How to Find the Right Physical Therapy Course near Philipsburg Montana
Earning a physical therapy degree near Philipsburg MT is an essential first step to starting a rewarding career in the health care field. Physical therapists (PT) help patients who have been incapacitated due to injury or illness gain back function and mobility. But before they may legally practice and work with the rehabilitation of patients, they need to acquire the proper training and education. A PT must additionally become licensed in all states, many requiring that the licensee hold a physical therapy degree from an accredited college. So before choosing a physical therapy school, it’s important to investigate those you are considering to make sure they will deliver a superior education and satisfy your state’s licensing requirements. What you do not want to do is select a college just because it happens to be the nearest to your residence or it has the most affordable tuition. There are other relevant qualifications that must be considered in addition to 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 the options for education.
What Do Physical Therapists Do?
Physical therapists work in a variety of settings, including Philipsburg MT private practices, hospitals, rehabilitation centers, nursing homes and sports facilities. What the facilities all have in common is that they have the equipment for the diagnosis and rehabilitation treatment of patients. As earlier touched on, physical therapists help people that are struggling with a lack of mobility and in many cases pain due to injury or illness. After diagnosing a patient, they develop a program of treatment to resolve the mobility issues and reduce or eradicate any pain. They also strive to prevent any progression of the disability. While the causes of disability requiring physical therapy are abundant, they include:
- Osteoporosis and Arthritis
- Car or motor cycle accidents
- Head injuries
- Heart attacks
- Sports injuries
- Burn injuries
- Knee Replacement
- Multiple Sclerosis
Licensed physical therapists practice in close partnerships with other Philipsburg MT medical specialists, 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. One thing to keep in mind for anyone considering getting into the physical therapy profession, it is quite physically demanding. Physical therapists regularly lift patients and heavy equipment, and stand, crouch and kneel for extended periods of time on a daily basis.
Physical Therapy Degrees Offered
There are three physical therapy degrees offered for individuals to pursue at the graduate and undergraduate levels. Of these alternatives, the single 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 readying them to progress to the doctoral level. Following are short explanations of degrees that are available in the Philipsburg MT area:
- Associate Degrees prepare students to become physical therapy assistants, or may be used as a stepping stone to a more advanced degree. Candidates must have obtained a high school diploma or GED to be accepted for enrollment. The programs are most often provided by community or junior colleges, and require two years to complete. Clinical training, which may be in the form of an internship is usually part of the program.
- Bachelor’s Degrees are designed as pre-physical therapy training to ready candidates to advance to the doctoral level. While they are not a requirement to be a candidate for the doctoral program, they are an essential preliminary step to practicing as a PT. Similar to the majority of bachelor’s degrees, they generally require 4 years to complete and usually include an internship program of a minimum of 500 hours.
- Doctorate Degrees are a requirement if you want to become a licensed practicing physical therapist. The degree program must also be accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE). After earning the bachelor’s degree, the doctoral takes 3 years to finish, making the total investment of time seven years in most cases. Practical or clinical training is an intregal component in addition to the extensive classroom and lab instruction. Therefor the completion of an internship is required, not just 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 phased out and is no longer available in the United States. A number of practicing physical therapists having a master’s or even a bachelor’s degree were “grandfathered” in before the current licensing requirement for a doctorate was instituted.
Physical Therapist Online Degrees
Although not as prevalent as the more traditional alternatives, there are a number of accredited online physical therapist programs offered, more so at the graduate level. Because of the hands-on nature of the training, clinical lab work and internships are integrated with the online classes. This necessitates that the student live near the college campus or nearby an available internship. Fortunately, the online segment of the course of study can be accessed within the comfort and convenience of the student’s Philipsburg MT home. Online programs are not only to some extent more accessible, but in many instances more economical. Tuition can be significantly less than similar on-campus options, and expenditures for commuting are minimized. And many of the online programs are accredited by the CAPTE, ensuring a quality education. These benefits can make the online option the ideal choice for those students that are disciplined enough to learn at home.
Topics to Ask Physical Therapy Colleges
By now you probably have made a decision concerning several of your preliminary questions, including the kind of physical therapist degree you want to attain, where you want to attend classes, and how much you can afford to invest in your education. But since there are so many PT schools within the Philipsburg MT area and throughout Montana, you’ll need to explore other qualifications also so as to further reduce your list of school options. Furthermore, you want to make certain that you enroll in the college that is best for you. That’s the reason we have compiled a list of essential questions that you need to ask the physical therapy programs you are thinking about. Ask all of the potential colleges these questions before making an ultimate decision.
Is the Physical Therapist College Accredited? Find out if the schools you are reviewing have received accreditation from a regional or a national organization. As previously 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 choose an online school, it may also receive accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council. It’s imperative that both the physical therapist school and program you enroll in are accredited, not simply the school. Also, check that the accreditation is from a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization. Along with ensuring that you receive an excellent education, accreditation might be required for state licensing and even for getting student loans or financial assistance.
