Physical Therapist Schools | Get Your Physical Therapy Degree – North Prairie WI

How to Pick a Physical Therapist Training Program near North Prairie 53153

North Prairie WI physical therapy school student with volunteerReceiving a physical therapy degree near North Prairie WI is an important first step to beginning a fulfilling career in the medical care field. Physical therapists (PT) help people who have been debilitated as a result of injury or illness regain function and mobility. But before they can practice and provide treatment for the rehabilitation of patients, they need to acquire the appropriate training and education. A PT must also be licensed in all states, many requiring that the licensee earn a physical therapy degree from an accredited school. So prior to enrolling in a physical therapy school, it’s important to investigate those you are looking at to make certain they will deliver a quality education and meet your state’s licensing requirements. What you do not want to do is enroll in a college simply because it happens to be the nearest to your residence or it has the lowest tuition. There are other relevant qualifications that must be evaluated besides 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?

North Prairie WI physical therapist helping patient walkPhysical therapists work in a variety of settings, including North Prairie 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 diagnosing and rehabilitating patients. As previously stated, physical therapists help individuals that are experiencing a lack of mobility and frequently pain caused by illness or injury. After patient diagnosis, they create a course of treatment to deal with the mobility problems and reduce or eradicate any pain. They also endeavor to stop any progression of the disability. Though the causes of disability requiring physical therapy are numerous, they include:

  • Osteoporosis and Arthritis
  • Motor vehicle accidents
  • Head injuries.
  • Cardiac arrest.
  • Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.
  • Burn injuries.
  • Hip Replacement.
  • Sciatica.
  • Multiple Sclerosis.

Licensed physical therapists practice in close affiliation with other North Prairie WI health professionals, including doctors, chiropractors, registered nurses and dentists. They may also supervise several physical therapy assistants who work under them in diagnosing and treating their patients. Something to take note of for anyone thinking about 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 long periods of time on a daily basis.

Physical Therapist Degree Options

North Prairie WI physical therapist applying acupuncture to patientThere are 3 physical therapy degree options offered for individuals to enroll in at the graduate and undergraduate levels. Of these alternatives, the only degree that is available to become a physical therapist is the doctorate. Undergraduate degrees concentrate on either training students to become a physical therapy assistant (PTA) or prepping them to progress to the doctoral level. Below are short summaries of degrees that are offered in the North Prairie WI area:

  • Associate Degrees prepare students to be physical therapy assistants, or may be used as a stepping stone to a more advanced degree. Applicants must have a high school diploma or GED to qualify for enrollment. The degrees are typically made available by community or junior colleges, and take about 2 years to complete. Clinical training, which may be in the form of an internship is usually part of the course of study.
  • Bachelor’s Degrees are created as pre-physical therapy training to prep candidates to move up to the doctoral level. Although they are not a requirement to be eligible for the doctoral program, they are an integral initial step to practicing as a PT. As with most bachelor’s degrees, they generally take 4 years to finish and commonly include an internship program of a minimum of 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 complete, making the overall commitment 7 years in the majority of cases. Practical or clinical training is an important element in addition to the considerable lab and classroom instruction. Consequently the fulfillment of an internship is required, not only 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 offered in the United States. Some practicing physical therapists holding a master’s or even a bachelor’s degree were “grandfathered” in prior to the current licensing mandate for a doctorate was implemented.

Physical Therapy Online Schools

woman attending physical therapy school online in North Prairie WIWhile not as common as the on-campus options, there are some accredited online physical therapist programs available, more so at the graduate level. Due to the hands-on structure of the training, clinical lab work and internships are integrated with the online classes. This requires that the student live close to the school campus or nearby a sponsored internship. Fortunately, the online part of the program may be accessed within the convenience and comfort of the student’s North Prairie WI residence. Online programs are not only partially more accessible, but in many instances more affordable. Tuition may be somewhat less than similar on-campus alternatives, and costs for commuting are reduced. And a number of the online schools are accredited by the CAPTE, assuring a quality education. These benefits may make the online alternative the best choice for those students that are motivated enough to attend classes at home.

What to Ask Physical Therapist Colleges

By now you most likely have come to decision regarding a few of your preliminary questions, including the type of physical therapy degree you would like to attain, where you want to attend classes, and how much money you can afford to spend for your education. But because there are numerous PT colleges within the North Prairie WI area and across Wisconsin, you’ll have to research other qualifications also in order to further narrow your list of school options. Also, you want to make sure that you choose the program that is right for you. That’s why we have compiled a list of essential questions that you must ask the physical therapist schools you are considering. Ask all of the potential schools these questions before making a final decision.

Is the Physical Therapist College Accredited?  Ask if the colleges you are looking at have received accreditation from a national or a regional agency. As previously stated, if you are pursuing a doctorate the program must be accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE). If you choose an online program, it can also earn accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council. It’s imperative that both the physical therapist school and program you select 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 a quality education, accreditation may be mandated for state licensing as well as for securing student loans or financial aid.

