Physical Therapist Schools | Get Your Physical Therapy Degree – Issaquah WA

How to Find the Right Physical Therapy Program near Issaquah 98027

Issaquah WA physical therapy school student with volunteerGetting a physical therapist degree near Issaquah WA is an important first step to starting a rewarding career in the health care industry. Physical therapists (PT) help individuals who have been incapacitated as a result of injury or illness regain mobility and function. But before they can practice and work with the rehabilitation of patients, they must acquire the necessary education and training. A PT must also be licensed in all states, a large number requiring that the licensee earn a physical therapy degree from an accredited college. So before enrolling in a physical therapy school, it’s essential to research the ones you are looking at to ensure they will supply a quality education and meet your state’s licensing standards. What you do not want to do is choose a school just because it happens to be the nearest to your home or it has the most affordable tuition. There are other important qualifications that must be evaluated besides cost and location. But before we talk about what those qualifications are and the questions you should be asking, we’ll cover what a physical therapist does and the options for education.

What is a Physical Therapist?

Issaquah WA physical therapist helping patient walkPhysical therapists practice in a variety of locations, including Issaquah WA hospitals, health clinics, assisted living facilities, rehab centers and health clubs. 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 patients that are suffering from a lack of mobility and often pain caused by injury or illness. After patient diagnosis, they develop a course of treatment to resolve the mobility problems and lessen or eliminate any pain. They also try to stop any progression of the disability. Although the causes of disability necessitating physical therapy are abundant, they include:

  • Osteoporosis and Arthritis
  • Motor vehicle accidents
  • Head injuries.
  • Cardiac arrest.
  • Sports injuries.
  • Burn injuries.
  • Hip Replacement.
  • Sciatica.
  • Multiple Sclerosis.

Licensed physical therapists practice in close association with other Issaquah WA medical professionals, including doctors, chiropractors, dentists and nurses. They may also supervise one or more physical therapy assistants who work under them in diagnosing and treating their patients. Something to bear in mind for anyone considering entering the physical therapy profession, it is rather physically demanding. Physical therapists routinely lift heavy equipment as well as patients, and kneel, crouch and stand for extended periods of time on a daily basis.

Physical Therapist Degree Options

Issaquah WA physical therapist applying acupuncture to patientThere are 3 physical therapist degree options offered for individuals to enroll in at the graduate and undergraduate levels. Of these choices, the single degree that is offered to become a physical therapist is the doctorate. Undergraduate degrees emphasize either preparing students to become a physical therapy assistant (PTA) or preparing them to advance to the doctoral level. Below are brief descriptions of degrees that are offered in the Issaquah WA area:

  • Associate Degrees train students to become physical therapy assistants, or may be the first step toward earning a more advanced degree. Applicants must have earned a high school diploma or equivalent to be accepted for enrollment. The degrees are usually offered by junior or community colleges, and require two years to complete. An internship or other form of clinical training is typically a component of the course of study.
  • Bachelor’s Degrees are created as pre-physical therapist training to ready candidates to move up to the doctoral level. While they are not required to be qualified for the doctoral program, they are an important initial step to practicing as a PT. As with the majority of bachelor’s degrees, they generally require 4 years to finish and often include an internship program of a minimum of 500 hours.
  • Doctorate Degrees are a requirement if you want to become a practicing licensed 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 3 years to finish, making the total investment of time 7 years in most cases. Clinical training is an essential component along with the extensive lab and classroom instruction. Consequently the fulfillment of an internship is required, not only for graduation but in several 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 United States. Some licensed physical therapists holding a master’s or even 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 Issaquah WAWhile not as common as the on campus alternatives, there are many accredited online physical therapist programs available, even more at the graduate level. Because of the hands-on nature of the training, internships and clinical lab work are combined with the online classes. This necessitates that the student live close to the college campus or in proximity of an available internship. However, the online portion of the curriculum can be accessed within the convenience and comfort of the student’s Issaquah WA home. Online schools are not only partially more accessible, but in a number of cases more economical. Tuition might be significantly lower than similar on-campus alternatives, and expenses for commuting are minimized. And many of the online schools are accredited by the CAPTE, assuring a quality education. These benefits may make the online option the best choice for those students that are disciplined enough to attend classes at home.

What to Ask Physical Therapist Programs

At this point you probably have made a decision regarding a few of your preliminary questions, like the type of physical therapist degree you would like to attain, where you prefer to attend classes, and how much you can afford to spend for your education. But since there are so many PT schools within the Issaquah WA area and across Washington, you’ll have to research additional qualifications as well so as to further reduce your list of college options. Moreover, you want to be sure that you enroll in the college that is best for you. That’s the reason we have collected a list of critical questions that you must ask the physical therapist colleges you are considering. Ask each of the competing schools these questions prior to making an ultimate decision.

Is the Physical Therapist College Accredited?  Find out if the colleges you are reviewing 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 receive accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council. It’s imperative that both the physical therapy program and school you enroll in are accredited, not simply the school. Also, verify that the accreditation is from a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency. Along with ensuring that you receive a quality education, accreditation might 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 college and program you pick have excellent reputations within the physical therapy community. There are a number of ways you can research a PT school’s reputation, beginning with asking for references from employers that they refer their students to. You can also search for online rating services and reviews and ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. Get in touch with some Issaquah WA physical therapist centers or other healthcare facilities that you might be interested in working for and ask if they can offer any recommendations about your school options. It may also be a good idea to check with the Washington Attorney General and school licensing authority to find out if any complaints have been filed against the colleges.

