Physical Therapist Schools | Get Your Physical Therapy Degree – Canton GA

How to Find the Right Physical Therapy College near Canton 30114

Canton GA physical therapy school student with volunteerObtaining a physical therapist degree near Canton GA is an important first step to starting a rewarding career in the medical care field. Physical therapists (PT) help people who have been disabled as a result of illness or injury gain back mobility and function. But before they may legally practice and provide treatment for the rehabilitation of patients, they must acquire the proper education and training. A PT must additionally be licensed in all states, many mandating that the licensee receive a physical therapy degree from an accredited college. So prior to enrolling in a physical therapy school, it’s essential to evaluate those you are considering to make sure they will supply a quality education and meet your state’s licensing criteria. What you do not want to do is enroll in a school simply because it happens to be the nearest to your home or it has the most affordable tuition. There are other significant qualifications that need to be considered in addition to location and cost. But before we discuss what those qualifications are and the questions you should be asking, we’ll address what a physical therapist does and the options for education.

What Do Physical Therapists Do?

Canton GA physical therapist helping patient walkPhysical therapists work in varying settings, such as Canton GA private practices, hospitals, assisted living facilities, rehab centers and sports facilities. What the facilities all share in common is that they are equipped for diagnosing and rehabilitating patients. As earlier touched on, physical therapists help individuals that are struggling with a lack of mobility and frequently pain caused by illness or injury. After patient diagnosis, they develop a course of treatment to address the mobility problems and lessen or eradicate any pain. They also strive to prevent any advancement of the disability. Although the causes of disability necessitating physical therapy are numerous, they include:

  • Arthritis or Osteoporosis
  • Car or motor cycle accidents
  • Strokes.
  • Heart attacks.
  • Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.
  • Fire injuries.
  • Hip Replacement.
  • Sciatica.
  • Cerebral Palsy.

Licensed physical therapists work in close affiliation with other Canton GA health professionals, including chiropractors, physicians, registered nurses and dentists. They may also supervise one or more physical therapy assistants who work under them assisting with diagnosing and treating their patients. Something to bear in mind for anyone thinking about getting into the physical therapy profession, it is rather physically demanding. Physical therapists regularly lift heavy equipment as well as patients, and stand, crouch and kneel for prolonged periods of time on a daily basis.

Physical Therapy Degrees Available

Canton GA physical therapist applying acupuncture to patientThere are three physical therapist degrees available for individuals to enroll in at the undergraduate and graduate levels. Of these choices, the only degree that is available to become a physical therapist is the doctorate. Undergraduate degrees target either preparing students to become a physical therapy assistant (PTA) or readying them to advance to the doctoral level. Below are brief summaries of degrees that are available in the Canton GA area:

  • Associate Degrees train students to practice as physical therapy assistants, or can be the first step toward earning a more advanced degree. Candidates must have earned a high school diploma or GED to qualify for enrollment. The programs are usually offered by junior or community colleges, and take about two years for completion. An internship or other form of clinical training is typically part of the curriculum.
  • Bachelor’s Degrees are created as pre-physical therapist training to ready candidates to advance to the doctoral level. Although they are not required to be eligible for the doctoral program, they are an integral preliminary step to practicing as a PT. Similar to most bachelor’s degrees, they typically take 4 years to finish and commonly include an internship program of a minimum of 500 hours.
  • Doctorate Degrees are required in order to become a licensed practicing 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 3 years to complete, making the overall commitment 7 years in most cases. Practical or clinical training is an important element along with the considerable classroom and lab instruction. Consequently the fulfillment of an internship is mandated, not just for graduation but in a number of states for licensing also.

The Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) has taken the place of the Master’s of Physical Therapy (MPT), which has been phased out and is no longer available in the United States. A number of licensed physical therapists having a master’s or in some cases a bachelor’s degree were “grandfathered” in prior to the existing licensing requirement for a doctorate was instituted.

Physical Therapy Online Programs

woman attending physical therapy school online in Canton GAAlthough not as prevalent as the on-campus options, there are many accredited online physical therapy programs offered, even more at the graduate level. Due to the hands-on nature of the training, clinical lab work and internships are incorporated with the online classes. This necessitates that the student live close to the school campus or in proximity of a sponsored internship. However, the online segment of the program may be accessed within the comfort and convenience of the student’s Canton GA residence. Online schools are not only partially more accessible, but in a number of instances more economical. Tuition may be significantly less than comparable on campus alternatives, and expenditures 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 option the right choice for those students that are motivated enough to learn at home.

Questions to Ask Physical Therapy Programs

At this point you most likely have come to decision regarding some of your preliminary questions, such as the kind of physical therapy degree you would like to attain, where you prefer to attend classes, and how much you can afford to invest in your education. But since there are so many PT schools within the Canton GA area and throughout Georgia, you’ll need to research additional qualifications as well so as to further narrow your list of school choices. Moreover, you want to make sure that you enroll in the college that is best for you. That’s why we have collected a list of essential questions that you need to ask the physical therapy programs you are thinking about. Ask each of the competing colleges these questions prior to making a final decision.

