How to Pick a Physical Therapist Program near Craigmont 83523
Receiving a physical therapist degree near Craigmont ID is an important first step to launching a rewarding career in the healthcare industry. Physical therapists (PT) help individuals who have been disabled as a result of illness or injury regain function and mobility. But before they can practice and provide treatment for the rehabilitation of patients, they must acquire the appropriate education and training. A PT must additionally be licensed in every state, many requiring that the licensee hold a physical therapy degree from an accredited school. So prior to choosing a physical therapy school, it’s important to evaluate those you are thinking about to make sure they will deliver a quality education and meet your state’s licensing criteria. What you do not want to do is choose a college 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 besides location and cost. But before we discuss 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 work in varying locations, including Craigmont ID private practices, hospitals, rehabilitation centers, nursing homes and health clubs. What the facilities all share in common is that they have the equipment for diagnosing and rehabilitating patients. As previously touched on, physical therapists help people that are struggling with a lack of mobility and frequently pain due to injury or illness. After diagnosing a patient, they design a program of treatment to address the mobility issues and lessen or eradicate any pain. They also endeavor to stop any advancement of the disability. Though the causes of disability necessitating physical therapy are abundant, they include:
- Osteoporosis and Arthritis
- Motor vehicle accidents
- Head injuries.
- Cardiac arrest.
- Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.
- Burn injuries.
- Knee Replacement.
- Cerebral Palsy.
Licensed physical therapists practice in close association with other Craigmont ID health specialists, including chiropractors, physicians, dentists and nurses. They can also oversee several physical therapy assistants who work under them assisting with the diagnosis and treatment of their patients. Something to take note of for anyone considering getting into the physical therapy profession, it is rather physically demanding. Physical therapists regularly lift heavy equipment as well as patients, and kneel, crouch and stand for extended periods of time on a daily basis.
Physical Therapist Degree Options
There are 3 physical therapist degrees available for students to pursue at the graduate and undergraduate levels. Of these choices, the only degree that is attainable to become a physical therapist is the doctorate. Undergraduate degrees focus on either training students to become a physical therapy assistant (PTA) or readying them to progress to the doctoral level. Below are short explanations of degree levels that are available in the Craigmont ID area:
- Associate Degrees train students to be physical therapy assistants, or can be the first step toward earning a more advanced degree. Candidates must have a high school diploma or GED to be accepted for enrollment. The degrees are typically offered by junior or community colleges, and require two years to complete. Clinical training, which may be in the form of an internship is typically part of the program.
- Bachelor’s Degrees are designed as pre-physical therapy education to prep students to advance to the doctoral level. While they are not required to be eligible for the doctoral program, they are an essential initial step to practicing as a PT. Similar to most bachelor’s degrees, they generally take four years to complete and usually include an internship program of a minimum of 500 hours.
- Doctorate Degrees are a requirement in order to become a licensed practicing physical therapist. The degree program must also be accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE). After earning the bachelor’s degree, the doctoral takes 3 years to finish, making the overall commitment seven years in most cases. Practical or clinical training is an essential component along with the substantial classroom and lab instruction. Therefor the completion of an internship is mandated, not just for graduation but in some 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 phased out 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 before the existing licensing mandate for a doctorate was instituted.
Physical Therapist Online Degrees
Although not as common as the on campus alternatives, there are a number of accredited online physical therapy programs available, even more at the graduate level. Because of the hands-on structure of the training, internships and clinical lab work are integrated with the online classes. This necessitates that the student live close to the college campus or nearby an available internship. Fortunately, the online segment of the curriculum can be accessed within the convenience and comfort of the student’s Craigmont ID residence. Online programs are not only to some extent more accessible, but in a number of instances more economical. Tuition may be somewhat lower than similar on campus options, and expenditures for commuting are minimized. And a number of the online schools are accredited by the CAPTE, guaranteeing a quality education. These benefits can make the online alternative the ideal choice for those students that are motivated enough to attend classes at home.
Questions to Ask Physical Therapy Programs
At this point you undoubtedly have come to decision regarding a few of your initial questions, including the type of physical therapist degree you want to earn, where you want to attend classes, and how much money you can afford to invest in your education. But because there are so many PT schools within the Craigmont ID area and across Idaho, you’ll need to research additional qualifications also so as to further reduce your list of school options. Also, you need to be sure that you choose the college that is best for you. That’s the reason we have collected a list of important questions that you need to ask the physical therapy colleges you are considering. Ask all of the competing colleges these questions before making a final decision.
Is the Physical Therapy Program Accredited? Ask if the schools you are looking at have received accreditation from a regional or a national organization. As earlier mentioned, if you are pursuing a doctoral degree the program must be accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE). If you enroll in an online program, it may also receive accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council. It’s essential that both the physical therapy program and school you enroll in 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 an excellent education, accreditation may be required for state licensing and even for securing student loans or financial assistance.
