Physical Therapy Programs in West Virginia - WV
In order to become a physical therapist in West Virginia, an individual must graduate from a four-year college and then go on to earn a graduate degree in physical therapy. Advanced degrees in physical therapy include the Master’s in Physical Therapy and the Doctor of Physical Therapy or DPT. As time goes by, employers and licensing boards are showing more and more preference for the DPT over the Master’s degree, so aspiring physical therapists are advised to earn the DPT if possible as doing so could mean more opportunities for career advancement in the future. For a student attending school full-time, the DPT takes three years to complete, no more than a year longer than a Master’s degree in physical therapy which typically takes two to two-and-a-half years.
An applicant to a graduate program in physical therapy should have a strong grounding in the life and laboratory sciences. Physical therapy schools require applicants to have taken certain prerequisites which include courses in biology, anatomy, physiology, chemistry, and physics, as well as courses in statistics and psychology. In addition, most physical therapy schools require applicants to graduate-level programs to have completed anywhere from 50 to 100 hours of volunteer or paid work experience in a health-care setting under the direction and supervision of a licensed physical therapist.
Graduate students in physical therapy take a challenging and rigorous program of course work which includes classes in advanced anatomy and physiology, biomechanics, neuroanatomy and neuroscience, orthotics and prosthetics, pediatrics, geriatrics, cardiopulmonology, psychology, and human development. Graduate programs in physical therapy also entail extensive clinical education, including courses in therapeutic techniques and diagnostic evaluation, as well as clinical rotations in a variety of health-care settings, such as hospitals, clinics, nursing homes, schools, and rehabilitation facilities, where students work with patients under the supervision of practicing physical therapists. There are a variety of online West Virginia physical therapy schools available.Through campus based and online programs, aspiring Physical Therapists in Charleston, Huntington, Parkersburg and Wheeling, West Virginia may be able to prepare themselves for the possibility of employment in some of the largest hospitals and healthcare facilities in the state including the Charleston Area Medical Center General Hospital, Wheeling Hospital, Saint Mary's Medical Center and Ruby Memorial Hospital.