How to Select the Right Physical Therapist School near Yarmouth Maine
Obtaining a physical therapy degree near Yarmouth ME is a critical first step to starting a fulfilling career in the medical care industry. Physical therapists (PT) help individuals who have been debilitated as a result of injury or illness gain back mobility and function. But before they may legally practice and work with the rehabilitation of patients, they need to get the proper training and education. A PT must additionally be licensed in all states, a large number mandating that the licensee hold a physical therapy degree from an accredited college. So prior to selecting a physical therapy school, it’s necessary to research those you are looking at to make sure they will supply a superior education and meet your state’s licensing requirements. What you should not do is select a school simply because it happens to be the nearest to your residence or it has the lowest tuition. There are other important qualifications that must be evaluated along with 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’s Job Description?
Physical therapists practice in a variety of settings, including Yarmouth ME private practices, hospitals, assisted living facilities, rehab centers and sports facilities. What the facilities all share in common is that they are equipped for the diagnosis and rehabilitation treatment of patients. As earlier touched on, physical therapists help individuals that are suffering from a lack of mobility and often pain caused by injury or illness. After patient diagnosis, they create a course of treatment to resolve the mobility problems and lessen or eradicate any pain. They also strive to prevent any advancement of the disability. Although 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
- Cerebral Palsy
Licensed physical therapists practice in close association with other Yarmouth ME medical professionals, including chiropractors, physicians, dentists and nurses. They can also supervise several physical therapy assistants who work under them in the diagnosis and treatment of their patients. One thing to bear in mind for anyone thinking about going into the physical therapy profession, it is quite physically demanding. Physical therapists regularly lift heavy equipment as well as patients, and kneel, crouch and stand for prolonged periods of time on a daily basis.
Physical Therapist Degrees
There are three physical therapy degree options available for students to pursue at the graduate and undergraduate levels. Of these choices, the one degree that is offered 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. Below are short descriptions of degree levels that are offered in the Yarmouth ME area:
- Associate Degrees prepare students to become physical therapy assistants, or may be the first step toward earning a more advanced degree. Candidates must have a high school diploma or GED to qualify for enrollment. The degrees are typically made available by junior or community colleges, and require two years for completion. Clinical training, which may be in the form of an internship is normally a component of the program.
- Bachelor’s Degrees are developed as pre-physical therapist training to prep students to advance to the doctoral level. Although they are not required to be a candidate for the doctoral program, they are an essential first step to becoming a PT. Similar to the majority of bachelor’s degrees, they generally require four years to complete and commonly include an internship program of at least 500 hours.
- Doctorate Degrees are mandated if you want 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 three years to complete, making the overall commitment seven years in the majority of cases. Practical or clinical training is an intregal component in addition to the extensive lab and classroom instruction. Consequently the completion of an internship is mandated, not just 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 USA. A number of licensed physical therapists holding a master’s or in some cases a bachelor’s degree were “grandfathered” in prior to the current licensing requirement for a doctorate was instituted.
Physical Therapist Online Colleges
While not as common as the more traditional options, there are some accredited online physical therapist degrees available, even more at the graduate level. Due to the hands-on nature of the training, clinical lab work and internships are combined with the online classes. This necessitates that the student live close to the college campus or in proximity of an available internship. Fortunately, the online segment of the course of study can be accessed within the convenience and comfort of the student’s Yarmouth ME home. Online schools are not only partially more accessible, but in many instances more affordable. Tuition may be significantly less than comparable on-campus options, and expenses for commuting are reduced. And a number of the online programs are accredited by the CAPTE, guaranteeing a quality education. These benefits may make the online alternative the best choice for those students that are disciplined enough to attend classes at home.
Subjects to Ask Physical Therapist Programs
By now you probably have come to decision regarding a few of your preliminary questions, such as the type of physical therapy degree you would like to obtain, where you prefer to attend classes, and how much you can afford to spend for your education. But considering there are so many PT colleges within the Yarmouth ME area and throughout Maine, you’ll need to look into other qualifications as well in order to further reduce your list of college options. Also, you want to be sure that you choose the college that is best for you. That’s why we have collected a list of essential questions that you need to ask the physical therapist programs you are thinking about. Ask all of the potential colleges these questions prior to making an ultimate selection.
Is the Physical Therapy School Accredited? Ask if the programs you are considering have earned accreditation from a national or a regional organization. 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 receive accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council. It’s imperative that both the physical therapy program and school you select are accredited, not just the school. Additionally, check that the accreditation is through a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization. Along with ensuring that you receive an excellent education, accreditation might be mandated for state licensing and even for getting student loans or financial assistance.
What is the School’s Ranking? Along with accreditation, it’s important that the college and program you choose have exceptional reputations within the physical therapy community. There are a number of ways you can investigate a PT college’s reputation, beginning with requesting references from employers that they refer their students to. You may also check online reviews and rating services and ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. Get in touch with a few Yarmouth ME physical therapist centers or other healthcare facilities that you may be interested in working for and ask if they can give you any recommendations about your school selections. It might also be prudent to check with the Maine Attorney General and school licensing authority to find out if any complaints have been submitted against the schools.
