Physical Therapist Schools | Get Your Physical Therapy Degree – Baldwin WI

How to Pick a Physical Therapy Program near Baldwin 54002

Baldwin WI physical therapy school student with volunteerObtaining a physical therapist degree near Baldwin WI is an essential first step to launching a fulfilling career in the medical care field. Physical therapists (PT) help patients who have been incapacitated as a result of injury or illness gain back function and mobility. But before they may legally practice and work with the rehabilitation of patients, they need to obtain the proper training and education. A PT must additionally be licensed in all states, many requiring that the licensee earn a physical therapy degree from an accredited school. So before selecting a physical therapy school, it’s important to investigate those you are considering to make sure they will furnish a superior education and satisfy your state’s licensing criteria. What you should not do is choose a college simply because it happens to be the nearest to your home or it has cheapest tuition. There are other important qualifications that need to be considered along with cost and location. But before we talk about what those qualifications are and what questions you should ask, we’ll cover what a physical therapist does and what the educational options are.

What is a Physical Therapist’s Job Description?

Baldwin WI physical therapist helping patient walkPhysical therapists practice in diverse locations, such as Baldwin WI hospitals, health clinics, assisted living facilities, rehab centers and sports facilities. What the facilities all have in common is that they are equipped for diagnosing and rehabilitating patients. As earlier stated, physical therapists help patients that are experiencing a lack of mobility and frequently pain caused by injury or illness. After diagnosing a patient, they create a course of treatment to resolve the mobility problems and reduce or eradicate any pain. They also try to stop any progression of the disability. Though the causes of disability necessitating physical therapy are abundant, they include:

  • Osteoporosis and Arthritis
  • Motor vehicle accidents
  • Strokes.
  • Heart attacks.
  • Sports injuries.
  • Fire injuries.
  • Knee Replacement.
  • Fibromyalgia.
  • Cerebral Palsy.

Licensed physical therapists practice in close affiliation with other Baldwin WI medical specialists, including doctors, chiropractors, registered nurses and dentists. They can also supervise one or more physical therapy assistants who work for them in the diagnosis and treatment of their patients. Something to bear in mind for anyone thinking about going into the physical therapy profession, it is rather physically demanding. Physical therapists often lift heavy equipment as well as patients, and stand, crouch and kneel for extended periods of time on a daily basis.

Physical Therapy Degrees Available

Baldwin WI physical therapist applying acupuncture to patientThere are three physical therapy degrees offered for individuals to enroll in at the graduate and undergraduate levels. Of these alternatives, the single degree that is attainable to practice as a physical therapist is the doctorate. Undergraduate degrees target either preparing students to become a physical therapy assistant (PTA) or readying them to advance to the doctoral level. Below are short summaries of degree levels that are offered in the Baldwin WI area:

  • Associate Degrees train students to be physical therapy assistants, or may be used as a stepping stone to a more advanced degree. Applicants must have obtained a high school diploma or GED to qualify for enrollment. The programs are typically offered by community colleges, and require 2 years to complete. An internship or other form of clinical training is typically part of the curriculum.
  • Bachelor’s Degrees are designed as pre-physical therapy training to ready students to progress to the doctoral level. While they are not a requirement to be eligible for the doctoral program, they are an important first step to practicing as a PT. Similar to most bachelor’s degrees, they typically require 4 years to finish and often include an internship program of at least 500 hours.
  • Doctorate Degrees are mandated in order to become a licensed practicing 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 3 years to finish, making the overall investment of time 7 years in most cases. Clinical training is an important component along with the considerable lab and classroom instruction. Therefor the completion of an internship is mandated, 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 United States. Some licensed physical therapists holding a master’s or in some cases a bachelor’s degree were “grandfathered” in prior to the current licensing mandate for a doctorate was instituted.

Physical Therapy Online Schools

woman attending physical therapy school online in Baldwin WIWhile not as common as the on campus options, there are many accredited online physical therapist degrees available, even more at the graduate level. Due to the hands-on nature of the training, internships and clinical lab work are integrated with the online classes. This necessitates that the student live near the school campus or in proximity of a sponsored internship. Fortunately, the online part of the program can be accessed within the comfort and convenience of the student’s Baldwin WI residence. Online schools are not only to some extent more accessible, but in a number of instances more economical. Tuition might be significantly less than similar on-campus options, and costs for commuting are minimized. And a number of the online schools are accredited by the CAPTE, assuring a quality education. These advantages may make the online option the right choice for those students that are motivated enough to attend classes at home.

Topics to Ask Physical Therapy Colleges

At this point you most likely have come to decision regarding a few of your preliminary queries, like the kind of physical therapist degree you would like to earn, where you want to attend classes, and how much money you can afford to spend for your education. But considering there are so many PT schools within the Baldwin WI area and across Wisconsin, you’ll have to look into other qualifications as well so as to further reduce your list of college choices. Moreover, you need to be sure that you enroll in the school that is right for you. That’s why we have put together a list of critical questions that you must ask the physical therapist schools you are thinking about. Ask each of the competing colleges these questions prior to making a final selection.

