How to Pick a Physical Therapist Training Program near Royal Oak 48067
Earning a physical therapy degree near Royal Oak MI is an important first step to starting a rewarding career in the medical care field. Physical therapists (PT) help people who have been incapacitated due to injury or illness regain mobility and function. But before they may legally practice and provide treatment for the rehabilitation of patients, they need to receive the necessary education and training. A PT must additionally become licensed in all states, many mandating that the licensee hold a physical therapy degree from an accredited school. So prior to selecting a physical therapy school, it’s necessary to evaluate the ones you are looking at to make sure they will furnish a quality education and comply with your state’s licensing standards. What you should not do is enroll in a school just because it happens to be the closest to your home or it has the most affordable tuition. There are other relevant qualifications that need to be considered along with 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 the options for education.
What is a Physical Therapist’s Job Description?
Physical therapists practice in a variety of locations, such as Royal Oak MI hospitals, health clinics, rehabilitation centers, nursing homes and health clubs. What the facilities all share in common is that they are equipped for the diagnosis and rehabilitation treatment of patients. As previously mentioned, physical therapists help individuals that are struggling with a lack of mobility and in many cases pain due to injury or illness. After diagnosing a patient, they develop a program of treatment to resolve the mobility issues and lessen or eradicate any pain. They also try to stop any progression of the disability. Though the causes of disability requiring physical therapy are numerous, they include:
- Arthritis or Osteoporosis
- Car or motor cycle accidents
- Heart attacks.
- Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.
- Burn injuries.
- Knee Replacement.
- Multiple Sclerosis.
Licensed physical therapists work in close association with other Royal Oak MI medical specialists, including doctors, chiropractors, registered nurses and dentists. They can also oversee one or more physical therapy assistants who work under them assisting with diagnosing and treating their patients. Something to take note of for anyone thinking about going into the physical therapy profession, it is rather physically demanding. Physical therapists often lift patients and heavy equipment, and kneel, crouch and stand for long periods of time on a daily basis.
Physical Therapy Degrees Offered
There are 3 physical therapist degree options offered for individuals to pursue at the graduate and undergraduate levels. Of these choices, the one degree that is offered to practice as a physical therapist is the doctorate. Undergraduate degrees target either training students to become a physical therapy assistant (PTA) or prepping them to progress to the doctoral level. Following are brief summaries of degree levels that are available in the Royal Oak MI area:
- Associate Degrees prepare students to practice as physical therapy assistants, or may be used as a stepping stone to a more advanced degree. Applicants must have a high school diploma or equivalent to qualify for enrollment. The degrees are usually provided by community colleges, and take about 2 years for completion. Clinical training, which may be in the form of an internship is usually part of the program.
- Bachelor’s Degrees are designed as pre-physical therapy education to prepare candidates to move up to the doctoral level. Although they are not a requirement to be a candidate for the doctoral program, they are an important initial step to becoming a PT. Similar to the majority of bachelor’s degrees, they normally take 4 years to complete and commonly include an internship program of at least 500 hours.
- Doctorate Degrees are a requirement 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 three years to complete, making the overall investment of time 7 years in most cases. Clinical or practical training is an intregal element along with the considerable lab and classroom instruction. Consequently the fulfillment of an internship is required, not just 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 eliminated and is no longer available in the United States. Some practicing physical therapists holding a master’s or even a bachelor’s degree were “grandfathered” in before the existing licensing requirement for a doctorate was instituted.
Physical Therapy Degrees Online
While not as prevalent as the on campus options, there are many accredited online physical therapy degrees offered, more so at the graduate level. Because of the hands-on structure of the training, internships and clinical lab work are incorporated with the online classes. This requires that the student live close to the college campus or nearby a sponsored internship. Fortunately, the online portion of the course of study may be accessed within the comfort and convenience of the student’s Royal Oak MI residence. Online schools are not only partially more accessible, but in a number of cases more economical. Tuition can be somewhat less than comparable on campus alternatives, and expenditures for commuting are minimized. And a number of the online programs are accredited by the CAPTE, assuring a quality education. These advantages may make the online alternative the ideal choice for those students that are motivated enough to learn at home.
What to Ask Physical Therapy Colleges
At this point you probably have made a decision concerning some of your preliminary queries, such as the type of physical therapy degree you would like to earn, where you want to attend classes, and how much money you can afford to invest in your education. But since there are so many PT schools within the Royal Oak MI area and across Michigan, you’ll have to look into additional qualifications as well so as to further reduce your list of school options. Also, you want to make certain that you enroll in the college that is right for you. That’s the reason we have compiled a list of critical questions that you must ask the physical therapist programs you are thinking about. Ask all of the potential schools these questions prior to making an ultimate decision.
Is the Physical Therapy Program Accredited? Find out if the colleges you are looking at have received 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 school, it can also obtain accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council. It’s essential that both the physical therapy program and school you enroll in are accredited, not just the school. Also, make sure that the accreditation is from a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting organization. Along with ensuring that you obtain an excellent education, accreditation may be mandated for state licensing as well as for getting student loans or financial aid.
