Physical Therapist Schools | Get Your Physical Therapy Degree – Bridgeview IL

How to Select a Physical Therapy School near Bridgeview 60455

Bridgeview IL physical therapy school student with volunteerGetting a physical therapist degree near Bridgeview IL is an important first step to launching a fulfilling career in the medical care field. Physical therapists (PT) help patients who have been incapacitated due to injury or illness gain back function and mobility. But before they may legally practice and provide treatment for the rehabilitation of patients, they must get the proper training and education. 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 selecting a physical therapy school, it’s essential to investigate those you are thinking about to ensure they will furnish a quality education and comply with your state’s licensing requirements. What you do not want to do is choose a school just because it happens to be the nearest to your residence or it has cheapest tuition. There are other important qualifications that must be considered besides location and cost. But before we discuss what those qualifications are and what questions you should ask, we’ll cover what a physical therapist does and the options for education.

What is a Physical Therapist?

Bridgeview IL physical therapist helping patient walkPhysical therapists practice in a variety of locations, such as Bridgeview IL private practices, hospitals, rehabilitation centers, nursing homes and sports facilities. What the facilities all have in common is that they have the equipment for the diagnosis and rehabilitation treatment of patients. As earlier stated, physical therapists help individuals that are suffering from a lack of mobility and frequently pain due to injury or illness. After patient diagnosis, they design a course of treatment to address the mobility problems and lessen or eradicate any pain. They also endeavor to prevent any progression of the disability. Though the causes of disability necessitating physical therapy are numerous, they include:

  • Arthritis or Osteoporosis
  • Car or motor cycle accidents
  • Head injuries.
  • Cardiac arrest.
  • Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.
  • Fire injuries.
  • Knee Replacement.
  • Fibromyalgia.
  • Multiple Sclerosis.

Licensed physical therapists practice in close partnerships with other Bridgeview IL health professionals, including doctors, chiropractors, dentists and nurses. They can also manage 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 going into 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

Bridgeview IL physical therapist applying acupuncture to patientThere are 3 physical therapy degrees available for students to enroll in at the graduate and undergraduate levels. Of these alternatives, the one degree that is attainable to become a physical therapist is the doctorate. Undergraduate degrees concentrate on either training students to become a physical therapy assistant (PTA) or prepping them to progress to the doctoral level. Below are short descriptions of degrees that are available in the Bridgeview IL area:

  • Associate Degrees educate students to be physical therapy assistants, or may be used as a stepping stone to a more advanced degree. Candidates must have obtained a high school diploma or equivalent to qualify for enrollment. The degrees are typically offered by community colleges, and take about two years to complete. An internship or other form of clinical training is normally a component of the program.
  • Bachelor’s Degrees are developed as pre-physical therapist training to prepare students to advance to the doctoral level. While they are not a requirement to be eligible for the doctoral program, they are an essential initial step to becoming a PT. Similar to most bachelor’s degrees, they typically require 4 years to complete and often 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 total commitment 7 years in the majority of cases. Practical or clinical training is an intregal element in addition to the considerable lab and classroom instruction. Therefor the completion of an internship is required, not solely for graduation but in some 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 USA. Some licensed physical therapists having a master’s or even a bachelor’s degree were “grandfathered” in before the existing licensing mandate for a doctorate was implemented.

Physical Therapy Online Colleges

woman attending physical therapy school online in Bridgeview ILWhile not as common as the on-campus alternatives, there are many accredited online physical therapy degrees offered, more so 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 college campus or in proximity of a sponsored internship. Fortunately, the online part of the program may be accessed within the convenience and comfort of the student’s Bridgeview IL residence. Online programs are not only to some extent more accessible, but in many instances more affordable. Tuition may be significantly less than comparable on-campus options, and costs for commuting are reduced. And a number of the online programs are accredited by the CAPTE, ensuring a quality education. These benefits can make the online option the ideal choice for those students that are dedicated enough to learn at home.

Questions to Ask Physical Therapy Colleges

At this point you probably have made a decision regarding several of your preliminary questions, including the kind of physical therapist degree you intend to attain, where you prefer to attend classes, and how much money you can afford to spend for your education. But because there are so many PT colleges within the Bridgeview IL area and throughout Illinois, you’ll need to research other qualifications also in order to further narrow your list of college options. Moreover, you want to make sure that you enroll in the school that is best for you. That’s the reason we have compiled a list of essential questions that you need to ask the physical therapist programs you are considering. Ask each of the competing colleges these questions prior to making a final decision.

Is the Physical Therapist School Accredited?  Ask if the colleges you are considering have received accreditation from a regional or a national agency. 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 select an online school, it can also receive accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council. It’s important that both the physical therapist program and school you select are accredited, not simply the school. Additionally, make sure that the accreditation is through a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting organization. Along with guaranteeing that you receive an excellent education, accreditation might be mandated for state licensing as well as for getting student loans or financial aid.

