Physical Therapist Schools | Get Your Physical Therapy Degree – Shady Spring WV

How to Choose a Physical Therapist School near Shady Spring 25918

Shady Spring WV physical therapy school student with volunteerEarning a physical therapist degree near Shady Spring WV is a critical first step to beginning a fulfilling career in the medical care field. Physical therapists (PT) help people who have been disabled due to illness or injury regain function and mobility. But before they may legally practice and work with the rehabilitation of patients, they need to obtain the appropriate training and education. A PT must also be licensed in all states, a large number mandating that the licensee receive a physical therapy degree from an accredited school. So before selecting a physical therapy school, it’s necessary to evaluate those you are thinking about to make sure they will supply a superior education and comply with your state’s licensing standards. What you do not want to do is choose a college just because it happens to be the closest to your home or it has cheapest tuition. There are other important qualifications that must be evaluated along with cost and location. But before we cover what those qualifications are and the questions you should be asking, we’ll cover what a physical therapist does and what the educational options are.

What Does a Physical Therapist Do?

Shady Spring WV physical therapist helping patient walkPhysical therapists work in a variety of locations, including Shady Spring WV hospitals, health clinics, assisted living facilities, rehab centers and health clubs. What the facilities all share in common is that they have the equipment for the diagnosis and rehabilitation treatment of patients. As earlier stated, physical therapists help individuals that are experiencing a lack of mobility and in many cases pain due to illness or injury. After diagnosing a patient, they design a program of treatment to deal with the mobility issues and lessen or eradicate any pain. They also endeavor to stop any progression of the disability. Although the causes of disability requiring physical therapy are abundant, they include:

  • Osteoporosis and Arthritis
  • Motor vehicle accidents
  • Head injuries.
  • Heart attacks.
  • Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.
  • Fire injuries.
  • Knee Replacement.
  • Fibromyalgia.
  • Cerebral Palsy.

Licensed physical therapists work in close affiliation with other Shady Spring WV medical professionals, including doctors, chiropractors, registered nurses and dentists. They can also oversee one or more physical therapy assistants who work under them assisting with diagnosing and treating their patients. One thing to keep in mind for anyone thinking about going into the physical therapy field, 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 Therapy Degrees

Shady Spring WV physical therapist applying acupuncture to patientThere are 3 physical therapy degree options available for individuals to pursue at the undergraduate and graduate levels. Of these alternatives, the one degree that is attainable to practice as a physical therapist is the doctorate. Undergraduate degrees focus on either training students to become a physical therapy assistant (PTA) or readying them to progress to the doctoral level. Following are short descriptions of degrees that are offered in the Shady Spring WV area:

  • Associate Degrees prepare students to become physical therapy assistants, or may be the first step toward earning a more advanced degree. Applicants must have a high school diploma or equivalent to qualify for enrollment. The degrees are most often made available by junior or community colleges, and require two years for completion. An internship or other form of clinical training is typically a portion of the curriculum.
  • Bachelor’s Degrees are developed as pre-physical therapist education to prep students to advance to the doctoral level. Although they are not a requirement to be a candidate for the doctoral program, they are an important initial step to becoming a PT. Similar to the majority of bachelor’s degrees, they normally require 4 years to finish and commonly include an internship program of at least 500 hours.
  • Doctorate Degrees are mandated in order to become a practicing licensed 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 finish, making the total commitment 7 years in most cases. Clinical training is an essential element in addition to the extensive lab and classroom instruction. Consequently the fulfillment 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 eliminated and is no longer attainable in the USA. Some licensed physical therapists holding a master’s or even a bachelor’s degree were “grandfathered” in prior to the existing licensing mandate for a doctorate was instituted.

Physical Therapist Online Schools

woman attending physical therapy school online in Shady Spring WVWhile not as common as the more traditional options, there are some accredited online physical therapist programs available, even more at the graduate level. Because of the hands-on structure of the training, internships and clinical lab work are incorporated with the online classes. This necessitates that the student live near the college campus or in proximity of a sponsored internship. However, the online portion of the program may be accessed within the convenience and comfort of the student’s Shady Spring WV residence. Online programs are not only partially more accessible, but in a number of instances more economical. Tuition can be significantly lower than comparable on-campus options, and expenditures for commuting are reduced. And many of the online programs are accredited by the CAPTE, assuring a quality education. These benefits can make the online alternative the best choice for those students that are dedicated enough to attend classes at home.

Subjects to Ask Physical Therapy Colleges

At this point you undoubtedly have come to decision concerning a few of your initial questions, including the kind of physical therapist degree you would like to obtain, where you prefer to attend classes, and how much money you can afford to spend for your education. But since there are so many PT schools within the Shady Spring WV area and across West Virginia, you’ll have to explore additional qualifications also in order to further reduce your list of college choices. Moreover, you want to make certain that you enroll in the school that is ideal for you. That’s why we have put together a list of critical questions that you need to ask the physical therapy programs you are thinking about. Ask all of the potential colleges these questions prior to making a final decision.

