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Points to Ask Medical Assistant Programs
Prior to evaluating your medical assistant school alternatives, you need to decide which kind of credential you want to earn, and if you would prefer attending classes on campus or online from home. After those decisions have been made, you can start the process of evaluating medical assistant schools. As we covered at the opening of this article, a number of prospective students confine their searches to the colleges that are nearest to Drexel Heights AZ with the most affordable tuition. Although location and cost are important qualifications, they are by no means the only ones. There are several additional issues that you need to look at when assessing programs. To help you with that task, following are a few questions that you should ask about each of the schools you are considering before making your final selection.
Is the Medical Assistant School Accredited? There are many great reasons to make certain that the school you select is accredited. To start with, accreditation helps guarantee that the instruction you receive will be both comprehensive and of the highest quality. Next, if you plan on becoming certified, you must complete an accredited program. Two of the acknowledged 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 program is not accredited by one of these agencies, you will not be allowed to take the CMA exam. Also, if you anticipate obtaining a student loan or financial aid, they are normally not available for non-accredited programs. And finally, as previously mentioned, a number of prospective Drexel Heights AZ employers will not employ a medical assistant who has not graduated from an accredited school.
What is the Program's Passing Percentage? The majority of accredited medical assistant colleges develop their programs to ready students to pass one or more certification examinations. First, you need to determine which of the certifications the colleges you are looking at are preparing their students for. If you are planning on taking the CMA for instance, then naturally you will want to enroll in a program targeting that certification. Next, ask what the program's passage rate is for the certification and contrast it to the national average. This is one of the means to help assess the quality of a school's program. Obviously programs with lower rates are ones that you will prefer to eliminate.
Which Credentials are Provided? As we covered earlier, there are basically two paths to obtaining medical assistant training. You can enroll in a diploma or certificate program and get entry level training in the fastest amount of time, from as little as 6 months, however the average is closer to one year. Or you can elect to earn an Associate Degree and receive a more comprehensive education that will take approximately 2 years to complete in a community college or vocational school. Whichever program you decide to pursue, verify that the schools you are reviewing offer the kind of program you have an interest in.
Are Internships Provided? Many medical assistant schools sponsor internship programs with Drexel Heights AZ area medical providers. They are a great way to get hands-on clinical experience and training. They can also help students build relationships within the Drexel Heights health care community. And as an additional benefit, they are an asset on resumes and for job interviews as well.
Is Job Placement Help Furnished? Landing that initial job may be a difficult task for graduating medical assistant students unless they have some assistance from a job placement program. Confirm that the colleges you are evaluating offer job placement assistance in the Drexel Heights AZ area and find out what their placement rate is. If a program has a higher job placement rate for its graduates, it affirms 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 jobs.
How Large are the Classrooms? Class size may be an indicator of how much individual attention you will receive during your training. Small classes and classes with a higher teacher to student ratio are more likely to provide greater access to instructors and face to face interaction. If possible, try to attend a few classes before enrolling in a program to observe what the teaching environment is like and just how much attention the students receive.
Is Class Scheduling Accessible? If you plan on attending a medical assistant college while you continue working full-time, it's important that the school you select provides classes that fit your schedule. If you need to attend classes at night or on weekends near Drexel Heights AZ, make sure that those times are available. You may be able to fit your classes in more conveniently with an online school, but you will also have to schedule all clinical training or internships that might be required. Additionally, ask what the protocol is for making up classes that you may have to miss due to work, illness or family responsibilities.