Physical Therapist Schools | Get Your Physical Therapy Degree – Dawson MN

How to Find the Right Physical Therapy College near Dawson 56232

Dawson MN physical therapy school student with volunteerGetting a physical therapy degree near Dawson MN is an essential first step to beginning a fulfilling career in the medical care field. Physical therapists (PT) help people who have been debilitated due to injury or illness gain back mobility and function. But before they can practice and work with the rehabilitation of patients, they need to acquire the necessary training and education. A PT must additionally become licensed in all states, many requiring that the licensee receive a physical therapy degree from an accredited college. So prior to enrolling in a physical therapy school, it’s essential to research those you are considering to ensure they will provide a quality education and satisfy 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 residence or it has cheapest tuition. There are other important qualifications that need to be considered besides location and cost. But before we discuss what those qualifications are and the questions you should be asking, we’ll address what a physical therapist does and what the educational options are.

What Does a Physical Therapist Do?

Dawson MN physical therapist helping patient walkPhysical therapists work in a variety of settings, including Dawson MN hospitals, health clinics, 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 previously touched on, physical therapists help people that are suffering from a lack of mobility and frequently pain due to injury or illness. After diagnosing a patient, they develop a program of treatment to deal with the mobility problems and reduce or eradicate any pain. They also endeavor to prevent any progression of the disability. Although the causes of disability necessitating physical therapy are abundant, they include:

  • Osteoporosis and Arthritis
  • Car or motor cycle accidents
  • Strokes.
  • Cardiac arrest.
  • Sports injuries.
  • Fire injuries.
  • Hip Replacement.
  • Fibromyalgia.
  • Multiple Sclerosis.

Licensed physical therapists work in close association with other Dawson MN health professionals, including doctors, chiropractors, dentists and nurses. They may also oversee one or more physical therapy assistants who work for them in diagnosing and treating their patients. One thing to take note of for anyone considering going into the physical therapy profession, it is quite physically demanding. Physical therapists regularly lift patients and heavy equipment, and stand, crouch and kneel for extended periods of time on a daily basis.

Physical Therapist Degree Options

Dawson MN physical therapist applying acupuncture to patientThere are three physical therapist degrees available for students to enroll in at the undergraduate and graduate levels. Of these alternatives, the only degree that is attainable to become a physical therapist is the doctorate. Undergraduate degrees emphasize either preparing students to become a physical therapy assistant (PTA) or readying them to advance to the doctoral level. Below are brief summaries of degrees that are available in the Dawson MN area:

  • Associate Degrees prepare students to become physical therapy assistants, or may be the first step toward earning a more advanced degree. Candidates must have a high school diploma or equivalent to qualify for enrollment. The programs are most often provided by junior or community colleges, and require two years for completion. An internship or other form of clinical training is typically part of the program.
  • Bachelor’s Degrees are created as pre-physical therapy education to ready students to advance to the doctoral level. Although they are not required to be qualified for the doctoral program, they are an important first step to practicing as a PT. As with most bachelor’s degrees, they typically take four years to finish and commonly incorporate an internship program of at least 500 hours.
  • Doctorate Degrees are mandated 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. Practical or clinical training is an intregal element along with the considerable lab and classroom instruction. Consequently the completion of an internship is required, not just for graduation but in some 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 attainable in the USA. Some licensed physical therapists holding a master’s or in some cases a bachelor’s degree were “grandfathered” in before the current licensing requirement for a doctorate was implemented.

Physical Therapy Schools Online

woman attending physical therapy school online in Dawson MNAlthough not as prevalent as the on-campus options, there are many accredited online physical therapy degrees available, more so at the graduate level. Because of the hands-on nature 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 an available internship. Fortunately, the online portion of the course of study can be accessed within the comfort and convenience of the student’s Dawson MN home. Online programs are not only to some extent more accessible, but in a number of instances more economical. Tuition can be somewhat less than similar on campus options, and costs 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 right choice for those students that are disciplined enough to attend classes at home.

Topics to Ask Physical Therapist Schools

At this point you probably have come to decision regarding some of your preliminary questions, like the kind of physical therapy 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 Dawson MN area and throughout Minnesota, you’ll need to research other qualifications as well so as to further narrow your list of school options. Moreover, you want to be sure that you select the school that is ideal for you. That’s the reason we have put together a list of essential questions that you need to ask the physical therapy colleges you are reviewing. Ask each of the potential schools these questions prior to making an ultimate decision.

Is the Physical Therapy College Accredited?  Ask if the schools you are considering have earned accreditation from a regional or a national agency. As previously 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 earn accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council. It’s important that both the physical therapist school and program you choose are accredited, not just the school. Also, check that the accreditation is through a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency. Besides ensuring that you obtain an excellent education, accreditation might be mandated for state licensing as well as for securing student loans or financial assistance.

