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

How to Select a Physical Therapy Training Program near Union 98592

Union WA physical therapy school student with volunteerEarning a physical therapy degree near Union WA is an important first step to starting a rewarding career in the health care field. Physical therapists (PT) help patients who have been disabled as a result of illness or injury gain back mobility and function. But before they may legally practice and provide treatment for the rehabilitation of patients, they must get the appropriate education and training. A PT must additionally be licensed in all states, a large number mandating that the licensee earn a physical therapy degree from an accredited school. So before enrolling in a physical therapy school, it’s necessary to evaluate those you are looking at to ensure they will provide a quality education and satisfy your state’s licensing standards. What you do not want to do is select a college simply 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 in addition to location and cost. But before we talk about what those qualifications are and what questions you should ask, we’ll cover what a physical therapist does and the options for education.

What is a Physical Therapist’s Job Description?

Union WA physical therapist helping patient walkPhysical therapists work in a variety of locations, such as Union WA hospitals, health clinics, assisted living facilities, rehab centers 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 struggling with a lack of mobility and frequently pain due to illness or injury. After diagnosing a patient, they design a course of treatment to deal with the mobility issues and reduce or eradicate any pain. They also endeavor to stop any progression of the disability. While the causes of disability necessitating physical therapy are abundant, they include:

  • Arthritis or Osteoporosis
  • Motor vehicle accidents
  • Head injuries.
  • Heart attacks.
  • Sports injuries.
  • Burn injuries.
  • Knee Replacement.
  • Fibromyalgia.
  • Multiple Sclerosis.

Licensed physical therapists practice in close association with other Union WA health professionals, including doctors, chiropractors, registered nurses and dentists. They may also supervise several physical therapy assistants who work under them assisting with diagnosing and treating their patients. One thing to keep in mind for anyone thinking about getting into the physical therapy field, 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 Therapist Degree Options

Union WA physical therapist applying acupuncture to patientThere are 3 physical therapy degrees offered for individuals to enroll in at the graduate and undergraduate levels. Of these alternatives, the one degree that is offered to practice as a physical therapist is the doctorate. Undergraduate degrees target either training students to become a physical therapy assistant (PTA) or prepping them to progress to the doctoral level. Below are short descriptions of degrees that are offered in the Union WA area:

  • Associate Degrees train 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 GED to qualify for enrollment. The programs are typically made available by community colleges, and require two years for completion. Clinical training, which may be in the form of an internship is usually a portion of the course of study.
  • Bachelor’s Degrees are developed as pre-physical therapist training to ready candidates to progress to the doctoral level. While they are not a requirement to be qualified for the doctoral program, they are an essential preliminary step to practicing as a PT. As with the majority of bachelor’s degrees, they normally require four years to finish and usually incorporate an internship program of at least 500 hours.
  • Doctorate Degrees are mandated if you want to become a licensed practicing physical therapist. The degree program also must 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 finish, making the overall commitment seven years in most cases. Clinical training is an essential component in addition to the extensive lab and classroom instruction. Therefor the completion of an internship is required, not just 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 offered in the USA. Some practicing physical therapists holding a master’s or in some cases a bachelor’s degree were “grandfathered” in before the present licensing requirement for a doctorate was implemented.

Physical Therapy Degrees Online

woman attending physical therapy school online in Union WAWhile not as common as the on campus options, there are a number of accredited online physical therapist programs available, more so at the graduate level. Because of the hands-on structure of the training, clinical lab work and internships are combined with the online classes. This requires that the student live close to the college campus or nearby an available internship. Fortunately, the online segment of the course of study may be accessed within the convenience and comfort of the student’s Union WA home. Online programs are not only to some extent more accessible, but in a number of instances more affordable. Tuition might be somewhat less than comparable on campus alternatives, and expenditures for commuting are reduced. And a number of the online programs are accredited by the CAPTE, ensuring a quality education. These benefits can make the online alternative the ideal choice for those students that are motivated enough to learn at home.

Topics to Ask Physical Therapy Colleges

By now you probably have made a decision regarding some of your initial questions, such as 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 since there are so many PT colleges within the Union WA area and throughout Washington, you’ll have to explore additional qualifications also in order to further narrow your list of college choices. Also, you need to make sure that you select the college that is best for you. That’s the reason we have put together a list of important questions that you need to ask the physical therapist colleges you are considering. Ask all of the potential schools these questions before making a final decision.

Is the Physical Therapy College Accredited?  Find out if the schools you are reviewing have earned accreditation from a regional or a national organization. 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 can also earn accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council. It’s imperative that both the physical therapist program and school you select are accredited, not just the school. Additionally, make sure that the accreditation is through a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency. Along with ensuring that you receive a quality education, accreditation may be required for state licensing and even for getting student loans or financial aid.

