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

How to Enroll In a Physical Therapist School near Poulsbo 98370

Poulsbo WA physical therapy school student with volunteerGetting a physical therapist degree near Poulsbo WA is an important first step to beginning a rewarding career in the health care industry. Physical therapists (PT) help individuals who have been incapacitated as a result of illness or injury regain function and mobility. But before they can practice and provide treatment for the rehabilitation of patients, they must get the appropriate education and training. A PT must also become licensed in all states, many mandating that the licensee receive a physical therapy degree from an accredited college. So before selecting a physical therapy school, it’s important to evaluate those you are considering to make sure they will supply a superior education and meet your state’s licensing standards. What you do not want to do is choose a college just because it happens to be the nearest to your home or it has the most affordable tuition. There are other relevant qualifications that need to be evaluated besides cost and location. But before we discuss 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 Do Physical Therapists Do?

Poulsbo WA physical therapist helping patient walkPhysical therapists work in a variety of locations, including Poulsbo WA 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 mentioned, physical therapists help patients that are struggling with a lack of mobility and in many cases pain caused by illness or injury. After patient diagnosis, they develop a course of treatment to deal with the mobility issues and lessen or eliminate any pain. They also endeavor to stop any advancement of the disability. Though the causes of disability requiring physical therapy are abundant, they include:

  • Arthritis or Osteoporosis
  • Car or motor cycle accidents
  • Strokes.
  • Heart attacks.
  • Sports injuries.
  • Burn injuries.
  • Hip Replacement.
  • Sciatica.
  • Multiple Sclerosis.

Licensed physical therapists work in close partnerships with other Poulsbo WA health specialists, including chiropractors, physicians, dentists and nurses. They can also oversee several physical therapy assistants who work under them in diagnosing and treating their patients. Something to keep in mind for anyone considering entering the physical therapy profession, it is rather physically demanding. Physical therapists routinely lift patients and heavy equipment, and kneel, crouch and stand for extended periods of time on a daily basis.

Physical Therapy Degrees Offered

Poulsbo WA physical therapist applying acupuncture to patientThere are three physical therapy degree options available for individuals to enroll in at the graduate and undergraduate levels. Of these alternatives, the one degree that is offered to become a physical therapist is the doctorate. Undergraduate degrees focus on either training students to become a physical therapy assistant (PTA) or preparing them to progress to the doctoral level. Below are brief summaries of degree levels that are offered in the Poulsbo WA area:

  • Associate Degrees prepare students to practice as 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 qualify for enrollment. The degrees are usually made available by community colleges, and require 2 years for completion. Clinical training, which may be in the form of an internship is normally a portion of the course of study.
  • Bachelor’s Degrees are designed as pre-physical therapy training to prep candidates to advance to the doctoral level. While they are not required to be eligible for the doctoral program, they are an essential preliminary step to practicing as a PT. As with the majority of bachelor’s degrees, they generally take four years to finish and commonly incorporate an internship program of a minimum of 500 hours.
  • Doctorate Degrees are a requirement 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). In addition to the bachelor’s degree, the doctoral takes three years to complete, making the overall commitment 7 years in the majority of cases. Clinical training is an essential element in addition to the extensive classroom and lab instruction. Therefor the completion of an internship is required, not only for graduation but in a number of states for licensing as well.

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 available in the USA. A number of licensed physical therapists having a master’s or even a bachelor’s degree were “grandfathered” in before the present licensing requirement for a doctorate was implemented.

Physical Therapist Online Degrees

woman attending physical therapy school online in Poulsbo WAWhile not as common as the on-campus alternatives, there are a number of accredited online physical therapist programs offered, 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 nearby an available internship. However, the online segment of the course of study may be accessed within the comfort and convenience of the student’s Poulsbo WA home. Online schools are not only partially more accessible, but in many instances more affordable. Tuition can be somewhat less than comparable on campus alternatives, and expenses for commuting are reduced. And a number of the online schools are accredited by the CAPTE, guaranteeing a quality education. These advantages may make the online alternative the best choice for those students that are motivated enough to learn at home.

Questions to Ask Physical Therapist Colleges

By now you undoubtedly have come to decision concerning some of your initial questions, including the kind of physical therapy degree you want to earn, where you prefer to attend classes, and how much you can afford to invest in your education. But since there are so many PT colleges within the Poulsbo WA area and throughout Washington, you’ll have to research additional qualifications as well in order to further reduce your list of school options. Furthermore, you need to make certain that you enroll in the college that is right for you. That’s the reason we have collected a list of important questions that you must ask the physical therapy schools you are reviewing. Ask each of the potential schools these questions before making an ultimate selection.

Is the Physical Therapist School Accredited?  Ask if the schools you are considering have received accreditation from a regional or a national agency. 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 select an online program, it may also receive accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council. It’s imperative that both the physical therapy school and program you choose are accredited, not simply the school. Additionally, check that the accreditation is from a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency. In addition to guaranteeing that you receive an excellent education, accreditation might be mandated for state licensing and even for getting student loans or financial aid.

