How to Find the Right Physical Therapy School near Georgetown 61846
Receiving a physical therapist degree near Georgetown IL is an important first step to beginning a rewarding career in the health care industry. Physical therapists (PT) help individuals 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 get the necessary 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 college. So before choosing a physical therapy school, it’s essential to research the ones you are looking at to make sure they will deliver a quality education and meet your state’s licensing criteria. What you do not want to do is enroll in 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 talk about 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 is a Physical Therapist’s Job Description?
Physical therapists practice in varying locations, such as Georgetown IL private practices, hospitals, assisted living facilities, rehab centers and sports facilities. What the facilities all have in common is that they are equipped for diagnosing and rehabilitating patients. As previously touched on, physical therapists help patients that are suffering from a lack of mobility and frequently pain caused by illness or injury. After patient diagnosis, they develop a course of treatment to address the mobility problems and lessen or eliminate any pain. They also strive to stop any advancement of the disability. While the causes of disability necessitating physical therapy are numerous, they include:
- Arthritis or Osteoporosis
- Car or motor cycle accidents
- Head injuries.
- Heart attacks.
- Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.
- Burn injuries.
- Knee Replacement.
- Multiple Sclerosis.
Licensed physical therapists practice in close affiliation with other Georgetown IL medical professionals, including doctors, chiropractors, dentists and nurses. They may also manage 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 going 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 Therapy Degrees Available
There are three physical therapy degree options offered for individuals to pursue at the undergraduate and graduate levels. Of these options, the only degree that is offered to practice as a physical therapist is the doctorate. Undergraduate degrees focus on either preparing students to become a physical therapy assistant (PTA) or readying them to advance to the doctoral level. Below are short descriptions of degree levels that are offered in the Georgetown IL area:
- Associate Degrees educate students to be physical therapy assistants, or can be used as a stepping stone to a more advanced degree. Candidates must have a high school diploma or equivalent to be accepted for enrollment. The degrees are usually provided by junior or community colleges, and require two years for completion. Clinical training, which may be in the form of an internship is usually a portion of the program.
- Bachelor’s Degrees are designed as pre-physical therapy education to prep students to advance to the doctoral level. Although they are not a requirement to be qualified for the doctoral program, they are an important preliminary step to becoming a PT. Similar to most bachelor’s degrees, they normally take 4 years to finish and commonly incorporate an internship program of at least 500 hours.
- Doctorate Degrees are required 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 complete, making the overall commitment seven years in the majority of cases. Clinical or practical training is an essential element in addition to the extensive classroom and lab instruction. Consequently the completion of an internship is mandated, 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 offered in the United States. A number of licensed 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 Therapy Colleges Online
While not as prevalent as the on-campus options, there are a number of accredited online physical therapist degrees offered, even more at the graduate level. Because of the hands-on structure of the training, clinical lab work and internships are combined with the online classes. This requires that the student live close to the school campus or in proximity of a sponsored internship. However, the online part of the course of study may be accessed within the comfort and convenience of the student’s Georgetown IL residence. Online schools are not only partially more accessible, but in a number of cases more economical. Tuition might be significantly less than comparable on-campus options, and expenses for commuting are reduced. And many of the online schools are accredited by the CAPTE, guaranteeing a quality education. These benefits can make the online alternative the best choice for those students that are disciplined enough to learn at home.
Topics to Ask Physical Therapist Schools
By now you probably have come to decision concerning some of your preliminary queries, including the type of physical therapist degree you intend to attain, where you prefer to attend classes, and how much you can afford to spend for your education. But since there are so many PT schools within the Georgetown IL area and throughout Illinois, you’ll have to research additional qualifications also so as to further narrow your list of school options. Moreover, you need to make sure that you enroll in the college that is ideal for you. That’s why we have collected a list of important questions that you must ask the physical therapist schools you are considering. Ask each of the potential colleges these questions prior to making an ultimate decision.
Is the Physical Therapy School Accredited? Find out if the colleges you are looking at have earned accreditation from a regional or a national organization. As previously stated, 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 school, it can also obtain accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council. It’s imperative that both the physical therapy program and school you select are accredited, not just the school. Also, make sure that the accreditation is through a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency. In addition to ensuring that you obtain a quality education, accreditation may be mandated for state licensing and even for securing student loans or financial assistance.
