How to Select a Physical Therapist College near Batavia 60510
Receiving a physical therapy degree near Batavia IL is an important first step to starting a rewarding career in the healthcare industry. Physical therapists (PT) help people who have been incapacitated due to illness or injury gain back function and mobility. But before they can practice and work with the rehabilitation of patients, they need to obtain the necessary education and training. A PT must also be licensed in every state, a large number requiring that the licensee hold a physical therapy degree from an accredited school. So prior to enrolling in a physical therapy school, it’s important to research those you are thinking about to make certain they will supply a quality education and comply with your state’s licensing standards. What you should not do is select a school just because it happens to be the nearest to your residence or it has cheapest tuition. There are other relevant qualifications that must be evaluated along with 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 what the educational options are.
What is a Physical Therapist?
Physical therapists work in varying locations, such as Batavia IL private practices, hospitals, assisted living facilities, rehab centers and sports facilities. What the facilities all share in common is that they are equipped for the diagnosis and rehabilitation treatment of patients. As earlier touched on, physical therapists help individuals that are suffering from a lack of mobility and often pain caused by illness or injury. After patient diagnosis, they design a program of treatment to deal with the mobility issues and lessen or eradicate any pain. They also strive to stop any progression of the disability. Though the causes of disability requiring physical therapy are numerous, they include:
- Arthritis or Osteoporosis
- Motor vehicle accidents
- Head injuries.
- Heart attacks.
- Sports injuries.
- Fire injuries.
- Hip Replacement.
- Cerebral Palsy.
Licensed physical therapists practice in close partnerships with other Batavia IL health professionals, including chiropractors, physicians, dentists and nurses. They can also oversee several physical therapy assistants who work under them in diagnosing and treating their patients. One thing to keep in mind for anyone considering going into the physical therapy profession, it is quite physically demanding. Physical therapists regularly 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 three physical therapy degree options offered for students to enroll in at the undergraduate and graduate levels. Of these options, the single degree that is attainable to practice as a physical therapist is the doctorate. Undergraduate degrees emphasize either preparing students to become a physical therapy assistant (PTA) or prepping them to advance to the doctoral level. Below are short summaries of degree levels that are offered in the Batavia IL area:
- Associate Degrees train students to practice as 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 equivalent to be accepted for enrollment. The programs are usually made available by junior or community colleges, and require 2 years for completion. An internship or other form of clinical training is normally part of the curriculum.
- Bachelor’s Degrees are developed as pre-physical therapy 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 important initial step to practicing as a PT. As with most bachelor’s degrees, they typically take four years to finish and often include an internship program of a minimum of 500 hours.
- Doctorate Degrees are required if you want to become a practicing licensed 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 three years to complete, making the overall commitment seven years in the majority of cases. Practical or clinical training is an important element along with the substantial classroom and lab instruction. Therefor the fulfillment of an internship is mandated, not solely for graduation but in several states for licensing also.
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 holding a master’s or even a bachelor’s degree were “grandfathered” in before the current licensing requirement for a doctorate was implemented.
Physical Therapist Online Colleges
Although not as prevalent as the more traditional options, there are some accredited online physical therapy degrees offered, even more at the graduate level. Because of the hands-on structure of the training, clinical lab work and internships are incorporated with the online classes. This necessitates that the student live close to the college campus or nearby an available internship. Fortunately, the online part of the course of study can be accessed within the comfort and convenience of the student’s Batavia IL home. Online programs are not only partially more accessible, but in many cases more economical. Tuition can be significantly lower than comparable on-campus options, and expenditures for commuting are reduced. And a number of the online schools are accredited by the CAPTE, ensuring a quality education. These benefits may make the online option the right choice for those students that are motivated enough to learn at home.
Subjects to Ask Physical Therapy Programs
At this point you most likely have come to decision concerning a few of your preliminary queries, including the kind of physical therapist degree you want to obtain, where you want to attend classes, and how much you can afford to invest in your education. But since there are numerous PT colleges within the Batavia IL area and throughout Illinois, you’ll have to explore other qualifications as well so as to further narrow your list of college options. Also, you want to be sure that you choose the college that is right for you. That’s the reason we have compiled a list of important questions that you need to ask the physical therapy programs you are thinking about. Ask all of the potential colleges these questions before making a final decision.
Is the Physical Therapy Program Accredited? Find out if the colleges you are looking at have received accreditation from a national or a regional agency. 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 program, it may 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. Also, verify that the accreditation is through a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency. Along with guaranteeing that you receive an excellent education, accreditation may be required for state licensing as well as for securing student loans or financial aid.
What is the Program’s Ranking? Along with accreditation, it’s imperative that the college and program you pick have excellent reputations within the physical therapy profession. There are a number of ways you can investigate a PT program’s reputation, beginning 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 agencies for their reviews as well. Call several Batavia IL physical therapy centers or other health care facilities that you might be interested in working for and ask if they can give you any insight about your college options. It might also be a good idea to contact the Illinois Attorney General and school licensing authority to find out if any complaints have been filed against the schools.
