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

How to Choose a Physical Therapy School near Burlington 53105

Burlington WI physical therapy school student with volunteerReceiving a physical therapist degree near Burlington WI is an essential first step to starting a rewarding career in the medical care field. Physical therapists (PT) help patients who have been disabled due to injury or illness regain function and mobility. But before they can practice and provide treatment for the rehabilitation of patients, they must acquire the proper education and training. A PT must additionally be licensed in all states, a large number mandating that the licensee hold a physical therapy degree from an accredited school. So before choosing a physical therapy school, it’s essential to evaluate those you are looking at to make certain they will furnish a quality education and comply with your state’s licensing standards. What you should not do is select a college just because it happens to be the closest to your residence or it has the most affordable tuition. There are other relevant qualifications that must be evaluated in addition to location and cost. But before we talk about what those qualifications are and what questions you should ask, we’ll address what a physical therapist does and what the educational options are.

What is a Physical Therapist?

Burlington WI physical therapist helping patient walkPhysical therapists work in a variety of locations, including Burlington WI private practices, hospitals, 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 mentioned, physical therapists help people that are struggling with a lack of mobility and in many cases pain caused by illness or injury. After diagnosing a patient, they create a program of treatment to deal with the mobility issues and reduce or eradicate any pain. They also endeavor to prevent any progression of the disability. Although the causes of disability necessitating physical therapy are abundant, they include:

  • Arthritis or Osteoporosis
  • Car or motor cycle accidents
  • Head injuries.
  • Cardiac arrest.
  • Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.
  • Burn injuries.
  • Knee Replacement.
  • Sciatica.
  • Multiple Sclerosis.

Licensed physical therapists work in close partnerships with other Burlington WI health specialists, including chiropractors, physicians, dentists and nurses. They may also manage several physical therapy assistants who work under them assisting with diagnosing and treating their patients. Something to take note of for anyone considering getting into the physical therapy field, it is rather physically demanding. Physical therapists often lift heavy equipment as well as patients, and kneel, crouch and stand for long periods of time on a daily basis.

Physical Therapist Degrees

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

  • Associate Degrees train students to be physical therapy assistants, or can 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 typically made available by community colleges, and require 2 years to complete. Clinical training, which may be in the form of an internship is typically a component of the program.
  • Bachelor’s Degrees are designed as pre-physical therapist training to prep candidates to move up to the doctoral level. While they are not a requirement to be a candidate for the doctoral program, they are an integral preliminary step to practicing as a PT. Similar to most bachelor’s degrees, they typically require four years to finish and often 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 must also 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 total investment of time 7 years in most cases. Clinical or practical training is an essential element in addition to the substantial classroom and lab instruction. Therefor the completion of an internship is mandated, not solely for graduation but in some states for licensing also.

The Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) has replaced the Master’s of Physical Therapy (MPT), which has been phased out and is no longer offered in the USA. Some licensed physical therapists having a master’s or even a bachelor’s degree were “grandfathered” in prior to the current licensing requirement for a doctorate was implemented.

Physical Therapist Schools Online

woman attending physical therapy school online in Burlington WIAlthough not as common as the on campus options, there are many accredited online physical therapy programs available, more so at the graduate level. Due to the hands-on nature of the training, internships and clinical lab work are combined with the online classes. This requires that the student live close to the school campus or nearby a sponsored internship. However, the online part of the curriculum can be accessed within the convenience and comfort of the student’s Burlington WI residence. Online programs are not only to some extent more accessible, but in many instances more affordable. Tuition can be somewhat less than similar on-campus alternatives, 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 alternative the right choice for those students that are motivated enough to attend classes at home.

What to Ask Physical Therapy Programs

By now you probably have come to decision concerning a few of your preliminary questions, including the type of physical therapist degree you want to attain, where you want to attend classes, and how much money you can afford to invest in your education. But because there are so many PT colleges within the Burlington WI area and across Wisconsin, you’ll have to explore additional qualifications as well so as to further narrow your list of school options. Furthermore, you need to make certain that you choose the school that is right for you. That’s the reason we have put together a list of important questions that you need to ask the physical therapist programs you are thinking about. Ask each of the potential schools these questions prior to making a final selection.

Is the Physical Therapy Program Accredited?  Find out if the schools you are considering have earned accreditation from a national or a regional agency. As earlier 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 choose are accredited, not simply the school. Additionally, check that the accreditation is through a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization. In addition to ensuring that you receive an excellent education, accreditation may be required for state licensing as well as for getting student loans or financial assistance.

