How to Select a Physical Therapy Program near El Granada 94018
Getting a physical therapist degree near El Granada CA is an essential first step to starting a fulfilling career in the healthcare industry. Physical therapists (PT) help patients who have been debilitated as a result of illness or injury gain back function and mobility. But before they can practice and provide treatment for the rehabilitation of patients, they need to get the appropriate training and education. A PT must additionally be licensed in all states, a large number mandating that the licensee receive a physical therapy degree from an accredited college. So before choosing a physical therapy school, it’s necessary to research those you are looking at to make certain they will furnish a superior education and meet your state’s licensing standards. What you do not want to do is choose a college just because it happens to be the closest to your home or it has the lowest tuition. There are other important qualifications that need to be evaluated besides location and cost. But before we cover 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 is a Physical Therapist?
Physical therapists practice in diverse locations, including El Granada CA 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 stated, physical therapists help individuals that are struggling with a lack of mobility and often pain caused by illness or injury. After diagnosing a patient, they design a course of treatment to address the mobility issues and lessen or eliminate any pain. They also endeavor to stop any advancement of the disability. Although the causes of disability necessitating physical therapy are numerous, they include:
- Arthritis or Osteoporosis
- Motor vehicle accidents
- Heart attacks.
- Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.
- Fire injuries.
- Knee Replacement.
- Cerebral Palsy.
Licensed physical therapists work in close affiliation with other El Granada CA medical professionals, including chiropractors, physicians, dentists and nurses. They can also oversee several physical therapy assistants who work under them in the diagnosis and treatment of their patients. One thing to take note of for anyone thinking about entering the physical therapy field, it is rather physically demanding. Physical therapists routinely lift heavy equipment as well as patients, and kneel, crouch and stand for prolonged periods of time on a daily basis.
Physical Therapy Degrees Offered
There are 3 physical therapy degrees offered for individuals to enroll in at the graduate and undergraduate levels. Of these options, the one degree that is offered to practice as a physical therapist is the doctorate. Undergraduate degrees emphasize either preparing students to become a physical therapy assistant (PTA) or prepping them to progress to the doctoral level. Below are brief descriptions of degree levels that are available in the El Granada CA area:
- Associate Degrees educate students to practice as physical therapy assistants, or can be the first step toward earning a more advanced degree. Applicants must have obtained 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 a portion of the course of study.
- Bachelor’s Degrees are developed as pre-physical therapy education to prep students to advance to the doctoral level. While they are not required to be a candidate for the doctoral program, they are an essential first step to practicing as a PT. Similar to the majority of bachelor’s degrees, they normally require four years to finish and commonly incorporate an internship program of at least 500 hours.
- Doctorate Degrees are mandated in order to become a practicing licensed physical therapist. The degree program must also 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 total commitment 7 years in most cases. Clinical training is an essential component in addition to the considerable lab and classroom 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 phased out and is no longer offered in the USA. Some practicing physical therapists holding a master’s or even a bachelor’s degree were “grandfathered” in before the existing licensing requirement for a doctorate was implemented.
Physical Therapist Degrees Online
While not as common as the on campus alternatives, there are a number of accredited online physical therapist degrees offered, even more at the graduate level. Due to the hands-on nature of the training, clinical lab work and internships are combined with the online classes. This necessitates that the student live close to the school campus or nearby a sponsored internship. However, the online segment of the course of study can be accessed within the comfort and convenience of the student’s El Granada CA home. Online programs are not only to some extent more accessible, but in many instances more economical. Tuition may be somewhat less than similar on campus alternatives, and expenses for commuting are minimized. And a number of the online schools are accredited by the CAPTE, assuring a quality education. These advantages can make the online option the best choice for those students that are motivated enough to learn at home.
Questions to Ask Physical Therapist Colleges
By now you undoubtedly have come to decision regarding several of your initial queries, such as the type of physical therapist degree you intend to earn, where you prefer to attend classes, and how much you can afford to invest in your education. But because there are numerous PT schools within the El Granada CA area and across California, you’ll have to look into other qualifications also so as to further narrow your list of school options. Moreover, you need to make certain that you select the school that is ideal for you. That’s why we have compiled a list of critical questions that you need to ask the physical therapy programs you are considering. Ask each of the competing schools these questions prior to making an ultimate selection.
Is the Physical Therapist Program Accredited? Ask if the schools you are reviewing have received accreditation from a regional or a national 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 choose an online college, it may also receive accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council. It’s essential that both the physical therapy school and program you select are accredited, not just the school. Additionally, make sure that the accreditation is through a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency. Besides ensuring that you receive an excellent education, accreditation may be mandated for state licensing as well as for getting student loans or financial aid.
What is the School’s Standing? Along with accreditation, it’s essential that the school and program you pick have outstanding reputations within the physical therapist profession. There are several ways you can look into a PT school’s reputation, starting with requesting references from employers that they place their graduates with. You may also check online reviews and rating services and ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. Get in touch with a few El Granada CA physical therapy clinics or other medical care facilities that you may have an interest in working for and ask if they can give you any insight about your college selections. 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 colleges.