What is the School’s Ranking? In addition to accreditation, it’s essential that the college and program you select have outstanding reputations within the physical therapist community. There are multiple ways you can investigate a PT college’s reputation, beginning with requesting references from employers that they refer their students to. You can also search for online rating services and reviews and ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. Call several North Prairie WI physical therapist centers or other health care facilities that you may have an interest in working for and ask if they can provide any insight 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 schools.

What is the College’s Job Placement Percentage? There are a couple of relevant statistics that you should know about each of the physical therapist schools you are looking at. One is their graduation rate. A lower rate may 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 help of the school’s job placement program, particularly in the North Prairie WI area? If a college has a higher job placement rate, it’s an indication that its reputation within the medical care community is good or even outstanding. It also affirms that the school has a broad network of contacts to assist students obtain internships or employment after graduation.

Does the College Prepare You For Licensing Requirements? It’s imperative that the college you enroll in provides both exceptional training and a course of study that supports the licensing requirements for Wisconsin or the state where you will be working. In every state a passing score is required on the National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE) along with a degree from an accredited physical therapy school. While licensing requirements fluctuate state by state for PT and PTA graduates, some states require a minimum number of clinical hours be performed as well as passing scores on supplemental tests.

Are Internship Programs Offered? Inquire if the physical therapist colleges you are evaluating have partnerships with North Prairie WI hospitals or clinics for internship programs. Internships are not only a great way to get practical training in a clinical setting, they are additionally a requirement for most PT programs and state licensing. As an ancillary benefit, they can help graduates and students establish professional connections in the North Prairie health care community and help with obtaining employment after licensing.

How Big are the Classes ? Unless you are the type of person that prefers to sit way in the back of the classroom or hide in the crowd, you will likely prefer a small class size. Smaller classes enable more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the physical therapist colleges you are considering what the average student to teacher ratio is for their classes. If practical you may prefer to sit in on one or more classes before making your final determination. This will also give you an opportunity to speak with some of the instructors and students to get their perspectives regarding the pharmacist technician program as well.

Where is the College Located? For many students, the physical therapist college they choose will have to be within driving distance of their North Prairie WI residence. Individuals who have chosen to attend online classes naturally will not have to trouble themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of area internships will be of importance. One thing to bear in mind is that if you decide to enroll in a program that is out of state or even out of your local area, you might have to pay a higher tuition. State colleges commonly 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 Assistance Provided? Most DPT colleges supply some form of financial assistance to their prospective students. Inquire if the schools you are reviewing have a financial aid department and see what type of help is offered. At a minimum they should help in securing 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 school because the tuition is beyond your budget, ask what financial aid may be available.

Can the Program Accommodate your Schedule? And last you need to confirm that the physical therapist school you ultimately choose can provide the class schedule you need. This is particularly essential if you choose to continue working while attending classes. If you must schedule evening or weekend classes in the North Prairie WI area, check that they are available. If you can only attend part-time, verify if that is an alternative and how many courses or credit hours you would need to carry. Also, find out what the procedure is for making up any classes that you may miss due to illness, work or family obligations.

Earning Your Physical Therapy Degree near North Prairie Wisconsin?

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

North Prairie, Wisconsin

Three prospectors from Mukwonago named the village in 1826. Blacksmiths from Eagle, Chas. Raynaus and Mr. Denny, were the first settlers to arrive that following year, although the first claim came from Stillman Smith. Farmers began to settle the North Prairie in the 1830s to raise their prize livestock and grain. The population grew and in 1840 Raynaus began the first school from his house.[6]

By 1850 the village had a general store and post office. The Milwaukee & Mississippi Railroad went through in 1852, but the village remained mostly rural. North Prairie would later become one of the area's more noted residential centers. A rumor of oil in 1866 enabled the North Prairie Petroleum Company to fund $50,000 "to dig a hole & extract oil or minerals," but this venture was a failure.

St. John's Lutheran Church was built in 1877 and North Prairie later incorporated in 1919. Morey Milk Condensery opened a plant in 1917 and by 1920 North Prairie saw a jump in growth due to this industry. Morey Milk employed over 200 people and became a primary source of income to more than 85% of the village households. The plant was sold in 1924 and is no longer in operation.[7]

Enroll in the Ideal Physical Therapy College near North Prairie WI

Selecting the right physical therapy college is a necessary first decision you need to make to begin a rewarding career in the medical field. As we have covered in this article, the PT or DPT degree program and school you pick should both have outstanding reputations and be accredited. But there are additional critical questions that you need to ask pertaining to your school of choice also. As you start your search for a physical therapy program, keep in mind that many factors will lead you toward your ultimate decision. You might want to visit each of the campuses to see their facilities and speak to current DPT students. While there, ask yourself this important question: will this program help me realize my goal of becoming a practicing licensed physical therapist? By following our list of supplemental questions, you will have the ability to narrow down the field so you can make the appropriate choice. And with the proper training and education, you can achieve your dream to become a licensed physical therapist in North Prairie WI.

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