What is the Program’s Job Placement Rate? There are a couple of useful statistics that you should know about all of the physical therapist schools you are considering. First is their graduation rate. A lower rate may indicate that students left due to displeasure with the program, the teachers, or both. Once the students have graduated, what percentage of them are being hired with the support of the college’s job placement program, particularly in the Batavia IL area? If a school has a higher job placement rate, it suggests that its reputation within the health care community is good or even exceptional. It also verifies that the program has a broad network of contacts to help students get internships or employment upon graduation.
Does the Program Prepare You For Licensing Requirements? It’s important that the college you select furnishes both excellent training and a curriculum that satisfies the licensing requirements for Illinois or the state where you will be practicing. In every state a passing score is required on the National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE) as well as a degree from an accredited physical therapy program. Although licensing requirements vary state by state for PTA and PT graduates, many states require a minimum number of clinical hours be completed and passing scores on additional tests.
Are Internships Provided? Ask if the physical therapy programs you are interested in have relationships with Batavia IL hospitals or clinics for internship programs. Internships are not only an excellent means to obtain hands on experience in a clinical environment, they are also a requirement for the majority of PT programs and state licensing. As an ancillary benefit, they can help students and graduates form professional connections in the Batavia health care community and assist with obtaining employment once licensed.
What are the Class Sizes ? Unless you are the type of person that prefers to sit far in the back of class or get lost in the crowd, you will probably want a small class size. Small classes permit more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the physical therapist colleges you are looking at what the typical student to teacher ratio is for their classes. If practical you may prefer to sit in on one or more classes before making your final determination. This will also give you an opportunity to converse with a few of the instructors and students to get their perspectives regarding the pharmacy technician program as well.
Where is the School Located? For a number of students, the physical therapy school they select will need to be within driving distance of their Batavia IL home. Individuals 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. One thing to consider is that if you decide to enroll in a school that is out of state or even out of your local area, you might need to pay a higher tuition. State colleges usually charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges frequently charge a higher tuition to those students that don’t reside within their districts.
Is Financial Assistance Offered? The majority of DPT colleges provide some type of financial assistance to their prospective students. Inquire if the colleges you are considering have a financial assistance office and find out what kind of aid is offered. They at least should help in acquiring a student loan or any scholarships you may qualify for. A number of physical therapy schools provide scholarships, while others offer work programs. So before you eliminate a school because the tuition is too expensive, learn what financial assistance might be available.
Can the Program Accommodate your Schedule? And finally you need to confirm that the physical therapist program you ultimately select can offer the class schedule you need. This is especially important if you choose to continue working while you attend classes. If you need to schedule evening or weekend classes in the Batavia IL 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 credit hours or courses you would need to enroll in. Also, ask 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 Batavia Illinois?
If you are planning on attending a Physical Therapy School in the Batavia IL area, the following information may prove to be both interesting and educational regarding the location of your future Alma Mater.
Batavia (/bəˈteɪviə/) is a city in DuPage and Kane counties in the U.S. state of Illinois. A suburb of Chicago, it was founded in 1833 and is the oldest city in Kane County. During the latter part of the 19th century, Batavia, home to six American-style windmill manufacturing companies, became known as "The Windmill City."Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory, a federal government-sponsored high-energy physics laboratory, where both the bottom quark and the top quark were first detected, is located in the city.
Batavia was first settled in 1833 by Christopher Payne and his family. Originally called Big Woods for the wild growth throughout the settlement, the town was renamed by local judge and former Congressman Isaac Wilson in 1840 after his former home of Batavia, New York. Because Judge Wilson owned the majority of the town, he was given permission to rename the city.
Batavia's settlement was delayed one year by the Black Hawk War, in which Abraham Lincoln was a citizen soldier, and Zachary Taylor and Jefferson Davis were Army officers. Although there is no direct evidence that Lincoln, Taylor, or Davis visited the future site of Batavia, there are writings by Lincoln that refer to "Head of the Big Woods," which was Batavia's original name from its first settler, Christopher Payne. The city was incorporated on July 27, 1872.
Choose the Best Physical Therapy School near Batavia IL
Selecting the best physical therapist college is an important initial decision you need to make to launch a rewarding career in the health care field. As we have discussed in this article, the PT or DPT degree program and school you choose should both have excellent reputations and be accredited. However there are additional critical questions that you need to ask pertaining to your school of choice also. As you begin your search for a physical therapist school, bear in mind that a number of factors will lead you to your final decision. You may want to visit different schools to see their facilities and speak to current DPT students. While there, ask yourself this important question: will this school help me realize 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 field so you can make the best selection. And with the necessary education and training, you can accomplish your dream of becoming a practicing physical therapist in Batavia IL.
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