Physical Therapist Schools | Get Your Physical Therapy Degree – Wellsburg WV

How to Pick a Physical Therapy Training Program near Wellsburg 26070

Wellsburg WV physical therapy school student with volunteerGetting a physical therapist degree near Wellsburg WV is an essential first step to launching a fulfilling career in the healthcare industry. Physical therapists (PT) help patients who have been incapacitated due to injury or illness regain mobility and function. But before they may legally practice and work with the rehabilitation of patients, they need to acquire the appropriate education and training. A PT must also be licensed in every state, a large number mandating that the licensee earn a physical therapy degree from an accredited school. So prior to choosing a physical therapy school, it’s necessary to investigate the ones you are looking at to make sure they will provide a superior education and meet your state’s licensing requirements. What you should not do is enroll in 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 in addition to location and cost. But before we cover 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 is a Physical Therapist?

Wellsburg WV physical therapist helping patient walkPhysical therapists work in varying settings, including Wellsburg WV private practices, hospitals, assisted living facilities, rehab centers and sports facilities. What the facilities all share in common is that they are equipped for diagnosing and rehabilitating patients. As earlier stated, physical therapists help individuals that are struggling with a lack of mobility and in many cases pain caused by illness or injury. After patient diagnosis, they create a course of treatment to resolve the mobility problems and lessen or eliminate any pain. They also try to stop any advancement of the disability. Though 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.
  • Hip Replacement.
  • Fibromyalgia.
  • Cerebral Palsy.

Licensed physical therapists work in close partnerships with other Wellsburg WV medical specialists, including chiropractors, physicians, dentists and nurses. They can also manage one or more physical therapy assistants who work for them assisting with the diagnosis and treatment of their patients. Something to bear in mind for anyone considering entering the physical therapy profession, it is rather physically demanding. Physical therapists regularly lift heavy equipment as well as patients, and kneel, crouch and stand for extended periods of time on a daily basis.

Physical Therapist Degrees Available

Wellsburg WV physical therapist applying acupuncture to patientThere are three physical therapist degree options available for individuals to enroll in at the undergraduate and graduate levels. Of these choices, the only degree that is attainable to become a physical therapist is the doctorate. Undergraduate degrees focus on either training students to become a physical therapy assistant (PTA) or readying them to advance to the doctoral level. Following are brief summaries of degree levels that are offered in the Wellsburg WV area:

  • Associate Degrees prepare students to practice as physical therapy assistants, or may be the first step toward earning a more advanced degree. Candidates 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 take about two years to complete. An internship or other form of clinical training is usually a portion of the course of study.
  • Bachelor’s Degrees are developed as pre-physical therapy training to prep candidates to progress to the doctoral level. While they are not required to be a candidate for the doctoral program, they are an integral first step to practicing as a PT. Similar to the majority of bachelor’s degrees, they generally take four years to finish and usually incorporate an internship program of at least 500 hours.
  • Doctorate Degrees are a requirement 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 complete, making the total investment of time 7 years in most cases. Practical or clinical training is an essential component in addition to the substantial classroom and lab instruction. Therefor the fulfillment of an internship is mandated, not solely 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. Some practicing physical therapists having a master’s or even a bachelor’s degree were “grandfathered” in before the existing licensing requirement for a doctorate was instituted.

Physical Therapy Online Programs

woman attending physical therapy school online in Wellsburg WVAlthough not as prevalent as the on campus alternatives, there are a number of accredited online physical therapist degrees offered, more so at the graduate level. Because of the hands-on nature of the training, clinical lab work and internships are integrated with the online classes. This requires that the student live close to the college campus or in proximity of a sponsored internship. However, the online part of the curriculum can be accessed within the comfort and convenience of the student’s Wellsburg WV residence. Online schools are not only partially more accessible, but in a number of instances more affordable. Tuition might be somewhat less than similar on campus alternatives, and expenditures for commuting are reduced. And many of the online programs are accredited by the CAPTE, assuring a quality education. These advantages may make the online option the right choice for those students that are dedicated enough to learn at home.

Topics to Ask Physical Therapist Programs

At this point you undoubtedly have come to decision concerning some of your initial questions, such as the type of physical therapy degree you intend to attain, where you prefer 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 Wellsburg WV area and across West Virginia, you’ll need to explore other qualifications as well so as to further narrow your list of college choices. Furthermore, you need to make certain that you choose the program that is best for you. That’s why we have put together a list of essential questions that you must ask the physical therapy colleges you are thinking about. Ask each of the potential schools these questions before making an ultimate decision.

Is the Physical Therapy School Accredited?  Ask if the schools you are reviewing have earned accreditation from a regional or a national agency. As previously mentioned, if you are pursuing a doctoral degree the program must be accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE). If you enroll in an online school, it can also earn accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council. It’s essential that both the physical therapist program and school you choose are accredited, not just the school. Additionally, verify that the accreditation is through a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization. In addition to guaranteeing that you receive an excellent education, accreditation might be mandated for state licensing and even for securing student loans or financial assistance.

