How to Find the Right Physical Therapist Degree Program near Lavonia 30553
Earning a physical therapist degree near Lavonia GA is an important first step to launching a fulfilling career in the health care field. Physical therapists (PT) help patients who have been debilitated as a result of injury or illness gain back function and mobility. But before they can practice and provide treatment for the rehabilitation of patients, they need to obtain the appropriate education and training. A PT must additionally become licensed in every state, a large number requiring that the licensee earn a physical therapy degree from an accredited college. So prior to choosing a physical therapy school, it’s essential to evaluate those you are thinking about to ensure they will furnish a quality education and comply with your state’s licensing standards. What you should not do is select a college simply because it happens to be the nearest to your home or it has the most affordable tuition. There are other relevant qualifications that need to 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 Do Physical Therapists Do?
Physical therapists practice in varying settings, such as Lavonia GA hospitals, health clinics, rehabilitation centers, nursing homes and sports facilities. What the facilities all share in common is that they have the equipment for diagnosing and rehabilitating patients. As earlier stated, physical therapists help patients that are experiencing a lack of mobility and often pain caused by injury or illness. After diagnosing a patient, they develop a course of treatment to resolve the mobility problems and reduce or eradicate any pain. They also endeavor to prevent any progression of the disability. Although the causes of disability requiring physical therapy are abundant, they include:
- Arthritis or Osteoporosis
- Motor vehicle accidents
- Heart attacks.
- Sports injuries.
- Burn injuries.
- Knee Replacement.
- Cerebral Palsy.
Licensed physical therapists work in close partnerships with other Lavonia GA health professionals, including chiropractors, physicians, registered nurses and dentists. They may also supervise one or more physical therapy assistants who work for them assisting with the diagnosis and treatment of their patients. Something to take note of for anyone thinking about going into the physical therapy field, it is rather physically demanding. Physical therapists regularly lift patients and heavy equipment, and stand, crouch and kneel for prolonged periods of time on a daily basis.
Physical Therapy Degrees Offered
There are 3 physical therapy degree options offered for students to enroll in at the graduate and undergraduate levels. Of these options, the only 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 prepping them to advance to the doctoral level. Below are brief summaries of degrees that are available in the Lavonia GA area:
- Associate Degrees train students to practice as physical therapy assistants, or may be used as a stepping stone to a more advanced degree. Candidates must have a high school diploma or GED to be accepted for enrollment. The degrees are most often offered by community colleges, and take about 2 years to complete. Clinical training, which may be in the form of an internship is normally part of the curriculum.
- Bachelor’s Degrees are created as pre-physical therapy training to prepare students to progress to the doctoral level. While they are not a requirement to be eligible for the doctoral program, they are an important preliminary step to becoming a PT. Similar to the majority of bachelor’s degrees, they generally 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 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 total investment of time 7 years in the majority of cases. Clinical or practical training is an essential element along with the considerable classroom and lab instruction. Therefor the completion of an internship is required, not only for graduation but in some 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 offered in the USA. A number of practicing physical therapists having 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 Therapy Online Schools
While not as prevalent as the on-campus alternatives, there are many accredited online physical therapy degrees available, more so at the graduate level. Due to the hands-on nature of the training, clinical lab work and internships are integrated with the online classes. This requires that the student live close to the school campus or in proximity of a sponsored internship. However, the online segment of the curriculum may be accessed within the comfort and convenience of the student’s Lavonia GA home. Online schools are not only to some extent more accessible, but in a number of cases more affordable. Tuition might be significantly less than comparable on campus alternatives, and expenditures for commuting are reduced. And many of the online schools are accredited by the CAPTE, ensuring a quality education. These advantages may make the online alternative the ideal choice for those students that are disciplined enough to learn at home.
Subjects to Ask Physical Therapy Colleges
At this point you probably have made a decision regarding some of your initial questions, like the type of physical therapist degree you would like to attain, where you prefer to attend classes, and how much you can afford to spend for your education. But since there are numerous PT schools within the Lavonia GA area and across Georgia, you’ll need to look into other qualifications as well in order to further narrow your list of school choices. Also, you need to make certain that you select the program that is best for you. That’s the reason we have compiled a list of important questions that you must ask the physical therapy colleges you are considering. Ask each of the competing colleges these questions prior to making a final selection.
Is the Physical Therapy Program Accredited? Ask if the programs you are looking at have earned accreditation from a national or a regional organization. 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 select an online college, it may also receive accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council. It’s imperative that both the physical therapist program and school you enroll in are accredited, not simply the school. Additionally, verify that the accreditation is from a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency. In addition to ensuring that you receive an excellent education, accreditation may be mandated for state licensing as well as for securing student loans or financial assistance.
