How to Find the Right Physical Therapy Training Program near Brewton Alabama
Receiving a physical therapist degree near Brewton AL is an important first step to beginning a rewarding career in the healthcare industry. Physical therapists (PT) help patients who have been disabled as a result of injury or illness gain back mobility and function. But before they may legally practice and provide treatment for the rehabilitation of patients, they need to receive the necessary training and education. A PT must also be licensed in every state, many mandating that the licensee hold a physical therapy degree from an accredited school. So before selecting a physical therapy school, it’s important to investigate those you are thinking about to make sure they will provide a quality education and satisfy your state’s licensing criteria. What you do not want to do is select a school just because it happens to be the nearest to your home or it has the lowest tuition. There are other relevant qualifications that need to be evaluated along with cost and location. But before we talk about 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 Do Physical Therapists Do?
Physical therapists practice in diverse locations, such as Brewton AL private practices, hospitals, assisted living facilities, rehab centers and health clubs. What the facilities all share in common is that they are equipped for diagnosing and rehabilitating patients. As previously stated, physical therapists help individuals that are experiencing a lack of mobility and often pain caused by illness or injury. After patient diagnosis, they develop a course of treatment to resolve the mobility issues 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 abundant, they include:
- Osteoporosis and Arthritis
- Car or motor cycle accidents
- Heart attacks
- Sports injuries
- Fire injuries
- Knee Replacement
- Cerebral Palsy
Licensed physical therapists practice in close partnerships with other Brewton AL medical professionals, including chiropractors, physicians, dentists and nurses. They can also oversee several physical therapy assistants who work under them in the diagnosis and treatment of their patients. Something to keep in mind for anyone thinking about getting into the physical therapy profession, it is quite physically demanding. Physical therapists routinely lift heavy equipment as well as patients, and kneel, crouch and stand for long periods of time on a daily basis.
Physical Therapist Degrees Available
There are 3 physical therapy degrees available for students to pursue at the graduate and undergraduate levels. Of these options, the only degree that is available to practice as a physical therapist is the doctorate. Undergraduate degrees concentrate on either preparing 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 Brewton AL area:
- Associate Degrees train students to practice as physical therapy assistants, or can be the first step toward earning a more advanced degree. Candidates must have a high school diploma or GED to qualify for enrollment. The programs are usually offered by community colleges, and take about 2 years to complete. An internship or other form of clinical training is usually a portion of the program.
- Bachelor’s Degrees are developed as pre-physical therapist training to ready students to progress to the doctoral level. While they are not required to be a candidate for the doctoral program, they are an essential initial step to becoming a PT. Similar to most bachelor’s degrees, they normally take 4 years to complete and commonly incorporate an internship program of a minimum of 500 hours.
- Doctorate Degrees are mandated if you want 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 finish, making the overall commitment 7 years in most cases. Clinical or practical training is an essential element in addition to the substantial lab and classroom instruction. Therefor the fulfillment of an internship is mandated, not just for graduation but in several 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 practicing 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 Therapist Colleges Online
While not as common as the on campus alternatives, there are many accredited online physical therapy programs available, more so at the graduate level. Due to the hands-on structure of the training, clinical lab work and internships are incorporated with the online classes. This necessitates that the student live near the college campus or nearby an available internship. However, the online segment of the course of study may be accessed within the convenience and comfort of the student’s Brewton AL residence. Online schools are not only partially more accessible, but in many cases more economical. Tuition might be somewhat less than comparable on campus options, and expenditures for commuting are minimized. And many of the online programs are accredited by the CAPTE, assuring a quality education. These advantages may make the online option the ideal choice for those students that are motivated enough to attend classes at home.
What to Ask Physical Therapy Colleges
By now you undoubtedly have made a decision regarding some of your initial queries, such as the type of physical therapy degree you would like to obtain, where you want to attend classes, and how much you can afford to invest in your education. But since there are numerous PT schools within the Brewton AL area and throughout Alabama, you’ll have to explore other qualifications also in order to further reduce your list of college options. Moreover, you need to be sure that you pick the school that is best for you. That’s the reason we have put together a list of essential questions that you need to ask the physical therapist schools you are reviewing. Ask each of the competing schools these questions prior to making a final selection.
Is the Physical Therapy College Accredited? Ask if the schools you are looking at have received accreditation from a national or a regional agency. As earlier 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 program, it can also obtain accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council. It’s essential that both the physical therapy school and program you choose are accredited, not simply the school. Also, verify that the accreditation is through a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization. Besides ensuring that you receive a quality education, accreditation may be required for state licensing and even for getting student loans or financial assistance.
