Physical therapists help people who have injuries or illnesses improve body movement and manage pain. They diagnose patients? dysfunctional movements by observing them stand or walk, use exercise and equipment to ease patients? pain, evaluate patients? progress, and set up therapy plans for patients. PTs usually work in private offices and clinics, hospitals, and nursing homes. The 2010 median pay for physical therapists was $76,310, and the job outlook from 2010-2020 is 39 percent, which is must faster job growth than average.
Since the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE) no longer accredits undergraduate degrees, PTs are required to earn a postgraduate professional degree from an accredited academic program. A student can either earn a Master of Physical Therapy or a Doctor of Physical Therapy degree. In addition, all states require physical therapists be licensed.
Courses include anatomy, ethics, neuroscience, chemistry, orthopedics, biology, physiology, therapeutic applications, pharmacology, physical therapy modalities, and kinesiology. Students will learn how to plan, prepare, and carry out individual treatment programs; record data in a patient?s chart; and identify anticipated progress. Students should be prepared to undergo clinical rotations under the supervision of a licensed physical therapist. These clinicals provide students with hands-on experience while practicing therapy procedures and diagnosing patients.