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

How to Enroll In a Physical Therapy College near Elmwood 54740

Elmwood WI physical therapy school student with volunteerEarning a physical therapist degree near Elmwood WI is an important first step to launching a fulfilling career in the healthcare industry. Physical therapists (PT) help people who have been disabled as a result of illness or injury regain function and mobility. But before they can practice and work with the rehabilitation of patients, they must obtain the proper education and training. A PT must also become 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 important to investigate the ones you are thinking about to make certain they will provide a superior education and satisfy 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 residence or it has the most affordable tuition. There are other significant qualifications that must be evaluated along with cost and location. But before we cover 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 Does a Physical Therapist Do?

Elmwood WI physical therapist helping patient walkPhysical therapists practice in varying locations, including Elmwood WI hospitals, health clinics, rehabilitation centers, nursing homes and sports facilities. What the facilities all have in common is that they are equipped for diagnosing and rehabilitating patients. As earlier touched on, physical therapists help patients that are struggling with a lack of mobility and in many cases pain due to injury or illness. After patient diagnosis, they create a program of treatment to resolve the mobility problems and reduce or eradicate any pain. They also try to prevent any progression of the disability. While the causes of disability requiring physical therapy are abundant, they include:

  • Arthritis or Osteoporosis
  • Car or motor cycle accidents
  • Head injuries.
  • Cardiac arrest.
  • Sports injuries.
  • Fire injuries.
  • Hip Replacement.
  • Sciatica.
  • Multiple Sclerosis.

Licensed physical therapists practice in close affiliation with other Elmwood WI health professionals, including doctors, chiropractors, registered nurses and dentists. They may also oversee one or more physical therapy assistants who work for them assisting with the diagnosis and treatment of their patients. Something to keep in mind for anyone thinking about going into the physical therapy field, it is quite physically demanding. Physical therapists often lift heavy equipment as well as patients, and kneel, crouch and stand for extended periods of time on a daily basis.

Physical Therapist Degrees

Elmwood WI physical therapist applying acupuncture to patientThere are three physical therapy degrees available for students to enroll in at the undergraduate and graduate levels. Of these choices, the single degree that is available to practice as a physical therapist is the doctorate. Undergraduate degrees emphasize either training students to become a physical therapy assistant (PTA) or prepping them to progress to the doctoral level. Following are brief descriptions of degree levels that are offered in the Elmwood WI area:

  • Associate Degrees train students to practice as physical therapy assistants, or may be used as a stepping stone to a more advanced degree. Candidates must have a high school diploma or GED to qualify for enrollment. The programs are usually offered by junior or community colleges, and take about two years for completion. Clinical training, which may be in the form of an internship is usually a component of the curriculum.
  • Bachelor’s Degrees are developed as pre-physical therapy education to ready candidates to advance to the doctoral level. Although they are not required to be a candidate for the doctoral program, they are an important preliminary step to becoming a PT. Similar to most bachelor’s degrees, they typically take 4 years to complete 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). After earning the bachelor’s degree, the doctoral takes three years to complete, making the total investment of time seven years in the majority of cases. Clinical training is an essential component in addition to the substantial lab and classroom instruction. Therefor the completion of an internship is required, not only for graduation but in several states for licensing as well.

The Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) has replaced the Master’s of Physical Therapy (MPT), which has been eliminated and is no longer attainable in the United States. Some licensed physical therapists holding a master’s or in some cases a bachelor’s degree were “grandfathered” in before the present licensing mandate for a doctorate was instituted.

Physical Therapist Colleges Online

woman attending physical therapy school online in Elmwood WIAlthough not as prevalent as the on campus alternatives, there are some accredited online physical therapist degrees 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 school campus or in proximity of a sponsored internship. Fortunately, the online portion of the curriculum may be accessed within the comfort and convenience of the student’s Elmwood WI residence. Online schools are not only partially more accessible, but in many instances more economical. Tuition can be significantly less than similar on campus alternatives, and expenses 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 option the right choice for those students that are motivated enough to learn at home.

Subjects to Ask Physical Therapy Colleges

By now you most likely have made a decision concerning several of your preliminary questions, such as the type of physical therapist degree you would like to earn, where you prefer to attend classes, and how much money you can afford to invest in your education. But considering there are so many PT schools within the Elmwood WI area and throughout Wisconsin, you’ll need to explore other qualifications as well in order to further narrow your list of college choices. Also, you want to make certain that you select the school that is best for you. That’s the reason we have put together a list of critical questions that you need to ask the physical therapy schools you are thinking about. Ask all of the potential colleges these questions before making an ultimate selection.

Is the Physical Therapy Program Accredited?  Ask if the schools you are looking at have received accreditation from a national or a regional organization. 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 obtain accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council. It’s important that both the physical therapist program and school you choose are accredited, not simply the school. Also, make sure that the accreditation is through a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency. Besides guaranteeing that you receive a quality education, accreditation might be required for state licensing and even for getting student loans or financial assistance.

