How to Enroll In a Physical Therapy College near Union City 30291
Obtaining a physical therapist degree near Union City GA is an essential first step to starting a rewarding career in the health care field. Physical therapists (PT) help people who have been debilitated due to illness or injury gain back function and mobility. But before they can practice and provide treatment for the rehabilitation of patients, they need to receive the necessary training and education. A PT must additionally become licensed in all states, many mandating that the licensee receive a physical therapy degree from an accredited college. So before selecting a physical therapy school, it’s necessary to research the ones you are thinking about to make certain they will provide a quality education and comply with your state’s licensing criteria. What you should not do is choose a school just because it happens to be the closest to your home or it has the lowest tuition. There are other important qualifications that need to be evaluated along with cost and location. But before we cover what those qualifications are and what questions you should ask, we’ll cover what a physical therapist does and what the educational options are.
What is a Physical Therapist’s Job Description?
Physical therapists work in diverse settings, including Union City 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 mentioned, physical therapists help patients that are suffering from a lack of mobility and frequently pain caused by injury or illness. After diagnosing a patient, they create a program of treatment to address the mobility problems and reduce or eliminate any pain. They also strive to prevent any advancement of the disability. Although the causes of disability requiring physical therapy are abundant, they include:
- Arthritis or Osteoporosis
- Car or motor cycle accidents
- Heart attacks.
- Sports injuries.
- Fire injuries.
- Hip Replacement.
- Multiple Sclerosis.
Licensed physical therapists practice in close association with other Union City GA health specialists, including chiropractors, physicians, registered nurses and dentists. They can also oversee one or more physical therapy assistants who work under them assisting with diagnosing and treating their patients. One thing to take note of for anyone considering entering the physical therapy profession, it is rather physically demanding. Physical therapists routinely lift heavy equipment as well as patients, and stand, crouch and kneel for long periods of time on a daily basis.
Physical Therapist Degrees Offered
There are 3 physical therapy degree options available for students to pursue at the undergraduate and graduate levels. Of these options, the single degree that is available to practice as a physical therapist is the doctorate. Undergraduate degrees concentrate on either preparing students to become a physical therapy assistant (PTA) or readying them to progress to the doctoral level. Below are brief explanations of degrees that are offered in the Union City GA area:
- Associate Degrees educate students to practice as physical therapy assistants, or may be used as a stepping stone to a more advanced degree. Applicants must have obtained a high school diploma or equivalent to qualify for enrollment. The degrees are typically provided by community or junior colleges, and take about 2 years for completion. Clinical training, which may be in the form of an internship is normally a component of the program.
- Bachelor’s Degrees are created as pre-physical therapy education to ready candidates to progress to the doctoral level. Although they are not required to be qualified for the doctoral program, they are an essential preliminary step to practicing as a PT. As with most bachelor’s degrees, they generally require four years to complete and usually incorporate an internship program of at least 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 three years to complete, making the overall commitment 7 years in the majority of cases. Practical or clinical training is an intregal element along with the substantial lab and classroom instruction. Therefor the completion of an internship is mandated, not solely for graduation but in a number of states for licensing as well.
The Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) has taken the place of 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 holding a master’s or in some cases a bachelor’s degree were “grandfathered” in before the current licensing mandate for a doctorate was instituted.
Physical Therapist Programs Online
Although not as common as the on campus alternatives, there are a number of accredited online physical therapist programs available, even more at the graduate level. Because of the hands-on nature of the training, internships and clinical lab work are incorporated with the online classes. This requires that the student live close to the school campus or nearby a sponsored internship. Fortunately, the online portion of the course of study can be accessed within the comfort and convenience of the student’s Union City 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 similar on campus alternatives, and costs for commuting are minimized. And a number of the online programs are accredited by the CAPTE, guaranteeing a quality education. These benefits can make the online alternative the right choice for those students that are motivated enough to attend classes at home.
Topics to Ask Physical Therapy Programs
By now you undoubtedly have made a decision concerning some of your preliminary queries, including the type of physical therapist degree you want to earn, where you prefer to attend classes, and how much money you can afford to invest in your education. But because there are so many PT colleges within the Union City GA area and throughout Georgia, you’ll have to research other qualifications as well in order to further reduce your list of school choices. Furthermore, you want to be sure that you enroll in the program that is ideal for you. That’s the reason we have compiled a list of critical questions that you must ask the physical therapy programs you are reviewing. Ask each of the potential colleges these questions before making a final decision.
Is the Physical Therapy Program Accredited? Find out if the programs 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 select an online school, it can also obtain accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council. It’s important that both the physical therapist school and program you choose are accredited, not simply the school. Additionally, make sure that the accreditation is through a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization. Besides ensuring that you receive a quality education, accreditation might be mandated for state licensing as well as for securing student loans or financial assistance.
