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

How to Pick a Physical Therapist School near Franklin 30217

Franklin GA physical therapy school student with volunteerObtaining a physical therapy degree near Franklin GA is a critical first step to beginning a rewarding career in the health care industry. Physical therapists (PT) help individuals who have been debilitated as a result of illness or injury gain back function and mobility. But before they can practice and work with the rehabilitation of patients, they must acquire the proper education and training. A PT must also become licensed in all states, a large number mandating that the licensee earn a physical therapy degree from an accredited school. So before enrolling in a physical therapy school, it’s important to research the ones you are looking at to make sure they will provide a superior education and comply with your state’s licensing requirements. What you should not do is enroll in a school just because it happens to be the nearest to your home or it has cheapest tuition. There are other important qualifications that must be evaluated in addition to cost and location. But before we talk about what those qualifications are and the questions you should be asking, we’ll cover what a physical therapist does and the options for education.

What is a Physical Therapist’s Job Description?

Franklin GA physical therapist helping patient walkPhysical therapists practice in diverse settings, such as Franklin GA hospitals, health clinics, rehabilitation centers, nursing homes and sports facilities. What the facilities all share in common is that they are equipped for diagnosing and rehabilitating patients. As previously stated, physical therapists help patients that are suffering from a lack of mobility and often pain due to illness or injury. After patient diagnosis, they develop a program of treatment to deal with the mobility issues and lessen or eradicate any pain. They also try to prevent any progression of the disability. Though the causes of disability requiring physical therapy are abundant, they include:

  • Arthritis or Osteoporosis
  • Car or motor cycle accidents
  • Head injuries.
  • Cardiac arrest.
  • Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.
  • Burn injuries.
  • Knee Replacement.
  • Sciatica.
  • Multiple Sclerosis.

Licensed physical therapists work in close partnerships with other Franklin GA health professionals, including doctors, chiropractors, registered nurses and dentists. They can also supervise several physical therapy assistants who work for them in diagnosing and treating their patients. One thing to bear in mind for anyone considering entering the physical therapy profession, it is rather physically demanding. Physical therapists routinely lift heavy equipment as well as patients, and kneel, crouch and stand for long periods of time on a daily basis.

Physical Therapy Degrees Available

Franklin GA physical therapist applying acupuncture to patientThere are 3 physical therapy degree options available for students to pursue at the graduate and undergraduate levels. Of these choices, the single degree that is available 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. Following are short explanations of degree levels that are available in the Franklin GA area:

  • Associate Degrees prepare students to practice as physical therapy assistants, or may 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 programs are most often provided by junior or community colleges, and require two years for completion. Clinical training, which may be in the form of an internship is usually part of the program.
  • Bachelor’s Degrees are designed as pre-physical therapy training to prep students to advance to the doctoral level. While they are not a requirement to be eligible for the doctoral program, they are an integral preliminary step to becoming a PT. As with most bachelor’s degrees, they typically take four years to complete and commonly include an internship program of at least 500 hours.
  • Doctorate Degrees are mandated if you want 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 three years to complete, making the overall investment of time seven years in the majority of cases. Clinical or practical training is an important element in addition to the extensive classroom and lab instruction. Consequently the completion of an internship is mandated, not only for graduation but in some 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 attainable in the United States. A number of practicing physical therapists holding a master’s or even a bachelor’s degree were “grandfathered” in before the present licensing requirement for a doctorate was implemented.

Physical Therapy Colleges Online

woman attending physical therapy school online in Franklin GAWhile not as common as the on-campus options, there are a number of accredited online physical therapist programs offered, more so at the graduate level. Due to the hands-on structure of the training, internships and clinical lab work are combined 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 program can be accessed within the comfort and convenience of the student’s Franklin GA residence. Online schools are not only to some extent more accessible, but in many instances more affordable. Tuition may be significantly less than comparable on-campus options, and expenditures for commuting are reduced. And many of the online programs are accredited by the CAPTE, ensuring a quality education. These benefits may make the online option the ideal choice for those students that are dedicated enough to attend classes at home.

Questions to Ask Physical Therapist Schools

At this point you undoubtedly have made a decision concerning a few of your preliminary questions, such as the kind of physical therapist degree you would like to earn, where you prefer to attend classes, and how much you can afford to invest in your education. But considering there are numerous PT colleges within the Franklin GA area and across Georgia, you’ll have to look into additional qualifications also in order to further narrow your list of college options. Moreover, you need to be sure that you choose the program that is ideal for you. That’s why we have collected a list of essential questions that you must ask the physical therapist schools you are reviewing. Ask each of the competing colleges these questions before making an ultimate selection.

Is the Physical Therapist Program Accredited?  Find out if the programs you are reviewing have received accreditation from a regional or a national agency. As previously stated, if you are pursuing a doctorate the program must be accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE). If you select an online program, it can also earn accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council. It’s essential that both the physical therapy school and program you choose are accredited, not just the school. Additionally, check that the accreditation is from a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization. In addition to guaranteeing that you obtain a quality education, accreditation may be required for state licensing as well as for getting student loans or financial assistance.