What is the School’s Reputation? In addition to accreditation, it’s important that the college and program you select have excellent reputations within the physical therapist profession. There are a number of ways you can research a PT college’s reputation, beginning with requesting references from employers that they refer their students to. You may also check online rating services and reviews and ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. Get in touch with a few Bridgeview IL physical therapist clinics or other medical care facilities that you might be interested in working for and ask if they can give you any advice about your program selections. It might also be a good idea to contact the Illinois Attorney General and school licensing authority to see if any complaints have been filed against the schools.

What is the College’s Job Placement Rate? There are a couple of relevant statistics that you should find out about all of the physical therapy colleges you are reviewing. First is their graduation rate. A low rate might indicate that students dropped out due to dissatisfaction with the program, the teachers, or both. After the students have graduated, what percentage of them are being hired with the assistance of the school’s job placement program, particularly in the Bridgeview IL area? If a school has a higher job placement rate, it suggests that its reputation within the health care field is good or even exceptional. It also affirms that the school has a broad network of contacts to help students obtain internships or jobs upon graduation.

Does the Program Prepare You For Licensing Requirements? It’s important that the school you select furnishes both excellent training and a course of study that supports the licensing criteria 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) in addition to a degree from an accredited physical therapist program. Although licensing requirements fluctuate state by state for PTA and PT graduates, some states require a minimum amount of clinical hours be performed and passing scores on supplemental tests.

Are Internship Programs Offered? Inquire if the physical therapy schools you are evaluating have partnerships with Bridgeview IL clinics or hospitals for internship programs. Internships are not only an excellent means to receive hands on training in a clinical setting, they are additionally a requirement for most PT programs and state licensing. As a supplemental benefit, they can assist graduates and students form professional relationships in the Bridgeview medical community and assist with job placement after licensing.

What Size are the Classes ? Unless you are the type of student that likes to sit way in the rear of the classroom or hide in the crowd, you will likely prefer a small class size. Smaller classes enable more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the physical therapist schools you are researching 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 final determination. This will also give you an opportunity to speak with a few of the students and instructors to get their opinions regarding the pharmacy technician program as well.

Where is the College Located? For a number of students, the physical therapy college they choose will need to be within commuting distance of their Bridgeview IL residence. Individuals who have chosen to attend classes online obviously will not have to concern themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of local internships will be of importance. 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 be required to pay a higher tuition. State colleges often charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges generally charge a higher tuition for those students that live outside of their districts.

Is Financial Aid Provided? Most DPT colleges offer some form of financial assistance to their prospective students. Ask if the schools you are examining have a financial aid department and see what type of aid is available. At a minimum they should help in obtaining a student loan or any grants you might be eligible for. Some physical therapist schools provide scholarships, while others provide work programs. So before you eliminate a college because the tuition is too expensive, find out what financial assistance may be available.

Can the Program Accommodate your Schedule? And finally you need to verify that the physical therapist school you finally select can provide the class schedule you need. This is particularly important if you choose to continue working while attending school. If you need to schedule evening or weekend classes in the Bridgeview IL area, confirm that they are offered. If you can only enroll on a part-time basis, check if that is an option and how many credit hours or courses you would have to enroll in. Also, learn what the protocol is for making up any classes that you might miss as a result of illness, work or family emergencies.

Earning Your Physical Therapy Degree near Bridgeview Illinois?

If you are planning on attending a Physical Therapy School in the Bridgeview IL area, the following information may prove to be both interesting and educational regarding the location of your future Alma Mater.

Bridgeview, Illinois

Bridgeview is a village in Cook County, Illinois, United States. It is located approximately 13 miles (21 km) southwest of the Chicago Loop. As of the 2010 census, the village population was 16,446.[3] Bridgeview is home to the Chicago Fire of Major League Soccer.

The village has a roughly rectangular shape; its borders running north and south stagger between 8200 West and 6800 West, but can generally be defined as between Roberts Road and Harlem Avenue. The southern border of the town is 103rd Street between 76th Avenue and Harlem. The northern border is staggered between 6700 South on the west side of the rail tracks and 6900 South on the east side of the rail tracks.

Bridgeview borders the following communities: Bedford Park, Nottingham Park (unincorporated Cook County, often considered part of Chicago due to its 60638 ZIP code[citation needed]), Burbank, Oak Lawn, Chicago Ridge, Palos Hills, Hickory Hills and Justice.

Choose the Best Physical Therapy Degree Program near Bridgeview IL

Choosing the right physical therapist school is a necessary initial decision you need to make to launch a rewarding career in the medical field. As we have covered in this article, the DPT or PT degree program and college you decide on should both have outstanding reputations and accreditation. However there are other critical questions that you should ask regarding your school of choice also. As you begin your search for a physical therapy school, bear in mind that numerous factors will guide you to your ultimate decision. You might want to go to each of the colleges to view their facilities and talk to current DPT students. While there, ask yourself this important question: will this college help me reach my goal of becoming a practicing licensed physical therapist? By following our list of additional questions, you will have the ability to narrow down the field so you can make the ideal choice. And with the proper education and training, you can achieve your dream to become a practicing physical therapist in Bridgeview IL.

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