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Topics to Ask Medical Assistant Programs
Before you can start evaluating your medical assistant school alternatives, you must decide which kind of credential you want to earn, and if you want to attend classes on campus or online at home. After those decisions have been made, you can begin the procedure of researching medical assistant schools. As we discussed at the beginning of this article, some prospective students limit their searches to the schools that are nearest to Calera AL with the lowest tuition. Although location and cost are important qualifiers, they are by no means the only ones. There are a number of additional considerations that you should explore when evaluating schools. To help you with that process, below are some questions that you should ask about all of the schools you are thinking about before making your ultimate choice.
Is the Medical Assistant Course Accredited? There are many great reasons to confirm that the school you choose is accredited. To start with, accreditation helps guarantee that the education you receive will be both extensive and of the highest quality. Second, if you intend to become certified, you must enroll in an accredited program. Two of the approved organizations for accreditation are the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES) and the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP). If your school is not accredited by one of these organizations, you will not be qualified to take the CMA exam. Additionally, if you intend on applying for a student loan or financial aid, they are frequently not available for non-accredited programs. And finally, as previously mentioned, many prospective Calera AL employers will not employ a medical assistant who has not graduated from an accredited school.
What is the School's Passage Percentage? Most of the accredited medical assistant colleges develop their programs to prep students to pass one or more certification examinations. To start with, you need to learn which of the certifications the programs you are looking at are preparing their students for. If you are interested in taking the CMA for example, then naturally you will want to enroll in a program focused on that certification. Second, learn what the school's passage rate is for the certification and contrast it to the national average. Doing this is one of the methods to help assess the quality of a college's program. Obviously programs with lower rates are ones that you will want to eliminate.
Which Credentials are Provided? As we previously covered, there are essentially two routes to obtaining medical assistant training. You can choose a certificate or diploma program and get entry level training in the shortest amount of time, from as little as 6 months, however the average is about one year. Or you can decide to obtain an Associate Degree and receive a more comprehensive education that will take about 2 years to complete in a junior college or vocational school. Whichever program you elect to enroll in, make sure that the schools you are looking at provide the kind of program you are interested in.
Are Internships Offered? Numerous medical assistant programs sponsor internship programs with Calera AL area health care providers. They are an excellent way to obtain hands-on clinical training and experience. They may also help students establish relationships within the Calera health care community. And as an added benefit, they are an asset on resumes and for job interviews too.
Is Job Placement Assistance Supplied? Getting that initial job may be a daunting undertaking for medical assistant school graduates unless they receive some assistance from a job placement program. Verify that the colleges you are evaluating provide job placement assistance in the Calera AL area and find out what their placement rate is. If a school has a high job placement rate for its students, it affirms that it has a good reputation within the medical community. It also suggests that it has a broad network of contacts to help place students in jobs.
How Big are the Classes? Class size might be an indicator of how much personal attention you will receive throughout your training. Small classes and classes with a higher teacher to student ratio are more likely to furnish increased access to instructors and face to face interaction. If practical, try to sit in on a few classes before enrolling in a college to witness what the teaching environment is like and just how much attention the students get.
Is Class Scheduling Practical? If you plan on attending a medical assistant program while you continue to work full-time, it's imperative that the program you select offers classes that fit your schedule. If you need to attend classes at night or on weekends near Calera AL, confirm that those times are offered. You might be able to fit your classes in easier with an online program, but you will still have to schedule any clinical training or internships that will be required. Also, ask what the protocol is for making up classes that you might have to miss due to work, illness or family responsibilities.