What is the Program’s Reputation? Along with accreditation, it’s imperative that the school and program you pick have excellent reputations within the physical therapist community. There are a number of ways you can research a PT school’s reputation, starting with asking for references from employers that they place their graduates with. You may also search for online rating services and reviews and ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. Contact some Craigmont ID physical therapy centers or other health care facilities that you might have an interest in working for and ask if they can give you any recommendations about your program options. It may also be a good idea to check with the Idaho Attorney General and school licensing authority to see if any complaints have been submitted against the schools.
What is the College’s Job Placement Percentage? There are a two important statistics that you should know about all of the physical therapy colleges you are reviewing. One is their graduation rate. A low rate might indicate that students dropped out due to dissatisfaction with the program, the teachers, or both. Once the students have graduated, what percentage of them are being placed in jobs with the assistance of the college’s job placement program, particularly in the Craigmont ID area? If a college has a higher job placement rate, it suggests that its reputation within the health care field is good or even exceptional. It also verifies that the program has a wide network of contacts to assist students gain internships or jobs upon graduation.
Does the Program Support Licensing Requirements? It’s essential that the school you choose provides both exceptional training and a course of study that satisfies the licensing requirements for Idaho 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 program. While licensing requirements fluctuate 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 Provided? Inquire if the physical therapy programs you are evaluating have partnerships with Craigmont ID hospitals or clinics for internship programs. Internships are not only a great means to get hands on training in a clinical setting, they are also a requirement for most PT programs and state licensing. As a secondary benefit, they may help students and graduates establish professional connections in the Craigmont healthcare community and help with obtaining employment once licensed.
How Large are the Classes ? Unless you are the type of student that likes to sit far in the back of class or hide in the crowd, you will likely want a smaller class size. Small classes permit more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the physical therapist schools you are reviewing what the average teacher to student ratio is for their classrooms. If practical you may prefer to sit in on one or more classes before making your ultimate determination. This will also give you an opportunity to talk with several of the instructors and students to get their perspectives regarding the pharmacy technician program also.
Where is the Program Located? For a lot of students, the physical therapy school they pick will need to be within commuting distance of their Craigmont ID home. 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 school that is out of state or even 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 to those students that don’t reside within their districts.
Is Financial Assistance Provided? Most DPT schools provide some type of financial assistance to their potential students. Ask if the colleges you are considering have a financial aid department and find out what type of help is obtainable. They at least should help in getting a student loan or any scholarships you may be eligible for. Some physical therapy colleges offer scholarships, while others offer work programs. So before you eliminate a program because the tuition is too expensive, learn what financial assistance may be available.
Can the School Accommodate your Schedule? And last you must verify that the physical therapist school you finally select can offer the class schedule you need. This is especially essential if you decide to continue working while attending classes. If you must schedule night or weekend classes in the Craigmont ID area, verify that they are offered. If you can only enroll on a part-time basis, verify if that is an option and how many courses or credit hours you would need to enroll in. Also, find out what the protocol is for making up any classes that you may miss as a result of work, illness or family obligations.
Earning Your Physical Therapy Degree near Craigmont Idaho?
If you are planning on attending a Physical Therapy School in the Craigmont ID area, the following information may prove to be both interesting and educational regarding the location of your future Alma Mater.
Craigmont is a city in the northwest United States in Lewis County, Idaho. Located on the Camas Prairie in north central Idaho, it is within the Nez Perce Indian Reservation. The population was 501 at the 2010 census, down from 556 in 2000.
The city is named for Colonel William Craig (1809–69), a mountain man who had a Nez Perce wife. He settled at Lapwai near his father-in-law Hin-mah-tute-ke-kaikt or James in 1840 when he gave up being a fur trapper due to the collapse of the market for beaver.
The Nez Perce Reservation was opened to white settlement 123 years ago in 1895, and a town named "Chicago," a mile west of the current Craigmont, was founded in 1898. In response to not getting their mail from the post office, it was renamed "Ilo" four years later, after Ilo Leggett, daughter of town founder and merchant W.O. Leggett. A fire burnt the town in 1904 and shortly thereafter the Camas Prairie Railroad bypassed the town and started a settlement, platted by Lewiston financier John P. Vollmer, on the northeast side of the railroad tracks, and he named it "Vollmer." Ilo responded and moved its community to the southwest side of the tracks, adjacent to Vollmer. After a decade-long feud and the consolidation of the school districts, the communities merged in 1920 to become Craigmont.
Select the Best Physical Therapist Training Program near Craigmont ID
Deciding on the right physical therapist program is a necessary first decision you have to make to start a rewarding career in the healthcare field. As we have discussed in this article, the PT or DPT degree program and school you select should both have outstanding reputations and be accredited. However there are additional important questions that you need to ask pertaining to your college of choice also. As you commence your search for a physical therapist program, bear in mind that numerous factors will lead you toward your final decision. You may decide to visit different schools to view their facilities and speak with current DPT students. While there, ask yourself this critical question: will this school help me reach my goal of becoming a licensed practicing physical therapist? By following our list of additional questions, you will have the ability to narrow down the options so you can make the appropriate selection. And with the proper training and education, you can achieve your dream to become a practicing physical therapist in Craigmont ID.
A Few More Interesting Locations in Idaho