How to Select a Physical Therapy Program near Washoe Valley 89704
Earning a physical therapy degree near Washoe Valley NV is an important first step to launching a fulfilling career in the health care industry. Physical therapists (PT) help patients who have been debilitated as a result of injury or illness gain back mobility and function. But before they may legally practice and provide treatment for the rehabilitation of patients, they need to acquire the proper training and education. A PT must also be licensed in all states, many mandating that the licensee receive a physical therapy degree from an accredited school. So before choosing a physical therapy school, it’s necessary to evaluate the ones you are considering to make certain they will provide a quality education and comply with your state’s licensing standards. What you do not want to do is select a school just because it happens to be the closest to your residence or it has the most affordable tuition. There are other significant qualifications that need to be considered besides cost and location. 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?
Physical therapists work in varying settings, such as Washoe Valley NV hospitals, health clinics, assisted living facilities, rehab centers 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 people that are suffering from a lack of mobility and often pain due to illness or injury. After patient diagnosis, they develop a course of treatment to resolve the mobility issues and reduce or eradicate any pain. They also strive to prevent any advancement of the disability. Though the causes of disability necessitating physical therapy are abundant, they include:
- Arthritis or Osteoporosis
- Car or motor cycle accidents
- Head injuries.
- Heart attacks.
- Sports injuries.
- Fire injuries.
- Knee Replacement.
- Multiple Sclerosis.
Licensed physical therapists work in close association with other Washoe Valley NV health specialists, including doctors, chiropractors, dentists and nurses. They can also supervise several physical therapy assistants who work under them in diagnosing and treating their patients. Something to take note of for anyone considering getting into the physical therapy field, it is rather physically demanding. Physical therapists regularly lift heavy equipment as well as patients, and stand, crouch and kneel for long periods of time on a daily basis.
Physical Therapist Degrees Available
There are three physical therapist degrees offered for individuals to pursue at the graduate and undergraduate levels. Of these options, the only degree that is attainable to practice as a physical therapist is the doctorate. Undergraduate degrees target either training students to become a physical therapy assistant (PTA) or preparing them to advance to the doctoral level. Following are brief explanations of degrees that are offered in the Washoe Valley NV area:
- Associate Degrees train students to be 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 made available by community colleges, and take about two years to complete. Clinical training, which may be in the form of an internship is usually a portion of the course of study.
- Bachelor’s Degrees are designed as pre-physical therapy education to ready candidates to progress to the doctoral level. While 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 normally take 4 years to finish and often 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 must also be accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE). In addition to the bachelor’s degree, the doctoral takes 3 years to complete, making the overall investment of time 7 years in the majority of cases. Clinical training is an essential component along with the extensive classroom and lab instruction. Therefor the fulfillment of an internship is mandated, not only 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 eliminated and is no longer available in the USA. A number of licensed physical therapists holding a master’s or even a bachelor’s degree were “grandfathered” in before the current licensing requirement for a doctorate was instituted.
Physical Therapist Online Schools
Although not as prevalent as the on-campus alternatives, there are a number of accredited online physical therapy degrees offered, 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 school campus or nearby an available internship. However, the online part of the course of study can be accessed within the comfort and convenience of the student’s Washoe Valley NV residence. Online programs are not only to some extent more accessible, but in a number of cases more economical. Tuition can be somewhat lower than similar on campus options, and expenses for commuting are reduced. And many of the online schools are accredited by the CAPTE, guaranteeing a quality education. These advantages may make the online option the best choice for those students that are disciplined enough to learn at home.
Subjects to Ask Physical Therapist Colleges
At this point you probably have come to decision concerning several of your initial queries, including the kind of physical therapy degree you intend to obtain, where you prefer to attend classes, and how much you can afford to invest in your education. But considering there are numerous PT colleges within the Washoe Valley NV area and across Nevada, you’ll need to look into other qualifications also in order to further narrow your list of college options. Furthermore, you want to be sure that you choose the school that is best for you. That’s the reason we have collected a list of important questions that you need to ask the physical therapy programs you are reviewing. Ask all of the potential schools these questions before making a final selection.
Is the Physical Therapy Program Accredited? Ask if the colleges you are reviewing have earned accreditation from a national or a regional organization. As previously stated, if you are pursuing a doctorate the program must be accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE). If you choose an online program, it can also earn accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council. It’s essential that both the physical therapy school and program you choose are accredited, not simply the school. Also, check that the accreditation is through a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency. Along with ensuring that you obtain a quality education, accreditation might be required for state licensing as well as for getting student loans or financial aid.
What is the School’s Standing? In addition to accreditation, it’s important that the college and program you pick have exceptional reputations within the physical therapist profession. There are several ways you can research a PT college’s reputation, beginning with requesting references from employers that they refer their students to. You can also check online rating services and reviews and ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. Contact several Washoe Valley NV physical therapy clinics or other healthcare facilities that you might be interested in working for and ask if they can offer any advice about your program options. It might also be a good idea to check with the Nevada Attorney General and school licensing authority to see if any complaints have been filed against the colleges.
