How to Select a Physical Therapy College near Angels Camp 95222
Obtaining a physical therapy degree near Angels Camp CA is an important first step to starting a rewarding career in the health care field. Physical therapists (PT) help individuals who have been debilitated due to injury or illness gain back function and mobility. But before they may legally practice and work with the rehabilitation of patients, they need to acquire the appropriate education and training. A PT must also become licensed in all states, many requiring that the licensee receive a physical therapy degree from an accredited school. So before enrolling in a physical therapy school, it’s necessary to investigate those you are considering to make sure they will provide a quality education and satisfy your state’s licensing requirements. What you should not do is select a college simply because it happens to be the closest to your residence or it has the lowest tuition. There are other significant qualifications that need to be evaluated in addition to cost and location. But before we discuss 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 Do Physical Therapists Do?
Physical therapists work in a variety of settings, including Angels Camp CA hospitals, health clinics, assisted living facilities, rehab centers and sports facilities. What the facilities all share in common is that they have the equipment for the diagnosis and rehabilitation treatment of patients. As previously touched on, physical therapists help people that are struggling with a lack of mobility and frequently pain caused by injury or illness. After patient diagnosis, they design a course of treatment to resolve the mobility problems and reduce or eradicate any pain. They also try to prevent any advancement of the disability. Though the causes of disability necessitating physical therapy are numerous, they include:
- Osteoporosis and Arthritis
- Car or motor cycle accidents
- Head injuries.
- Heart attacks.
- Sports injuries.
- Burn injuries.
- Knee Replacement.
- Cerebral Palsy.
Licensed physical therapists practice in close association with other Angels Camp CA medical professionals, including doctors, chiropractors, registered nurses and dentists. They may also manage one or more physical therapy assistants who work under them in the diagnosis and treatment of their patients. Something to keep in mind for anyone considering getting 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
There are three physical therapist degree options available for students to pursue at the undergraduate and graduate levels. Of these options, the single degree that is offered to practice as a physical therapist is the doctorate. Undergraduate degrees emphasize either training students to become a physical therapy assistant (PTA) or readying them to advance to the doctoral level. Below are short descriptions of degrees that are available in the Angels Camp CA area:
- Associate Degrees prepare students to be physical therapy assistants, or can be used as a stepping stone to a more advanced degree. Candidates must have a high school diploma or GED to be accepted for enrollment. The degrees are typically provided by community colleges, and require 2 years for completion. 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 move up to the doctoral level. While they are not required to be qualified for the doctoral program, they are an important preliminary step to becoming a PT. As with the majority of bachelor’s degrees, they generally require 4 years to finish and usually incorporate 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). After earning the bachelor’s degree, the doctoral takes 3 years to finish, making the overall investment of time seven years in the majority of cases. Clinical or practical training is an intregal component along with the considerable classroom and lab instruction. Consequently the fulfillment of an internship is mandated, not just for graduation but in several 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 USA. A number of 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
Although not as prevalent as the more traditional alternatives, there are some accredited online physical therapist programs available, more so at the graduate level. Due to the hands-on structure of the training, clinical lab work and internships are integrated with the online classes. This requires that the student live close to the college campus or in proximity of an available internship. However, the online part of the course of study can be accessed within the convenience and comfort of the student’s Angels Camp CA home. Online schools are not only partially more accessible, but in a number of cases more affordable. Tuition can be somewhat lower than similar on campus options, and expenses 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 disciplined enough to attend classes at home.
Questions to Ask Physical Therapist Colleges
At this point you undoubtedly have come to decision regarding some of your preliminary questions, like the type of physical therapist degree you intend to earn, where you want to attend classes, and how much money you can afford to spend for your education. But considering there are numerous PT colleges within the Angels Camp CA area and across California, you’ll have to explore other qualifications as well in order to further reduce your list of college options. Also, you need to make certain that you select the program that is right for you. That’s the reason we have put together a list of critical questions that you need to ask the physical therapy colleges you are considering. Ask each of the competing schools these questions prior to making an ultimate selection.
Is the Physical Therapy Program Accredited? Find out if the programs you are considering have received accreditation from a national or a regional organization. As earlier mentioned, 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 therapy program and school you choose are accredited, not just the school. Additionally, verify that the accreditation is through a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization. Along with ensuring that you receive an excellent education, accreditation may be required for state licensing as well as for securing student loans or financial assistance.