What is the School’s Job Placement Rate? There are a couple of important statistics that you should know about each of the physical therapy schools you are considering. First is their graduation rate. A low rate may suggest that students dropped out because of displeasure with the program, the teachers, 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 Issaquah WA area? If a program has a higher job placement rate, it’s an indication that its reputation within the health care community is good or even outstanding. It also affirms that the program has a wide network of contacts to help students get internships or employment after graduation.

Does the Program Support Licensing Requirements? It’s essential that the college you choose furnishes both superior training and a curriculum that supports the licensing requirements for Washington or the state where you will be practicing. In each state a passing score is needed on the National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE) along with a degree from an accredited physical therapy school. Although licensing requirements fluctuate state by state for PT and PTA graduates, some states require a minimum number of clinical hours be completed as well as passing scores on additional exams.

Are Internships Provided? Ask if the physical therapy programs you are interested in have associations with Issaquah WA clinics or hospitals for internship programs. Not only are internships a terrific means to receive practical training in a clinical environment, they are also a requirement for most PT programs and state licensing. As a supplemental benefit, they can assist graduates and students establish professional connections in the Issaquah healthcare community and help with obtaining employment once licensed.

What Size are the Classes ? Unless you are the type of student that prefers to sit far in the rear of the classroom or hide in the crowd, you will probably want a small class size. Smaller classes allow for more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the physical therapist schools you are looking at what the average student to teacher ratio is for their classes. If practical you may want to monitor one or more classes before making your ultimate decision. This will also give you an opportunity to speak with several of the instructors and students to get their perspectives regarding the pharmacy tech program also.

Where is the College Located? For a number of students, the physical therapist school they select will have to be within travelling distance of their Issaquah WA home. Individuals who have opted to attend online classes naturally will not have to trouble themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of local internships will be of concern. Something to bear 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 have to pay a higher tuition. State colleges normally charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges typically charge a higher tuition to those students that don’t reside within their districts.

Is Financial Support Offered? The majority of DPT schools provide some type of financial support to their potential students. Ask if the schools you are reviewing have a financial aid department and see what type of assistance is available. At a minimum they should help in securing a student loan or any scholarships you may qualify for. Some physical therapist colleges provide scholarships, while others provide work programs. So before eliminating a college because the tuition is too expensive, ask what financial assistance might be available.

Can the College Accommodate your Schedule? And last you must confirm that the physical therapy college you ultimately choose can provide the class schedule you need. This is particularly essential if you choose to continue working while attending classes. If you must schedule night or weekend classes in the Issaquah WA area, verify that they are available. If you can only enroll on a part-time basis, check if that is an alternative and how many courses or credit hours you would have to carry. Also, learn what the protocol is for making up any classes that you may miss because of illness, work or family emergencies.

Earning Your Physical Therapy Degree near Issaquah Washington?

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

Issaquah, Washington

Issaquah (/ˈɪsəkwɑː/ ISS-ə-kwah) is a city in King County, Washington, United States. The population was 37,487 in a 2017 census estimate. Located in a valley and bisected by Interstate 90, the city is bordered by the Sammamish Plateau to the north and the Issaquah Alps to the south.

"Issaquah" is an anglicized word for a local Native American name, meaning either "the sound of birds", "snake", or "little stream". "Squak Valley", an older name for the area, also derives from this same Native-American name.[6][7]

In 1885, the then unincorporated area was the scene of an attack on Chinese laborers who had come to pick hops from local fields. The city itself was officially incorporated on April 29, 1892. Initially a small mining town, this town has changed noticeably both in its appearance and economic focus. Issaquah was originally developed to service the mining industry (on the two nearby mountains that now lend their names to the Cougar/Squak Corridor Park), and began as the town of Gilman, Washington. As the mining deposits neared depletion in the late 1890s, other companies started to realize Issaquah's potential to support a lucrative lumber business. These companies exported timber from Issaquah and other small, local towns to Seattle and larger, rapidly growing communities throughout western Washington. These early boom industries, however, faded into a period of relative quiet by the time of the Great Depression. The town remained fairly placid through the succeeding decades, with The Boeing Company providing the majority of employment in the area. Microsoft and other technological industries moved into Redmond, Washington and other cities in the area, and later established operations in Issaquah itself. Both Boeing and Microsoft have significantly affected Issaquah's history, cultural development, and diverse population through their active community participation and attraction of outside residents. In June 1996, Costco moved its global headquarters to Issaquah from nearby Kirkland, Washington.

Choose the Best Physical Therapist Degree Program near Issaquah WA

Deciding on the best physical therapist school is a necessary first decision you need to make to begin a gratifying career in the medical field. As we have covered in this article, the PT or DPT degree program and school you pick should both have excellent reputations and be accredited. But there are additional critical questions that you should ask pertaining to your school of choice also. As you start your search for a physical therapy program, keep in mind that a number of variables will lead you to your ultimate decision. You may decide to visit each of the colleges to see their facilities and speak to current 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 adhering to our list of supplemental questions, you will have the ability to narrow down the options so you can make the appropriate selection. And with the proper training and education, you can fulfill your dream of becoming a practicing physical therapist in Issaquah WA.

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