What is the College’s Reputation? In addition to accreditation, it’s essential that the school and program you select have excellent reputations within the physical therapist community. There are several ways you can investigate a PT program’s reputation, starting with requesting references from employers that they refer their students to. You can also check online reviews and rating services and ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. Contact some Dawson MN physical therapist clinics or other healthcare facilities that you might have an interest in working for and ask if they can provide any advice about your program options. It may also be a good idea to check with the Minnesota 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 couple of important statistics that you should find out about all of the physical therapist programs you are reviewing. One is their graduation rate. A low rate may suggest that students dropped out 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 school’s job placement program, particularly in the Dawson MN area? If a program has a higher job placement rate, it’s an indication that its reputation within the medical care community is good or even excellent. It also confirms that the college has a wide network of contacts to assist students obtain internships or jobs upon graduation.

Does the Program Prepare You For Licensing Requirements? It’s essential that the school you enroll in furnishes both superior training and a curriculum that satisfies the licensing requirements for Minnesota or the state where you will be practicing. In every state a passing score is needed on the National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE) in addition to a degree from an accredited physical therapy program. While licensing requirements differ state by state for PT and PTA graduates, many states require a minimum amount of clinical hours be completed and passing scores on supplemental tests.

Are Internship Programs Provided? Ask if the physical therapy programs you are interested in have relationships with Dawson MN hospitals or clinics for internship programs. Not only are internships an excellent way to get practical experience in a clinical setting, they are additionally a requirement for the majority of PT programs and state licensing. As a supplemental benefit, they may assist students and graduates form professional relationships in the Dawson health care community and help with job placement once licensed.

How Big are the Classes ? Unless you are the kind of person that prefers to sit far in the rear of class or hide in the crowd, you will likely prefer a smaller class size. Smaller classes enable more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the physical therapist colleges you are researching what the average student to teacher ratio is for their classes. If practical you may prefer 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 students and instructors to get their perspectives regarding the pharmacist technician program as well.

Where is the College Located? For many students, the physical therapy school they choose will have to be within travelling distance of their Dawson MN residence. Individuals who have chosen to attend classes online obviously will not have to concern themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of local internships will be of importance. Something to keep in mind is that if you choose to enroll in a program that is out of state or even out of your local area, you may need to pay a higher tuition. State colleges commonly charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges frequently charge a higher tuition for those students that live outside of their districts.

Is Financial Support Offered? The majority of DPT colleges offer some form of financial aid to their prospective students. Find out if the colleges you are considering have a financial assistance office and see what type of aid is obtainable. At a minimum they should help in acquiring a student loan or any grants you might be eligible for. A number of physical therapy colleges offer scholarships, while others offer work programs. So before eliminating a college because the tuition is beyond your budget, ask what financial assistance might be available.

Can the School Accommodate your Schedule? And finally you must verify that the physical therapist school you finally choose can offer the class schedule you need. This is particularly crucial if you decide to continue working while you attend school. If you must schedule night or weekend classes in the Dawson MN area, confirm that they are available. If you can only attend part-time, check if that is an option and how many courses or credit hours you would need to carry. Also, learn what the procedure is for making up any classes that you might miss as a result of illness, work or family emergencies.

Earning Your Physical Therapy Degree near Dawson Minnesota?

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

Dawson, Minnesota

Dawson was platted in 1884.[8] The city was named for William Dawson, a former mayor of St. Paul, MN, and one of three partners in the Dawson Townsite Company.[9] A post office has been in operation at Dawson since 1884.[10] The city was incorporated in 1885.[8]

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 1.48 square miles (3.83 km2), all of it land.[2] The West Branch of the Lac qui Parle River flows through the city.[11] The West Branch of The Lac qui Parle River flows into the Lac qui Parle River south of Dawson. U.S. Route 212 serves as a main route in the city.

As of the census[3] of 2010, there were 1,540 people, 682 households, and 412 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,040.5 inhabitants per square mile (401.7/km2). There were 768 housing units at an average density of 518.9 per square mile (200.3/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 97.4% White, 0.4% African American, 0.4% Native American, 0.1% Pacific Islander, 0.6% from other races, and 1.1% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 2.3% of the population.

Pick the Ideal Physical Therapy Degree Program near Dawson MN

Selecting the right physical therapy college is a necessary first decision you must make to launch a rewarding career in the health care profession. As we have addressed in this article, the PT or DPT degree program and school you decide on should both have outstanding reputations and be accredited. However there are additional critical questions that you need to ask pertaining to your college of choice also. As you commence your search for a physical therapy program, keep in mind that numerous variables will lead you toward your ultimate decision. You might decide to visit different colleges to view their facilities and speak with active DPT students. While there, ask yourself this important question: will this school help me accomplish 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 best selection. And with the necessary training and education, you can fulfill your dream to become a licensed physical therapist in Dawson MN.

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