What is the College’s Ranking? Along with accreditation, it’s important that the college and program you choose have exceptional reputations within the physical therapy community. There are multiple ways you can research a PT college’s reputation, starting with asking for references from employers that they place their graduates with. You may also check online rating services and reviews and ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. Call some Angels Camp CA physical therapy clinics or other medical care facilities that you might be interested in working for and ask if they can give you any recommendations about your college options. It may also be prudent to check with the California Attorney General and school licensing authority to find out 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 know about all of the physical therapy schools you are reviewing. First is their graduation rate. A lower rate might indicate that students left because of displeasure with the program, the instructors, or both. After the students have graduated, how many of them are being placed in jobs with the help of the school’s job placement program, particularly in the Angels Camp CA area? If a school has a higher job placement rate, it suggests that its reputation within the medical care field is good or even outstanding. It also affirms that the college has a wide network of contacts to assist students gain internships or employment after graduation.
Does the College Support Licensing Requirements? It’s essential that the college you select provides both excellent training and a curriculum that supports the licensing requirements for California or the state where you will be practicing. In every state a passing score is needed on the National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE) in addition to a degree from an accredited physical therapist school. While licensing requirements vary state by state for PTA and PT graduates, many states require a minimum number of clinical hours be completed and passing scores on additional tests.
Are Internships Provided? Inquire if the physical therapy colleges you are interested in have partnerships with Angels Camp CA hospitals or clinics for internship programs. Not only are internships a great way to obtain hands on experience in a clinical environment, they are additionally a requirement for most PT programs and state licensing. As a secondary benefit, they can assist students and graduates develop professional relationships in the Angels Camp medical community and assist with job placement after licensing.
How Large are the Classes ? Unless you are the kind of person that likes to sit way in the back of class or hide in the crowd, you will probably prefer a smaller class size. Smaller classes enable more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the physical therapist schools you are researching what the average student to teacher ratio is for their classes. If practical you may want to sit in on one or more classes before making your ultimate determination. This will also give you a chance to converse with a few of the instructors and students to get their perspectives regarding the pharmacy tech program as well.
Where is the Program Located? For a number of students, the physical therapist college they choose will have to be within driving distance of their Angels Camp CA residence. Individuals who have decided to attend online classes naturally will not have to trouble themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of area internships will be of importance. One thing to bear 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 have to pay a higher tuition. State colleges normally 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 Aid Offered? Most DPT colleges offer some form of financial aid to their prospective students. Ask if the schools you are examining have a financial assistance department and see what kind of aid is offered. They at least should help in acquiring a student loan or any grants you might be eligible for. Some physical therapy colleges offer scholarships, while others provide work programs. So before eliminating a college because the tuition is too expensive, find out what financial assistance may be available.
Can the School Accommodate your Schedule? And last you need to verify that the physical therapist school you finally pick can offer the class schedule you need. This is especially essential if you choose to continue working while attending school. If you need to schedule night or weekend classes in the Angels Camp CA area, confirm that they are offered. If you can only enroll on a part-time basis, check if that is an option and how many courses or credit hours you would have to carry. Also, learn what the procedure is for making up any classes that you may miss as a result of illness, work or family emergencies.
Earning Your Physical Therapy Degree near Angels Camp California?
If you are planning on attending a Physical Therapy School in the Angels Camp CA area, the following information may prove to be both interesting and educational regarding the location of your future Alma Mater.
Angels Camp, California
Angels Camp, also known as City of Angels and formerly Angel's Camp, Angels, Angels City, Carson's Creek and Clearlake, is the only incorporated city in Calaveras County, California, United States. The population was 3,835 at the 2010 census, up from 3,004 at the 2000 census. It lies at an elevation of 1378 feet (420 m).
Mark Twain based his short story "The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County" on a story he claimed he heard at the Angels Hotel in 1865. The event is commemorated with a Jumping Frog Jubilee each May at the Calaveras County Fairgrounds, just east of the city. Because of this, Angels Camp is sometimes referred to as "Frogtown."
Henry Angell, a native of Rhode Island, set up a tent store on the banks of the creek. The placers around his camp were productive but gave out after a few years, and the population began to dwindle until gold-bearing quartz veins were discovered in the town, which brought people back. Those mines operated for the next few decades, producing more than $20 million worth of gold, processed by stamp mills in town. It was said that when the last mill finally ceased operations, the townspeople couldn't sleep, the silence was so loud.
Choose the Ideal Physical Therapist School near Angels Camp CA
Selecting the right physical therapist program is an important initial decision you must make to launch a gratifying career in the medical field. As we have addressed in this article, the DPT or PT degree program and school you pick should both have outstanding reputations and accreditation. However there are other relevant questions that you need to ask regarding your college of choice as well. As you begin your search for a physical therapy college, keep in mind that a number of variables will guide you toward your final decision. You might want to go to different campuses to view their facilities and speak to current DPT students. While there, ask yourself this critical question: will this college help me achieve my goal of becoming a practicing licensed physical therapist? By following our list of additional questions, you will be able to narrow down the options so you can make the appropriate selection. And with the necessary training and education, you can fulfill your dream to become a licensed physical therapist in Angels Camp CA.
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