Is the Physical Therapist College Accredited?  Find out if the programs you are reviewing have earned accreditation from a national or a regional 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 obtain accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council. It’s important that both the physical therapy school and program you select are accredited, not simply the school. Also, make sure that the accreditation is from a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting organization. Besides guaranteeing that you obtain a quality education, accreditation might be mandated for state licensing and even for getting student loans or financial aid.

What is the College’s Reputation? Along with accreditation, it’s important that the school and program you choose have excellent reputations within the physical therapy profession. There are multiple ways you can investigate a PT program’s reputation, starting with asking for references from employers that they place their graduates with. You may also check online reviews and rating services and ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. Call some Baldwin WI physical therapy clinics or other healthcare facilities that you may be interested in working for and ask if they can give you any advice about your program options. It may also be a good idea to contact the Wisconsin Attorney General and school licensing authority to see if any complaints have been filed against the colleges.

What is the College’s Job Placement Percentage? There are a two important statistics that you need to know about all of the physical therapist schools you are considering. First is their graduation rate. A low rate may mean that students dropped out because of displeasure with the program, the instructors, or both. Once the students have graduated, how many of them are being hired with the help of the college’s job placement program, particularly in the Baldwin WI area? If a school has a higher job placement rate, it’s an indication that its reputation within the healthcare community is good or even outstanding. It also confirms that the school has a large network of contacts to assist students gain internships or employment upon graduation.

Does the College Support Licensing Requirements? It’s imperative that the college you enroll in provides both exceptional training and a course of study that satisfies the licensing requirements for Wisconsin or the state where you will be practicing. In each state a passing score is needed on the National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE) in addition to a degree from an accredited physical therapist program. 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 supplemental tests.

Are Internships Offered? Find out if the physical therapy schools you are evaluating have relationships with Baldwin WI hospitals or clinics for internship programs. Not only are internships an excellent means to receive 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 help students and graduates establish professional connections in the Baldwin health care community and assist with job placement after licensing.

How Large are the Classes ? Unless you are the type of student that prefers to sit far in the rear of class or get lost in the crowd, you will likely want a smaller class size. Smaller classes enable more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the physical therapy schools you are researching what the typical student to teacher ratio is for their classes. If practical you may prefer to sit in on one or more classes before making your ultimate decision. This will also give you a chance to talk with several of the students and instructors to get their perspectives regarding the pharmacy tech program also.

Where is the Program Located? For a lot of students, the physical therapy school they decide on will need to be within travelling distance of their Baldwin WI residence. Individuals who have chosen to attend classes online obviously will not have to concern 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 decide to enroll in a school that is out of state or even out of your local area, you may need to pay a higher tuition. State colleges typically 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 Offered? Most DPT schools supply some form of financial assistance to their potential students. Ask if the schools you are examining have a financial assistance department and find out what type of aid is obtainable. They at least should help in acquiring a student loan or any scholarships you might qualify for. Some physical therapist schools offer scholarships, while others provide work programs. So before you eliminate a school because the tuition is beyond your budget, learn what financial aid might be available.

Can the College Accommodate your Schedule? And finally you must confirm that the physical therapist program you ultimately pick can furnish the class schedule you need. This is especially crucial if you choose to continue working while you attend school. If you must schedule night or weekend classes in the Baldwin WI area, verify 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 enroll in. Also, ask what the protocol is for making up any classes that you might miss as a result of illness, work or family obligations.

Earning Your Physical Therapy Degree near Baldwin Wisconsin?

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

Baldwin, Wisconsin

Baldwin was founded in 1871 by Dana Reed Bailey. First known as "Clarksville" after the railroad depot of the young town, it was later renamed Baldwin after the manager of the Western Wisconsin Railroad (Mr D. A. Baldwin), who was responsible for the railroad through the town.[8][9]

As of the census[4] of 2010, there were 3,957 people, 1,572 households, and 1,006 families residing in the village. The population density was 1,359.8 inhabitants per square mile (525.0/km2). There were 1,724 housing units at an average density of 592.4 per square mile (228.7/km2). The racial makeup of the village was 96.0% White, 0.9% African American, 0.4% Native American, 0.6% Asian, 0.6% from other races, and 1.6% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.6% of the population.

There were 1,572 households of which 37.0% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 51.7% were married couples living together, 7.8% had a female householder with no husband present, 4.5% had a male householder with no wife present, and 36.0% were non-families. 28.9% of all households were made up of individuals and 12.1% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.48 and the average family size was 3.09.

Pick the Ideal Physical Therapy Training Program near Baldwin WI

Picking the right physical therapist school is an important initial decision you have to make to start a gratifying career in the healthcare field. As we have covered in this article, the PT or DPT degree program and school you enroll in should both have exceptional reputations and accreditation. However there are additional critical questions that you need to ask regarding your college of choice as well. As you commence your search for a physical therapist program, keep in mind that numerous factors will lead you toward your final decision. You may want to visit each of the campuses to view their facilities and speak to current DPT students. While there, ask yourself this critical question: will this school help me realize my goal of becoming a practicing licensed physical therapist? By adhering to our list of additional questions, you will be able to narrow down the field so you can make the appropriate choice. And with the necessary training and education, you can achieve your dream of becoming a licensed physical therapist in Baldwin WI.

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