What is the Program’s Ranking? Along with accreditation, it’s imperative that the college and program you choose have outstanding reputations within the physical therapy community. There are multiple ways you can look into a PT college’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 also. Contact a few Brewton AL physical therapy clinics or other health care facilities that you might be interested in working for and ask if they can give you any advice about your program options. It may also be prudent to contact the Alabama Attorney General and school licensing authority to see if any complaints have been filed against the colleges.
What is the College’s Job Placement Percentage? There are a two relevant statistics that you should find out about each of the physical therapy colleges you are considering. First is their graduation rate. A low rate might mean that students dropped out because of displeasure with the program, the teachers, or both. After the students have graduated, what percentage of them are being hired with the support of the college’s job placement program, particularly in the Brewton AL area? If a school has a higher job placement rate, it suggests that its reputation within the health care community is good or even excellent. It also affirms that the college has a large network of contacts to help students gain internships or employment upon graduation.
Does the School Prepare You For Licensing Requirements? It’s important that the college you enroll in provides both excellent training and a curriculum that satisfies the licensing requirements for Alabama or the state where you will be working. In every state a passing score is needed on the National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE) in addition to a degree from an accredited physical therapy program. Although licensing requirements differ state by state for PT and PTA graduates, some states require a minimum amount of clinical hours be performed as well as passing scores on additional exams.
Are Internships Offered? Ask if the physical therapy programs you are reviewing have partnerships with Brewton AL hospitals or clinics for internship programs. Internships are not only a terrific manner to get hands on training in a clinical setting, they are additionally a requirement for most PT programs and state licensing. As a secondary benefit, they may assist graduates and students form professional connections in the Brewton health care community and assist with obtaining employment once licensed.
How Large are the Classes ? Unless you are the type of student that likes to sit way in the back of class or hide in the crowd, you will likely want a small class size. Small classes allow for more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the physical therapist schools you are researching what the typical teacher to student ratio is for their classes. 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 several of the students and instructors to get their opinions regarding the pharmacy technician program also.
Where is the Program Located? For a lot of students, the physical therapy college they choose will need to be within commuting distance of their Brewton AL home. Students who have decided to attend classes online obviously will not have to concern themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of local internships will be of concern. Something to keep in mind is that if you decide to enroll in a college that is out of state or perhaps out of your local area, you may need to pay a higher tuition. State colleges generally charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges typically charge a higher tuition to those students that don’t reside within their districts.
Is Financial Aid Provided? Most DPT colleges supply some type of financial assistance to their prospective students. Find out if the schools you are looking at have a financial aid office and see what type of help is offered. At a minimum they should help in acquiring a student loan or any scholarships you may be eligible for. Some physical therapist schools offer scholarships, while others provide work programs. So before eliminating a program because the tuition is too expensive, ask what financial assistance may be available.
Can the School Accommodate your Schedule? And last you need to verify that the physical therapist school you finally select can offer the class schedule you need. This is especially important if you choose to continue working while you attend classes. If you must schedule evening or weekend classes in the Brewton AL area, make sure that they are available. If you can only attend part-time, verify if that is an option and how many credit hours or courses you would need to carry. Also, learn what the procedure is for making up any classes that you might miss because of work, illness or family emergencies.
Enrolling in a Physical Therapy Program near Brewton Alabama?
If you are planning on attending a Physical Therapy School in the Brewton AL area, the following information may prove to be both interesting and educational regarding the location of your future campus.
Brewton is a city in Escambia County, Alabama, United States. At the 2010 census, the population was 5,408. The city is the county seat of Escambia County. Brewton is located in south central Alabama, just north of the Florida Panhandle.
Brewton was ranked as one of the 100 best small towns in America in Norman Crampton's book, The 100 Best Small Towns in America (1995).. Brewton's unusual abundance of wealth, natural resources and good public schools make the town an anomaly for rural South Alabama.
In May 1861, the city of Brewton began as a train station under Edmund Troupe Bruton. The settlement was originally known as Newport when barges made runs to and from Pensacola, Florida on Murder Creek and Burnt Corn Creek before the installation of rail.
Physical Therapist Training Brewton AL
Selecting the best physical therapy program is a necessary initial decision you have to make to start a fulfilling career in the medical field. As we have covered in this article, the DPT or PT degree program and school you select should both have outstanding reputations and accreditation. But there are additional important questions that you should ask regarding your school of choice also. You originally come to this website because of your interest in getting information on Physical Therapist Training. However, as you begin your search for a physical therapist school bear in mind that numerous variables will lead you toward your final decision. You may want to visit different schools to view their facilities and speak with current DPT students. While there, ask yourself this critical question: will this program help me realize my goal of becoming a practicing licensed physical therapist? By adhering to our list of additional questions, you will have the ability to narrow down the field so you can make the ideal selection. And with the proper education and training, you can achieve your dream to become a practicing physical therapist in Brewton AL.
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