What is the Program’s Ranking? In addition to accreditation, it’s imperative that the school and program you select have outstanding reputations within the physical therapy profession. There are a number of ways you can research a PT school’s reputation, beginning with requesting references from employers that they refer their students to. You can also check online reviews and rating services and ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. Call several Royal Oak MI physical therapist centers or other healthcare facilities that you may be interested in working for and ask if they can give you any advice about your college selections. It might also be a good idea to contact the Michigan 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 two useful statistics that you need to know about all of the physical therapist schools you are reviewing. One is their graduation rate. A low rate might indicate that students left because of displeasure with the program, the instructors, or both. After the students have graduated, what percentage of them are being hired with the assistance of the college’s job placement program, particularly in the Royal Oak MI area? If a school has a high job placement rate, it suggests that its reputation within the healthcare community is good or even outstanding. It also affirms that the school has a large network of contacts to assist students obtain internships or employment after graduation.
Does the School Prepare You For Licensing Requirements? It’s essential that the program you choose furnishes both superior training and a curriculum that supports the licensing requirements for Michigan or the state where you will be practicing. In every state a passing score is required on the National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE) along with a degree from an accredited physical therapy program. Although licensing requirements vary state by state for PTA and PT graduates, some states require a minimum number of clinical hours be performed as well as passing scores on additional tests.
Are Internship Programs Offered? Find out if the physical therapist schools you are assessing have relationships with Royal Oak MI hospitals or clinics for internship programs. Internships are not only a terrific means to get hands on training in a clinical environment, they are also a requirement for the majority of PT programs and state licensing. As a secondary benefit, they may help students and graduates establish professional relationships in the Royal Oak medical community and assist with job placement once licensed.
How Large are the Classes ? Unless you are the kind of student that prefers to sit way in the back of class 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 therapy schools you are considering what the typical student to teacher ratio is for their classes. If practical you may prefer to monitor one or more classes before making your ultimate decision. This will also give you a chance to converse with a few of the instructors and students to get their perspectives regarding the pharmacist technician program as well.
Where is the Program Located? For a number of students, the physical therapist college they pick will have to be within commuting distance of their Royal Oak MI residence. Those who have decided to attend online classes naturally will not have to worry themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of area internships will be of concern. One thing to keep 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 be required to pay a higher tuition. State colleges normally charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges generally charge a higher tuition to those students that don’t reside within their districts.
Is Financial Help Offered? Most DPT schools offer some form of financial assistance to their prospective students. Inquire if the schools you are examining have a financial assistance department and see what kind of help is offered. At a minimum they should help in acquiring a student loan or any scholarships you may qualify for. A number of physical therapist colleges offer scholarships, while others offer work programs. So before eliminating a program because the tuition is beyond your budget, find out what financial aid might be available.
Can the Program Accommodate your Schedule? And finally you need to verify that the physical therapist program you finally choose can furnish the class schedule you need. This is especially essential if you decide to continue working while you attend classes. If you must schedule evening or weekend classes in the Royal Oak MI area, verify that they are offered. If you can only enroll on a part-time basis, find out if that is an option and how many credit hours or courses you would need to carry. Also, find out what the procedure is for making up any classes that you might miss because of work, illness or family emergencies.
Earning Your Physical Therapy Degree near Royal Oak Michigan?
If you are planning on attending a Physical Therapy School in the Royal Oak MI area, the following information may prove to be both interesting and educational regarding the location of your future Alma Mater.
Royal Oak, Michigan
Royal Oak is a city in Oakland County of the U.S. state of Michigan. It is a suburb of Detroit. As of the 2010 census, the city had a population of 57,236. It is the 8th-largest municipality in Oakland County and the 27th-largest municipality in Michigan by population.
Early Europeans in this area near Fort Detroit in the 18th century were mostly French Canadians; some traded with the Sauk, Huron, and other Native Americans in the area. After defeating France in the Seven Years' War, Great Britain took control of their territory east of the Mississippi River, including Fort Detroit and environs. After the American Revolutionary War, Britain promoted development of what was then called Upper Canada and Province of Quebec, across the Detroit and St. Clair rivers to the south and east.
Royal Oak was not incorporated as a village until 1891, and as a city in 1921. It was named in 1819, during one of the surveying expeditions led by Territorial Governor Lewis Cass. A large oak tree at this small settlement reminded Cass of the story of the Royal Oak, where King Charles II of England was said to hide to escape capture by the Roundheads after the Battle of Worcester. Cass named the settlement after that, several years after the United States had fought Great Britain across the northern border in the War of 1812.
Enroll in the Best Physical Therapist School near Royal Oak MI
Deciding on the right physical therapy college is a necessary initial decision you have to make to start a rewarding career in the health care profession. As we have covered in this article, the DPT or PT degree program and school you decide on should both have excellent reputations and be accredited. However there are other important questions that you need to ask regarding your college of choice also. As you begin your search for a physical therapist school, bear in mind that numerous variables will lead you to your final decision. You might decide to go to different schools to see their facilities and speak to current DPT students. While there, ask yourself this important question: will this program help me accomplish my goal of becoming a practicing licensed physical therapist? By following 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 training and education, you can accomplish your dream to become a licensed physical therapist in Royal Oak MI.
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