What is the College’s Standing? Along with accreditation, it’s important that the school and program you choose have excellent reputations within the physical therapist profession. There are several ways you can look into a PT program’s reputation, starting 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 agencies for their reviews also. Get in touch with several Philipsburg MT physical therapist centers or other health care facilities that you may be interested in working for and ask if they can give you any insight about your school selections. It may also be a good idea to contact the Montana Attorney General and school licensing authority to find out if any complaints have been submitted against the schools.
What is the Program’s Job Placement Percentage? There are a couple of relevant statistics that you should know about all of the physical therapist colleges you are considering. One is their graduation rate. A lower rate may mean that students left due to displeasure with the program, the teachers, or both. Once the students have graduated, what percentage of them are being placed in jobs with the support of the school’s job placement program, particularly in the Philipsburg MT area? If a school has a high job placement rate, it’s an indication that its reputation within the healthcare field is good or perhaps exceptional. It also confirms that the program has a broad network of contacts to assist students obtain internships or jobs after graduation.
Does the College Prepare You For Licensing Requirements? It’s important that the college you select furnishes both excellent training and a course of study that satisfies the licensing criteria for Montana or the state where you will be practicing. In every state a passing score is required 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, some states require a minimum amount of clinical hours be completed as well as passing scores on supplemental exams.
Are Internships Offered? Ask if the physical therapist schools you are evaluating have associations with Philipsburg MT clinics or hospitals for internship programs. Internships are not only a terrific means to receive practical experience in a clinical setting, they are also a requirement for most PT programs and state licensing. As a secondary benefit, they can help graduates and students establish professional relationships in the Philipsburg healthcare community and help with obtaining employment after licensing.
How Big are the Classes ? Unless you are the kind of student that prefers to sit way in the back of the classroom or hide in the crowd, you will probably prefer a smaller class size. Smaller classes enable more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the physical therapist schools you are researching what the average student to teacher ratio is for their classrooms. 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 talk with a few of the instructors and students to get their opinions regarding the pharmacist tech program also.
Where is the School Located? For many students, the physical therapy school they select will need to be within commuting distance of their Philipsburg MT home. Individuals who have opted to attend online classes obviously will not have to worry themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of area 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 might need to pay a higher tuition. State colleges generally charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges usually charge a higher tuition to those students that don’t reside within their districts.
Is Financial Support Provided? The majority of DPT schools supply some type of financial assistance to their prospective students. Inquire if the schools you are looking at have a financial assistance department and see what type of help is offered. They at least should help in obtaining a student loan or any grants you might qualify for. Some physical therapist colleges offer scholarships, while others provide work programs. So before you eliminate a program because the tuition is beyond your budget, learn what financial assistance might be available.
Can the School Accommodate your Schedule? And last you need to confirm that the physical therapist program you ultimately select can offer the class schedule you need. This is especially crucial if you choose to continue working while you attend classes. If you need to schedule evening or weekend classes in the Philipsburg MT area, make sure that they are available. If you can only enroll on a part-time basis, verify if that is an option and how many credit hours or courses you would have to carry. Also, learn what the protocol is for making up any classes that you may miss due to illness, work or family obligations.
Enrolling in a Physical Therapy Program near Philipsburg Montana?
If you are planning on attending a Physical Therapy School in the Philipsburg MT area, the following information may prove to be both interesting and educational regarding the location of your future campus.
Philipsburg is a town in and the county seat of Granite County, Montana, United States. The population was 820 at the 2010 census. The town was named after the famous mining engineer Philip Deidesheimer, who designed and supervised the construction of the ore smelter around which the town originally formed.
As of the census of 2010, there were 820 people, 413 households, and 217 families residing in the town. The population density was 1,025.0 inhabitants per square mile (395.8/km2). There were 547 housing units at an average density of 683.8 per square mile (264.0/km2). The racial makeup of the town was 96.8% White, 0.1% African American, 0.9% Native American, 0.2% Asian, 0.4% from other races, and 1.6% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.8% of the population.
There were 413 households of which 16.0% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 40.0% were married couples living together, 8.5% had a female householder with no husband present, 4.1% had a male householder with no wife present, and 47.5% were non-families. 40.0% of all households were made up of individuals and 17.9% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 1.92 and the average family size was 2.53.
Physical Therapist Assistant Associate Degree Philipsburg MT
Deciding on the best physical therapy college is an important initial decision you need to make to begin a rewarding career in the medical field. As we have discussed in this article, the PT or DPT degree program and school you enroll in should both have excellent reputations and be accredited. But there are additional important questions that you should ask pertaining to your college of choice also. You originally come to this website because of your interest in getting information on Physical Therapist Assistant Associate Degree. However, as you begin your search for a physical therapy college bear in mind that many variables will lead you to your ultimate decision. You might decide to visit each of the schools to view their facilities and talk with active DPT students. While there, ask yourself this critical question: will this program help me reach my goal of becoming a licensed practicing physical therapist? By following our list of supplemental questions, you will be able to narrow down the options so you can make the appropriate selection. And with the necessary education and training, you can achieve your dream to become a practicing physical therapist in Philipsburg MT.
Additional Therapeutic Locations in Montana