How to Select a Physical Therapy Degree Program near Glencoe 60022
Obtaining a physical therapy degree near Glencoe IL is an essential first step to launching a rewarding career in the healthcare field. Physical therapists (PT) help patients who have been debilitated due to injury or illness regain mobility and function. But before they may legally practice and work with the rehabilitation of patients, they must acquire the proper training and education. A PT must additionally become licensed in every state, many mandating that the licensee hold a physical therapy degree from an accredited college. So before choosing a physical therapy school, it’s necessary to investigate the ones you are looking at to make sure they will deliver a superior education and comply with your state’s licensing requirements. What you should not do is select a college just because it happens to be the nearest to your home or it has cheapest tuition. There are other significant qualifications that must be considered besides location and cost. But before we cover what those qualifications are and what questions you should ask, we’ll address what a physical therapist does and what the educational options are.
What is a Physical Therapist’s Job Description?
Physical therapists work in a variety of settings, including Glencoe IL private practices, hospitals, rehabilitation centers, nursing homes and health clubs. 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 people that are suffering from a lack of mobility and in many cases pain caused by injury or illness. After diagnosing a patient, they develop a course of treatment to deal with the mobility issues and reduce or eliminate any pain. They also strive to stop any progression of the disability. Although the causes of disability requiring physical therapy are numerous, they include:
- Arthritis or Osteoporosis
- Car or motor cycle accidents
- Head injuries.
- Heart attacks.
- Sports injuries.
- Burn injuries.
- Hip Replacement.
- Cerebral Palsy.
Licensed physical therapists work in close partnerships with other Glencoe IL medical specialists, including doctors, chiropractors, registered nurses and dentists. They can also manage one or more physical therapy assistants who work for them in diagnosing and treating their patients. Something to keep in mind for anyone thinking about entering the physical therapy profession, it is quite physically demanding. Physical therapists routinely lift heavy equipment as well as patients, and kneel, crouch and stand for prolonged periods of time on a daily basis.
Physical Therapy Degrees Available
There are 3 physical therapy degree options available for students to pursue at the graduate and undergraduate levels. Of these options, the only degree that is available to practice as a physical therapist is the doctorate. Undergraduate degrees emphasize either training students to become a physical therapy assistant (PTA) or preparing them to progress to the doctoral level. Following are short descriptions of degrees that are offered in the Glencoe IL area:
- Associate Degrees prepare students to practice as physical therapy assistants, or can be used as a stepping stone to a more advanced degree. Candidates must have obtained a high school diploma or GED to qualify for enrollment. The programs are most often provided by junior or community colleges, and require 2 years for completion. An internship or other form of clinical training is usually a portion of the curriculum.
- Bachelor’s Degrees are created as pre-physical therapy training to prep candidates to move up to the doctoral level. Although they are not required to be eligible for the doctoral program, they are an important first step to practicing as a PT. As with most bachelor’s degrees, they normally require 4 years to complete and often include an internship program of at least 500 hours.
- Doctorate Degrees are required in order to become a licensed practicing 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 3 years to finish, making the total commitment seven years in the majority of cases. Clinical or practical training is an intregal component in addition to the substantial lab and classroom instruction. Consequently the completion of an internship is required, not solely for graduation but in several 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 USA. A number of practicing physical therapists having a master’s or in some cases a bachelor’s degree were “grandfathered” in before the present licensing mandate for a doctorate was instituted.
Physical Therapy Schools Online
Although not as prevalent as the on campus alternatives, there are some accredited online physical therapy programs offered, more so at the graduate level. Because of the hands-on nature of the training, clinical lab work and internships are integrated with the online classes. This necessitates that the student live near the school campus or in proximity of an available internship. Fortunately, the online portion of the course of study may be accessed within the comfort and convenience of the student’s Glencoe IL residence. Online schools are not only partially more accessible, but in many instances more economical. Tuition might be significantly less than similar on-campus alternatives, and expenditures for commuting are reduced. And a number of the online programs are accredited by the CAPTE, guaranteeing a quality education. These advantages may make the online alternative the ideal choice for those students that are disciplined enough to learn at home.
Topics to Ask Physical Therapy Colleges
At this point you most likely have made a decision regarding some of your initial questions, like the type of physical therapy degree you intend to obtain, where you want to attend classes, and how much you can afford to invest in your education. But considering there are so many PT colleges within the Glencoe IL area and across Illinois, you’ll have to explore additional qualifications also in order to further reduce your list of school options. Moreover, you need to make certain that you choose the program that is ideal for you. That’s why we have put together a list of essential questions that you need to ask the physical therapist schools you are thinking about. Ask each of the competing colleges these questions prior to making a final selection.
Is the Physical Therapist College Accredited? Find out if the programs you are considering 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 choose an online program, it may also earn accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council. It’s imperative that both the physical therapy school and program you enroll in are accredited, not simply the school. Additionally, verify that the accreditation is through a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting organization. Along with ensuring that you receive a quality education, accreditation might be required for state licensing as well as for securing student loans or financial assistance.
