Research Article | Open Access
Students of physical therapy. A comparative study of student profiles at a college and university in Israel
This study focuses on the attributes of students of physical therapy in order to compare the profiles of students of physical therapy (PT) in two institutions of higher learning in Israel: Ben Gurion University (BGU) and the Academic College of Judea and Samaria (ACJS). This study focuses on a department where studies have an occupational/applicative/practical orientation and high status in the higher education system. Findings of this study indicate broad similarities in the profiles of students at both institutions in relation to their age, family status, country of origin, number of siblings, parental education, and financial status of student family of origin. On the other hand, students at both institutions differed in terms of gender composition, students' employment status, the source of payment for tuition, and in their academic attainments prior to admission. Specifically, students of physical therapy at ACJS had lower academic achievements prior to their admission and reported having been rejected by other physical therapy programs. Students at ACJS placed higher importance on factors relating to the quality of instruction including teacher involvement, competitiveness, organization, control, and orientation to the study material. Students at BGU attributed greater importance to teachers' support. Findings support a thesis of a converging system of higher education in Israel, traditionally dominated by national universities and regional colleges, a relatively recent phenomenon.