Is the Physical Therapy School Accredited?  Ask if the programs you are looking at have received accreditation from a national or a regional organization. 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 enroll in an online college, it may also earn 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, check that the accreditation is from a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency. In addition to ensuring that you receive an excellent education, accreditation may be required for state licensing and even for securing student loans or financial assistance.

What is the College’s Ranking? Along with accreditation, it’s imperative that the college and program you choose have excellent reputations within the physical therapy profession. There are multiple ways you can look into a PT school’s reputation, starting with requesting references from employers that they place their graduates with. You can also search for online reviews and rating services and ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. Get in touch with some Shady Spring WV physical therapist clinics or other medical care facilities that you may have an interest in working for and ask if they can give you any insight about your college options. It may also be a good idea to check with the West Virginia Attorney General and school licensing authority to see if any complaints have been submitted against the schools.

What is the College’s Job Placement Rate? There are a two significant statistics that you need to find out about all of the physical therapy schools you are looking at. First is their graduation rate. A lower rate might indicate that students left due to displeasure with the program, the instructors, or both. After the students have graduated, how many of them are being hired with the help of the college’s job placement program, particularly in the Shady Spring WV area? If a college has a high job placement rate, it suggests that its reputation within the medical care community is good or even exceptional. It also confirms that the program has a broad network of contacts to help students obtain internships or jobs after graduation.

Does the Program Prepare You For Licensing Requirements? It’s imperative that the school you choose furnishes both exceptional training and a course of study that supports the licensing criteria for West Virginia 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 college. While licensing requirements fluctuate state by state for PTA and PT graduates, many states require a minimum number of clinical hours be completed and passing scores on additional exams.

Are Internships Provided? Inquire if the physical therapy programs you are reviewing have associations with Shady Spring WV clinics or hospitals for internship programs. Not only are internships a terrific manner to get practical experience in a clinical environment, they are additionally a requirement for most PT programs and state licensing. As an ancillary benefit, they may assist students and graduates form professional relationships in the Shady Spring medical community and help with job placement once licensed.

How Large are the Classes ? Unless you are the sort of person that likes to sit way in the back of class or get lost in the crowd, you will undoubtedly prefer a small class size. Small classes permit more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the physical therapy colleges you are looking at 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 an opportunity to converse with several of the students and instructors to get their opinions regarding the pharmacy tech program also.

Where is the Program Located? For a lot of students, the physical therapy school they pick will have to be within commuting distance of their Shady Spring WV residence. Those who have decided to attend online classes naturally 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 keep in mind is that if you decide 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 usually charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges usually charge a higher tuition for those students that don’t reside within their districts.

Is Financial Aid Provided? Most DPT colleges supply some form of financial aid to their prospective students. Find out if the schools you are examining have a financial aid office and see what type of assistance is obtainable. At a minimum they should help in obtaining a student loan or any grants you may qualify for. A number of physical therapist schools provide scholarships, while others provide work programs. So before you eliminate a program because the tuition is beyond your budget, ask what financial aid may be available.

Can the College Accommodate your Schedule? And last you must confirm that the physical therapy college you finally choose can provide the class schedule you need. This is particularly important if you decide to continue working while attending classes. If you need to schedule evening or weekend classes in the Shady Spring WV area, make sure that they are offered. If you can only enroll on a part-time basis, verify if that is an option and how many credit hours or courses you would need to carry. Also, learn what the procedure is for making up any classes that you may miss because of work, illness or family obligations.

Earning Your Physical Therapy Degree near Shady Spring West Virginia?

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

Shady Spring, West Virginia

According to the United States Census Bureau, the CDP has a total area of 6.1 square miles (15.9 km²), of which, 6.1 square miles (15.7 km²) of it is land and 0.1 square miles (0.2 km²) is water.

The community takes its name from a nearby spring.[5] “The ‘Shady Spring’ was an enduring landmark, never known to ‘run dry’ and served as a focal point for the community, especially for the women, many of whom would come bearing washtubs…,” according to “A History of Shady Spring District." The first business in Shady was the Pioneer Inn and Tavern, established in 1832 by Henry Hull and his brothers. The first official post office was established on Aug. 25, 1925, and the first postmistress was Mrs. Sarah Willis.[6]

General Rutherford B. Hayes, future President of the United States, was in the area during the Civil War. He “described the spring in 1862: ‘A large spring gives the name to this place. The water gushes out copiously, runs on the surface a few rods and runs again into the earth,” according to “Raleigh County: West Virginia” by Jim Wood.[7]

Pick the Right Physical Therapy Degree Program near Shady Spring WV

Deciding on the right physical therapist college is an important initial decision you need to make to launch a rewarding career in the healthcare field. As we have covered in this article, the PT or DPT degree program and college you enroll in should both have excellent reputations and accreditation. But there are additional important questions that you need to ask concerning your college of choice as well. As you begin your search for a physical therapist college, keep in mind that numerous factors will lead you to your final decision. You may decide to visit each of the campuses to view their facilities and speak to active DPT students. While there, ask yourself this important question: will this school help me realize my goal of becoming a practicing licensed physical therapist? By following our list of additional questions, you will be able to narrow down the options so you can make the right selection. And with the necessary training and education, you can achieve your dream of becoming a licensed physical therapist in Shady Spring WV.

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