What is the School’s Job Placement Rate? There are a two important statistics that you need to find out about all of the physical therapist colleges you are looking at. One is their graduation rate. A low rate might suggest that students left because of dissatisfaction with the program, the teachers, or both. Once the students have graduated, what percentage of them are being hired with the support of the school’s job placement program, particularly in the Washoe Valley NV area? If a school has a higher job placement rate, it suggests that its reputation within the health care field is good or even excellent. It also verifies that the school has a large network of contacts to help students obtain internships or employment upon graduation.
Does the College Prepare You For Licensing Requirements? It’s essential that the school you choose provides both exceptional training and a course of study that satisfies the licensing requirements for Nevada or the state where you will be practicing. In every state a passing score is required on the National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE) in addition to a degree from an accredited physical therapist program. While licensing requirements vary state by state for PTA and PT graduates, many states require a minimum amount of clinical hours be performed and passing scores on supplemental tests.
Are Internship Programs Sponsored? Inquire if the physical therapist colleges you are reviewing have partnerships with Washoe Valley NV hospitals or clinics for internship programs. Not only are internships an excellent means to get practical experience 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 develop professional connections in the Washoe Valley healthcare community and assist with job placement once licensed.
What are the Class Sizes ? Unless you are the kind of student that likes to sit far in the rear of class or hide in the crowd, you will likely want a smaller class size. Small classes allow for more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the physical therapist colleges you are reviewing what the average teacher to student ratio is for their classes. If practical you may prefer to sit in on one or more classes before making your final decision. This will also give you an opportunity to speak with some 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 therapist college they select will need to be within travelling distance of their Washoe Valley NV residence. Individuals who have chosen to attend classes online naturally will not have to concern themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of area internships will be of concern. 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 might be required to pay a higher tuition. State colleges commonly charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges typically charge a higher tuition for those students that don’t reside within their districts.
Is Financial Assistance Offered? Most DPT schools provide some type of financial assistance to their prospective students. Inquire if the colleges you are looking at have a financial assistance department and find out what type of aid is available. At a minimum they should help in obtaining a student loan or any scholarships you might be eligible for. A number of physical therapy schools provide scholarships, while others provide work programs. So before eliminating a college because the tuition is beyond your budget, ask what financial assistance might be available.
Can the Program Accommodate your Schedule? And finally you must confirm that the physical therapist program you ultimately pick can furnish the class schedule you need. This is particularly important if you decide to continue working while attending school. If you must schedule night or weekend classes in the Washoe Valley NV area, check that they are offered. If you can only enroll on a part-time basis, check 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 may miss due to work, illness or family emergencies.
Earning Your Physical Therapy Degree near Washoe Valley Nevada?
If you are planning on attending a Physical Therapy School in the Washoe Valley NV area, the following information may prove to be both interesting and educational regarding the location of your future Alma Mater.
Washoe County, Nevada
Washoe County was created on November 25, 1861, as one of the original nine counties of the Nevada Territory. It is named after the Washoe people who originally inhabited the area. It was consolidated with Roop County in 1864. Washoe City was the first county seat in 1861 and was replaced by Reno in 1871.
Washoe County is the setting of the 1965 episode "The Wild West's Biggest Train Holdup" of the syndicated western television series, Death Valley Days. In the story line, deputy Jim Brand (Charles Bateman) places a locked chain on a Central Pacific Railroad engine until the company agrees to pay its tax assessment. Roy Barcroft played the aging Sheriff Jackson with Pat Priest as his daughter, N Brand.
In 1911, a small group of Bannock under a leader named "Shoshone Mike" killed four ranchers in Washoe County. A posse was formed, and on February 26, 1911, they caught up with the band, and eight of them were killed, along with one member of the posse, Ed Hogle. Three children and a woman who survived the battle were captured. The remains of some of the members of the band were repatriated from the Smithsonian Institution to the Fort Hall Idaho Shoshone-Bannock Tribe in 1994.
Enroll in the Ideal Physical Therapy Degree Program near Washoe Valley NV
Picking the ideal physical therapy college is an important initial decision you must make to begin a gratifying career in the health care profession. As we have covered in this article, the DPT or PT degree program and school you choose should both have outstanding reputations and accreditation. However there are other important questions that you should ask pertaining to your college of choice also. As you start your search for a physical therapist college, keep in mind that a number of variables will guide you toward your final decision. You might want to visit different colleges to see their facilities and talk to active DPT students. While there, ask yourself this important question: will this school help me accomplish my goal of becoming a licensed practicing 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 proper education and training, you can achieve your dream of becoming a licensed physical therapist in Washoe Valley NV.
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