How to Enroll In the Right Physical Therapist Training Program near Eight Mile Alabama
Getting a physical therapist degree near Eight Mile AL is an essential first step to beginning a fulfilling career in the medical care industry. Physical therapists (PT) help people who have been disabled due to injury or illness regain mobility and function. But before they may legally practice and provide treatment for the rehabilitation of patients, they need to acquire the proper education and training. A PT must additionally become licensed in every state, many requiring that the licensee receive a physical therapy degree from an accredited school. So prior to selecting a physical therapy school, it’s important to evaluate the ones you are thinking about to ensure they will deliver a quality education and comply with your state’s licensing standards. What you do not want to do is select a school simply because it happens to be the closest to your residence or it has cheapest tuition. There are other relevant qualifications that must be considered in addition to cost and location. But before we talk about what those qualifications are and the questions you should be asking, we’ll cover what a physical therapist does and the options for education.
What Does a Physical Therapist Do?
Physical therapists work in varying settings, including Eight Mile AL private practices, hospitals, rehabilitation centers, nursing homes and sports facilities. What the facilities all share in common is that they are equipped for diagnosing and rehabilitating patients. As previously mentioned, physical therapists help people that are experiencing a lack of mobility and in many cases pain due to injury or illness. After diagnosing a patient, they design a program of treatment to address the mobility problems and reduce or eliminate any pain. They also strive to prevent any progression of the disability. Although the causes of disability necessitating physical therapy are numerous, they include:
- Osteoporosis and Arthritis
- Car or motor cycle accidents
- Heart attacks
- Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
- Burn injuries
- Knee Replacement
- Multiple Sclerosis
Licensed physical therapists practice in close partnerships with other Eight Mile AL medical specialists, including chiropractors, physicians, dentists and nurses. They may also manage several physical therapy assistants who work for them assisting with diagnosing and treating their patients. One thing to take note of for anyone considering going into the physical therapy profession, it is quite 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 Therapist Degrees
There are 3 physical therapist degrees offered for students to pursue at the graduate and undergraduate levels. Of these choices, the only degree that is available to become 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 short summaries of degrees that are offered in the Eight Mile AL area:
- Associate Degrees educate students to practice as 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 be accepted for enrollment. The programs are usually made available by junior or community colleges, and take about 2 years for completion. An internship or other form of clinical training is typically part of the curriculum.
- Bachelor’s Degrees are developed as pre-physical therapy training to prepare students to move up to the doctoral level. Although they are not required to be qualified for the doctoral program, they are an essential preliminary step to practicing as a PT. As with most bachelor’s degrees, they generally take 4 years to finish and usually incorporate an internship program of at least 500 hours.
- Doctorate Degrees are required 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). In addition to the bachelor’s degree, the doctoral takes 3 years to complete, making the overall investment of time seven years in the majority of cases. Clinical or practical training is an intregal element in addition to the substantial lab and classroom instruction. Therefor the fulfillment of an internship is required, 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 eliminated and is no longer attainable in the USA. Some licensed physical therapists having a master’s or in some cases a bachelor’s degree were “grandfathered” in prior to the current licensing requirement for a doctorate was implemented.
Physical Therapy Online Degrees
Although not as common as the on-campus options, there are many accredited online physical therapy programs offered, even more 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 necessitates that the student live near the school campus or in proximity of a sponsored internship. However, the online part of the program may be accessed within the convenience and comfort of the student’s Eight Mile AL 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 alternatives, and costs for commuting are reduced. And many of the online schools are accredited by the CAPTE, ensuring a quality education. These benefits may make the online option the best choice for those students that are disciplined enough to learn at home.
Topics to Ask Physical Therapy Programs
At this point you undoubtedly have made a decision regarding several of your preliminary queries, like the kind of physical therapist degree you would like to obtain, where you want to attend classes, and how much you can afford to spend for your education. But because there are so many PT colleges within the Eight Mile AL area and throughout Alabama, you’ll have to research other qualifications also in order to further narrow your list of school options. Also, you need to be sure that you enroll in the program that is best for you. That’s why we have collected a list of important questions that you must ask the physical therapist programs you are considering. Ask all of the competing colleges these questions prior to making an ultimate decision.
Is the Physical Therapy Program Accredited? Find out if the schools you are considering have earned accreditation from a national or a regional organization. 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 school, it can also obtain accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council. It’s important that both the physical therapist school and program you choose 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 receive an excellent education, accreditation may be mandated for state licensing and even for getting student loans or financial aid.
What is the College’s Reputation? In addition to accreditation, it’s imperative that the college and program you select have excellent reputations within the physical therapist community. There are a number of ways you can research a PT school’s reputation, starting with requesting references from employers that they refer their students to. You can also check online rating services and reviews and ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. Get in touch with a few Eight Mile AL physical therapist centers or other healthcare facilities that you might have an interest in working for and ask if they can provide any advice about your program selections. It might also be a good idea to contact the Alabama Attorney General and school licensing authority to find out if any complaints have been filed against the schools.
