How to Select a Physical Therapy College near Ben Lomond 95005
Getting a physical therapy degree near Ben Lomond CA is an essential first step to launching a fulfilling career in the healthcare industry. Physical therapists (PT) help people who have been incapacitated as a result of injury or illness gain back mobility and function. But before they may legally practice and work with the rehabilitation of patients, they need to acquire the necessary education and training. A PT must also become licensed in all states, a large number mandating that the licensee hold a physical therapy degree from an accredited school. So before enrolling in a physical therapy school, it’s necessary to research the ones you are looking at to ensure 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 nearest to your home or it has the most affordable tuition. There are other relevant qualifications that must be considered along with cost and location. But before we discuss 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 Do Physical Therapists Do?
Physical therapists work in varying settings, including Ben Lomond CA private practices, hospitals, assisted living facilities, rehab centers and health clubs. What the facilities all share in common is that they are equipped for diagnosing and rehabilitating patients. As earlier touched on, physical therapists help people that are experiencing a lack of mobility and in many cases pain due to injury or illness. After patient diagnosis, they design a program of treatment to resolve the mobility problems and reduce or eradicate any pain. They also endeavor to prevent any advancement of the disability. While the causes of disability requiring physical therapy are numerous, they include:
- Arthritis or Osteoporosis
- Car or motor cycle accidents
- Head injuries.
- Heart attacks.
- Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.
- Burn injuries.
- Knee Replacement.
- Cerebral Palsy.
Licensed physical therapists practice in close partnerships with other Ben Lomond CA health specialists, including doctors, chiropractors, dentists and nurses. They may also supervise several physical therapy assistants who work under them assisting with the diagnosis and treatment of their patients. Something to take note of for anyone thinking about getting into the physical therapy profession, it is rather physically demanding. Physical therapists routinely lift patients and heavy equipment, and stand, crouch and kneel for prolonged periods of time on a daily basis.
Physical Therapy Degrees
There are three physical therapist degree options offered for students to enroll in at the undergraduate and graduate levels. Of these choices, the only degree that is attainable to practice as a physical therapist is the doctorate. Undergraduate degrees emphasize either training students to become a physical therapy assistant (PTA) or preparing them to progress to the doctoral level. Following are short summaries of degrees that are offered in the Ben Lomond CA area:
- Associate Degrees train students to become physical therapy assistants, or may be the first step toward earning a more advanced degree. Candidates must have a high school diploma or GED to qualify for enrollment. The programs are typically offered by community or junior colleges, and require 2 years for completion. An internship or other form of clinical training is typically part of the curriculum.
- Bachelor’s Degrees are designed as pre-physical therapist education to prep students to progress 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 most bachelor’s degrees, they generally require four years to finish and commonly incorporate 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 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 investment of time 7 years in most cases. Clinical training is an intregal component along with the substantial lab and classroom instruction. Consequently the fulfillment of an internship is mandated, not only 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 available in the United States. Some practicing physical therapists having a master’s or even a bachelor’s degree were “grandfathered” in prior to the current licensing mandate for a doctorate was implemented.
Physical Therapist Online Colleges
While not as common as the on-campus options, there are many accredited online physical therapy degrees available, even more at the graduate level. Due to the hands-on nature of the training, internships and clinical lab work are integrated with the online classes. This requires that the student live close to the school campus or in proximity of an available internship. However, the online segment of the course of study may be accessed within the comfort and convenience of the student’s Ben Lomond CA home. Online schools are not only to some extent more accessible, but in many instances more economical. Tuition can be significantly less than comparable on campus alternatives, and costs for commuting are minimized. And a number of the online programs are accredited by the CAPTE, ensuring a quality education. These advantages can make the online alternative the ideal choice for those students that are motivated enough to learn at home.
What to Ask Physical Therapist Schools
By now you probably have made a decision regarding some of your preliminary questions, such as the kind of physical therapy degree you intend to earn, where you want to attend classes, and how much money you can afford to invest in your education. But considering there are so many PT schools within the Ben Lomond CA area and across California, you’ll need to research other qualifications as well so as to further narrow your list of school options. Moreover, you want to be sure that you choose the school that is right for you. That’s the reason we have collected a list of essential questions that you must ask the physical therapy colleges you are thinking about. Ask all of the competing colleges these questions before making a final decision.
Is the Physical Therapist School Accredited? Ask if the schools you are reviewing have earned accreditation from a national or a regional organization. As earlier 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 choose an online college, it may also obtain accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council. It’s essential that both the physical therapy program and school you enroll in are accredited, not simply the school. Also, check that the accreditation is from a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization. Along with guaranteeing that you receive an excellent education, accreditation might be required for state licensing and even for getting student loans or financial aid.
What is the College’s Reputation? Along with accreditation, it’s essential that the college and program you choose have outstanding reputations within the physical therapist profession. There are multiple ways you can investigate a PT college’s reputation, starting with asking for references from employers that they place their graduates with. You can also search for online reviews and rating services and ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. Call several Ben Lomond CA physical therapist centers or other healthcare facilities that you might have an interest in working for and ask if they can offer any insight about your program selections. It may also be prudent to check with the California Attorney General and school licensing authority to see if any complaints have been filed against the colleges.