What is the Program’s Standing? In addition to accreditation, it’s essential that the school and program you pick have outstanding reputations within the physical therapist profession. There are multiple ways you can investigate a PT program’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 agencies for their reviews also. Contact some Union City GA physical therapy centers or other health care facilities that you may have an interest in working for and ask if they can offer any insight about your college selections. It may also be prudent to contact 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 two significant statistics that you should find out about all of the physical therapy colleges you are looking at. One is their graduation rate. A low rate may suggest that students dropped out due to dissatisfaction with the program, the instructors, or both. Once the students have graduated, what percentage of them are being placed in jobs with the support of the college’s job placement program, particularly in the Union City GA area? If a program has a higher job placement rate, it suggests that its reputation within the medical care community is good or even excellent. It also affirms that the school has a broad network of contacts to help students get internships or employment upon graduation.
Does the Program Support Licensing Requirements? It’s important that the school you select provides both superior 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) in addition to a degree from an accredited physical therapist program. Although licensing requirements fluctuate state by state for PTA and PT graduates, a number of states require a minimum amount of clinical hours be completed and passing scores on supplemental tests.
Are Internship Programs Provided? Ask if the physical therapy schools you are reviewing have relationships with Union City GA hospitals or clinics for internship programs. Internships are not only a great manner to get 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 help students and graduates establish professional connections in the Union City medical community and assist with obtaining employment once licensed.
What are the Class Sizes ? Unless you are the sort of person that prefers to sit way in the rear of the classroom or hide in the crowd, you will probably want a smaller class size. Smaller classes enable more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the physical therapist schools you are looking at 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 a chance to converse with several of the instructors and students to get their opinions regarding the pharmacy technician program also.
Where is the School Located? For a number of students, the physical therapy college they pick will need to be within travelling distance of their Union City GA residence. Individuals who have decided to attend online classes obviously will not have to trouble 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 might be required to pay a higher tuition. State colleges typically charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges typically charge a higher tuition for those students that live outside of their districts.
Is Financial Assistance Offered? Most DPT colleges provide some form of financial aid to their prospective students. Inquire if the colleges you are looking at have a financial aid department and find out what type of help is available. At a minimum they should help in obtaining a student loan or any grants you may be eligible for. A number of physical therapy schools offer scholarships, while others offer work programs. So before eliminating a school because the tuition is beyond your budget, find out what financial assistance may be available.
Can the College Accommodate your Schedule? And last you need to verify that the physical therapist program you finally pick can furnish the class schedule you need. This is especially essential if you choose to continue working while you attend classes. If you need to schedule evening or weekend classes in the Union City GA area, make sure that they are available. If you can only enroll on a part-time basis, verify if that is an option and how many credit hours or courses you would have to carry. Also, ask what the protocol is for making up any classes that you may miss as a result of illness, work or family emergencies.
Earning Your Physical Therapy Degree near Union City Georgia?
If you are planning on attending a Physical Therapy School in the Union City GA area, the following information may prove to be both interesting and educational regarding the location of your future Alma Mater.
Union City, Georgia
The current mayor[when?] is Vince Williams, and council members include: Brian Jones, Angelette Mealing, Christina Hobbs, and Shayla Nealy. The City Manager is LaSonja Filliingame and City Clerk is Shandrella Jewett.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 19.3 square miles (50.0 km2), of which 19.1 square miles (49.5 km2) is land and 0.2 square miles (0.5 km2), or 0.83%, is water.
As of the 2010 United States Census, there were 19,456 people residing in the city. The racial makeup of the city was 81.5% Black, 8.6% White, 0.2% Native American, 0.8% Asian, 0.0% Pacific Islander, 0.3% from some other race and 1.6% from two or more races. 7.0% were Hispanic or Latino of any race.
Enroll in the Best Physical Therapy School near Union City GA
Deciding on the ideal physical therapist college is a necessary first decision you have to make to start a rewarding career in the medical field. As we have covered in this article, the PT or DPT degree program and school you decide on should both have outstanding reputations and accreditation. However there are additional critical questions that you should ask concerning your school of choice also. As you begin your search for a physical therapist program, keep in mind that a number of factors will lead you to your final decision. You might decide to go to different campuses to view their facilities and talk with active DPT students. While there, ask yourself this critical question: will this program help me realize my goal of becoming a licensed practicing physical therapist? By following our list of supplemental questions, you will have the ability to narrow down the field so you can make the right selection. And with the necessary education and training, you can fulfill your dream of becoming a practicing physical therapist in Union City GA.
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