Is the Physical Therapist Program Accredited?  Find out if the schools you are considering have received accreditation from a national or a regional organization. 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 school, it can also obtain accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council. It’s essential that both the physical therapy school and program you enroll in are accredited, not simply the school. Additionally, check that the accreditation is from a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency. Besides ensuring that you receive an excellent education, accreditation might be mandated for state licensing and even for getting student loans or financial assistance.

What is the Program’s Reputation? In addition to accreditation, it’s essential that the college and program you choose have exceptional reputations within the physical therapist profession. There are several ways you can investigate a PT school’s reputation, beginning with requesting references from employers that they refer their students to. You may also check online rating services and reviews and ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. Contact several Canton GA physical therapy clinics or other medical care facilities that you may be interested in working for and ask if they can provide any advice about your college options. It might also be prudent to check with the Georgia Attorney General and school licensing authority to find out if any complaints have been submitted against the schools.

What is the Program’s Job Placement Rate? There are a two relevant statistics that you need to find out about all of the physical therapist colleges you are looking at. One is their graduation rate. A lower rate might indicate that students dropped out due to dissatisfaction with the program, the teachers, or both. Once the students have graduated, what percentage of them are being placed in jobs with the help of the school’s job placement program, particularly in the Canton GA area? If a school has a high job placement rate, it’s an indication that its reputation within the healthcare field is good or perhaps outstanding. It also confirms that the college has a wide network of contacts to help students gain internships or jobs upon graduation.

Does the College Support Licensing Requirements? It’s important that the school you enroll in provides both superior training and a curriculum that supports the licensing criteria for Georgia 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 completed and passing scores on additional tests.

Are Internships Sponsored? Ask if the physical therapist programs you are assessing have associations with Canton GA clinics or hospitals for internship programs. Not only are internships an excellent manner to receive hands on experience in a clinical environment, they are additionally a requirement for most PT programs and state licensing. As an ancillary benefit, they may assist students and graduates form professional relationships in the Canton medical community and assist with job placement after licensing.

What are the Class Sizes ? Unless you are the sort of person that likes to sit way in the rear of the classroom or hide in the crowd, you will likely prefer a smaller class size. Small classes permit more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the physical therapy schools you are reviewing what the average student to teacher ratio is for their classes. If practical you may prefer to monitor one or more classes before making your ultimate decision. This will also give you an opportunity to converse with several of the instructors and students to get their perspectives regarding the pharmacy technician program as well.

Where is the College Located? For many students, the physical therapist school they choose will have to be within travelling distance of their Canton GA home. Those who have opted 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 importance. Something 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 might have to pay a higher tuition. State colleges normally charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges often charge a higher tuition to those students that live outside of their districts.

Is Financial Aid Offered? The majority of DPT colleges offer some form of financial assistance to their prospective students. Ask if the schools you are considering have a financial assistance department and see what type 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 schools provide scholarships, while others offer work programs. So before eliminating a school because the tuition is too expensive, find out what financial assistance may be available.

Can the Program Accommodate your Schedule? And last you must confirm that the physical therapist program you finally pick can provide the class schedule you need. This is particularly essential if you decide to continue working while attending school. If you must schedule night or weekend classes in the Canton GA area, confirm that they are available. If you can only attend part-time, verify if that is an alternative and how many credit hours or courses you would need to carry. Also, ask what the protocol is for making up any classes that you might miss because of illness, work or family obligations.

Earning Your Physical Therapy Degree near Canton Georgia?

If you are planning on attending a Physical Therapy School in the Canton GA area, the following information may prove to be both interesting and educational regarding the location of your future Alma Mater.

Canton, Georgia

Canton is located near the center of Cherokee County at 34°13′38″N 84°29′41″W / 34.22722°N 84.49472°W / 34.22722; -84.49472 (34.227307, −84.494727).[6] The city lies just north of Holly Springs and south of Ball Ground. Interstate 575 passes through the eastern side of the city, with access from exits 14 through 20. Canton is 40 miles (64 km) north of downtown Atlanta via I-575 and I-75.

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 18.7 square miles (48.5 km2), of which 18.6 square miles (48.2 km2) is land and 0.15 square miles (0.4 km2), or 0.76%, is water.[5] The Etowah River, a tributary of the Coosa River, flows from east to west through the center of the city.

As of the 2010 census,[2] there were 22,958 people, 8,204 households, and 5,606 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,234.3 people per square mile (476.8/km²). There were 9,341 housing units at an average density of 502.2 per square mile (194.0/km²).

Choose the Best Physical Therapist Degree Program near Canton GA

Deciding on the right physical therapist college is a necessary first decision you have to make to launch a fulfilling career in the healthcare profession. As we have covered in this article, the PT or DPT degree program and school you enroll in should both have exceptional reputations and accreditation. However there are additional important questions that you should ask regarding your school of choice as well. As you start your search for a physical therapy program, bear in mind that numerous factors will guide you to your final decision. You might decide to visit each of the schools to see their facilities and speak to active DPT students. While there, ask yourself this important question: will this school help me accomplish my goal of becoming a licensed practicing physical therapist? By adhering to our list of supplemental questions, you will be able to narrow down the field so you can make the best choice. And with the proper education and training, you can achieve your dream of becoming a practicing physical therapist in Canton GA.

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