Physical Therapist Schools | Get Your Physical Therapy Degree – Sterling MI

How to Enroll In a Physical Therapist College near Sterling 48659

Sterling MI physical therapy school student with volunteerReceiving a physical therapist degree near Sterling MI is an important first step to starting a fulfilling career in the healthcare industry. Physical therapists (PT) help patients who have been debilitated due to illness or injury gain back function and mobility. But before they may legally practice and work with the rehabilitation of patients, they must acquire the appropriate education and training. A PT must also be licensed in every state, a large number mandating that the licensee earn a physical therapy degree from an accredited college. So before selecting a physical therapy school, it’s important to research those you are considering to make certain they will furnish a quality education and satisfy 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 most affordable tuition. There are other significant qualifications that must be evaluated along with 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 what the educational options are.

What Does a Physical Therapist Do?

Sterling MI physical therapist helping patient walkPhysical therapists practice in a variety of settings, including Sterling MI hospitals, health clinics, rehabilitation centers, nursing homes and sports facilities. What the facilities all share in common is that they are equipped for the diagnosis and rehabilitation treatment of patients. As previously touched on, physical therapists help patients that are experiencing a lack of mobility and often pain due to illness or injury. After diagnosing a patient, they develop a program of treatment to address the mobility issues and reduce or eradicate any pain. They also strive to stop any progression of the disability. Though the causes of disability necessitating physical therapy are abundant, they include:

  • Arthritis or Osteoporosis
  • Motor vehicle accidents
  • Strokes.
  • Cardiac arrest.
  • Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.
  • Burn injuries.
  • Hip Replacement.
  • Sciatica.
  • Multiple Sclerosis.

Licensed physical therapists practice in close association with other Sterling MI medical professionals, including chiropractors, physicians, dentists and nurses. They can also oversee several physical therapy assistants who work under them in diagnosing and treating their patients. One thing to take note of for anyone considering entering the physical therapy profession, it is quite physically demanding. Physical therapists routinely lift patients and heavy equipment, and stand, crouch and kneel for extended periods of time on a daily basis.

Physical Therapy Degrees Offered

Sterling MI physical therapist applying acupuncture to patientThere are three physical therapist degrees offered for individuals to pursue at the undergraduate and graduate levels. Of these options, the one degree that is attainable to become a physical therapist is the doctorate. Undergraduate degrees focus on either preparing students to become a physical therapy assistant (PTA) or preparing them to advance to the doctoral level. Following are brief descriptions of degree levels that are available in the Sterling MI area:

  • Associate Degrees train 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 GED to qualify for enrollment. The programs are typically provided by community or junior colleges, and require 2 years to complete. An internship or other form of clinical training is usually a portion of the program.
  • Bachelor’s Degrees are designed as pre-physical therapist education to prepare candidates to advance to the doctoral level. Although they are not required to be eligible for the doctoral program, they are an important first step to becoming a PT. Similar to the majority of bachelor’s degrees, they generally require 4 years to complete and often include an internship program of at least 500 hours.
  • Doctorate Degrees are required if you want 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 three years to complete, making the overall investment of time seven years in most cases. Practical or clinical training is an important element along with the extensive classroom and lab instruction. Consequently the completion of an internship is mandated, not just 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 eliminated and is no longer available in the USA. Some practicing physical therapists holding a master’s or in some cases a bachelor’s degree were “grandfathered” in prior to the current licensing mandate for a doctorate was instituted.

Physical Therapy Schools Online

woman attending physical therapy school online in Sterling MIAlthough not as common as the on campus alternatives, there are a number of accredited online physical therapy programs available, more so at the graduate level. Due to the hands-on structure of the training, internships and clinical lab work are incorporated with the online classes. This requires that the student live near the college campus or nearby an available internship. However, the online portion of the curriculum can be accessed within the convenience and comfort of the student’s Sterling MI residence. Online programs are not only partially more accessible, but in a number of cases more economical. Tuition may be significantly less than comparable on campus options, and expenses for commuting are reduced. And a number of the online schools are accredited by the CAPTE, assuring a quality education. These benefits can make the online alternative the right choice for those students that are motivated enough to attend classes at home.

Topics to Ask Physical Therapy Schools

By now you most likely have made a decision concerning several of your preliminary questions, like the kind of physical therapist degree you want to obtain, where you want to attend classes, and how much money you can afford to invest in your education. But considering there are numerous PT colleges within the Sterling MI area and throughout Michigan, you’ll have to explore additional qualifications also so as to further reduce your list of college options. Moreover, you need to make sure that you choose the college that is ideal for you. That’s why we have collected a list of important questions that you need to ask the physical therapist programs you are thinking about. Ask all of the competing schools these questions prior to making an ultimate decision.