What is the School’s Ranking? In addition to accreditation, it’s essential that the school and program you choose have outstanding reputations within the physical therapy community. There are a number of ways you can look into a PT program’s reputation, beginning with asking for references from employers that they refer their students to. You may also search for online reviews and rating services and ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. Get in touch with a few Elmwood WI physical therapy clinics or other health care facilities that you may have an interest in working for and ask if they can give you any recommendations about your college options. It might also be a good idea to contact the Wisconsin Attorney General and school licensing authority to see if any complaints have been submitted against the colleges.

What is the School’s Job Placement Percentage? There are a couple of useful statistics that you should find out about each of the physical therapist colleges you are looking at. One is their graduation rate. A lower rate might indicate that students left because of displeasure with the program, the instructors, or both. Once the students have graduated, how many of them are being hired with the support of the college’s job placement program, particularly in the Elmwood WI area? If a school has a higher job placement rate, it suggests that its reputation within the healthcare field is good or perhaps exceptional. It also affirms that the school has a large network of contacts to help students gain internships or employment after graduation.

Does the College Support Licensing Requirements? It’s essential that the school you select provides both exceptional training and a course of study that supports the licensing criteria for Wisconsin or the state where you will be working. 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. Although licensing requirements differ state by state for PTA and PT graduates, many states require a minimum number of clinical hours be performed and passing scores on additional exams.

Are Internship Programs Offered? Find out if the physical therapist programs you are reviewing have associations with Elmwood WI hospitals or clinics for internship programs. Not only are internships a terrific manner to obtain practical training in a clinical environment, they are additionally a requirement for most PT programs and state licensing. As a supplemental benefit, they can assist students and graduates develop professional connections in the Elmwood healthcare community and assist with job placement once licensed.

What Size are the Classes ? Unless you are the sort of person that prefers to sit far in the rear of class or get lost in the crowd, you will probably want a small class size. Smaller classes enable more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the physical therapy schools you are considering what the average teacher to student ratio is for their classrooms. If practical you may want to monitor one or more classes before making your ultimate decision. This will also give you an opportunity to speak with a few of the instructors and students to get their perspectives regarding the pharmacy technician program as well.

Where is the School Located? For a number of students, the physical therapist school they choose will need to be within travelling distance of their Elmwood WI home. 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 choose to enroll in a school that is out of state or perhaps out of your local area, you might be required to pay a higher tuition. State colleges generally 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 Offered? The majority of DPT colleges offer some form of financial assistance to their prospective students. Ask if the colleges you are reviewing have a financial assistance office and see what kind of assistance is available. They at least should help in securing a student loan or any grants you may qualify for. A number of physical therapist schools offer scholarships, while others provide work programs. So before you eliminate a college because the tuition is beyond your budget, find out what financial assistance might be available.

Can the College Accommodate your Schedule? And last you must verify that the physical therapist college you finally select can furnish the class schedule you need. This is particularly crucial if you choose to continue working while you attend school. If you need to schedule night or weekend classes in the Elmwood WI area, confirm that they are offered. If you can only attend part-time, find out if that is an option and how many courses or credit hours you would need to carry. Also, ask what the procedure is for making up any classes that you may miss as a result of work, illness or family obligations.

Earning Your Physical Therapy Degree near Elmwood Wisconsin?

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

Elmwood, Wisconsin

According to the United States Census Bureau, the village has a total area of 1.53 square miles (3.96 km2), of which, 1.51 square miles (3.91 km2) of it is land and 0.02 square miles (0.05 km2) is water.[1]

As of the census[3] of 2010, there were 817 people, 343 households, and 222 families residing in the village. The population density was 541.1 inhabitants per square mile (208.9/km2). There were 379 housing units at an average density of 251.0 per square mile (96.9/km2). The racial makeup of the village was 98.0% White, 0.1% African American, 0.5% Native American, 0.1% Asian, 0.7% from other races, and 0.5% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 3.1% of the population.

There were 343 households of which 28.6% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 49.9% were married couples living together, 9.3% had a female householder with no husband present, 5.5% had a male householder with no wife present, and 35.3% were non-families. 30.6% of all households were made up of individuals and 14% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.28 and the average family size was 2.82.

Pick the Ideal Physical Therapist Degree Program near Elmwood WI

Picking the best physical therapy school is an important initial decision you must make to begin a rewarding career in the health care profession. As we have addressed in this article, the PT or DPT degree program and college you enroll in should both have exceptional reputations and be accredited. But there are other relevant questions that you should ask regarding your school of choice as well. As you commence your search for a physical therapy school, keep in mind that many factors will lead you to your ultimate decision. You may decide to visit different schools to view their facilities and talk with active DPT students. While there, ask yourself this critical question: will this college help me accomplish my goal of becoming a practicing licensed physical therapist? By following our list of supplemental questions, you will be able to narrow down the options so you can make the right choice. And with the proper training and education, you can fulfill your dream of becoming a licensed physical therapist in Elmwood WI.

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