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Subjects to Ask Physical Therapist Programs

At this point you probably have come to decision concerning a few of your initial queries, such as the kind of physical therapist degree you want to obtain, where you prefer to attend classes, and how much you can afford to invest in your education. But considering there are so many PT schools within the Cave Creek AZ area and throughout Arizona, you'll need to look into additional qualifications as well so as to further reduce your list of school options. Moreover, you need to be sure that you choose the program that is best for you. That's why we have put together a list of essential questions that you must ask the physical therapist colleges 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 programs you are reviewing have received accreditation from a national or a regional organization. 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 select an online college, it can also earn accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council. It's imperative that both the physical therapist program and school you select are accredited, not just the school. Also, make sure that the accreditation is through a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency. In addition to ensuring that you receive a quality education, accreditation might be required for state licensing and even for securing student loans or financial assistance.

What is the College's Ranking? In addition to accreditation, it's important that the school and program you select have excellent reputations within the physical therapy community. There are multiple ways you can look into a PT program's reputation, beginning with requesting references from employers that they place their graduates with. You may also search for online reviews and rating services and ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. Call some Cave Creek AZ physical therapist centers or other health care facilities that you might have an interest in working for and ask if they can provide any advice about your program options. It might also be prudent to contact the Arizona Attorney General and school licensing authority to find out if any complaints have been filed against the schools.

What is the Program's Job Placement Rate? There are a two relevant statistics that you need to find out about all of the physical therapist colleges you are reviewing. First is their graduation rate. A lower rate may mean that students dropped out due to 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 school's job placement program, particularly in the Cave Creek AZ area? If a college has a high job placement rate, it suggests that its reputation within the medical care community is good or even excellent. It also verifies that the college has a broad network of contacts to assist students gain internships or employment after graduation.

Does the Program Prepare You For Licensing Requirements? It's important that the program you select provides both superior training and a course of study that satisfies the licensing requirements for Arizona or the state where you will be practicing. In each state a passing score is needed on the National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE) as well as a degree from an accredited physical therapy school. While licensing requirements differ state by state for PT and PTA graduates, a number of states require a minimum number of clinical hours be completed as well as passing scores on supplemental exams.

Are Internship Programs Offered? Find out if the physical therapy programs you are assessing have partnerships with Cave Creek AZ clinics or hospitals for internship programs. Internships are not only an excellent means to receive practical training in a clinical environment, they are additionally a requirement for the majority of PT programs and state licensing. As a supplemental benefit, they can help students and graduates form professional relationships in the Cave Creek health care community and assist with job placement once licensed.

What Size are the Classes ? Unless you are the kind of student that likes to sit far in the rear of the classroom or hide in the crowd, you will likely want a smaller class size. Smaller classes allow for more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the physical therapy colleges you are reviewing what the typical student to teacher ratio is for their classrooms. 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 a few of the students and instructors to get their perspectives regarding the physical therapist program as well.

Where is the School Located? For a lot of students, the physical therapist college they choose will need to be within commuting distance of their Cave Creek AZ home. Students who have chosen to attend online classes obviously will not have to trouble themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of area internships will be of concern. One thing to bear in mind is that if you choose to enroll in a program that is out of state or even out of your local area, you may need to pay a higher tuition. State colleges commonly charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges commonly charge a higher tuition to those students that don't reside within their districts.

Is Financial Aid Provided? Most DPT schools provide some form of financial aid to their potential students. Find out if the schools you are reviewing have a financial assistance department and see what kind of aid is offered. At a minimum they should help in obtaining a student loan or any scholarships you might be eligible for. A number of physical therapist colleges offer scholarships, while others offer work programs. So before eliminating a school because the tuition is beyond your budget, find out what financial assistance may be available.

Can the Program Accommodate your Schedule? And last you must verify that the physical therapy college you finally pick can furnish the class schedule you need. This is especially crucial if you opt to continue working while you attend classes. If you need to schedule evening or weekend classes in the Cave Creek AZ area, make sure that they are available. If you can only attend part-time, verify if that is an alternative and how many courses or credit hours you would have to enroll in. Also, find out what the procedure is for making up any classes that you might miss as a result of work, illness or family emergencies.

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