6 things to complete before becoming a therapist

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6 things to complete before becoming a therapist

If you’ve just graduated from high school, or just finished up your freshman year at college, you’re probably getting a lot of questions about what you’re going to do with your life. Frustrating, right?

Here at NARA, we would like to encourage you to pursue the life of a therapist! This can entail everything from speech therapy to physical therapy to occupational therapy and more. These careers are very rewarding, as you are helping people every day.

However, before you join our profession, make sure you follow these six steps:

  1. Shadow several therapists


Each therapist is going to have their own outlook on the business and own way of doing things. Plus, if you’re not sure what type of therapy you want to pursue, it will be good to get a glance at several different kinds to figure out what you want.


  1. Tailor your undergraduate studies


Once you decide what kind of therapist you want to be, make sure you’re hitting all the prerequisites for graduate school. Usually, this will include anatomy & physiology, biology, physics and math.


  1. Grades are even more important


Your parents were probably always trying to motivate you to get better grades, but for any kind of therapy job, you really need them to be top-notch! This is something graduate schools will look at before admitting you. Which brings us to:


  1. The GRE


While you might be four years away from the GREs (or Graduate Records Examination), it’s not too early to start preparing for them. These are essentially the ACTs or SATs for grad school. They cover math, logical analytical skills and writing skills. If there is an area that you are shaky in, take some extra classes in it as you near graduation.


  1. Research programs


Aside from Google searches, make sure you visit the campus where you intend to go to school, as well as talk to the professors. You’ll be working much more closely with them than you did as an undergrad, so it’s important that you have a good working relationship early on. Make sure the graduate school you’re going to has an average pass rate of 85% or higher for the Boards.


  1. Take the Boards


Just like a lawyer has to pass the Bar, you’ll have to study for and pass the Boards. This will certify you as a therapist.


Once you complete all these steps, you should be on your way to joining our profession! After you’ve started practicing, don’t forget to become a member of NARA