What is the College’s Job Placement Rate? There are a two relevant statistics that you should find out about all of the physical therapy colleges you are considering. One is their graduation rate. A low rate might mean that students left due to displeasure with the program, the instructors, or both. Once the students have graduated, what percentage of them are being hired with the support of the college’s job placement program, particularly in the El Granada CA area? If a college 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 program has a wide network of contacts to help students gain internships or employment upon graduation.
Does the School Support Licensing Requirements? It’s important that the college you enroll in furnishes both exceptional training and a curriculum that satisfies the licensing criteria 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) as well as a degree from an accredited physical therapy program. Although licensing requirements fluctuate state by state for PTA and PT graduates, some states require a minimum amount of clinical hours be performed and passing scores on supplemental tests.
Are Internship Programs Provided? Inquire if the physical therapy colleges you are assessing have partnerships with El Granada CA clinics or hospitals for internship programs. Not only are internships an excellent means to get hands on experience in a clinical environment, they are additionally a requirement for the majority of PT programs and state licensing. As an ancillary benefit, they may assist graduates and students establish professional connections in the El Granada health care community and help with obtaining employment once licensed.
What are the Class Sizes ? Unless you are the sort of person that likes to sit way in the back of the classroom or get lost in the crowd, you will likely prefer a small class size. Smaller classes enable more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the physical therapist colleges you are considering what the typical 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 opinions regarding the pharmacist tech program also.
Where is the College Located? For a lot of students, the physical therapy college they choose will have to be within travelling distance of their El Granada CA home. Individuals who have opted 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 concern. Something to keep in mind is that if you choose to enroll in a college that is out of state or perhaps out of your local area, you may need to pay a higher tuition. State colleges often charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges generally charge a higher tuition for those students that don’t reside within their districts.
Is Financial Help Provided? The majority of DPT colleges provide some type of financial assistance to their prospective students. Find out if the colleges you are examining have a financial aid department and see what type of assistance is available. They at least should help in securing a student loan or any scholarships you might qualify for. Some physical therapy schools offer scholarships, while others provide work programs. So before eliminating a school because the tuition is too expensive, learn what financial assistance may be available.
Can the School Accommodate your Schedule? And finally you must verify that the physical therapy college you finally choose can furnish the class schedule you need. This is particularly crucial if you opt to continue working while attending classes. If you need to schedule evening or weekend classes in the El Granada CA area, confirm that they are available. 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 have to carry. Also, learn 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 El Granada California?
If you are planning on attending a Physical Therapy School in the El Granada CA area, the following information may prove to be both interesting and educational regarding the location of your future Alma Mater.
El Granada, California
El Granada is located at 37°30′14″N 122°28′24″W / 37.50389°N 122.47333°W / 37.50389; -122.47333 (37.503766, -122.473230), on the less densely populated Pacific coast side of San Mateo County, approximately 25 miles (40 km) south of San Francisco and 45 miles (72 km) north of Santa Cruz, California. Neighboring towns include Montara and Moss Beach to the north and Half Moon Bay to the south.
The 2010 United States Census reported that El Granada had a population of 5,467. The population density was 1,133.7 people per square mile (437.7/km²). The racial makeup of El Granada was 4,608 (84.3%) White, 45 (0.8%) African American, 38 (0.7%) Native American, 190 (3.5%) Asian, 5 (0.1%) Pacific Islander, 336 (6.1%) from other races, and 245 (4.5%) from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 813 persons (14.9%).
There were 2,098 households, out of which 660 (31.5%) had children under the age of 18 living in them, 1,245 (59.3%) were opposite-sex married couples living together, 163 (7.8%) had a female householder with no husband present, 69 (3.3%) had a male householder with no wife present. There were 132 (6.3%) unmarried opposite-sex partnerships, and 33 (1.6%) same-sex married couples or partnerships. 420 households (20.0%) were made up of individuals and 124 (5.9%) had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.60. There were 1,477 families (70.4% of all households); the average family size was 3.00.
Pick the Best Physical Therapist Training Program near El Granada CA
Picking the right physical therapy program is an important initial decision you must make to launch a rewarding career in the healthcare field. As we have covered in this article, the DPT or PT degree program and college you select should both have excellent reputations and accreditation. However there are additional important questions that you need to ask concerning your college of choice also. As you start your search for a physical therapist college, bear in mind that a number of factors will guide you to your final decision. You might decide to visit different schools to see their facilities and talk with active DPT students. While there, ask yourself this important question: will this school help me reach my goal of becoming a practicing licensed physical therapist? By following our list of supplemental questions, you will be able to narrow down the field so you can make the right selection. And with the proper training and education, you can accomplish your dream of becoming a practicing physical therapist in El Granada CA.
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