|Physical Therapy Schools||Physical Therapist Schools||Physical Therapy Degrees|
|Physical Therapist Degrees||Physical Therapy Major Programs|
Topics to Ask Physical Therapist Colleges
At this point you undoubtedly have come to decision regarding some of your preliminary questions, such as the type of physical therapist 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 so many PT colleges within the Gulf Shores AL area and across Alabama, you'll have to look into additional qualifications as well so as to further narrow your list of school options. Furthermore, you need to be sure that you choose the school that is best for you. That's why we have put together a list of important questions that you must ask the physical therapy programs you are thinking about. Ask each of the competing colleges these questions prior to making an ultimate selection.
Is the Physical Therapy Program Accredited? Find out if the colleges you are looking at have received accreditation from a regional or a national agency. 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 select an online school, it may also receive accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council. It's essential that both the physical therapy program and school you select are accredited, not simply the school. Also, verify that the accreditation is from a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting organization. Besides guaranteeing that you obtain a quality education, accreditation might be mandated for state licensing and even for getting student loans or financial aid.
What is the College's Ranking? Along with accreditation, it's important that the college and program you select have excellent reputations within the physical therapy profession. There are multiple ways you can research a PT college's reputation, starting with asking for 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. Get in touch with several Gulf Shores AL physical therapist centers or other health care facilities that you might be interested in working for and ask if they can offer any insight about your college options. It might also be prudent to check with the Alabama Attorney General and school licensing authority to find out if any complaints have been filed against the schools.
What is the School's Job Placement Rate? There are a couple of important statistics that you need to find out about each of the physical therapy schools you are looking at. One is their graduation rate. A lower rate might indicate that students left because of dissatisfaction with the program, the teachers, or both. After the students have graduated, what percentage of them are being hired with the help of the school's job placement program, particularly in the Gulf Shores AL area? If a program has a high job placement rate, it's an indication that its reputation within the healthcare field is good or perhaps outstanding. It also confirms that the program has a wide network of contacts to assist students gain internships or employment after graduation.
Does the College Prepare You For Licensing Requirements? It's imperative that the program you enroll in furnishes both exceptional training and a course of study that supports the licensing criteria for Alabama or the state where you will be practicing. In each state a passing score is needed on the National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE) in addition to a degree from an accredited physical therapist college. While licensing requirements vary state by state for PTA and PT graduates, many states require a minimum number of clinical hours be completed and passing scores on supplemental tests.
Are Internship Programs Offered? Find out if the physical therapist colleges you are reviewing have relationships with Gulf Shores AL clinics or hospitals for internship programs. Internships are not only a terrific manner to get practical 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 assist graduates and students establish professional relationships in the Gulf Shores healthcare community and help with job placement once licensed.
What Size are the Classes ? Unless you are the kind of student that prefers to sit way in the rear of class or get lost in the crowd, you will undoubtedly prefer a smaller class size. Smaller classes enable more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the physical therapist schools you are looking at what the average student to teacher ratio is for their classrooms. If practical you may prefer to monitor one or more classes before making your ultimate determination. This will also give you a chance to converse with a few of the instructors and students to get their perspectives regarding the physical therapy program as well.
Where is the College Located? For a number of students, the physical therapist school they decide on will need to be within commuting distance of their Gulf Shores AL home. Those who have decided to attend classes online obviously will not have to concern themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of area internships will be of importance. One thing to bear in mind is that if you decide to enroll in a school 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 Support Provided? Most DPT colleges provide some form of financial support to their potential students. Find out if the colleges you are reviewing have a financial aid office 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 therapy schools provide scholarships, while others offer work programs. So before you eliminate a program because the tuition is beyond your budget, learn what financial aid may be available.
Can the College Accommodate your Schedule? And finally you must verify that the physical therapist school you finally select can provide the class schedule you need. This is particularly essential if you decide to continue working while attending school. If you need to schedule night or weekend classes in the Gulf Shores AL area, confirm that they are available. If you can only attend part-time, check if that is an alternative and how many credit hours or courses you would need to carry. Also, find out what the protocol is for making up any classes that you may miss due to illness, work or family obligations.