What is the School’s Standing? In addition to accreditation, it’s important that the school and program you choose have excellent reputations within the physical therapy profession. There are a number of ways you can look into a PT school’s reputation, starting with requesting references from employers that they place their graduates with. You may also check online rating services and reviews and ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. Get in touch with several Lavonia GA physical therapist clinics or other health care facilities that you may have an interest in working for and ask if they can give you any insight about your school selections. It might also be a good idea to contact the Georgia Attorney General and school licensing authority to see if any complaints have been submitted against the colleges.
What is the Program’s Job Placement Rate? There are a two significant statistics that you need to find out about all of the physical therapist schools you are reviewing. First is their graduation rate. A lower rate may indicate that students dropped out because of displeasure with the program, the instructors, or both. Once the students have graduated, how many of them are being placed in jobs with the help of the school’s job placement program, particularly in the Lavonia GA area? If a program has a higher job placement rate, it suggests that its reputation within the health care community is good or perhaps outstanding. It also confirms that the school has a broad network of contacts to assist students get internships or employment after graduation.
Does the College Prepare You For Licensing Requirements? It’s imperative that the program you select furnishes both excellent training and a curriculum that supports 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 therapist program. While licensing requirements vary state by state for PTA and PT graduates, some states require a minimum amount of clinical hours be completed and passing scores on supplemental tests.
Are Internship Programs Provided? Inquire if the physical therapy programs you are evaluating have associations with Lavonia GA clinics or hospitals for internship programs. Not only are internships an excellent manner to get hands on training in a clinical setting, they are additionally a requirement for most PT programs and state licensing. As an ancillary benefit, they may assist students and graduates develop professional connections in the Lavonia healthcare community and help with job placement after licensing.
How Large are the Classes ? Unless you are the type of person that prefers to sit way in the rear of class or hide in the crowd, you will probably prefer a small class size. Smaller classes enable more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the physical therapist colleges you are considering what the typical teacher to student ratio is for their classes. If practical you may want to monitor one or more classes before making your ultimate determination. This will also give you an opportunity to talk with several of the students and instructors to get their perspectives regarding the pharmacist tech program as well.
Where is the School Located? For a lot of students, the physical therapy school they pick will need to be within travelling distance of their Lavonia GA residence. Students who have decided to attend online classes naturally will not have to concern themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of local internships will be of concern. Something to bear in mind is that if you decide to enroll in a school that is out of state or perhaps out of your local area, you may have to pay a higher tuition. State colleges normally 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 Help Offered? The majority of DPT schools provide some type of financial assistance to their potential students. Inquire if the colleges you are looking at have a financial assistance office and see what type of assistance is available. They at least should help in getting a student loan or any grants you might be eligible for. Some physical therapy colleges provide scholarships, while others provide work programs. So before eliminating a program because the tuition is too expensive, find out what financial assistance might be available.
Can the School Accommodate your Schedule? And last you need to confirm that the physical therapist program you ultimately select can provide the class schedule you need. This is especially essential if you decide to continue working while attending school. If you must schedule night or weekend classes in the Lavonia GA area, make sure that they are available. If you can only attend part-time, 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 due to illness, work or family emergencies.
Earning Your Physical Therapy Degree near Lavonia Georgia?
If you are planning on attending a Physical Therapy School in the Lavonia GA area, the following information may prove to be both interesting and educational regarding the location of your future Alma Mater.
Lavonia is located in northeastern Franklin County at 34°26′10″N 83°6′23″W / 34.43611°N 83.10639°W / 34.43611; -83.10639 (34.436055, -83.106270). A small portion of the town extends southeast into Hart County.
The Cherokee people were indigenous to the area in which Lavonia is located. A sophisticated tribe that typically dwelled in cabins by the 18th century, the Cherokee joined with the British during the American Revolution. When the American colonists prevailed, their land was issued as bounty land to those who had fought in the revolution. As a result, people of European ancestry began to move into the Lavonia area during the 1780s.
The founding of the town of Lavonia came as the result of the expansion of the railroad in northeast Georgia. A railroad line known as the Elberton-Airline Railroad desired another station further to the north. In a move typical for the time, businessmen in the area determined to build a town around the new railroad station. Upon division of the area into town lots and completion of all necessary legal procedures, the town of Lavonia was incorporated in 1880.
Pick the Right Physical Therapy Training Program near Lavonia GA
Selecting the best physical therapy school is a necessary initial decision you need to make to start a fulfilling career in the health care profession. As we have covered in this article, the PT or DPT degree program and school you choose should both have exceptional reputations and be accredited. However there are additional relevant questions that you should ask regarding your school of choice as well. As you commence your search for a physical therapist program, keep in mind that numerous variables will guide you toward your ultimate decision. You might decide to go to different schools to view their facilities and speak with active DPT students. While there, ask yourself this critical question: will this college help me achieve my goal of becoming a practicing licensed physical therapist? By adhering to our list of additional questions, you will be able to narrow down the field so you can make the best selection. And with the necessary education and training, you can accomplish your dream to become a licensed physical therapist in Lavonia GA.
A Few More Interesting Locations in Georgia
Business Results 1 - 10 of 2