How to Enroll In a Physical Therapy School near Lone Pine 93545
Obtaining a physical therapist degree near Lone Pine CA is an important first step to starting a rewarding career in the healthcare industry. Physical therapists (PT) help individuals who have been disabled due to injury or illness regain function and mobility. But before they can practice and work with the rehabilitation of patients, they need to get the necessary education and training. A PT must additionally be licensed in every state, a large number mandating that the licensee receive a physical therapy degree from an accredited school. So before choosing a physical therapy school, it’s important to investigate the ones you are considering to make certain they will deliver a superior education and satisfy your state’s licensing standards. What you do not want to do is select a school simply because it happens to be the closest to your residence or it has the lowest tuition. There are other important qualifications that must be considered 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 Does a Physical Therapist Do?
Physical therapists practice in a variety of locations, such as Lone Pine CA hospitals, health clinics, assisted living facilities, rehab centers and health clubs. What the facilities all have in common is that they are equipped for diagnosing and rehabilitating patients. As earlier touched on, physical therapists help individuals that are suffering from a lack of mobility and in many cases pain due to illness or injury. After patient diagnosis, they design a course of treatment to resolve the mobility issues and lessen or eradicate any pain. They also try to stop any progression of the disability. While the causes of disability requiring physical therapy are abundant, they include:
- Arthritis or Osteoporosis
- Motor vehicle accidents
- Cardiac arrest.
- Sports injuries.
- Burn injuries.
- Knee Replacement.
- Multiple Sclerosis.
Licensed physical therapists practice in close partnerships with other Lone Pine CA medical specialists, including chiropractors, physicians, dentists and nurses. They may also supervise one or more physical therapy assistants who work under them assisting with the diagnosis and treatment of their patients. One thing to keep in mind for anyone considering getting into the physical therapy profession, it is rather physically demanding. Physical therapists often lift patients and heavy equipment, and stand, crouch and kneel for long periods of time on a daily basis.
Physical Therapist Degrees Offered
There are 3 physical therapist degrees offered for individuals to enroll in at the graduate and undergraduate levels. Of these alternatives, the single degree that is attainable to become a physical therapist is the doctorate. Undergraduate degrees target either training students to become a physical therapy assistant (PTA) or preparing them to progress to the doctoral level. Following are brief descriptions of degree levels that are available in the Lone Pine CA area:
- Associate Degrees train students to become physical therapy assistants, or can be the first step toward earning a more advanced degree. Applicants must have earned a high school diploma or GED to be accepted for enrollment. The programs are typically made available by community or junior colleges, and require two years to complete. An internship or other form of clinical training is usually a portion of the curriculum.
- Bachelor’s Degrees are designed as pre-physical therapy education to prep candidates to advance to the doctoral level. While they are not a requirement 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 generally take four years to complete and commonly include an internship program of at least 500 hours.
- Doctorate Degrees are a requirement 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 overall investment of time seven years in most cases. Clinical or practical training is an intregal element in addition to the extensive classroom and lab instruction. Consequently the fulfillment of an internship is required, not only for graduation but in some states for licensing as well.
The Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) has taken the place of the Master’s of Physical Therapy (MPT), which has been eliminated and is no longer attainable in the USA. Some licensed physical therapists holding a master’s or even a bachelor’s degree were “grandfathered” in prior to the current licensing mandate for a doctorate was instituted.
Physical Therapist Online Colleges
Although not as prevalent as the on campus alternatives, there are many accredited online physical therapy degrees available, more so at the graduate level. Because of the hands-on nature of the training, internships and clinical lab work are incorporated with the online classes. This necessitates that the student live near the school campus or in proximity of a sponsored internship. However, the online portion of the course of study can be accessed within the convenience and comfort of the student’s Lone Pine CA home. Online programs are not only to some extent more accessible, but in a number of instances more affordable. Tuition might be significantly less than comparable on-campus options, and expenses for commuting are reduced. And a number of the online programs are accredited by the CAPTE, ensuring a quality education. These advantages may make the online alternative the ideal choice for those students that are motivated enough to learn at home.
Questions to Ask Physical Therapist Programs
At this point you probably have made a decision regarding a few of your preliminary questions, including the type of physical therapist degree you want to attain, where you want to attend classes, and how much you can afford to invest in your education. But since there are so many PT colleges within the Lone Pine CA area and across California, you’ll need to explore additional qualifications also so as to further narrow your list of college choices. Also, you need to make certain that you select the school that is right for you. That’s why we have collected a list of critical questions that you must ask the physical therapy programs you are considering. Ask all of the competing colleges these questions before making an ultimate decision.
Is the Physical Therapy School Accredited? Ask if the programs you are considering have received accreditation from a national or a regional agency. As previously 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 program, it may also receive accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council. It’s imperative that both the physical therapy program and school you select are accredited, not just the school. Also, verify that the accreditation is through a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency. Along with guaranteeing that you obtain a quality education, accreditation might be required for state licensing and even for getting student loans or financial aid.
What is the College’s Ranking? Along with accreditation, it’s essential that the school and program you choose have outstanding reputations within the physical therapy profession. There are multiple ways you can investigate a PT school’s reputation, beginning with asking for references from employers that they refer their students to. You may also check online rating services and reviews and ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. Get in touch with some Lone Pine CA physical therapy centers or other medical care facilities that you might have an interest in working for and ask if they can provide any advice about your college options. It might also be a good idea to contact the California Attorney General and school licensing authority to find out if any complaints have been filed against the schools.
