How to Pick a Physical Therapy College near Kings Canyon National Pk 93633
Earning a physical therapy degree near Kings Canyon National Pk CA is a critical first step to starting a fulfilling career in the health care industry. Physical therapists (PT) help individuals who have been incapacitated due to illness or injury gain back mobility and function. 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 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 investigate those you are thinking about to make sure they will provide a superior education and satisfy your state’s licensing requirements. What you should not do is select a school simply because it happens to be the closest to your residence or it has the most affordable tuition. There are other relevant qualifications that need to be evaluated besides cost and location. 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 what the educational options are.
What is a Physical Therapist’s Job Description?
Physical therapists practice in varying locations, including Kings Canyon National Pk CA private practices, hospitals, rehabilitation centers, nursing homes and sports facilities. What the facilities all have in common is that they are equipped for the diagnosis and rehabilitation treatment of patients. As previously mentioned, physical therapists help people that are suffering from a lack of mobility and often pain due to injury or illness. After diagnosing a patient, they create a course of treatment to resolve the mobility problems and lessen or eliminate any pain. They also endeavor to prevent any advancement of the disability. Although the causes of disability requiring physical therapy are abundant, they include:
- Osteoporosis and Arthritis
- Car or motor cycle accidents
- Head injuries.
- Cardiac arrest.
- Sports injuries.
- Fire injuries.
- Knee Replacement.
- Multiple Sclerosis.
Licensed physical therapists practice in close partnerships with other Kings Canyon National Pk CA health specialists, including doctors, chiropractors, dentists and nurses. They can also manage one or more physical therapy assistants who work under them assisting with diagnosing and treating their patients. Something to take note of for anyone considering getting into the physical therapy profession, it is rather physically demanding. Physical therapists regularly lift patients and heavy equipment, and stand, crouch and kneel for extended periods of time on a daily basis.
Physical Therapist Degrees Available
There are 3 physical therapy degree options available for students to enroll in at the undergraduate and graduate levels. Of these choices, the only degree that is offered to become a physical therapist is the doctorate. Undergraduate degrees concentrate on either training students to become a physical therapy assistant (PTA) or readying them to advance to the doctoral level. Below are short summaries of degree levels that are offered in the Kings Canyon National Pk CA area:
- Associate Degrees prepare students to be physical therapy assistants, or may be the first step toward earning a more advanced degree. Candidates must have earned a high school diploma or equivalent to be accepted for enrollment. The degrees are usually provided by community colleges, and require 2 years to complete. Clinical training, which may be in the form of an internship is usually a portion of the course of study.
- Bachelor’s Degrees are created as pre-physical therapist training to ready students to advance to the doctoral level. Although they are not required to be qualified for the doctoral program, they are an essential initial step to practicing as a PT. As with most bachelor’s degrees, they normally take four years to finish and often incorporate an internship program of a minimum of 500 hours.
- Doctorate Degrees are mandated 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). After earning the bachelor’s degree, the doctoral takes 3 years to complete, making the total investment of time seven years in the majority of cases. Practical or clinical training is an essential component in addition to the considerable classroom and lab instruction. Therefor the completion of an internship is required, not solely for graduation but in a number of 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 available in the USA. Some licensed physical therapists having a master’s or in some cases a bachelor’s degree were “grandfathered” in before the present licensing requirement for a doctorate was implemented.
Physical Therapist Online Colleges
Although not as prevalent as the on-campus alternatives, there are a number of accredited online physical therapy degrees available, even more at the graduate level. Because of the hands-on structure of the training, internships and clinical lab work are combined with the online classes. This necessitates 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 can be accessed within the comfort and convenience of the student’s Kings Canyon National Pk CA home. Online schools are not only to some extent more accessible, but in many cases more economical. Tuition can be significantly lower than comparable on-campus alternatives, and costs for commuting are reduced. And many of the online programs are accredited by the CAPTE, guaranteeing a quality education. These advantages can make the online option the best choice for those students that are disciplined enough to attend classes at home.
What to Ask Physical Therapy Schools
By now you most likely have come to decision concerning some of your initial queries, like the kind of physical therapy degree you intend to obtain, where you want to attend classes, and how much you can afford to spend for your education. But since there are so many PT schools within the Kings Canyon National Pk CA area and across California, you’ll need to explore additional qualifications also in order to further narrow your list of school choices. Furthermore, you want to make certain that you enroll in the college that is best for you. That’s the reason we have compiled a list of important questions that you need to ask the physical therapist colleges you are thinking about. Ask all of the competing colleges these questions prior to making a final decision.
Is the Physical Therapist School Accredited? Find out if the colleges you are looking at have earned accreditation from a regional or a national 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 choose an online school, it may also earn accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council. It’s important that both the physical therapy program and school you select are accredited, not simply the school. Additionally, check that the accreditation is from a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency. In addition to ensuring that you obtain an excellent education, accreditation might be required for state licensing and even for getting student loans or financial assistance.
What is the College’s Standing? In addition to accreditation, it’s important that the school and program you select have exceptional reputations within the physical therapist community. There are a number of ways you can investigate a PT college’s reputation, starting with asking for references from employers that they refer their students to. You may also search for online reviews and rating services and ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. Call some Kings Canyon National Pk CA physical therapist clinics or other health care facilities that you may be interested in working for and ask if they can give you any recommendations about your program selections. It might also be prudent to check with the California Attorney General and school licensing authority to see if any complaints have been filed against the schools.
