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Move Toward a Physical Therapist Career OVERVIEW FOR PRE-PT STUDENTS.

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Presentation on theme: "Move Toward a Physical Therapist Career OVERVIEW FOR PRE-PT STUDENTS."— Presentation transcript:

1 Move Toward a Physical Therapist Career OVERVIEW FOR PRE-PT STUDENTS

2 OVERVIEW ▪ PT Careers ▪ PT Education ▪ PT Admissions Process ▪ Is a PT Career Right for You? ▪ Resources


4 PHYSICAL THERAPISTS ARE MOVEMENT EXPERTS Physical therapists are health care professionals who diagnose and treat individuals of all ages with medical problems or other health- related conditions that limit their abilities to move and perform functional activities in their daily lives.

5 ROLE OF PHYSICAL THERAPISTS IN HEALTH CARE ▪ Diagnose and manage movement dysfunction and enhance physical and functional abilities. ▪ Restore, maintain, and promote optimal ▪ physical function, ▪ wellness and fitness, and ▪ quality of life as it relates to movement and health. ▪ Prevent the onset, symptoms, and progression of impairments, functional limitations, and disabilities that may result from diseases, disorders, conditions, or injuries.

6 WHERE DO PHYSICAL THERAPISTS WORK? ▪ Acute Care ▪ Extended Care Facility (eg, Nursing Home) ▪ Home Health ▪ Hospice ▪ Industrial and Workplace Environments ▪ Local, State, and Federal Governments ▪ Outpatient Clinic ▪ Rehabilitation Hospital ▪ Research Center ▪ School ▪ Wellness, Prevention, Sports, and Fitness Centers

7 EXAMPLES OF CONDITIONS TREATED BY PHYSICAL THERAPISTS ▪ Arthritis ▪ Back Pain ▪ Balance ▪ Burns ▪ Carpal Tunnel Syndrome ▪ Developmental Delays ▪ Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease ▪ Dislocations ▪ Fractures ▪ Hand Injuries ▪ Headaches ▪ Incontinence ▪ Lymphedema ▪ Osteoporosis ▪ Pelvic Pain ▪ Sports Injuries ▪ Stroke ▪ Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI)

8 CORE VALUES OF PHYSICAL THERAPISTS Accountability Altruism Compassion/Caring Excellence Integrity Professional Duty Social Responsibility Critical Elements of Professionalism for Physical Therapists

9 HIGH JOB SATISFACTION ▪ gave physical therapists a grade of “A” for “Personal Satisfaction” as a quality of life indicator in 2012.A” for “Personal Satisfaction ▪ Forbes ranked physical therapists as one of "The Ten Happiest Jobs," in 2011.The Ten Happiest Jobs, ▪ Physical therapists have one of the highest job-satisfaction levels. highest job-satisfaction levels ▪ 78% "very satisfied" with their chosen career. ▪ 2007 National Opinion Research Center report.

10 JOB OUTLOOK 39% PT Employment Expected to Grow by 39% through 2020 ▪ US Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2013 ▪ 198,600 - Current Employment ▪ 276,000 - Projected Employment by 2020 Best Jobs in America ▪ U.S. News & World Report: 2013, 2012 and 2009 Fastest Growing Jobs ▪ 2012, 2010 Highest Growth Expected in Rural Areas and Geriatrics

11 BENEFITS OF A PHYSICAL THERAPIST CAREER ▪ Make a Difference ▪ Be a Movement Expert ▪ Enjoy Job Security ▪ Love Your Job ▪ Choose Your Location ▪ Be an Entrepreneur


13 PHYSICAL THERAPIST DEGREE To practice as a physical therapist in the US, you must ▪ Earn a DPT degree from a program accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE) and ▪ Pass a state licensure exam. Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) Degree

14 PT EDUCATION ▪ Length of Program Typically 3 years following 3-4 years of undergraduate study or degree ▪ Time in Classroom and Lab Approximately 80% of program ▪ Time in Clinical Education Approximately 20% of program ▪ Final Clinical Experience27.5 Weeks on average

