How to Select a Physical Therapy College near Petoskey 49770
Getting a physical therapist degree near Petoskey MI is an essential first step to beginning a rewarding career in the healthcare industry. Physical therapists (PT) help patients who have been disabled as a result of injury or illness regain function and mobility. But before they can practice and work with the rehabilitation of patients, they need to get the proper education and training. A PT must additionally become licensed in all states, many requiring that the licensee hold a physical therapy degree from an accredited college. So prior to enrolling in a physical therapy school, it’s necessary to research the ones you are looking at to make sure they will furnish a quality education and comply with your state’s licensing criteria. What you do not want to do is select a college just because it happens to be the closest to your home or it has cheapest tuition. There are other important qualifications that need to be considered along with location and cost. But before we discuss what those qualifications are and what questions you should ask, we’ll address what a physical therapist does and the options for education.
What is a Physical Therapist’s Job Description?
Physical therapists work in diverse settings, such as Petoskey MI private practices, hospitals, assisted living facilities, rehab centers and sports facilities. What the facilities all have in common is that they have the equipment for diagnosing and rehabilitating patients. As earlier stated, physical therapists help individuals 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 resolve the mobility problems and reduce or eradicate any pain. They also try to prevent any advancement of the disability. Although the causes of disability necessitating physical therapy are numerous, they include:
- Osteoporosis and Arthritis
- Motor vehicle accidents
- Cardiac arrest.
- Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.
- Burn injuries.
- Knee Replacement.
- Multiple Sclerosis.
Licensed physical therapists practice in close partnerships with other Petoskey MI medical professionals, including doctors, chiropractors, dentists and nurses. They can also manage several physical therapy assistants who work for them assisting with diagnosing and treating their patients. Something to keep in mind for anyone thinking about entering the physical therapy field, it is quite 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 Therapy Degrees Available
There are three physical therapy degree options offered for individuals to pursue at the undergraduate and graduate levels. Of these alternatives, the one degree that is offered to practice as 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. Following are brief summaries of degrees that are offered in the Petoskey MI area:
- Associate Degrees educate students to practice as 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 GED to be accepted for enrollment. The programs are usually provided by community colleges, and take about 2 years to complete. Clinical training, which may be in the form of an internship is usually part of the curriculum.
- Bachelor’s Degrees are created as pre-physical therapy education to ready candidates to progress to the doctoral level. While they are not a requirement to be qualified for the doctoral program, they are an integral first step to becoming a PT. Similar to the majority of bachelor’s degrees, they generally take 4 years to finish and usually incorporate an internship program of at least 500 hours.
- Doctorate Degrees are required 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 3 years to complete, making the overall commitment 7 years in the majority of cases. Clinical or practical training is an important element in addition to the extensive lab and classroom instruction. Therefor the fulfillment of an internship is mandated, not solely for graduation but in a number of states for licensing also.
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. Some practicing physical therapists having a master’s or in some cases a bachelor’s degree were “grandfathered” in prior to the present licensing mandate for a doctorate was instituted.
Physical Therapist Online Degrees
Although not as prevalent as the on-campus alternatives, there are some accredited online physical therapist degrees available, even more at the graduate level. Due to the hands-on nature of the training, clinical lab work and internships are incorporated with the online classes. This requires that the student live close to the college campus or in proximity of an available internship. Fortunately, the online part of the curriculum may be accessed within the convenience and comfort of the student’s Petoskey MI residence. Online programs are not only partially more accessible, but in a number of instances more economical. Tuition may be significantly less than comparable on campus options, and expenditures for commuting are reduced. And many of the online programs are accredited by the CAPTE, ensuring a quality education. These benefits may make the online option the ideal choice for those students that are disciplined enough to learn at home.
Subjects to Ask Physical Therapy Schools
By now you undoubtedly have come to decision concerning several of your initial questions, like the kind of physical therapist degree you would like to earn, where you prefer to attend classes, and how much you can afford to spend for your education. But considering there are numerous PT schools within the Petoskey MI area and throughout Michigan, 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 choose the school 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 considering. Ask each of the potential colleges these questions prior to making an ultimate decision.
Is the Physical Therapist College Accredited? Ask if the schools you are looking at have received accreditation from a regional or a national organization. As previously 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 college, it may also obtain accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council. It’s important that both the physical therapy school and program you enroll in are accredited, not just the school. Also, check that the accreditation is from a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting organization. Besides ensuring that you obtain a quality education, accreditation might be mandated for state licensing as well as for getting student loans or financial aid.
What is the College’s Reputation? In addition to accreditation, it’s imperative that the college and program you choose have outstanding reputations within the physical therapy profession. There are several ways you can investigate a PT program’s reputation, starting with asking for references from employers that they place their graduates with. You can also check online rating services and reviews and ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. Contact a few Petoskey MI physical therapy centers or other medical care facilities that you might be interested in working for and ask if they can give you any advice about your college selections. It might also be prudent to contact the Michigan Attorney General and school licensing authority to see if any complaints have been submitted against the colleges.
