminating a college because the tuition is too expensive, ask what financial aid might be available.
Can the College Accommodate your Schedule? And last you must verify that the physical therapy school you finally pick can provide the class schedule you need. This is especially essential if you choose to continue working while attending classes. If you must schedule evening or weekend classes in the Litchfield Park AZ area, check that they are offered. If you can only enroll on a part-time basis, verify if that is an alternative and how many credit hours or courses you would need to enroll in. Also, learn what the protocol is for making up any classes that you may miss due to illness, work or family emergencies.
Earning Your Physical Therapy Degree near Litchfield Park Arizona?
If you are planning on attending a Physical Therapy School in the Litchfield Park AZ area, the following information may prove to be both interesting and educational regarding the location of your future Alma Mater.
Litchfield Park, Arizona
Litchfield Park is a city in Maricopa County, Arizona, United States. It is twenty miles northwest of Phoenix. According to the U.S. Census, the population of the city was estimated to be 6,009 as of 2017.
The town of Litchfield Park is a historically affluent community outside of Phoenix named after its founder, Paul Weeks Litchfield (1875–1959). He was an executive of the Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company who came to the Phoenix area in 1916 in search of suitable land to farm a long-staple cotton that had previously been available only from the Sea Islands off the coast of Georgia and from Egypt. This cotton was needed to strengthen the rubber in the pneumatic tire, of which Goodyear was the world's largest producer. The east coast cotton supply had been devastated by the boll weevil and the African supply had been greatly reduced by World War I attacks from German U-boats. Litchfield went to the Phoenix area at the suggestion of the United States Department of Agriculture, but he was not successful in motivating local farmers to grow his cotton. Instead he got Goodyear to form the Southwest Cotton Company in Phoenix, with Litchfield as its president, eventually purchasing some 36,000 acres in the general Salt River Valley area including 5,000 acres around the present site of Litchfield Park, then known as Litchfield Ranch. Much of the land was bought for as little as $25 per acre. The cotton was cultivated with a workforce of mostly Mexican and Native American men. The U.S. Postal Service agreed to the name "Litchfield Park" in 1926. In 1929, the Wigwam Resort was opened to the public. In 1926, Litchfield went on to become the president of the Goodyear-Zeppelin Corporation, and then Chairman of the Board in 1930. He retired from the company in 1958, and spent the final months of his life as a resident of Litchfield Park at his home on Fairway Drive.
In 1964, Goodyear created Litchfield Park Land and Development Co. to expand Litchfield Park into a 90,000 resident community.Arden E. Goodyear was the head of the company, Patrick Cusick was vice president and general manager, and Victor Gruen was hired to design some of the buildings. Emanuel Cartsonis, who had worked with Cusick became city planner. The plan called for 25,000 homes, a college, a junior college, eighteen elementary schools, ten junior high schools, and six high schools, as well as improvements to the town's golf course and harness track at an expense of at least 750 million dollars. Goodyear made many mistakes during development, including selling properties right up to the curb line, which means that the city must get permission from property owners before they can put in a sidewalk. They abandoned their plans for expanding Litchfield Park before they were completed and sold whatever land they could.
Choose the Right Physical Therapist School near Litchfield Park AZ
Selecting the right physical therapy school is an important initial decision you have to make to begin a rewarding career in the medical field. As we have addressed in this article, the DPT or PT degree program and school you select should both have outstanding reputations and be accredited. However there are additional critical questions that you need to ask pertaining to your school of choice as well. As you begin your search for a physical therapy school, keep in mind that many factors will lead you to your ultimate decision. You might want to go to each of the colleges to see their facilities and talk with active DPT students. While there, ask yourself this critical question: will this program help me accomplish 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 field 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 Litchfield Park AZ.
A Few More Interesting Locations in Arizona
Business Results 1 - 10 of 317