What is the Program’s Job Placement Rate? There are a couple of relevant statistics that you need to know about all of the physical therapist programs you are looking at. First is their graduation rate. A lower rate may suggest that students left due to displeasure with the program, the instructors, or both. Once the students have graduated, how many of them are being placed in jobs with the support of the college’s job placement program, particularly in the Lone Pine CA area? If a college has a high job placement rate, it’s an indication that its reputation within the health care field is good or perhaps exceptional. It also affirms that the school has a large network of contacts to help students get internships or employment after graduation.
Does the Program Support Licensing Requirements? It’s essential that the college you enroll in provides both excellent training and a curriculum that supports 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 therapy school. While licensing requirements differ state by state for PT and PTA graduates, a number of states require a minimum amount of clinical hours be performed and passing scores on additional tests.
Are Internship Programs Sponsored? Find out if the physical therapist schools you are evaluating have partnerships with Lone Pine CA clinics or hospitals for internship programs. Not only are internships a terrific manner to receive hands on training in a clinical setting, they are additionally a requirement for the majority of PT programs and state licensing. As a secondary benefit, they may assist students and graduates form professional connections in the Lone Pine healthcare community and help with job placement after licensing.
What are the Class Sizes ? Unless you are the type of student that likes to sit far in the back of class or get lost in the crowd, you will probably prefer a small class size. Smaller classes allow for more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the physical therapy colleges you are considering what the average teacher to student ratio is for their classes. If practical you may prefer to sit in on one or more classes before making your final determination. This will also give you an opportunity to converse with several of the instructors and students to get their opinions regarding the pharmacist technician program also.
Where is the School Located? For many students, the physical therapy college they choose will need to be within commuting distance of their Lone Pine CA home. Those who have chosen to attend classes online obviously will not have to concern themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of area internships will be of concern. Something 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 for those students that don’t reside within their districts.
Is Financial Assistance Offered? The majority of DPT colleges supply some form of financial assistance to their prospective students. Ask if the schools you are examining have a financial assistance office and see what type of help is obtainable. At a minimum they should help in securing a student loan or any grants you might qualify for. A number of physical therapist schools provide scholarships, while others offer work programs. So before eliminating a program because the tuition is too expensive, learn what financial assistance might be available.
Can the Program Accommodate your Schedule? And last you must confirm that the physical therapy program you ultimately choose can offer the class schedule you need. This is particularly important if you opt to continue working while attending school. If you must schedule evening or weekend classes in the Lone Pine 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 credit hours or courses you would have to enroll in. Also, learn what the procedure is for making up any classes that you might miss as a result of work, illness or family emergencies.
Earning Your Physical Therapy Degree near Lone Pine California?
If you are planning on attending a Physical Therapy School in the Lone Pine CA area, the following information may prove to be both interesting and educational regarding the location of your future Alma Mater.
Lone Pine, California
Lone Pine is a census designated place (CDP) in Inyo County, California, United States. Lone Pine is located 16 miles (26 km) south-southeast of Independence, at an elevation of 3727 feet (1136 m). The population was 2,035 at the 2010 census, up from 1,655 at the 2000 census. The town is located in the Owens Valley, near the Alabama Hills. From possible choices of urban, rural, and frontier, the Census Bureau identifies this area as "frontier". The local hospital, Southern Inyo Hospital, offers standby emergency services. On March 26, 1872, the very large Lone Pine earthquake destroyed most of the town and killed 27 of its 250 to 300 residents.
The Paiute people inhabited the Owens Valley area from prehistoric times. These early inhabitants are known to have established trading routes which extended to the Pacific Central Coast, delivering materials originating in the Owens Valley to such tribes as the Chumash.
In 1864, a geological survey team from California discovered Mt. Whitney and named the peak after the team's leader, Josiah Whitney. One member of the survey team, Clarence King, made two unsuccessful attempts at climbing the mountain. Returning in 1871, he summited what was then believed to be Mt. Whitney, but turned out to be Mt. Langley. Two years later, he returned and summited Mt. Whitney on September 19, 1873, only one month after the actual first ascent was made by three residents of Lone Pine: Charles Begole, J J. Lucas, and Albert H. Johnson. They reportedly reached the summit at noon on August 18, 1873, starting from Kern Canyon, where they had gone for a fishing trip.
Enroll in the Ideal Physical Therapist School near Lone Pine CA
Deciding on the best physical therapist college is an important initial decision you must make to begin a fulfilling career in the health care field. As we have discussed in this article, the DPT or PT degree program and school you select should both have excellent reputations and be accredited. But there are additional relevant questions that you need to ask regarding your school of choice as well. As you begin your search for a physical therapist school, bear in mind that many factors will lead you toward your final decision. You may want to visit each of the colleges to see their facilities and speak to active DPT students. While there, ask yourself this critical question: will this school help me realize my goal of becoming a practicing licensed physical therapist? By following our list of supplemental questions, you will have the ability to narrow down the options so you can make the ideal choice. And with the necessary education and training, you can achieve your dream to become a licensed physical therapist in Lone Pine CA.
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