How to Choose the Right Physical Therapist School near Clear Alaska
Obtaining a physical therapy degree near Clear AK is an essential first step to beginning a fulfilling career in the healthcare industry. Physical therapists (PT) help people who have been debilitated due to 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 proper training and education. A PT must also become licensed in every state, a large number mandating that the licensee receive a physical therapy degree from an accredited school. So before choosing a physical therapy school, it’s necessary to investigate those you are thinking about to make sure they will provide a superior education and meet your state’s licensing standards. What you should not do is choose a college just because it happens to be the closest to your home or it has the lowest tuition. There are other important qualifications that must be evaluated in addition to location and cost. But before we discuss what those qualifications are and the questions you should be asking, we’ll address what a physical therapist does and what the educational options are.
What is a Physical Therapist?
Physical therapists work in diverse locations, including Clear AK private practices, hospitals, assisted living facilities, rehab centers and health clubs. What the facilities all have in common is that they have the equipment for diagnosing and rehabilitating patients. As previously mentioned, physical therapists help individuals that are suffering from a lack of mobility and often pain caused by injury or illness. After patient diagnosis, they develop a course of treatment to resolve the mobility issues and reduce or eradicate any pain. They also endeavor to stop any advancement of the disability. While the causes of disability necessitating physical therapy are numerous, they include:
- Osteoporosis and Arthritis
- Motor vehicle accidents
- Heart attacks
- Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
- Fire injuries
- Hip Replacement
- Multiple Sclerosis
Licensed physical therapists practice in close association with other Clear AK health specialists, including chiropractors, physicians, dentists and nurses. They may also oversee several physical therapy assistants who work under them in 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 prolonged periods of time on a daily basis.
Physical Therapy Degree Options
There are 3 physical therapist degrees offered for students to enroll in at the graduate and undergraduate levels. Of these choices, the only degree that is available to practice as a physical therapist is the doctorate. Undergraduate degrees focus on either training students to become a physical therapy assistant (PTA) or preparing them to progress to the doctoral level. Following are brief explanations of degrees that are offered in the Clear AK area:
- Associate Degrees prepare students to practice as physical therapy assistants, or may be the first step toward earning a more advanced degree. Applicants must have obtained a high school diploma or equivalent to qualify for enrollment. The programs are typically offered by community or junior colleges, and require 2 years for completion. Clinical training, which may be in the form of an internship is usually part of the program.
- Bachelor’s Degrees are developed as pre-physical therapist education to prep students to progress to the doctoral level. Although they are not a requirement to be qualified for the doctoral program, they are an important initial step to becoming a PT. As with most bachelor’s degrees, they typically take four years to finish and commonly include an internship program of at least 500 hours.
- Doctorate Degrees are required in order to become a practicing licensed physical therapist. The degree program must also be accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE). In addition to the bachelor’s degree, the doctoral takes three years to complete, making the overall investment of time seven years in the majority of cases. Clinical or practical training is an important element along with the extensive classroom and lab 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 taken the place of the Master’s of Physical Therapy (MPT), which has been eliminated and is no longer offered in the United States. A number of licensed physical therapists having a master’s or in some cases a bachelor’s degree were “grandfathered” in before the existing licensing mandate for a doctorate was implemented.
Physical Therapy Degrees Online
Although not as common as the more traditional alternatives, there are a number of accredited online physical therapist degrees available, even more at the graduate level. Because of the hands-on nature of the training, internships and clinical lab work are incorporated with the online classes. This requires that the student live near the school campus or in proximity of a sponsored internship. Fortunately, the online segment of the program may be accessed within the convenience and comfort of the student’s Clear AK home. Online programs are not only partially more accessible, but in a number of cases more affordable. Tuition might be somewhat lower than comparable on-campus alternatives, and expenses for commuting are reduced. And many of the online programs are accredited by the CAPTE, guaranteeing a quality education. These advantages can make the online alternative the best choice for those students that are motivated enough to learn at home.
Topics to Ask Physical Therapist Colleges
At this point you most likely have come to decision regarding a few of your preliminary questions, like the type of physical therapist degree you want to attain, where you want to attend classes, and how much money you can afford to spend for your education. But considering there are numerous PT schools within the Clear AK area and across Alaska, you’ll need to look into other qualifications as well in order to further narrow your list of school options. Furthermore, you need to be sure that you select the school that is ideal for you. That’s the reason we have compiled a list of essential questions that you must ask the physical therapist schools you are thinking about. Ask all of the competing colleges these questions prior to making a final decision.
Is the Physical Therapist Program Accredited? Ask if the schools you are looking at have received accreditation from a national or a regional agency. As earlier 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 school, it may also obtain accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council. It’s imperative that both the physical therapy school and program you select are accredited, not simply the school. Additionally, check that the accreditation is from a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency. Besides ensuring that you receive 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 imperative that the college and program you choose have excellent reputations within the physical therapy profession. There are a number of ways you can research a PT college’s reputation, beginning 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 Clear AK physical therapy centers or other healthcare facilities that you may be interested in working for and ask if they can offer any advice about your program options. It might also be a good idea to check with the Alaska Attorney General and school licensing authority to find out if any complaints have been filed against the colleges.