What is the School’s Ranking? In addition to accreditation, it’s important that the college and program you pick have outstanding reputations within the physical therapist community. There are multiple ways you can investigate a PT school’s reputation, starting with requesting references from employers that they refer their students to. You may also check online rating services and reviews and ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. Get in touch with several Poulsbo WA physical therapist clinics or other health care facilities that you might be interested in working for and ask if they can provide any advice about your program options. It might also be a good idea to check with the Washington Attorney General and school licensing authority to see if any complaints have been filed against the schools.

What is the College’s Job Placement Rate? There are a couple of important statistics that you should find out about all of the physical therapy colleges you are considering. First is their graduation rate. A low rate may indicate that students left due to displeasure with the program, the teachers, or both. After the students have graduated, what percentage of them are being hired with the support of the school’s job placement program, particularly in the Poulsbo WA area? If a program has a higher job placement rate, it suggests that its reputation within the medical care community is good or even exceptional. It also verifies that the college has a large network of contacts to assist students obtain internships or employment upon graduation.

Does the Program Support Licensing Requirements? It’s imperative that the school you select furnishes both superior training and a curriculum that supports the licensing criteria for Washington or the state where you will be working. In each state a passing score is required on the National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE) in addition to a degree from an accredited physical therapy school. Although licensing requirements vary state by state for PT and PTA graduates, a number of states require a minimum amount of clinical hours be performed and passing scores on additional exams.

Are Internship Programs Offered? Inquire if the physical therapy colleges you are reviewing have associations with Poulsbo WA hospitals or clinics for internship programs. Not only are internships a terrific way to obtain hands on experience in a clinical environment, they are additionally a requirement for most PT programs and state licensing. As an ancillary benefit, they can help graduates and students form professional connections in the Poulsbo health care community and help with job placement once licensed.

What are the Class Sizes ? Unless you are the type of student that likes to sit far in the rear of the classroom or get lost in the crowd, you will undoubtedly prefer a smaller class size. Small classes permit more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the physical therapist schools you are researching what the average teacher to student ratio is for their classrooms. If practical you may want to sit in on one or more classes before making your final decision. This will also give you a chance to speak with some of the instructors and students to get their opinions regarding the pharmacist tech program also.

Where is the School Located? For many students, the physical therapist school they pick will need to be within travelling distance of their Poulsbo WA residence. Individuals who have chosen to attend classes online obviously will not have to worry themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of area 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 might be required to pay a higher tuition. State colleges generally charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges often charge a higher tuition for those students that live outside of their districts.

Is Financial Help Provided? Most DPT schools provide some type of financial aid to their potential students. Ask if the schools you are considering have a financial aid department and see what type of help is available. They at least should help in obtaining 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 you eliminate a college because the tuition is too expensive, find out what financial aid may be available.

Can the College Accommodate your Schedule? And last you need to confirm that the physical therapist school you finally select can furnish the class schedule you need. This is especially crucial if you opt to continue working while attending school. If you need to schedule evening or weekend classes in the Poulsbo WA area, confirm that they are offered. If you can only attend part-time, check if that is an alternative and how many credit hours or courses you would need to carry. Also, ask what the protocol is for making up any classes that you might miss because of illness, work or family emergencies.

Earning Your Physical Therapy Degree near Poulsbo Washington?

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

Poulsbo, Washington

Prior to the arrival of Scandinavian immigrants in the 1880s, the Suquamish people had names for several areas in what is now Poulsbo; one of those names, tcu-tcu-lats, means "place of the maples".[5] Their ancestors occupied villages on the Liberty Bay shoreline — among them, ho-CHEEB[6] — for at least 5,000 years, hunted in local forests and floodplains, fished in bays and streams here, and harvested shellfish along the marine shoreline.

After the signing of the Treaty of Point Elliott in 1855, most Suquamish people here relocated to the Port Madison Indian Reservation, although the Suquamish Tribe reserved — and to this day exercises — certain cultural and natural resource rights in its historical territory, including Poulsbo.

The first Scandinavians arrived in the 1880s after several attempts to establish farms in the Midwest. They were drawn here by the availability of land, by the area's rich resources, and by a landscape similar to their native home. Poulsbo was founded by Jørgen Eliason of Førdefjord, Norway. At the time, the primary mode of travel was by boat. Acquiring supplies required an 18-mile trip from Seattle by rowboat and later by steamboat. Over a 60-year period, the "Mosquito Fleet", comprising more than a dozen steamboats, served Poulsbo and other locations along Liberty Bay and Puget Sound, carrying passengers and freight to and from Poulsbo and delivering farmers' produce to Pike Place Market in Seattle.

Choose the Best Physical Therapy Degree Program near Poulsbo WA

Deciding on the ideal physical therapist college is a necessary first decision you need to make to start a rewarding career in the medical profession. As we have discussed in this article, the DPT or PT degree program and college you decide on should both have exceptional reputations and accreditation. But there are other relevant questions that you should ask pertaining to your college of choice as well. As you commence your search for a physical therapist school, bear in mind that a number of factors will guide you toward your ultimate decision. You might decide to visit each of the campuses to view their facilities and speak with active DPT students. While there, ask yourself this critical question: will this school help me achieve my goal of becoming a practicing licensed physical therapist? By adhering to our list of additional questions, you will have the ability to narrow down the options so you can make the ideal choice. And with the proper training and education, you can accomplish your dream to become a practicing physical therapist in Poulsbo WA.

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