What is the Program’s Job Placement Percentage? There are a couple of relevant statistics that you should find out about all of the physical therapist colleges you are reviewing. One is their graduation rate. A low rate may mean that students dropped out due to displeasure with the program, the instructors, or both. Once the students have graduated, how many of them are being placed in jobs with the help of the college’s job placement program, particularly in the Eight Mile AL area? If a college has a high job placement rate, it’s an indication that its reputation within the medical care field is good or even exceptional. It also affirms that the program has a wide network of contacts to assist students get internships or jobs after graduation.
Does the College Prepare You For Licensing Requirements? It’s important that the program you choose provides both exceptional training and a curriculum that supports the licensing requirements for Alabama or the state where you will be practicing. In each state a passing score is needed on the National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE) along with a degree from an accredited physical therapist school. While licensing requirements differ state by state for PT and PTA graduates, a number of states require a minimum number of clinical hours be completed as well as passing scores on additional exams.
Are Internships Sponsored? Find out if the physical therapist schools you are assessing have partnerships with Eight Mile AL hospitals or clinics for internship programs. Internships are not only a terrific means to get hands on training in a clinical environment, they are also a requirement for most PT programs and state licensing. As a supplemental benefit, they may assist graduates and students develop professional connections in the Eight Mile health care community and help with obtaining employment once licensed.
What are the Class Sizes ? Unless you are the type of person that likes to sit way in the back of the classroom or hide in the crowd, you will likely want a smaller class size. Small classes enable more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the physical therapy 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 determination. This will also give you a chance to talk with a few of the students and instructors to get their perspectives regarding the pharmacy tech program also.
Where is the Program Located? For many students, the physical therapy college they choose will have to be within commuting distance of their Eight Mile AL residence. Those who have opted to attend classes online naturally will not have to concern themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of local internships will be of importance. One thing to consider is that if you decide to enroll in a college that is out of state or perhaps out of your local area, you might need to pay a higher tuition. State colleges generally charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges normally charge a higher tuition for those students that don’t reside within their districts.
Is Financial Help Provided? Most DPT colleges provide some form of financial support to their potential students. Ask if the colleges you are reviewing have a financial assistance office and see what type of help is available. At a minimum they should help in obtaining a student loan or any scholarships you might be eligible for. Some physical therapist schools provide scholarships, while others provide work programs. So before eliminating a college because the tuition is too expensive, ask what financial assistance may be available.
Can the College Accommodate your Schedule? And finally you need to confirm that the physical therapy school you finally select can furnish the class schedule you need. This is especially crucial if you decide to continue working while attending school. If you need to schedule evening or weekend classes in the Eight Mile AL area, confirm that they are available. If you can only attend part-time, check if that is an option and how many credit hours or courses you would have to carry. Also, find out what the procedure is for making up any classes that you might miss due to illness, work or family obligations.
Enrolling in a Physical Therapy Program near Eight Mile Alabama?
If you are planning on attending a Physical Therapy School in the Eight Mile AL area, the following information may prove to be both interesting and educational regarding the location of your future campus.
Eight Mile, Alabama
Eight Mile is an unincorporated community in Mobile County, Alabama, United States. The community is named for its distance from the city of Mobile. Part of it was annexed in the mid-20th century by the city of Prichard, Alabama.
In 2008 lightning struck a mercaptan storage tank at a Mobile Gas Service Corp. underground natural gas pipeline at the Whistler Junction gas transfer facility within the Eight Mile community. An estimated 500 US gallons (1,900 l; 420 imp gal) of Mercaptan, the chemical odorant added to natural gas to help detect leaks, spilled into the soil and groundwater for six months, according to Alabama state environmental officials. It has migrated to ponds and surfaced, polluting the community's air.
Beginning in 2011, residents in Eight Mile began complaining of an overwhelming mercaptan odor and associated health problems. They have concerns about the damage to their health from the chemical, and to property values from its persistent rotten egg smell. They appealed for a state and federal investigation.
Physical Therapy Bachelors Degree Eight Mile AL
Picking the ideal physical therapy program is an important first decision you have to make to launch a fulfilling career in the medical profession. As we have covered in this article, the PT or DPT degree program and school you decide on should both have outstanding reputations and be accredited. However there are other relevant questions that you need to ask concerning your college of choice also. You originally come to this website because of your interest in getting information on Physical Therapy Bachelors Degree. However, as you start your search for a physical therapy school keep in mind that many factors will lead you toward your final decision. You may want to visit each of the schools to see their facilities and speak to current DPT students. While there, ask yourself this important question: will this school help me achieve my goal of becoming a licensed practicing physical therapist? By adhering to our list of supplemental questions, you will be able to narrow down the field so you can make the appropriate choice. And with the necessary education and training, you can accomplish your dream of becoming a practicing physical therapist in Eight Mile AL.
Additional Therapeutic Locations in Alabama
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