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How to Become a Physiotherapist?

Aspiring physiotherapists in India have a lot to look forward to. The scope of the job is varied and versatile, and upon qualifying as a physiotherapist, you’ll have a lot of options to choose from. You could branch out into any one of the many specialized fields like pediatric physical therapy, geriatric physical therapy, or even neurological physical therapy, among others. However, the most essential question remains, “How do you become a physiotherapist?

Let’s find out.

The 10+2 Level

When it comes to a career in physiotherapy, this is the pivotal phase. Taking the right combination of subjects at the 10+2 level makes it possible for you to smoothly sail through the rest of the journey. Ensure that you study physics, chemistry, and biology (or PCB). Of course, students who take the PCMB group also qualify, as they study the three required subjects in addition to mathematics. Additionally, most prestigious colleges and universities require candidates to have scored a minimum of 50% in the 10+2 level, so that’s another thing you’ll want to make sure you accomplish.

Undergraduate Education

At the graduate level, it’s best to enroll in the Bachelor of Physiotherapy course, which is often simply referred to as BPT. Here’s everything you’ll need to know about the BPT course.

Bachelor of Physiotherapy

● Duration – The course typically spans across four years and six months. It’s structured to include four years of academic and theoretical study, followed by six months of practical training.
● Eligibility – The minimum requirement is a score of 50% in the 10+2 level. Only candidates with the PCB or the PCMB combination of subjects are eligible for the BPT course.
● Admission – Admission into the course requires that aspiring candidates take the Common Entrance Test (CET). Upon clearing this exam, you’ll have to sit for an interview. Once you’ve qualified for the exam and the interview, you can enroll in the Bachelor of Physiotherapy course.
● Job scope – Possessing a bachelor’s degree in physiotherapy allows you to run your own practice as a physiotherapist or to be employed in a hospital.
An Alternative Professional Course
If you haven’t studied physics, chemistry, and biology at the 10+2 level, there’s a workaround that can allow you to enroll for the BPT course. You’ll need to acquire a diploma in physiotherapy. Here are the details.

Diploma in Physiotherapy

● Duration – This course spans across three years (or two, in some cases). It essentially depends on the institute you enroll in.
● Eligibility – The minimum requirement is 10+2 in the science stream, with an aggregate of 45% higher.
● Admission – Colleges may conduct their own entrance tests to filter out eligible candidates.
● Lateral entry into BPT – Students who’ve completed the diploma course in physiotherapy can often gain entry into the second year of the BPT course.
● Job scope – it’s almost never possible to be employed as a full-fledged physiotherapist with a diploma alone. However, with a diploma in physiotherapy, you can work as an assistant to a practicing physiotherapist.

Postgraduate Education

If you’re interested in pursuing a postgraduate course, there’s always the MPT (or Master of Physiotherapy) course to consider. It might improve the scope of your career and make you more employable.

Master’s Degree in Physiotherapy

● Duration – The MPT course spans across two years. There’s no age limit in place, currently.
● Eligibility – The minimum requirement is an undergraduate degree in physiotherapy. BPT is naturally the most accepted qualification to make a candidate eligible for MPT.
● Specializations – You can pursue a master’s degree in any of these streams: neurosciences, orthopedics, community physiotherapy, pediatrics and women’s health, and cardiopulmonary sciences.
● Job scope – With a postgraduate degree in physiotherapy, you can branch out into research, or you could be employed as a physiotherapist in any one of the many leading hospitals in the country. Private practice is also always an option. So, that’s the layout of the basic journey you’ll need to take from 10+2 to become a physiotherapist. It’s a simple and straightforward set of courses. Also, depending on whether or not you intend to obtain a master’s degree in physiotherapy, it should take you around four-and-a-half to seven years to be qualified as a physiotherapist.

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Kishlay KishoreManipal Academy of Higher Education