What is the Program’s Job Placement Rate? There are a couple of significant statistics that you should know about each of the physical therapy schools you are considering. One is their graduation rate. A lower rate might indicate that students left due to dissatisfaction with the program, the instructors, or both. After the students have graduated, what percentage of them are being placed in jobs with the support of the college’s job placement program, particularly in the Petoskey MI area? If a college has a higher job placement rate, it’s an indication that its reputation within the healthcare community is good or even outstanding. It also affirms that the college has a wide network of contacts to help students obtain internships or jobs upon graduation.
Does the School Prepare You For Licensing Requirements? It’s essential that the program you select furnishes both excellent training and a course of study that satisfies the licensing requirements for Michigan or the state where you will be working. In every state a passing score is needed on the National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE) along with a degree from an accredited physical therapy program. Although licensing requirements differ state by state for PT and PTA graduates, some states require a minimum amount of clinical hours be completed as well as passing scores on supplemental tests.
Are Internships Provided? Ask if the physical therapy schools you are reviewing have partnerships with Petoskey MI hospitals or clinics for internship programs. Not only are internships a great manner to obtain hands on training in a clinical setting, they are also a requirement for most PT programs and state licensing. As a secondary benefit, they can assist graduates and students establish professional relationships in the Petoskey healthcare community and help with job placement once licensed.
What are the Class Sizes ? Unless you are the type of student that prefers to sit far in the back of class or get lost in the crowd, you will likely prefer a smaller class size. Small classes enable more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the physical therapist colleges you are looking at what the average student to teacher ratio is for their classrooms. If practical you may prefer to monitor one or more classes before making your ultimate determination. This will also give you a chance to talk with several of the instructors and students to get their perspectives regarding the pharmacist tech program as well.
Where is the College Located? For a number of students, the physical therapy school they select will have to be within travelling distance of their Petoskey MI home. Individuals who have decided to attend online classes obviously will not have to trouble 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 perhaps out of your local area, you might have to pay a higher tuition. State colleges normally charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges normally charge a higher tuition for those students that live outside of their districts.
Is Financial Help Provided? The majority of DPT colleges provide some type of financial aid to their potential students. Ask if the schools you are looking at have a financial aid department and see what type of assistance is available. They at least should help in securing a student loan or any scholarships you may be eligible for. Some physical therapy colleges provide scholarships, while others offer work programs. So before you eliminate a school because the tuition is beyond your budget, ask what financial aid may be available.
Can the School Accommodate your Schedule? And last you need to confirm that the physical therapy college you ultimately select can offer the class schedule you need. This is especially crucial if you decide to continue working while you attend classes. If you must schedule night or weekend classes in the Petoskey MI area, check that they are available. If you can only attend part-time, verify if that is an option and how many courses or credit hours you would need to enroll in. Also, learn what the procedure is for making up any classes that you might miss due to work, illness or family emergencies.
Earning Your Physical Therapy Degree near Petoskey Michigan?
If you are planning on attending a Physical Therapy School in the Petoskey MI area, the following information may prove to be both interesting and educational regarding the location of your future Alma Mater.
Petoskey is a city and coastal resort community in the U.S. state of Michigan. The population was estimated at approximately close to 5,670 at the 2010 census. It is the county seat of Emmet County.
The Little Traverse Bay area was long inhabited by indigenous peoples, including the Odawa people. The name "Petoskey" is said to mean "where the light shines through the clouds" in the language of the Odawa. However it is more likely that the town was named for the Joseph Petoskey family of Poland. The original Petoskey family posterity still reside in the town. Yet the romantic myth that the town was named for the Odawa chief is good for tourism. After the 1836 Treaty of Washington, Odawa Chief Ignatius Petosega (1787–1885) took the opportunity to purchase lands near the Bear River. Petosega's father was Antoine Carre, a French Canadian fur trader and his mother was Odawa.
By the 1850s, several religious groups had established missions near the Little Traverse Bay. A Mormon offshoot had been based at Beaver Island, the Jesuit missionaries had been based at L'arbor Croche and Michilimackinac, with a Catholic presence in Harbor Springs, then known as "Little Traverse". Andrew Porter, a Presbyterian missionary, arrived at the village of Bear River (as it was then called) in 1852.
Enroll in the Best Physical Therapy School near Petoskey MI
Selecting the best physical therapy school is a necessary first decision you must make to begin a rewarding career in the health care field. As we have covered in this article, the DPT or PT degree program and college you select should both have excellent reputations and be accredited. However there are additional critical questions that you should ask regarding your school of choice as well. As you begin your search for a physical therapy college, bear in mind that a number of factors will lead you toward your final decision. You might decide to go to each of the campuses to view their facilities and speak to active DPT students. While there, ask yourself this important question: will this college help me realize my goal of becoming a licensed practicing physical therapist? By adhering to our list of supplemental questions, you will be able to narrow down the options so you can make the best selection. And with the necessary education and training, you can accomplish your dream to become a practicing physical therapist in Petoskey MI.
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