So you have already asked the question “Should I become a physical therapist” and your ready to start diving into the process. Before you get going its important to know that this process does take time, however we are here to help you rapidly cut down on the process.
Below we have outlined 8 key points in the Doctor Physical Therapy (DPT) program life-cycle. While there are several steps and processes that you will encounter in-between each process, these step will you a general timeline for the steps that lead to a DPT degree.
1. Get a bachelors’s or master’s degree in any numerous science courses such as biology, chemistry, or even physics. The sooner you can take these classes the better. If you already have a degree in a nonscience related field, then you may have to go back get get some of these science classes.
2. Earn High Marks. Maintain an excellent grade point average (GPA) and score high on your Graduate Record Exam (GRE). Your college GPA and GRE are critical are two of the most important criteria used to select applicants for DPT school .
3. Obtain observation hours. During your undergraduate work consult local hospitals, rehabilitation centers, and private clinics about their hiring forecasts and job demands. If you can get any exposure to life as physical therapist before committing to a DPT program, you can see which lifestyle is really right for you.
4.Get a handle on the DPT application. Becoming DPT is an involved process, so we suggest you save time, effort, and money by downloading our free “PT Success Step by Step” guide which can be found at the bottom of this article. The Guide below will give you the knowledge and know-how for finding the DPT program right for you.
5.Research your DPT school and program. In the United States there are over 200+ DPT schools and programs to choose from. PhyscialTherapyGraduate.com (PTGrad.com) has broken this process down by providing the critical data needed to find the program that is right for you.
6.Get your DPT degree. This process can take between 3-4 years depending on the program you choose.
7.Pass the mandatory National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE). Each state is different so please check your state’s exact licensing requirements long before graduation these necessary links can be found with each of the schools listed on PTGrad.com
8.Decide if you want to specialize in an area such as pediatrics, neurology, or sports medicine. Ask your schools counselor about additional training or degrees required for certification in curtain specialty areas. You can always work toward a specialty after you graduate from college. It takes years of practice to master a specialty area so search out experienced clinicians to help you along the way.
Below is an different more generalized DPT lifecycle info-graphic courtesy of schools.com