What is the School’s Job Placement Rate? There are a two relevant statistics that you should find out about each of the physical therapist programs you are considering. One is their graduation rate. A low rate might suggest that students dropped out because of displeasure with the program, the instructors, or both. After the students have graduated, how many of them are being placed in jobs with the assistance of the school’s job placement program, particularly in the Yarmouth ME area? If a program has a higher job placement rate, it’s an indication that its reputation within the health care community is good or even excellent. It also verifies that the college has a large network of contacts to help students get internships or employment upon graduation.
Does the Program Prepare You For Licensing Requirements? It’s essential that the school you select provides both superior training and a curriculum that supports the licensing requirements for Maine or the state where you will be working. In every state a passing score is required on the National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE) in addition to a degree from an accredited physical therapy school. Although licensing requirements vary state by state for PTA and PT graduates, some states require a minimum amount of clinical hours be performed and passing scores on additional tests.
Are Internships Offered? Inquire if the physical therapy programs you are evaluating have associations with Yarmouth ME hospitals or clinics for internship programs. Not only are internships a terrific 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 may help students and graduates develop professional relationships in the Yarmouth health care community and help with job placement after licensing.
What are the Class Sizes ? Unless you are the type of student that prefers to sit far in the back of class or get lost in the crowd, you will undoubtedly want a small class size. Small classes allow for more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the physical therapist schools you are researching what the average student to teacher ratio is for their classes. If practical you may prefer to monitor one or more classes before making your final determination. This will also give you a chance to converse with some of the instructors and students to get their perspectives regarding the pharmacist technician program as well.
Where is the School Located? For a number of students, the physical therapy college they select will have to be within travelling distance of their Yarmouth ME residence. Individuals who have opted 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. One thing to consider is that if you choose to enroll in a college that is out of state or perhaps out of your local area, you may have to pay a higher tuition. State colleges normally charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges normally charge a higher tuition to those students that live outside of their districts.
Is Financial Assistance Offered? Most DPT schools supply some form of financial aid to their potential students. Find out if the schools you are considering have a financial aid department and find out what kind of aid is offered. They at least should help in obtaining a student loan or any scholarships you may qualify for. A number of physical therapy colleges provide scholarships, while others offer work programs. So before you eliminate a college because the tuition is beyond your budget, learn what financial aid may be available.
Can the School Accommodate your Schedule? And last you must confirm that the physical therapy college you ultimately pick can offer the class schedule you need. This is especially important if you decide to continue working while attending school. If you need to schedule night or weekend classes in the Yarmouth ME area, verify that they are available. If you can only enroll on a part-time basis, find out if that is an option and how many courses or credit hours you would have to enroll in. 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 Yarmouth Maine?
If you are planning on attending a Physical Therapy School in the Yarmouth ME area, the following information may prove to be both interesting and educational regarding the location of your future campus.
Yarmouth is a town in Cumberland County, Maine, located twelve miles north of the state's largest city, Portland. The town was settled in 1636 and incorporated in 1849. Its population was 8,349 in the 2010 census. As of 2015's estimation, this is about 0.6% of Maine's total population.
The town's proximity to the Atlantic Ocean and its location on the banks of the Royal River, which empties into Casco Bay less than a mile away, means it is a prime location as a harbor. Ships were built in the harbor mainly between 1818 and the 1870s, at which point demand declined dramatically. Meanwhile, the Royal River's four waterfalls within Yarmouth, whose Main Street sits about 80 feet above sea level, resulted in the foundation of almost sixty mills between 1674 and 1931.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 22.94 square miles (59.41 km2), of which, 13.35 square miles (34.58 km2) (58%) is land and 9.59 square miles (24.84 km2) (42%) is water.
Schools For Physical Therapy Assistant Yarmouth ME
Deciding on the right physical therapist school is an important initial decision you must make to launch a fulfilling career in the healthcare field. As we have discussed in this article, the PT or DPT degree program and school you select should both have excellent reputations and accreditation. However there are other important questions that you need to ask concerning your college of choice as well. You originally come to this website because of your interest in getting information on Schools For Physical Therapy Assistant. However, as you commence your search for a physical therapy program keep in mind that numerous factors will guide you to your final decision. You might want to go to different campuses to see their facilities and speak with current DPT students. While there, ask yourself this critical question: will this school help me achieve 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 choice. And with the necessary education and training, you can accomplish your dream to become a practicing physical therapist in Yarmouth ME.
Additional Therapeutic Locations in Maine
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Occupational Therapy Assistant - Keiser University
Occupational therapy is a health profession that provides services to individuals affected by developmental, physical, emotional or social disabilities and helps them achieve maximum independence. If you are a creative and caring individual who likes working with others, consider a career as an occupational therapy assistant.
Best Physical Therapy Programs - Top Health Schools - US News Rankings
Ranked in 2020, part of Best Health Schools. To become a physical therapist, students must first master areas of science such as biomechanics, neuroscience, exercise physiology and anatomy.
Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) Degree Program | USAHS
The Doctor of Physical Therapy and Doctor of Physical Therapy Flex programs at the St. Augustine, Florida campus of the University of St. Augustine for Health Sciences is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE), 3030 Potomac Ave., Suite 100, Alexandria, Virginia 22305-3085; telephone: 703-706-3245 ...
Physical Therapist Assistant - Keiser University
This program is designed to train students to implement treatment programs as directed by a physical therapist; competently perform data collection skills necessary for a plan of care; effectively communicate both verbally and in writing with health care team members and patients; participate in patient education as directed by a physical therapist; and demonstrate a commitment to learning.