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Concerns to Ask Medical Assistant Programs
Prior to assessing your medical assistant school alternatives, you have to decide which type of credential you would like to earn, and if you would prefer attending classes on campus or online from home. Once those decisions have been made, you can start the procedure of comparing medical assistant schools. As we discussed at the beginning of this article, a number of potential students restrict their searches to the schools that are closest to Hueytown AL with the lowest tuition. Although cost and location are significant qualifiers, they are not the only ones. There are a number of additional considerations that you must look at when assessing schools. To help you with that process, below are some questions that you should ask about all of the programs you are considering before making your final selection.
Is the Medical Assistant College Accredited? There are a number of great reasons to verify that the program you enroll in is accredited. To start with, accreditation helps ensure that the training you receive will be both extensive and of the highest quality. Next, if you intend to become certified, you must enroll in an accredited program. Two of the approved organizations for accreditation are the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) and the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES). If your school is not accredited by either of these agencies, you will not be allowed to take the CMA exam. Additionally, if you plan on obtaining a student loan or financial aid, they are frequently not available for non-accredited programs. And finally, as mentioned previously, many prospective Hueytown AL employers will not employ a medical assistant who has not graduated from an accredited program.
What is the Program's Passing Percentage? The majority of accredited medical assistant colleges develop their programs to prepare students to pass one or more certification exams. To start with, you need to determine which of the certifications the schools you are reviewing are preparing their students for. If you are planning on taking the CMA for example, then obviously you will want to enroll in a program targeting that certification. Second, learn what the school's passage rate is for the certification and contrast it to the national average. This is one of the methods to help assess the quality of a college's program. Of course schools with lower rates are those that you will want to eliminate.
Which Credentials are Provided? As we previously covered, there are basically two routes to acquiring medical assistant training. You can enroll in a certificate or diploma program and obtain entry level training in the shortest amount of time, starting at just 6 months, although the average is closer to 1 year. Or you can elect to obtain an Associate Degree and get a more comprehensive education that will require approximately 2 years to complete in a community college or vocational school. Whatever program you decide to pursue, verify that the schools you are reviewing provide the kind of program you are interested in.
Are Internships Sponsored? Numerous medical assistant programs sponsor internship programs with Hueytown AL area medical care providers. They are a great method to get hands-on clinical experience and training. They may also help students build relationships within the Hueytown medical community. And as an added benefit, they are an advantage on resumes and for job interviews too.
Is Job Placement Service Supplied? Finding that very first job can be a challenging task for graduating medical assistant students unless they obtain some assistance from a job placement program. Confirm that the schools you are interviewing offer job placement assistance in the Hueytown AL area and ask what their placement rate is. If a college has a higher job placement rate for its graduates, it indicates that it has an excellent reputation within the health care community. It also suggests that it has a wide network of employers to help place students in positions.
How Big are the Classes? Class size might be an indication of how much individual instruction you will receive during your training. Smaller classes and classes with a higher teacher to student ratio are more likely to furnish greater access to instructors and face to face interaction. If practical, try to monitor a few classes before selecting a college to witness what the teaching environment is like and how much attention the students get.
Is Class Scheduling Practical? If you anticipate attending a medical assistant school while you continue to work full time, it's imperative that the school you select offers classes that fit your schedule. If you have to attend classes in the evenings or on weekends near Hueytown AL, verify that those times are available. You may be able to fit your classes in easier with an online program, but you will still need to schedule all clinical training or internships that might be required. Also, ask what the protocol is for making up classes that you may have to miss because of illness, work or family responsibilities.