What is the Program’s Ranking? Along with accreditation, it’s essential that the college and program you select have exceptional reputations within the physical therapy profession. There are multiple ways you can research a PT program’s reputation, beginning with requesting references from employers that they refer their students to. You may also check online reviews and rating services and ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. Call a few Wellsburg WV physical therapy centers or other medical care facilities that you might have an interest in working for and ask if they can offer any advice about your program selections. It may also be a good idea to contact the West Virginia Attorney General and school licensing authority to see if any complaints have been submitted against the colleges.

What is the School’s Job Placement Rate? There are a two useful statistics that you should find out about each of the physical therapy colleges you are considering. One is their graduation rate. A lower rate might suggest that students left due to displeasure with the program, the teachers, or both. Once the students have graduated, how many of them are being placed in jobs with the assistance of the college’s job placement program, particularly in the Wellsburg WV area? If a program has a higher job placement rate, it suggests that its reputation within the medical care community is good or even excellent. It also affirms that the program has a broad network of contacts to help students obtain internships or employment after graduation.

Does the College Prepare You For Licensing Requirements? It’s essential that the school you choose provides both superior training and a curriculum that satisfies the licensing criteria for West Virginia 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 therapist school. Although licensing requirements fluctuate state by state for PT and PTA graduates, many states require a minimum number of clinical hours be completed as well as passing scores on supplemental tests.

Are Internships Provided? Inquire if the physical therapy programs you are assessing have associations with Wellsburg WV clinics or hospitals for internship programs. Internships are not only an excellent way to get hands on experience in a clinical setting, they are additionally a requirement for most PT programs and state licensing. As an ancillary benefit, they can assist graduates and students establish professional relationships in the Wellsburg health care community and assist with job placement after licensing.

How Large are the Classes ? Unless you are the kind of person that likes to sit far in the rear of class or get lost in the crowd, you will probably want a smaller class size. Small classes allow for more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the physical therapist schools you are reviewing 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 final decision. This will also give you an opportunity to speak with some of the instructors and students to get their opinions regarding the pharmacy technician program as well.

Where is the School Located? For a number of students, the physical therapy school they pick will need to be within travelling distance of their Wellsburg WV residence. Those who have opted to attend classes online naturally will not have to trouble themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of local internships will be of importance. Something to keep in mind is that if you choose to enroll in a school that is out of state or perhaps out of your local area, you may need to pay a higher tuition. State colleges often 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 Help Provided? The majority of DPT schools provide some form of financial support to their potential students. Ask if the schools you are reviewing have a financial aid department and see what kind of help is obtainable. They at least should help in getting a student loan or any grants you may qualify for. Some physical therapist schools provide scholarships, while others provide work programs. So before eliminating a school because the tuition is beyond your budget, ask what financial assistance might be available.

Can the Program Accommodate your Schedule? And finally you need to confirm that the physical therapist college you ultimately choose can furnish the class schedule you need. This is especially important if you choose to continue working while attending school. If you need to schedule evening or weekend classes in the Wellsburg WV area, confirm 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 enroll in. Also, ask what the protocol is for making up any classes that you might miss due to illness, work or family emergencies.

Earning Your Physical Therapy Degree near Wellsburg West Virginia?

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

Wellsburg, West Virginia

Wellsburg is a city in and the county seat of Brooke County, West Virginia, United States.[6] It is part of the Weirton-Steubenville, WV-OH Metropolitan Statistical Area. The 2010 census recorded a population of 2,805. The diverse economy includes one paper mill, a glass gift outlet, several telemarketing facilities, and a factory that does metal fabrication plus plastics molding.[7]

In 1772, the Cox brothers, Friend, Israel, and Jonathan, made tomahawk rights claims totaling 1,200 acres (4.9 km2) in the area now including Wellsburg. In March 1788, Charles Prather purchased 481 acres (1.95 km2) from the Cox heirs for $3,000. In 1791, Prather petitioned Ohio County to incorporate the town of Charlestown, Virginia, naming it after himself. The original name continued until 1816, when it was changed to Wellsburg, to avoid confusion with Charles Town, Jefferson County. The new name was in honor of Charles Wells (1745-1815), Charles Prather’s son-in-law, builder of the first large flour warehouse in the east. Late in 1890, nearby Midway and Lazearville were annexed to Wellsburg.[7]

Wellsburg was the home of Patrick Gass, the last surviving member of the Lewis and Clark expedition and author of a memoir of the famous journey. Here also was the home of Joseph Doddridge, author of Notes on the Settlement and Indian Wars. In 1832, the original Grimes Golden apple tree was found just east of Wellsburg. The first glass factory in Western Virginia was built at Wellsburg in 1813.[7]

Enroll in the Right Physical Therapist Training Program near Wellsburg WV

Deciding on the best physical therapy program is a necessary first decision you need to make to start a gratifying career in the health care profession. As we have discussed in this article, the PT or DPT degree program and college you pick should both have outstanding reputations and be accredited. But there are other important questions that you should ask pertaining to your college of choice also. As you start your search for a physical therapy program, bear in mind that many factors will lead you toward your ultimate decision. You may decide to visit each of the campuses to view their facilities and speak to current DPT students. While there, ask yourself this important question: will this college help me reach my goal of becoming a licensed practicing physical therapist? By following our list of additional questions, you will have the ability to narrow down the field so you can make the appropriate choice. And with the proper education and training, you can achieve your dream to become a practicing physical therapist in Wellsburg WV.

A Few More Interesting Locations in West Virginia

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