How to Choose a Physical Therapy Training Program near Rockmart 30153
Earning a physical therapist degree near Rockmart GA is an essential first step to launching a fulfilling career in the health care industry. Physical therapists (PT) help individuals who have been debilitated due to illness or injury regain mobility and function. But before they may legally practice and provide treatment for the rehabilitation of patients, they must obtain the appropriate training and education. A PT must also be licensed in every state, many mandating that the licensee earn a physical therapy degree from an accredited college. So before choosing a physical therapy school, it’s essential to research the ones you are thinking about to make sure they will furnish a quality education and meet your state’s licensing requirements. What you should not do is choose a school just because it happens to be the nearest to your residence or it has the lowest tuition. There are other important qualifications that need to be considered in addition to cost and location. But before we cover what those qualifications are and what questions you should ask, we’ll address what a physical therapist does and the options for education.
What Do Physical Therapists Do?
Physical therapists practice in varying locations, including Rockmart GA private practices, hospitals, rehabilitation centers, nursing homes and sports facilities. What the facilities all share in common is that they have the equipment for the diagnosis and rehabilitation treatment of patients. As previously mentioned, physical therapists help individuals that are suffering from a lack of mobility and in many cases pain due to injury or illness. After diagnosing a patient, they design a program of treatment to resolve the mobility problems and lessen or eliminate any pain. They also strive to stop any progression of the disability. While the causes of disability necessitating physical therapy are abundant, they include:
- Osteoporosis and Arthritis
- Motor vehicle accidents
- Cardiac arrest.
- Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.
- Fire injuries.
- Knee Replacement.
- Cerebral Palsy.
Licensed physical therapists practice in close partnerships with other Rockmart GA medical professionals, including chiropractors, physicians, registered nurses and dentists. They can also supervise one or more physical therapy assistants who work under them in diagnosing and treating their patients. Something to bear in mind for anyone considering getting into the physical therapy field, it is quite physically demanding. Physical therapists routinely lift patients and heavy equipment, and stand, crouch and kneel for extended periods of time on a daily basis.
Physical Therapist Degrees
There are 3 physical therapist degrees available for individuals to enroll in at the undergraduate and graduate levels. Of these choices, the one degree that is attainable 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 advance to the doctoral level. Below are short summaries of degrees that are available in the Rockmart GA area:
- Associate Degrees train students to be physical therapy assistants, or can be used as a stepping stone to a more advanced degree. Applicants must have earned a high school diploma or GED to qualify for enrollment. The programs are typically made available by community colleges, and require 2 years to complete. An internship or other form of clinical training is usually part of the course of study.
- Bachelor’s Degrees are developed as pre-physical therapist training to prepare candidates to move up to the doctoral level. While they are not a requirement to be eligible for the doctoral program, they are an essential first step to practicing as a PT. As with the majority of bachelor’s degrees, they typically take 4 years to complete and commonly incorporate an internship program of at least 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). After earning the bachelor’s degree, the doctoral takes three years to finish, making the overall commitment seven years in most cases. Practical or clinical training is an intregal element along with the considerable classroom and lab instruction. Therefor the fulfillment of an internship is required, not only 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. A number of practicing physical therapists having a master’s or in some cases a bachelor’s degree were “grandfathered” in before the current licensing mandate for a doctorate was implemented.
Physical Therapy Online Degrees
Although not as prevalent as the more traditional options, there are some accredited online physical therapy programs offered, even more at the graduate level. Due to the hands-on structure of the training, internships and clinical lab work are integrated with the online classes. This requires that the student live close to the school campus or in proximity of an available internship. However, the online part of the program can be accessed within the convenience and comfort of the student’s Rockmart GA residence. Online programs are not only partially more accessible, but in many cases more affordable. Tuition might be significantly lower than similar on campus alternatives, and expenses for commuting are reduced. And many of the online programs are accredited by the CAPTE, assuring a quality education. These advantages may make the online alternative the ideal choice for those students that are dedicated enough to attend classes at home.
Subjects to Ask Physical Therapy Colleges
By now you most likely have come to decision concerning some of your preliminary questions, like the kind of physical therapist degree you intend to obtain, where you want to attend classes, and how much you can afford to spend for your education. But because there are so many PT schools within the Rockmart GA area and across Georgia, you’ll have to look into other qualifications also in order to further narrow your list of school choices. Moreover, you want to make sure that you pick the school that is best for you. That’s why we have compiled a list of critical questions that you must ask the physical therapist programs you are thinking about. Ask all of the potential colleges these questions before making an ultimate decision.
Is the Physical Therapy School Accredited? Find out if the colleges you are looking at have earned accreditation from a national or a regional organization. As earlier 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 can also earn accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council. It’s essential that both the physical therapist program and school you select are accredited, not simply the school. Additionally, check that the accreditation is through a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency. Besides guaranteeing that you receive an excellent education, accreditation might be mandated for state licensing as well as for getting student loans or financial assistance.