15 PRIMARY CONTENT AREAS IN PT CURRICULUM ▪ biology/anatomy ▪ cellular histology ▪ physiology ▪ exercise physiology ▪ biomechanics ▪ kinesiology ▪ neuroscience ▪ pharmacology ▪ pathology ▪ behavioral sciences ▪ communication ▪ ethics/values ▪ management sciences ▪ finance ▪ sociology ▪ clinical reasoning ▪ evidence-based practice ▪ cardiovascular and pulmonary ▪ endocrine and metabolic ▪ musculoskeletal

16 RESIDENCIES AND FELLOWSHIPS ▪ Clinical Residency ▪ A planned program of postprofessional clinical and didactic education for PTs that is designed to significantly advance the PT resident's preparation as a provider of patient care services in a defined area of clinical practice. ▪ Clinical Fellowship ▪ A planned program of postprofessional clinical and didactic education for physical therapists who demonstrate clinical expertise in an area of clinical practice related to the practice focus of the fellowship. Fellows are frequently post-residency prepared or board-certified specialists. Licensed physical therapists may choose to pursue a residency or fellowship program to enhance their knowledge and practice.

17 SPECIALTY CERTIFICATION ▪ Cardiovascular and Pulmonary ▪ Clinical Electrophysiology ▪ Geriatrics ▪ Neurology ▪ Orthopaedics ▪ Pediatrics ▪ Sports Physical Therapy ▪ Women's Health Physical therapists can specialize in the following areas! Physical therapists specialize to develop a greater depth of knowledge and skills related to a particular area of practice. Specialty certification is voluntary. Physical therapists are not required to be certified in order to practice in a specific area.


19 WAYS YOU CAN PREPARE ▪ Research DPT programs and requirements 2 years before applying. ▪ Seek help from your college pre-PT or health professions advisor. ▪ Complete course prerequisites.course ▪ Gain and track PT observation experiences 1-3 years in advance. ▪ Take the GRE at least 6+ weeks before the deadline, if required. ▪ Request references from the appropriate individuals, if required. ▪ Apply EARLY. Some use rolling admissions or fill class before deadline.

20 WHAT IS PTCAS?  It is the Physical Therapist Centralized Application Service.  PTCAS allows applicants to use one application and set of materials to apply to multiple DPT programs.  PTCAS is a service of APTA and managed by Liaison International.  80% of DPT programs participate in PTCAS. PTCAS Website: http://www.ptcas.org PTCAS Checklist and Overview Slides:

21 MOST COMMON COLLEGE COURSE PREREQUISITES ▪ Anatomy and Physiology I or Anatomy ▪ Anatomy and Physiology II or Physiology ▪ Biology I and II ▪ Advanced Biology ▪ Chemistry I and II ▪ Physics I and II ▪ Psychology ▪ Advanced Psychology ▪ Statistics ▪ English Composition Course prerequisites for admission vary significantly across DPT programs For more information, go to / /

22 MOST COMMON COLLEGE MAJORS FOR PT STUDENTS You are not required to select a particular major in order to be eligible for admission to a PT education program. Source: 2012-13 PTCAS Applicant Data Report

23 GRADE POINT AVERAGE (GPA) ▪ Minimum GPA ▪ DPT programs often have minimum GPA requirements. ▪ Applicants who only meet the minimum GPA may not be competitive. ▪ Average GPA for Accepted PTCAS Applicants in 2013 ▪ Average GPAs of accepted applicants are often much higher. ▪ Overall Undergraduate GPA = 3.54 ▪ Combined Science and Math GPA = 3.40 ▪ Core PT Prerequisite GPA= 3.50 ▪ See also the PTCAS Applicant Data Report ▪ Source: 2012-13 PTCAS Applicant Data Report

24 PT OBSERVATION EXPERIENCE ▪ PT observation requirements vary by program. ▪ Most require 50+ hours (range from 0 to 200). ▪ More than one setting may be required. ▪ Determine if hours must be verified by a licensed physical therapist. ▪ Keep track of hours and contact information for the physical therapist. ▪ Begin search for PT experiences 1 to 3 years before you apply. ▪ Explore opportunities at clinics, hospitals, nursing homes, and other settings. ▪ APTA cannot assist you in your search efforts. See also

