How to Choose a Physical Therapist Degree Program near Danielsville 30633
Getting a physical therapist degree near Danielsville GA is an essential first step to starting a rewarding career in the medical care industry. Physical therapists (PT) help patients who have been disabled due to injury or illness regain function and mobility. But before they can practice and provide treatment for the rehabilitation of patients, they must get the appropriate education and training. A PT must also become licensed in every state, many mandating that the licensee receive a physical therapy degree from an accredited college. So before choosing a physical therapy school, it’s essential to research the ones you are considering to ensure they will deliver a quality education and meet your state’s licensing requirements. What you do not want to do is choose a college just because it happens to be the closest to your residence or it has cheapest tuition. There are other relevant qualifications that must be considered besides 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 is a Physical Therapist?
Physical therapists work in diverse settings, such as Danielsville GA 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 earlier stated, physical therapists help individuals that are struggling with a lack of mobility and often pain due to injury or illness. After patient diagnosis, they develop a program of treatment to address the mobility problems and reduce or eliminate any pain. They also endeavor to stop any advancement of the disability. Although the causes of disability necessitating physical therapy are abundant, they include:
- Arthritis or Osteoporosis
- Motor vehicle accidents
- Cardiac arrest.
- Sports injuries.
- Burn injuries.
- Hip Replacement.
- Cerebral Palsy.
Licensed physical therapists work in close affiliation with other Danielsville GA medical specialists, including doctors, chiropractors, dentists and nurses. They can also manage several physical therapy assistants who work under them assisting with diagnosing and treating their patients. Something to keep in mind for anyone considering going into the physical therapy profession, it is quite 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 Therapist Degrees Offered
There are 3 physical therapist degree options available for students to pursue at the undergraduate and graduate levels. Of these alternatives, the single degree that is available to practice as a physical therapist is the doctorate. Undergraduate degrees concentrate on either training students to become a physical therapy assistant (PTA) or readying them to progress to the doctoral level. Following are short explanations of degree levels that are offered in the Danielsville GA area:
- Associate Degrees train students to become physical therapy assistants, or can be used as a stepping stone to a more advanced degree. Candidates must have obtained a high school diploma or GED to qualify for enrollment. The programs are most often made available by community or junior colleges, and require 2 years to complete. Clinical training, which may be in the form of an internship is normally part of the course of study.
- Bachelor’s Degrees are designed as pre-physical therapist education to prep candidates to progress to the doctoral level. While they are not a requirement to be eligible for the doctoral program, they are an essential initial step to practicing as a PT. As with the majority of bachelor’s degrees, they normally require 4 years to finish and usually include an internship program of a minimum of 500 hours.
- Doctorate Degrees are mandated in order 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 7 years in the majority of cases. Practical or clinical training is an essential component in addition to the substantial classroom and lab instruction. Therefor the completion of an internship is required, not just 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 licensed physical therapists holding a master’s or in some cases a bachelor’s degree were “grandfathered” in prior to the present licensing mandate for a doctorate was implemented.
Physical Therapist Schools Online
Although not as prevalent as the more traditional options, there are many 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 requires that the student live near the college campus or in proximity of a sponsored internship. However, the online segment of the course of study can be accessed within the convenience and comfort of the student’s Danielsville GA home. Online schools are not only to some extent more accessible, but in many cases more affordable. Tuition might be significantly less than comparable on campus options, and expenses for commuting are reduced. And a number of the online schools are accredited by the CAPTE, ensuring a quality education. These advantages can make the online option the best choice for those students that are motivated enough to learn at home.
What to Ask Physical Therapist Colleges
At this point you probably have come to decision regarding a few 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 spend for your education. But since there are numerous PT colleges within the Danielsville GA area and across Georgia, you’ll have to research other qualifications as well in order to further narrow your list of college choices. Also, you want to make sure that you enroll in the school that is right for you. That’s the reason we have collected a list of important questions that you must ask the physical therapist colleges you are considering. Ask each of the competing schools these questions before making an ultimate selection.
Is the Physical Therapy College Accredited? Find out if the colleges you are looking at have earned accreditation from a national or a regional 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 can also receive accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council. It’s important that both the physical therapist program and school you enroll in are accredited, not just the school. Also, verify that the accreditation is through a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency. Besides ensuring that you receive a quality education, accreditation may be mandated for state licensing and even for securing student loans or financial aid.
What is the College’s Standing? Along with accreditation, it’s important that the college and program you choose have exceptional reputations within the physical therapist profession. There are a number of ways you can research a PT college’s reputation, starting with requesting references from employers that they refer their students to. You can also check online reviews and rating services and ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. Call some Danielsville GA 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 may 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 colleges.
What is the College’s Job Placement Rate? There are a two useful statistics that you need to find out about each of the physical therapy programs you are looking at. One is their graduation rate. A lower rate may mean that students left because of displeasure with the program, the instructors, or both. Once the students have graduated, what percentage of them are being hired with the assistance of the college’s job placement program, particularly in the Danielsville GA area? If a school has a higher job placement rate, it’s an indication that its reputation within the healthcare field is good or even excellent. It also confirms that the program has a broad network of contacts to assist students obtain internships or jobs after graduation.