What is the Program’s Standing? Along with accreditation, it’s essential that the school and program you choose have exceptional reputations within the physical therapy profession. There are multiple ways you can research a PT college’s reputation, starting with requesting 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 as well. Get in touch with some Burlington WI physical therapist centers or other health care facilities that you might be interested in working for and ask if they can offer any recommendations about your school options. It might also be prudent to contact the Wisconsin Attorney General and school licensing authority to find out if any complaints have been submitted against the colleges.

What is the Program’s Job Placement Percentage? There are a couple of important statistics that you need to know about each of the physical therapy colleges you are considering. First is their graduation rate. A lower rate may mean that students dropped out because of dissatisfaction 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 Burlington WI area? If a college has a higher job placement rate, it suggests that its reputation within the medical care field is good or perhaps excellent. It also confirms that the college has a broad network of contacts to help students get internships or employment after graduation.

Does the College Support Licensing Requirements? It’s imperative that the college you enroll in furnishes both excellent training and a curriculum that supports 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 college. Although licensing requirements vary state by state for PT and PTA graduates, some states require a minimum number of clinical hours be completed as well as passing scores on additional tests.

Are Internships Sponsored? Find out if the physical therapist schools you are assessing have relationships with Burlington WI clinics or hospitals for internship programs. Not only are internships a great way to obtain hands on experience in a clinical setting, they are also a requirement for the majority of PT programs and state licensing. As a secondary benefit, they can help students and graduates develop professional connections in the Burlington healthcare community and assist with job placement after licensing.

How Big are the Classes ? Unless you are the kind of person that likes to sit way in the back of the classroom or hide in the crowd, you will probably prefer a smaller class size. Small classes enable more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the physical therapy schools you are researching what the typical student to teacher ratio is for their classrooms. If practical you may want to sit in on one or more classes before making your final determination. This will also give you an opportunity to converse with a few of the students and instructors to get their opinions regarding the pharmacy tech program also.

Where is the Program Located? For many students, the physical therapist college they decide on will need to be within driving distance of their Burlington WI residence. Individuals who have opted 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 consider is that if you decide to enroll in a program that is out of state or perhaps out of your local area, you might be required to pay a higher tuition. State colleges normally charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges often charge a higher tuition for those students that don’t reside within their districts.

Is Financial Support Offered? Most DPT colleges offer some form of financial support to their prospective students. Inquire if the colleges you are considering have a financial assistance department and see what kind of assistance is obtainable. They at least should help in getting a student loan or any scholarships you may be eligible for. Some physical therapist colleges offer scholarships, while others provide work programs. So before you eliminate a program because the tuition is too expensive, find out what financial assistance might be available.

Can the Program Accommodate your Schedule? And finally you must confirm that the physical therapy college you finally pick can furnish the class schedule you need. This is especially essential if you decide to continue working while attending school. If you need to schedule evening or weekend classes in the Burlington WI area, make certain that they are offered. If you can only enroll on a part-time basis, find out 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 as a result of illness, work or family emergencies.

Earning Your Physical Therapy Degree near Burlington Wisconsin?

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

Burlington, Wisconsin

Burlington is a city in Racine and Walworth counties in the U.S. state of Wisconsin,[4] with the majority of the city located in Racine County.[5] The population of the portion of the city inside Racine County was 10,464 as of the 2010 census.

Prior to the arrival of Europeans in the area, Native American mounds were constructed near the present location of Burlington. For example, around 1830, a small Potawatomi village stood in what is now the Town of Burlington,[6] though it wasn't larger than the present-day city.

The earliest certain European presence in what is now Burlington was in the fall of 1799, when a group of French explorers and missionaries led by Francis Morgan de Vereceones made a portage from the Root River to the Fox River, reaching the Fox at approximately Burlington's present location.[7]

Pick the Best Physical Therapy College near Burlington WI

Selecting the best physical therapy school is an important initial decision you must make to begin a gratifying career in the medical field. As we have covered in this article, the DPT or PT degree program and college you decide on should both have outstanding reputations and be accredited. But there are additional critical questions that you should ask concerning your college of choice as well. As you commence your search for a physical therapist college, bear in mind that numerous variables will guide you toward your ultimate decision. You might want to visit each of the colleges 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 licensed practicing physical therapist? By following our list of supplemental questions, you will be able to narrow down the field so you can make the ideal choice. And with the necessary training and education, you can accomplish your dream to become a practicing physical therapist in Burlington WI.

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