What is the College’s Reputation? Along with accreditation, it’s imperative that the school and program you select have excellent reputations within the physical therapist profession. There are a number of ways you can investigate a PT college’s reputation, starting with asking for references from employers that they refer their students to. You can also search for online rating services and reviews and ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. Get in touch with several Georgetown IL physical therapist centers or other healthcare facilities that you may have an interest in working for and ask if they can provide any insight about your program selections. It may 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 School’s Job Placement Percentage? There are a couple of important statistics that you should know about each of the physical therapist schools you are reviewing. One is their graduation rate. A lower rate might mean that students left because of 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 school’s job placement program, particularly in the Georgetown IL area? If a program has a higher job placement rate, it’s an indication that its reputation within the healthcare community is good or perhaps excellent. It also confirms that the school has a large network of contacts to assist students get internships or employment upon graduation.
Does the Program Prepare You For Licensing Requirements? It’s essential that the college you choose furnishes both exceptional training and a curriculum that supports the licensing criteria for Illinois or the state where you will be practicing. In each state a passing score is required on the National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE) in addition to a degree from an accredited physical therapy college. While licensing requirements fluctuate state by state for PTA and PT graduates, many states require a minimum number of clinical hours be performed as well as passing scores on additional tests.
Are Internships Offered? Inquire if the physical therapist colleges you are assessing have relationships with Georgetown IL hospitals or clinics for internship programs. Internships are not only an excellent manner to receive practical experience in a clinical setting, they are additionally a requirement for the majority of PT programs and state licensing. As a secondary benefit, they may assist graduates and students form professional connections in the Georgetown healthcare community and assist with obtaining employment once licensed.
What Size are the Classes ? Unless you are the sort of student that likes to sit far in the rear of class or hide in the crowd, you will likely want a small class size. Smaller classes allow for more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the physical therapist schools you are researching what the average student to teacher 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 a chance to converse with a few of the instructors and students to get their opinions regarding the pharmacist tech program also.
Where is the School Located? For many students, the physical therapy school they decide on will have to be within commuting distance of their Georgetown IL home. Those who have chosen to attend online classes obviously will not have to concern themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of area internships will be of concern. One thing to bear in mind is that if you choose to enroll in a college that is out of state or even out of your local area, you may need to pay a higher tuition. State colleges often charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges usually charge a higher tuition for those students that don’t reside within their districts.
Is Financial Support Offered? Most DPT colleges offer some type of financial aid to their potential students. Find out if the colleges you are reviewing have a financial assistance department and find out what kind of aid is offered. They at least should help in obtaining a student loan or any grants you might be eligible for. A number of physical therapist colleges provide scholarships, while others provide work programs. So before eliminating a school because the tuition is beyond your budget, learn what financial assistance might be available.
Can the College Accommodate your Schedule? And finally you need to verify that the physical therapist college you ultimately select can provide the class schedule you need. This is especially essential if you decide to continue working while attending classes. If you need to schedule night or weekend classes in the Georgetown IL area, confirm that they are offered. If you can only attend part-time, find out if that is an option and how many credit hours or courses 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 Georgetown Illinois?
If you are planning on attending a Physical Therapy School in the Georgetown IL area, the following information may prove to be both interesting and educational regarding the location of your future Alma Mater.
Georgetown was established in 1826 and was platted by James Haworth, although the first home was established in 1820 by Henry Johnson. The town may have been named after George Beckwith, since Danville had been named after Dan Beckwith; another possibility is that it was named after James Haworth's son George. The first post office was established in 1828.
Georgetown is located on Illinois Route 1 / U.S. Route 150 about 13 miles (21 km) south of the county seat of Danville. According to the 2010 census, Georgetown has a total area of 0.14 square miles (0.36 km2), all land.
As of the census of 2000, there were 3,628 people, 1,470 households, and 1,004 families residing in the city. The population density was 2,250.6 people per square mile (870.0/km²). There were 1,564 housing units at an average density of 970.2 per square mile (375.1/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 95.53% White, 2.73% African American, 0.28% Native American, 0.06% Asian, 0.25% from other races, and 1.16% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.19% of the population.
Select the Ideal Physical Therapist Degree Program near Georgetown IL
Deciding on the ideal physical therapy program is a necessary first decision you need to make to begin a fulfilling career in the medical field. As we have addressed in this article, the DPT or PT degree program and school you enroll in should both have outstanding reputations and be accredited. But there are additional relevant questions that you should ask pertaining to your school of choice as well. As you start your search for a physical therapy school, keep in mind that many factors will guide you to your final decision. You might decide to visit different schools to see their facilities and speak with active DPT students. While there, ask yourself this important question: will this program help me achieve my goal of becoming a practicing licensed physical therapist? By adhering to our list of supplemental questions, you will be able to narrow down the field so you can make the appropriate selection. And with the necessary education and training, you can achieve your dream of becoming a licensed physical therapist in Georgetown IL.
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