What is the Program’s Job Placement Rate? There are a couple of relevant statistics that you need to find out about each of the physical therapist schools you are reviewing. First is their graduation rate. A low rate might mean that students left because of dissatisfaction with the program, the instructors, or both. Once the students have graduated, how many of them are being placed in jobs with the assistance of the college’s job placement program, particularly in the Ben Lomond CA area? If a college has a high job placement rate, it’s an indication that its reputation within the healthcare field is good or even exceptional. It also affirms that the school has a broad network of contacts to help students obtain internships or employment upon graduation.
Does the College Prepare You For Licensing Requirements? It’s imperative that the program you select furnishes both superior training and a course of study that satisfies the licensing requirements for California or the state where you will be practicing. 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 school. While licensing requirements differ state by state for PT and PTA graduates, many states require a minimum amount of clinical hours be performed as well as passing scores on additional tests.
Are Internship Programs Sponsored? Inquire if the physical therapy schools you are reviewing have relationships with Ben Lomond CA hospitals or clinics for internship programs. Not only are internships a terrific manner to receive practical experience in a clinical environment, they are additionally a requirement for most PT programs and state licensing. As an ancillary benefit, they may assist graduates and students form professional connections in the Ben Lomond health care community and assist with obtaining employment after licensing.
How Big are the Classes ? Unless you are the kind of person that likes to sit far in the back of class or hide in the crowd, you will probably prefer a smaller class size. Smaller classes permit more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the physical therapy colleges you are considering what the typical student to teacher ratio is for their classrooms. If practical you may want to monitor one or more classes before making your final decision. This will also give you a chance to converse with some of the students and instructors to get their opinions regarding the pharmacist tech program also.
Where is the College Located? For a number of students, the physical therapist college they select will need to be within travelling distance of their Ben Lomond CA residence. Individuals who have chosen 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 consider 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 generally charge a higher tuition to those students that live outside of their districts.
Is Financial Assistance Provided? Most DPT colleges provide some type of financial support to their prospective students. Ask if the schools you are reviewing have a financial assistance office and find out what type of assistance is obtainable. They at least should help in getting a student loan or any scholarships you might be eligible for. Some physical therapist schools offer scholarships, while others offer work programs. So before you eliminate a school because the tuition is too expensive, find out what financial aid might be available.
Can the College Accommodate your Schedule? And finally you need to confirm that the physical therapy college you ultimately select can furnish the class schedule you need. This is especially important if you decide to continue working while attending classes. If you must schedule evening or weekend classes in the Ben Lomond CA area, make sure that they are available. If you can only enroll on a part-time basis, verify if that is an option and how many courses or credit hours you would need to enroll in. Also, learn what the protocol is for making up any classes that you might miss as a result of illness, work or family emergencies.
Earning Your Physical Therapy Degree near Ben Lomond California?
If you are planning on attending a Physical Therapy School in the Ben Lomond CA area, the following information may prove to be both interesting and educational regarding the location of your future Alma Mater.
Ben Lomond, California
The mountain was named by John Burns, a Scot who settled on the west side of the ridge in 1851. Burns named the mountain after one in Scotland. Ben Lomond means "beacon peak" in Gaelic. Burns became one of the first vintners in the Santa Cruz Mountains, and is usually also credited with naming the community of Bonny Doon. The San Lorenzo River watershed contains extensive forests of Coast redwood, and was an early center of the logging/lumber industry in Santa Cruz County. The community was originally known as Pacific Mills, after a sawmill operation located there. When, in 1887, the community applied for a U.S. Post Office, residents voted to adopt the name of the mountain.
Ben Lomond is located on State Highway 9, about 12 miles from Santa Cruz, California and 34 miles from San Jose, California (the nearest major city) at 37°5′24″N 122°5′24″W / 37.09000°N 122.09000°W / 37.09000; -122.09000 (37.09, -122.09). According to the United States Census Bureau, the CDP has a total area of 8.4 square miles (22 km2). The San Lorenzo River runs through it, in what is known locally as the San Lorenzo Valley, which runs SE/NW to the east of Ben Lomond Mountain (really a long ridge whose highest point has an elevation of 810m/2660 ft).
The National Weather Service has kept weather records for Ben Lomond since 1937. The Western Climate Center reports that Ben Lomond has an average annual rainfall of 49.00 inches and an average annual snowfall of 0.2 inch. January is the coldest month with a normal maximum of 61.5 °F (16.4 °C) and a normal minimum of 36.9 °F (2.7 °C). August is the warmest month with a normal maximum of 85.5 °F (29.7 °C) and a normal minimum of 50.4 °F (10.2 °C).
Enroll in the Ideal Physical Therapist Degree Program near Ben Lomond CA
Deciding on the ideal physical therapy program is an important initial decision you must make to start a gratifying career in the medical field. As we have covered in this article, the DPT or PT degree program and school you pick should both have exceptional reputations and accreditation. However there are additional important questions that you should ask concerning your college of choice also. As you commence your search for a physical therapist program, bear in mind that many factors will lead you to your ultimate decision. You might decide 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 realize my goal of becoming a licensed practicing physical therapist? By following our list of supplemental questions, you will have the ability to narrow down the field so you can make the ideal choice. And with the proper training and education, you can achieve your dream of becoming a licensed physical therapist in Ben Lomond CA.
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