Does the Program Prepare You For Licensing Requirements? It’s imperative that the school you enroll in provides both superior training and a curriculum that satisfies the licensing requirements for Georgia or the state where you will be working. In each state a passing score is needed on the National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE) along with a degree from an accredited physical therapy college. Although licensing requirements vary state by state for PTA and PT graduates, some states require a minimum number of clinical hours be completed and passing scores on additional exams.
Are Internships Provided? Find out if the physical therapist programs you are assessing have associations with Danielsville GA hospitals or clinics for internship programs. Not only are internships a great way to obtain hands on experience in a clinical setting, they are additionally a requirement for the majority of PT programs and state licensing. As an ancillary benefit, they can assist students and graduates form professional relationships in the Danielsville medical community and help with obtaining employment once licensed.
How Large are the Classes ? Unless you are the type of student that likes to sit way in the rear of class or get lost in the crowd, you will undoubtedly want a smaller class size. Smaller classes allow for more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the physical therapy schools 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 determination. This will also give you an opportunity to talk with a few of the students and instructors to get their opinions regarding the pharmacist tech program also.
Where is the College Located? For many students, the physical therapist college they select will need to be within commuting distance of their Danielsville GA residence. Those who have opted 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. One thing to keep 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 be required to pay a higher tuition. State colleges normally 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 Help Provided? The majority of DPT colleges provide some type of financial aid to their prospective students. Find out if the colleges you are examining have a financial aid office and find out what kind of assistance is obtainable. They at least should help in acquiring a student loan or any scholarships you may qualify for. Some physical therapy schools provide scholarships, while others offer work programs. So before you eliminate a program because the tuition is beyond your budget, learn what financial assistance may be available.
Can the Program Accommodate your Schedule? And last you must verify that the physical therapist program you ultimately select can furnish the class schedule you need. This is particularly essential if you choose to continue working while attending classes. If you need to schedule night or weekend classes in the Danielsville GA area, confirm that they are available. If you can only attend part-time, verify if that is an option and how many courses or credit hours you would need to enroll in. Also, ask what the procedure is for making up any classes that you may miss as a result of work, illness or family emergencies.
Earning Your Physical Therapy Degree near Danielsville Georgia?
If you are planning on attending a Physical Therapy School in the Danielsville GA area, the following information may prove to be both interesting and educational regarding the location of your future Alma Mater.
Danielsville was named for General Allen Daniel (1772-1836), Major-General of the Fourth Division of Georgia Militia 1812-17 and both state senator and representative of Elbert and Madison Counties. His father was at one time thought to be a Captain Allen Daniel of Virginia, a veteran of the American Revolutionary War, but this has been disproved. In 1812, Danielsville was designated seat of the newly formed Madison County. Danielsville was incorporated as a town in 1817 and as a city in 1908.
On April 11, 1936, 45-year-old a black man, [called Lint Shaw in newspaper accounts] was arrested by Madison County police in connection with the rape of two white girls. Shaw, who resisted arrest, was shot three times by police before being taken to the county jail in Danielsville. By late evening, word had spread of Shaw's arrest, and a crowd of about 150 white Danielsville residents gathered at the jail, demanding Shaw be released to them. The crowd began prying apart the brick wall of the jail when 74-year-old judge Berry Mosely, who had been confined to bed with an illness, arrived and began talking down the crowd. In the meantime, the county sheriff began rounding up deputies, and called in nearby National Guard soldiers. Judge Mosely ordered the sheriff to take Shaw to a hospital, and when the National Guard soldiers arrived, they backed a truck up to the jail and sped away to Athens before the crowd could react. No one was severely injured in the incident, but the damaged jail had to be repaired.
Two weeks later, Shaw was escorted back to Danielsville to face trial. The mob reappeared, and Mosely again ordered Shaw moved away for his safety, this time to Royston. That location was not far enough to protect him from the mob, which followed Shaw to the jail there. In the middle of the night, the mob stormed the jail and lynched Shaw, leaving his hanging body to be found the next day. His death was the 468th lynching in Georgia since 1889.
Pick the Ideal Physical Therapist School near Danielsville GA
Choosing the best physical therapy school is an important initial decision you have to make to begin a fulfilling career in the healthcare field. As we have addressed in this article, the DPT or PT degree program and college you decide on should both have outstanding reputations and accreditation. But there are other critical questions that you should ask concerning your college of choice as well. As you commence your search for a physical therapist school, bear in mind that many factors will guide you toward your final decision. You might decide to go to each of the colleges to see their facilities and talk to active DPT students. While there, ask yourself this critical question: will this school help me reach 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 field so you can make the best selection. And with the proper training and education, you can accomplish your dream of becoming a practicing physical therapist in Danielsville GA.
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