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Subjects to Ask Physical Therapy Programs

At this point you most likely have made a decision regarding a few of your initial queries, including the type of physical therapy degree you would like to earn, where you prefer to attend classes, and how much money you can afford to spend for your education. But because there are numerous PT colleges within the Clay AL area and across Alabama, you'll need to look into additional qualifications also so as to further narrow your list of school options. Also, you want to make sure that you enroll in the program that is right for you. That's the reason we have compiled a list of critical questions that you need to ask the physical therapy colleges you are thinking about. Ask each of the competing colleges these questions before making an ultimate decision.

Is the Physical Therapist College Accredited?  Ask if the programs you are looking at have earned accreditation from a regional or a national agency. 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 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 choose are accredited, not simply the school. Also, make sure that the accreditation is from a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency. Besides guaranteeing that you receive an excellent education, accreditation might be required for state licensing and even for securing student loans or financial assistance.

What is the School's Standing? Along with accreditation, it's essential that the school and program you choose have outstanding reputations within the physical therapist community. There are multiple ways you can research a PT school's reputation, beginning with requesting references from employers that they place their graduates with. You may also search for online rating services and reviews and ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. Call some Clay AL physical therapist clinics or other medical care facilities that you might be interested in working for and ask if they can offer any advice about your program options. It may also be a good idea to contact the Alabama Attorney General and school licensing authority to see if any complaints have been submitted against the colleges.

What is the School's Job Placement Rate? There are a two useful statistics that you need to find out about all of the physical therapy schools you are looking at. First is their graduation rate. A low rate might suggest that students left due to dissatisfaction with the program, the instructors, or both. Once the students have graduated, how many of them are being hired with the assistance of the school's job placement program, particularly in the Clay AL area? If a school has a higher job placement rate, it's an indication that its reputation within the health care community is good or perhaps excellent. It also affirms that the program has a large network of contacts to help students get internships or jobs after graduation.

Does the Program Support Licensing Requirements? It's important that the program you enroll in furnishes both exceptional training and a curriculum that satisfies the licensing criteria for Alabama or the state where you will be practicing. In every state a passing score is needed on the National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE) as well as a degree from an accredited physical therapy college. Although licensing requirements differ state by state for PTA and PT graduates, many states require a minimum number of clinical hours be completed as well as passing scores on additional tests.

Are Internship Programs Sponsored? Inquire if the physical therapy schools you are assessing have associations with Clay AL hospitals or clinics for internship programs. Internships are not only a terrific means to receive hands on experience in a clinical environment, they are additionally a requirement for most PT programs and state licensing. As an ancillary benefit, they can assist students and graduates form professional relationships in the Clay health care community and help with obtaining employment once licensed.

What are the Class Sizes ? Unless you are the sort of student that prefers to sit way in the rear of class or get lost in the crowd, you will likely prefer a smaller class size. Smaller classes allow for more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the physical therapy schools you are considering what the typical 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 speak with some of the students and instructors to get their perspectives regarding the physical therapist program as well.

Where is the School Located? For a number of students, the physical therapy college they pick will need to be within travelling distance of their Clay AL residence. Students who have opted to attend classes online naturally will not have to worry themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of area internships will be of importance. Something to consider is that if you decide to enroll in a program that is out of state or even out of your local area, you may be required to pay a higher tuition. State colleges normally charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges frequently charge a higher tuition to those students that don't reside within their districts.

Is Financial Aid Offered? The majority of DPT schools offer some type of financial aid to their potential students. Inquire if the colleges you are examining have a financial assistance office and see what kind of help is obtainable. At a minimum they should help in securing a student loan or any scholarships you may qualify for. A number of physical therapist schools offer scholarships, while others offer work programs. So before eliminating a college because the tuition is beyond your budget, find out what financial aid might be available.

Can the College Accommodate your Schedule? And last you must confirm that the physical therapist college you finally choose can furnish the class schedule you need. This is particularly important if you choose to continue working while attending school. If you must schedule night or weekend classes in the Clay AL area, make sure that they are offered. If you can only enroll on a part-time basis, check if that is an option and how many courses or credit hours you would have to carry. Also, find out what the procedure is for making up any classes that you may miss due to illness, work or family emergencies.

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