What is the College’s Standing? In addition to accreditation, it’s imperative that the college and program you choose have exceptional reputations within the physical therapist profession. There are several ways you can research a PT school’s reputation, starting with requesting references from employers that they place their graduates with. You can also search for online reviews and rating services and ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. Contact a few Glencoe IL physical therapist centers or other medical care facilities that you may be interested in working for and ask if they can give you any recommendations about your school selections. It may also be prudent to check with the Illinois Attorney General and school licensing authority to see if any complaints have been submitted against the colleges.
What is the School’s Job Placement Rate? There are a couple of important statistics that you need to know about each of the physical therapist colleges you are looking at. First is their graduation rate. A low rate may suggest that students left because of dissatisfaction with the program, the teachers, or both. After the students have graduated, how many of them are being hired with the support of the college’s job placement program, particularly in the Glencoe IL area? If a college has a higher job placement rate, it’s an indication that its reputation within the healthcare field is good or even exceptional. It also confirms that the school has a broad network of contacts to help students gain internships or jobs after graduation.
Does the Program Support Licensing Requirements? It’s essential that the school you enroll in provides both excellent training and a curriculum that supports the licensing requirements for Illinois or the state where you will be practicing. In each state a passing score is needed on the National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE) as well as a degree from an accredited physical therapist program. Although licensing requirements differ state by state for PT and PTA graduates, some states require a minimum number of clinical hours be completed as well as passing scores on supplemental tests.
Are Internship Programs Offered? Ask if the physical therapy schools you are interested in have relationships with Glencoe IL clinics or hospitals for internship programs. Internships are not only a great manner to receive practical training in a clinical environment, they are also a requirement for the majority of PT programs and state licensing. As an ancillary benefit, they may assist graduates and students develop professional connections in the Glencoe health care community and help with job placement once licensed.
How Large are the Classes ? Unless you are the kind of person that prefers to sit far in the back of the classroom or hide in the crowd, you will likely prefer a small class size. Small classes enable more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the physical therapy schools you are researching what the average teacher to student ratio is for their classrooms. If practical you may want to monitor one or more classes before making your final decision. This will also give you a chance to speak with a few of the instructors and students to get their opinions regarding the pharmacy technician program as well.
Where is the Program Located? For many students, the physical therapy college they select will have to be within driving distance of their Glencoe IL residence. Those who have decided to attend online classes naturally will not have to trouble themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of local internships will be of importance. 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 may need to pay a higher tuition. State colleges typically charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges frequently charge a higher tuition to those students that live outside of their districts.
Is Financial Help Offered? Most DPT colleges offer some form of financial aid to their potential students. Inquire if the colleges you are considering have a financial assistance department and find out what type of help is available. They at least should help in getting a student loan or any scholarships you may qualify for. A number of physical therapy schools offer scholarships, while others provide work programs. So before you eliminate a school because the tuition is beyond your budget, learn what financial aid might be available.
Can the College Accommodate your Schedule? And last you must verify that the physical therapy program you ultimately choose can provide the class schedule you need. This is particularly crucial if you decide to continue working while you attend classes. If you need to schedule night or weekend classes in the Glencoe IL area, make sure that they are available. If you can only enroll on a part-time basis, check if that is an alternative and how many credit hours or courses you would need to carry. Also, find out what the protocol is for making up any classes that you might miss due to illness, work or family obligations.
Earning Your Physical Therapy Degree near Glencoe Illinois?
If you are planning on attending a Physical Therapy School in the Glencoe IL area, the following information may prove to be both interesting and educational regarding the location of your future Alma Mater.
Glencoe (/ˈɡlɛnˌkoʊ/) is a village in northeastern Cook County, Illinois, United States. As of the 2010 census, the total population was 8,723. Glencoe is located on Chicago's North Shore and is located within the New Trier High School District. Glencoe ranks 1st among the top 10 most successful cities in the US. It is an affluent town, ranked 2nd among the richest towns in Illinois and 12th among the richest towns in US.
According to the 2010 census, Glencoe has a total area of 3.781 square miles (9.79 km2), of which 3.72 square miles (9.63 km2) (or 98.39%) is land and 0.061 square miles (0.16 km2) (or 1.61%) is water.
Glencoe is located on the west side of Lake Michigan. It is separated from suburbs to the north and west by more than 1,200 acres (490 ha) of the Cook County Forest Preserve natural forest area. Three golf clubs also buffer it, with the private Lake Shore Country Club on the north, the public Glencoe Golf Club (operated by the village of Glencoe) on the northwest, and the private Skokie Country Club on the west.
Pick the Right Physical Therapy Training Program near Glencoe IL
Deciding on the best physical therapy program is an important first decision you must make to launch a fulfilling career in the health care field. As we have covered in this article, the DPT or PT degree program and college you enroll in should both have excellent reputations and accreditation. But there are other important questions that you need to ask pertaining to your college of choice as well. As you commence your search for a physical therapist program, bear in mind that many factors will guide you to your ultimate decision. You might decide to visit different schools to view their facilities and speak with active DPT students. While there, ask yourself this important question: will this program help me reach my goal of becoming a licensed practicing physical therapist? By adhering to our list of additional questions, you will have the ability to narrow down the field so you can make the right selection. And with the proper training and education, you can achieve your dream to become a practicing physical therapist in Glencoe IL.
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