25 GRADUATE RECORD EXAMINATION GRADUATE RECORD EXAMINATION ® ▪ Most PT programs require applicants to take the GRE ®.GRE ▪ Programs may set minimum scores and last acceptable test dates. EVERY ▪ Use the correct GRE ® code for EVERY PT program you select.correct GRE ® code ▪ PTCAS GRE code for DPT program may differ from university code. ▪ See also

26 REFERENCES ▪ Also known as letters of recommendation and evaluations. ▪ Reference requirements vary by institution. ▪ Most programs require 2-3 references. ▪ References are often required from a ▪ Physical therapist ▪ Professor in major or a science professor ▪ See also

27 OTHER FACTORS IN THE ADMISSIONS PROCESS ▪ Interviews ▪ State residency ▪ Extracurricular activities ▪ Work experience ▪ Diversity

28 TECHNICAL STANDARDS AND ESSENTIAL FUNCTIONS A DPT program may have technical standards or an essential skills document that describes the physical, behavioral, and/or cognitive abilities needed to complete the physical therapist curriculum at that particular institution and to competently perform as a physical therapist upon graduation. Policies vary. Visit the each program’s website for details.

29 CRIMINAL BACKGROUND CHECKS ▪ Be prepared to disclose any felonies or misdemeanors to DPT programs. ▪ PTCAS application requires applicants to disclose felony convictions. ▪ Programs may require criminal background checks or drug tests to… ▪ verify your suitability to participate in experiential education rotations, ▪ confirm your eligibility for licensure, and ▪ ensure patient safety. ▪ Failure to disclose criminal history may result in dismissal from program. ▪ Contact programs directly for specific policies. ▪ Additional resources ▪ APTA Criminal Background Check Report & APTA Criminal Background Check

30 PITFALLS TO AVOID ▪ Errors of any kind on your application ▪ Typos or grammatical mistakes in your application ▪ Late applications or materials ▪ Unprofessional behavior in pre-PT observation experiences ▪ Unprofessional dress or behavior during interview ▪ Applying without researching program’s admission requirements ▪ Applying without most course prerequisites completed ▪ Failing to check email regularly during admissions process


32 IS A PHYSICAL THERAPIST CAREER RIGHT FOR YOU? ▪ Are you interested in how the human body works and moves? ▪ Do you want to interact directly with patients? ▪ Are you interested in a hands-on career? ▪ Are you an effective communicator? ▪ Do you have good interpersonal skills? ▪ Can you motivate people? ▪ Do you excel in science?

33 WHAT IT MEANS TO BE A PHYSICAL THERAPIST ▪ With each positive outcome we achieve, we share a….love for the profession of physical therapy and the patients and clients PTs serve.” Will Humphreys, PT owns Affinity Physical Therapy in Arizona ▪ “I've never second-guessed my career path. Every time I see an 8 year old playing freely and happily in the park—knowing that particular boy couldn't hold his head up when I started treating him at age 6 months— my reason for becoming a PT is affirmed. We are therapists. We are teachers. We are advocates. We are researchers. We are professionals.” Hadiya Guerrero, PT, DPT, CKTP, operates Pediatric Physical Therapy of Harlem in New York City

34 WHAT IT MEANS TO BE A PHYSICAL THERAPIST ▪ “The healing potential of human touch has been celebrated since antiquity. But the sensitivity of a PT's hands lends that touch great power. It's a humbling and deeply gratifying aspect of why I love what I do.” Carrie A. Ciaverelli, PT, MPT, CYT Senior PT at Lakeway Aquatic Therapy & Wellness Center in Austin, Texas ▪ “I am becoming a PT for my love, fascination, and curiosity of the human body and wanting to make a positive difference in the lives of many people.” Chukwuemeka Nwigwe Student PT (SPT) at UMDNJ-SHRP and Graduate School at Rutgers Camden

35 ADDITIONAL RESOURCES ▪ American Physical Therapy Association (APTA) ▪ ▪ – Information for the Public ▪ – Frequently Asked Questions ▪ Physical Therapist Centralized Application Service (PTCAS) ▪ ▪ Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE) ▪ ▪ Federation of State Boards of Physical Therapy (FSBPT) ▪ ▪ Academic Council of the American Physical Therapy Association ▪


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