Is the Physical Therapy Program Accredited?  Ask if the programs you are looking at have earned accreditation from a regional or a national agency. As earlier mentioned, if you are pursuing a doctorate the program must be accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE). If you select an online college, it can also obtain accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council. It’s essential that both the physical therapist school and program you select are accredited, not simply the school. Additionally, check that the accreditation is from a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency. Besides guaranteeing that you obtain a quality education, accreditation might be mandated 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 essential that the college and program you select have exceptional reputations within the physical therapy community. There are several ways you can look into a PT school’s reputation, beginning with asking for references from employers that they place their graduates with. You can also check online reviews and rating services and ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. Get in touch with several Sterling MI physical therapist clinics or other health care facilities that you may be interested in working for and ask if they can provide any recommendations about your college options. It may also be prudent to contact the Michigan Attorney General and school licensing authority to see if any complaints have been submitted against the schools.

What is the Program’s Job Placement Percentage? There are a couple of important statistics that you should know about each of the physical therapist programs you are looking at. One is their graduation rate. A lower rate may indicate that students dropped out due to dissatisfaction with the program, the teachers, 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 Sterling MI area? If a program has a high job placement rate, it’s an indication that its reputation within the health care community is good or even excellent. It also confirms that the school has a large network of contacts to assist students gain internships or employment upon graduation.

Does the College Support Licensing Requirements? It’s imperative that the program you select furnishes both exceptional training and a curriculum that supports the licensing criteria for Michigan or the state where you will be working. In every state a passing score is required on the National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE) along with a degree from an accredited physical therapist school. 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 additional tests.

Are Internships Provided? Inquire if the physical therapist colleges you are interested in have relationships with Sterling MI hospitals or clinics for internship programs. Internships are not only a terrific manner to get practical training in a clinical setting, they are additionally a requirement for most PT programs and state licensing. As an ancillary benefit, they may help students and graduates establish professional relationships in the Sterling healthcare community and help with obtaining employment after licensing.

What are the Class Sizes ? Unless you are the type of student that likes to sit way in the back of the classroom or get lost in the crowd, you will undoubtedly prefer a small class size. Smaller classes permit more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the physical therapy colleges you are reviewing what the average student to teacher ratio is for their classrooms. If practical you may prefer to sit in on one or more classes before making your ultimate determination. This will also give you an opportunity to speak with several of the instructors and students to get their opinions regarding the pharmacist tech program also.

Where is the College Located? For many students, the physical therapy school they choose will have to be within driving distance of their Sterling MI residence. Individuals 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 importance. Something to keep in mind is that if you choose to enroll in a school that is out of state or even out of your local area, you might need to pay a higher tuition. State colleges usually charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges often charge a higher tuition to those students that don’t reside within their districts.

Is Financial Help Provided? The majority of DPT schools provide some form of financial assistance to their prospective students. Inquire if the colleges you are examining have a financial assistance office and see what kind of aid is obtainable. At a minimum they should help in acquiring a student loan or any grants you might qualify for. Some physical therapy colleges offer scholarships, while others provide work programs. So before eliminating a program because the tuition is too expensive, learn what financial aid might be available.

Can the School Accommodate your Schedule? And finally you must verify that the physical therapy school you finally choose can offer the class schedule you need. This is especially essential if you opt to continue working while attending school. If you must schedule evening or weekend classes in the Sterling MI area, check that they are offered. If you can only attend part-time, verify if that is an option and how many credit hours or courses you would need to enroll in. Also, ask what the procedure is for making up any classes that you might miss due to work, illness or family obligations.

Earning Your Physical Therapy Degree near Sterling Michigan?

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

Sterling Heights, Michigan

Sterling Heights is a city in Macomb County of the U.S. state of Michigan, and one of Detroit's core suburbs. As of the 2010 census, the city had a total population of 129,699.[6] It is the second largest suburb in Metro Detroit, and the fourth largest city in Michigan. Sterling Heights consistently ranks as the safest city in Michigan with population over 100,000.[7]

Sterling Heights was incorporated as a city in 1968. It was until the 1950s an agricultural area largely devoted to growing rhubarb and other crops sold in Detroit.[8] Prior to 1968 Sterling Heights was known as Sterling Township. It had from 1836 until 1838 been known as Jefferson Township.

Gerald Donovan became the first mayor of the city. F. James Dunlop became the first mayor pro-tem. There was already a small village named Sterling in Arenac County, so the word "Heights" was added to the township name to satisfy a state law that prevents incorporated municipalities from having the same name. "Moravian" was another name under consideration for the new city.[13]

Choose the Ideal Physical Therapy Training Program near Sterling MI

Choosing the right physical therapist program is a necessary first decision you need to make to begin a gratifying career in the healthcare profession. As we have addressed in this article, the DPT or PT degree program and school you enroll in should both have excellent reputations and accreditation. However there are additional critical questions that you should ask regarding your school of choice as well. As you commence your search for a physical therapist program, keep in mind that many variables will lead you toward your final decision. You might want to go to different colleges to view their facilities and talk 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 appropriate selection. And with the necessary training and education, you can fulfill your dream to become a practicing physical therapist in Sterling MI.

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