What is the School’s Reputation? In addition to accreditation, it’s imperative that the school and program you select have outstanding reputations within the physical therapy profession. There are a number of ways you can look into a PT program’s reputation, beginning with asking for references from employers that they place their graduates with. You can also search for online reviews and rating services and ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. Get in touch with several Union WA physical therapist centers or other healthcare facilities that you may be interested in working for and ask if they can give you any recommendations about your program selections. It may also be a good idea to contact the Washington Attorney General and school licensing authority to find out if any complaints have been submitted against the schools.

What is the Program’s Job Placement Percentage? There are a couple of relevant statistics that you need to know about all of the physical therapy programs you are reviewing. One is their graduation rate. A low rate may mean 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 hired with the support of the school’s job placement program, particularly in the Union WA area? If a program has a high job placement rate, it’s an indication that its reputation within the healthcare field is good or even outstanding. It also confirms that the program has a broad network of contacts to assist students gain internships or jobs upon graduation.

Does the College Support Licensing Requirements? It’s imperative that the school you choose provides both excellent 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 required on the National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE) along with a degree from an accredited physical therapy college. While licensing requirements differ state by state for PTA and PT graduates, some states require a minimum number of clinical hours be performed and passing scores on additional exams.

Are Internship Programs Sponsored? Inquire if the physical therapist schools you are assessing have partnerships with Union WA clinics or hospitals for internship programs. Internships are not only an excellent way to obtain hands on training in a clinical setting, they are also a requirement for most PT programs and state licensing. As an ancillary benefit, they can help graduates and students establish professional connections in the Union healthcare community and help with obtaining employment once licensed.

How Big are the Classes ? Unless you are the sort of student that prefers to sit far in the back of the classroom or hide in the crowd, you will probably want a smaller class size. Smaller classes allow for more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the physical therapy schools you are researching what the typical teacher to student ratio is for their classrooms. If practical you may prefer to monitor one or more classes before making your ultimate determination. This will also give you a chance to talk with a few of the students and instructors to get their opinions regarding the pharmacy technician program as well.

Where is the School Located? For a lot of students, the physical therapy school they pick will have to be within travelling distance of their Union WA residence. Students who have opted to attend online classes obviously will not have to worry themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of local internships will be of concern. One thing to bear in mind is that if you decide to enroll in a school that is out of state or even out of your local area, you might be required to pay a higher tuition. State colleges often charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges usually charge a higher tuition for those students that live outside of their districts.

Is Financial Help Provided? Most DPT colleges offer some form of financial support to their potential students. Inquire if the colleges you are looking at have a financial aid department and see what kind of help is obtainable. At a minimum they should help in acquiring a student loan or any scholarships you may be eligible for. A number of physical therapy colleges provide scholarships, while others offer work programs. So before you eliminate a program because the tuition is too expensive, find out what financial aid may be available.

Can the College Accommodate your Schedule? And finally you must confirm that the physical therapist school you ultimately select can furnish the class schedule you need. This is particularly crucial if you decide to continue working while you attend classes. If you need to schedule night or weekend classes in the Union WA area, confirm that they are available. If you can only enroll on a part-time basis, find out if that is an option and how many credit hours or courses you would have to enroll in. Also, find out what the procedure is for making up any classes that you might miss due to illness, work or family obligations.

Earning Your Physical Therapy Degree near Union Washington?

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

UnionsWA

In April 2000, the Trades & Labor Council of Western Australia became simply UnionsWA, to coincide with the consolidation of various union based operations within Western Australia and the opening of "Unity House" on May Day, 2000.

1947 - It continued in this guise for another twenty years when, in 1947, the name was changed once more, this time to the Trade Unions Industrial Council (ALP, WA) to more accurately delineate its trade union role from the political motives of the labour movement.

Although still acknowledged today as the Trades & Labor Council of Western Australia, an increasing association with 'white collar' unions had, by 2000, deemed this old title unreflective of all affiliated unions.

Enroll in the Ideal Physical Therapist College near Union WA

Choosing the best physical therapist program is a necessary initial decision you have to make to launch a gratifying career in the medical field. As we have addressed in this article, the DPT or PT degree program and college you decide on should both have outstanding reputations and accreditation. But there are other important questions that you should ask regarding your college of choice also. As you commence your search for a physical therapy college, keep in mind that many variables will guide you to your ultimate decision. You might decide to go to each of the colleges to view their facilities and speak to current DPT students. While there, ask yourself this important question: will this college help me achieve 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 ideal choice. And with the proper training and education, you can accomplish your dream of becoming a licensed physical therapist in Union WA.

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