What is the School’s Job Placement Percentage? There are a couple of useful statistics that you should know about each of the physical therapist programs you are reviewing. One is their graduation rate. A lower rate may indicate that students dropped out due to dissatisfaction with the program, the teachers, or both. After the students have graduated, how many of them are being placed in jobs with the help of the college’s job placement program, particularly in the Kings Canyon National Pk CA area? If a college has a higher job placement rate, it’s an indication that its reputation within the medical care field is good or perhaps excellent. It also affirms that the college has a wide network of contacts to assist students obtain internships or jobs upon graduation.
Does the College Prepare You For Licensing Requirements? It’s imperative that the college you choose furnishes both exceptional training and a course of study that satisfies the licensing criteria for California or the state where you will be working. In every state a passing score is needed on the National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE) along with a degree from an accredited physical therapist school. While licensing requirements differ state by state for PTA and PT graduates, a number of states require a minimum amount of clinical hours be performed as well as passing scores on additional tests.
Are Internships Sponsored? Ask if the physical therapist colleges you are interested in have relationships with Kings Canyon National Pk CA clinics or hospitals for internship programs. Not only are internships a terrific manner to receive practical training in a clinical environment, they are additionally a requirement for most PT programs and state licensing. As a supplemental benefit, they can assist students and graduates develop professional connections in the Kings Canyon National Pk health care community and help with obtaining employment after licensing.
What Size are the Classes ? Unless you are the sort of student that prefers to sit far in the rear of the classroom or get lost in the crowd, you will undoubtedly prefer a smaller class size. Small classes allow for more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the physical therapist colleges you are reviewing what the typical student to teacher ratio is for their classes. If practical you may want to monitor one or more classes before making your final decision. This will also give you an opportunity to converse with some of the instructors and students to get their perspectives regarding the pharmacy tech program also.
Where is the College Located? For a lot of students, the physical therapy school they pick will have to be within travelling distance of their Kings Canyon National Pk CA home. Individuals who have chosen to attend online classes obviously will not have to trouble themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of area internships will be of concern. One thing to keep in mind is that if you choose to enroll in a program that is out of state or even out of your local area, you might have to pay a higher tuition. State colleges usually charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges typically charge a higher tuition to those students that don’t reside within their districts.
Is Financial Assistance Provided? Most DPT schools provide some type of financial support to their prospective students. Inquire if the colleges you are looking at have a financial assistance office and find out what type of help is obtainable. They at least should help in obtaining a student loan or any grants you may be eligible for. Some physical therapy schools offer scholarships, while others provide work programs. So before eliminating a college because the tuition is too expensive, find out what financial assistance might be available.
Can the College Accommodate your Schedule? And last you must confirm that the physical therapy school you finally choose can offer the class schedule you need. This is particularly crucial if you choose to continue working while attending classes. If you must schedule evening or weekend classes in the Kings Canyon National Pk CA area, make sure that they are available. 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 enroll in. Also, ask what the procedure is for making up any classes that you may miss because of illness, work or family emergencies.
Earning Your Physical Therapy Degree near Kings Canyon National Pk California?
If you are planning on attending a Physical Therapy School in the Kings Canyon National Pk CA area, the following information may prove to be both interesting and educational regarding the location of your future Alma Mater.
Kings Canyon National Park
Kings Canyon National Park is an American national park in the southern Sierra Nevada, in Fresno and Tulare Counties, California. Originally established in 1890 as General Grant National Park, the park was greatly expanded and renamed to Kings Canyon National Park on March 4, 1940. The park's namesake, Kings Canyon, is a rugged glacier-carved valley more than a mile (1,600 m) deep. Other natural features include multiple 14,000-foot (4,300 m) peaks, high mountain meadows, swift-flowing rivers, and some of the world's largest stands of giant sequoia trees. Kings Canyon is north of and contiguous with Sequoia National Park, and the two are jointly administered by the National Park Service as the Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks.
The majority of the 461,901-acre (186,925 ha) park, drained by the Middle and South Forks of the Kings River and many smaller streams, is designated wilderness. Tourist facilities are concentrated in two areas: Grant Grove, home to General Grant (the second largest tree in the world, measured by trunk volume) and Cedar Grove/Kanawyers, located in the heart of Kings Canyon. Overnight hiking is required to access most of the park's backcountry, or high country, which for much of the year is covered in deep snow. The combined Pacific Crest Trail/John Muir Trail, a popular backpacking route, traverses the entire length of the park from north to south.
General Grant National Park was initially created to protect a small area of giant sequoias from logging. Although John Muir's visits brought public attention to the huge wilderness area to the east, it took more than fifty years for the rest of Kings Canyon to be designated a national park. Environmental groups, park visitors and many local politicians wanted to see the area preserved; however, development interests wanted to build hydroelectric dams in the canyon. Even after President Franklin D. Roosevelt expanded the park in 1940, the fight continued until 1965, when the Cedar Grove and Tehipite Valley dam sites were finally annexed into the park.
Pick the Right Physical Therapy College near Kings Canyon National Pk CA
Picking the best physical therapist college is a necessary initial decision you have to make to launch a fulfilling career in the healthcare field. As we have covered in this article, the PT or DPT degree program and college you select should both have exceptional reputations and accreditation. But there are other important questions that you need to ask concerning your school of choice also. As you begin your search for a physical therapy program, keep in mind that many variables will guide you to your final decision. You might want to go to each of the schools to see their facilities and talk with current DPT students. While there, ask yourself this important question: will this school help me realize 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 appropriate choice. And with the proper education and training, you can fulfill your dream of becoming a licensed physical therapist in Kings Canyon National Pk CA.
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