What is the Program’s Job Placement Percentage? There are a couple of significant statistics that you should know about all of the physical therapist schools you are considering. One is their graduation rate. A low rate might indicate that students dropped out due to displeasure with the program, the teachers, or both. After 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 Clear AK area? If a program has a higher job placement rate, it suggests that its reputation within the medical care community is good or perhaps outstanding. It also verifies that the college has a broad network of contacts to help students gain internships or employment after graduation.
Does the School Prepare You For Licensing Requirements? It’s essential that the school you select furnishes both excellent training and a course of study that satisfies the licensing criteria for Alaska or the state where you will be practicing. In each state a passing score is required on the National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE) along with a degree from an accredited physical therapist college. While licensing requirements differ state by state for PTA and PT graduates, a number of states require a minimum number of clinical hours be completed as well as passing scores on additional exams.
Are Internships Provided? Find out if the physical therapy colleges you are evaluating have relationships with Clear AK hospitals or clinics for internship programs. Internships are not only a great means to get hands on experience in a clinical environment, they are also a requirement for the majority of PT programs and state licensing. As a supplemental benefit, they may help graduates and students develop professional relationships in the Clear medical 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 undoubtedly prefer a small class size. Small classes enable more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the physical therapist schools you are reviewing what the average student to teacher ratio is for their classes. If practical you may want to sit in on one or more classes before making your final decision. This will also give you a chance to speak with several of the students and instructors to get their perspectives regarding the pharmacist tech program also.
Where is the School Located? For a lot of students, the physical therapist school they decide on will need to be within driving distance of their Clear AK home. Individuals who have decided to attend classes online obviously will not have to trouble 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 program that is out of state or perhaps out of your local area, you might be required to pay a higher tuition. State colleges usually charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges typically charge a higher tuition to those students that live outside of their districts.
Is Financial Help Provided? Most DPT schools offer some type of financial assistance to their potential students. Ask if the colleges you are considering have a financial assistance department and see what kind of aid is available. At a minimum they should help in obtaining a student loan or any grants you may qualify for. Some physical therapist schools offer scholarships, while others offer work programs. So before you eliminate a college because the tuition is too expensive, learn what financial assistance might be available.
Can the Program Accommodate your Schedule? And finally you need to verify that the physical therapy school you finally pick can offer the class schedule you need. This is particularly crucial if you opt to continue working while you attend classes. If you must schedule night or weekend classes in the Clear AK area, verify that they are available. If you can only enroll on a part-time basis, check if that is an alternative and how many courses or credit hours you would have to carry. Also, learn what the protocol is for making up any classes that you may miss because of work, illness or family obligations.
Enrolling in a Physical Therapy Program near Clear Alaska?
If you are planning on attending a Physical Therapy School in the Clear AK area, the following information may prove to be both interesting and educational regarding the location of your future campus.
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Design work on the AK-47 began in 1945. In 1946, the AK-47 was presented for official military trials, and in 1948, the fixed-stock version was introduced into active service with selected units of the Soviet Army. An early development of the design was the AKS (S—Skladnoy or "folding"), which was equipped with an underfolding metal shoulder stock. In early 1949, the AK-47 was officially accepted by the Soviet Armed Forces and used by the majority of the member states of the Warsaw Pact.
Even after seven decades, the model and its variants remain the most popular and widely used assault rifles in the world because of its reliability under harsh conditions, low production costs compared to contemporary Western weapons, availability in virtually every geographic region, and ease of use. The AK-47 has been manufactured in many countries and has seen service with armed forces as well as irregular forces and insurgencies worldwide, and was the basis for developing many other types of individual, crew-served and specialised firearms. As of 2004[update], "Of the estimated 500 million firearms worldwide, approximately 100 million belong to the Kalashnikov family, three-quarters of which are AK-47s".
Physical Therapy Education Programs Clear AK
Picking the best physical therapist program is an important initial decision you need to make to begin a rewarding career in the healthcare field. As we have covered in this article, the PT or DPT degree program and college you select should both have excellent reputations and accreditation. However there are other relevant questions that you need to ask concerning your school of choice also. You originally come to this website because of your interest in getting information on Physical Therapy Education Programs. However, as you commence your search for a physical therapy program keep in mind that many variables will guide you to your ultimate decision. You may want to visit different colleges to see their facilities and speak to current DPT students. While there, ask yourself this critical question: will this program help me accomplish my goal of becoming a licensed practicing physical therapist? By following our list of supplemental questions, you will have the ability to narrow down the options so you can make the appropriate selection. And with the necessary education and training, you can fulfill your dream of becoming a practicing physical therapist in Clear AK.
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