What is the Program’s Ranking? Along with accreditation, it’s imperative that the school and program you choose have exceptional reputations within the physical therapist profession. There are several ways you can look into a PT program’s reputation, starting with requesting references from employers that they place their graduates with. You may also search for online reviews and rating services and ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. Get in touch with several Franklin GA physical therapist clinics or other health care facilities that you might be interested in working for and ask if they can provide any insight about your school 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 schools.

What is the School’s Job Placement Rate? There are a couple of useful statistics that you should find out about all of the physical therapist programs you are reviewing. First is their graduation rate. A lower rate might indicate that students dropped out 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 school’s job placement program, particularly in the Franklin GA area? If a college has a higher job placement rate, it suggests that its reputation within the health care community is good or perhaps excellent. It also verifies that the program has a broad network of contacts to assist students obtain internships or jobs after graduation.

Does the College Support Licensing Requirements? It’s essential that the school you select provides both exceptional training and a curriculum that satisfies the licensing criteria for Georgia 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 therapist college. While licensing requirements differ state by state for PT and PTA graduates, many states require a minimum amount of clinical hours be performed as well as passing scores on additional exams.

Are Internships Offered? Ask if the physical therapist programs you are reviewing have associations with Franklin GA hospitals or clinics for internship programs. Internships are not only a great way to receive practical experience in a clinical setting, they are also a requirement for most PT programs and state licensing. As a supplemental benefit, they can assist graduates and students develop professional connections in the Franklin health care community and assist with job placement once licensed.

What are the Class Sizes ? Unless you are the type of student that prefers to sit far in the rear of class or hide in the crowd, you will likely prefer a small class size. Smaller classes permit more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the physical therapist schools you are considering what the typical teacher to student 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 speak with some of the instructors and students to get their perspectives regarding the pharmacy tech program as well.

Where is the Program Located? For a number of students, the physical therapy college they pick will have to be within driving distance of their Franklin GA residence. Those who have decided to attend classes online naturally 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 be required to pay a higher tuition. State colleges usually charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges commonly charge a higher tuition for those students that don’t reside within their districts.

Is Financial Aid Provided? The majority of DPT schools offer some form of financial support to their prospective students. Find out if the schools you are considering have a financial aid department and see what kind of aid is obtainable. At a minimum they should help in acquiring a student loan or any scholarships you may qualify for. Some physical therapy colleges provide scholarships, while others offer work programs. So before you eliminate a program because the tuition is beyond your budget, learn what financial aid might be available.

Can the School Accommodate your Schedule? And last you must confirm that the physical therapist college you ultimately select can provide the class schedule you need. This is especially crucial if you decide to continue working while you attend school. If you need to schedule evening or weekend classes in the Franklin GA area, verify 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, learn what the protocol is for making up any classes that you might miss as a result of work, illness or family obligations.

Earning Your Physical Therapy Degree near Franklin Georgia?

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

Franklin, Georgia

Franklin is a city in Heard County, Georgia, United States. The population was 993 at the 2010 census,[4] up from 902 at the 2000 census. Franklin is the county seat of Heard County.[5] The city is named after Benjamin Franklin.[6]

Franklin is located in central Heard County at 33°16′47″N 85°05′54″W / 33.279788°N 85.098403°W / 33.279788; -85.098403,[8] along the Chattahoochee River. U.S. Route 27 passes through the east side of the city on a bypass, leading north 23 miles (37 km) to Carrollton and south 19 miles (31 km) to LaGrange. Georgia State Route 34 passes through the center of Franklin, leading northeast 20 miles (32 km) to Newnan and southwest 12 miles (19 km) to the Alabama border. Georgia State Route 100 joins SR 34 for part of its path through Franklin, but leads northwest 14 miles (23 km) to Ephesus and southeast 14 miles to Hogansville.

According to the United States Census Bureau, Franklin has a total area of 3.5 square miles (9.0 km2), of which 3.4 square miles (8.7 km2) are land and 0.2 square miles (0.4 km2), or 4.00%, are water.[4]

Choose the Best Physical Therapy Degree Program near Franklin GA

Selecting the ideal physical therapist college is an important first decision you need to make to start a rewarding career in the medical profession. As we have addressed in this article, the DPT or PT degree program and college you pick should both have exceptional reputations and accreditation. But there are other relevant questions that you should ask concerning your school of choice as well. As you begin your search for a physical therapist college, bear in mind that many factors will guide you toward your ultimate decision. You might decide to visit each of the colleges to view their facilities and talk 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 additional questions, you will be able to narrow down the options so you can make the right selection. And with the proper education and training, you can accomplish your dream of becoming a practicing physical therapist in Franklin GA.

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