What is the School’s Standing? Along with accreditation, it’s essential that the school and program you pick have outstanding reputations within the physical therapist community. There are a number of ways you can look into a PT school’s reputation, starting with requesting references from employers that they refer their students to. You may also search for online reviews and rating services and ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. Call a few Rockmart GA physical therapy clinics or other healthcare facilities that you may have an interest in working for and ask if they can provide any recommendations about your college options. It may also be prudent to contact the Georgia Attorney General and school licensing authority to see if any complaints have been submitted against the colleges.
What is the College’s Job Placement Percentage? There are a couple of significant statistics that you should know about each of the physical therapy programs you are looking at. One is their graduation rate. A lower rate may indicate that students dropped out because of displeasure with the program, the teachers, or both. After the students have graduated, how many of them are being placed in jobs with the support of the school’s job placement program, particularly in the Rockmart GA area? If a school has a higher job placement rate, it suggests that its reputation within the medical care community is good or perhaps exceptional. It also affirms that the school has a broad network of contacts to assist students get internships or jobs after graduation.
Does the School Prepare You For Licensing Requirements? It’s essential 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 practicing. In each state a passing score is required on the National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE) along with a degree from an accredited physical therapist program. Although licensing requirements differ state by state for PT and PTA graduates, a number of states require a minimum number of clinical hours be completed as well as passing scores on supplemental tests.
Are Internship Programs Sponsored? Ask if the physical therapist colleges you are reviewing have partnerships with Rockmart GA clinics or hospitals for internship programs. Internships are not only a terrific manner to get hands on training in a clinical environment, they are additionally a requirement for most PT programs and state licensing. As an ancillary benefit, they can assist graduates and students form professional connections in the Rockmart medical community and assist with obtaining employment once licensed.
What Size are the Classes ? Unless you are the sort of student that likes to sit way in the rear of class or get lost in the crowd, you will undoubtedly want a small class size. Small classes enable more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the physical therapist colleges you are researching what the average teacher to student ratio is for their classes. If practical you may want to monitor one or more classes before making your final decision. This will also give you a chance to converse with some of the students and instructors to get their opinions regarding the pharmacy tech program as well.
Where is the School Located? For many students, the physical therapist school they pick will need to be within travelling distance of their Rockmart GA residence. Those who have decided to attend classes online naturally will not have to worry themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of area internships will be of importance. One thing to bear in mind is that if you decide to enroll in a school that is out of state or even out of your local area, you may be required to pay a higher tuition. State colleges commonly charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges commonly charge a higher tuition to those students that don’t reside within their districts.
Is Financial Aid Provided? The majority of DPT colleges provide some type of financial aid to their prospective students. Inquire if the colleges you are reviewing have a financial aid office and see what kind of help is obtainable. They at least should help in securing a student loan or any scholarships you might qualify for. A number of physical therapy colleges offer scholarships, while others provide work programs. So before eliminating a college because the tuition is too expensive, ask what financial assistance might be available.
Can the College Accommodate your Schedule? And finally you must verify that the physical therapist school you finally select can provide the class schedule you need. This is especially essential if you opt to continue working while attending school. If you must schedule evening or weekend classes in the Rockmart GA area, make sure that they are offered. If you can only attend part-time, check if that is an option and how many credit hours or courses you would need to carry. Also, find out what the protocol is for making up any classes that you may miss as a result of illness, work or family obligations.
Earning Your Physical Therapy Degree near Rockmart Georgia?
If you are planning on attending a Physical Therapy School in the Rockmart GA area, the following information may prove to be both interesting and educational regarding the location of your future Alma Mater.
Rockmart is a city in Polk County, Georgia, United States. The population was 4,199 according to a 2010 census. Rockmart developed as a railroad depot town when the Southern Railway built a station in the area. The community was incorporated in 1872, and was named from abundant deposits of slate in the area. The Rockmart Downtown Historic District is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
Rockmart is located at 34°00′14″N 85°02′57″W / 34.003952°N 85.049202°W / 34.003952; -85.049202. According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 4.4 square miles (11 km2), of which 4.3 square miles (11 km2) is land and 0.04 square miles (0.10 km2) (0.69%) is water. The majority of the city of Rockmart is located in Polk County; however, parts of Rockmart stretch into Paulding County as well.
As of the census of 2000, there were 3,870 people, 1,541 households, and 1,027 families residing in the city. The population density was 892.0 people per square mile (344.3/km²). There were 1,681 housing units at an average density of 387.5 per square mile (149.5/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 79.82% White, 18.48% African American, 0.10% Native American, 0.34% Asian, 0.39% from other races, and 0.88% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.50% of the population.
Choose the Right Physical Therapist Training Program near Rockmart GA
Picking the right physical therapist college is an important first decision you must make to launch a fulfilling career in the medical field. As we have addressed in this article, the PT or DPT degree program and college you select should both have excellent reputations and be accredited. But there are additional important questions that you need to ask concerning your school of choice as well. As you begin your search for a physical therapy school, bear in mind that a number of variables will guide you to your ultimate decision. You may want to visit each of the colleges to see their facilities and talk to active DPT students. While there, ask yourself this important question: will this school help me achieve 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 appropriate choice. And with the proper education and training, you can achieve your dream of becoming a licensed physical therapist in Rockmart GA.
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