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What to Ask Medical Assistant Colleges
Before you can start examining your medical assistant school options, you must decide which kind of credential you would like to earn, and if you want to attend classes on-campus or online from home. After those choices have been made, you can start the procedure of researching medical assistant schools. As we covered at the beginning of this article, many potential students restrict their searches to the schools that are closest to San Luis AZ with the most affordable tuition. Although cost and location are important qualifications, they are by no means the only ones. There are several additional issues that you should look at when assessing programs. To help you with that process, below are some questions that you need to ask about each of the programs you are considering before making your final choice.
Is the Medical Assistant Course Accredited? There are several good reasons to confirm that the college you choose is accredited. First, 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 need to complete an accredited program. Two of the approved agencies 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 organizations, you will not be qualified to take the CMA examination. Additionally, if you plan on obtaining a student loan or financial assistance, they are often not available for non-accredited programs. And last, as mentioned previously, a number of potential San Luis AZ employers will not employ a medical assistant who has not graduated from an accredited college.
What is the Program's Passage Percentage? Most of the accredited medical assistant colleges create their programs to prepare students to pass one or more certification exams. To start with, you must find out which of the certifications the programs you are looking at are preparing their students to take. If you are planning on taking the CMA for instance, then naturally you will want to enroll in a program focused on that certification. Second, ask 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 school's program. Obviously programs with low rates are ones that you will want to eliminate.
Which Credentials are Available? As we covered earlier, there are essentially two routes to acquiring medical assistant training. You can choose a certificate or diploma program and receive 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 choose to acquire an Associate Degree and get a broader education that will take about two years to finish in a junior college or trade school. Whatever program you choose to enroll in, confirm that the schools you are considering offer the type of program you are interested in.
Are Internships Provided? Many medical assistant schools sponsor internship programs with San Luis AZ area health care providers. They are a great means to obtain hands-on clinical training and experience. They may also help students establish relationships within the San Luis healthcare community. And as an additional benefit, they are an asset on resumes and for job interviews too.
Is Job Placement Service Offered? Getting that first job may be a difficult undertaking for medical assistant school graduates unless they receive a little assistance from a job placement program. Confirm that the colleges you are researching offer job placement assistance in the San Luis AZ area and ask what their placement rate is. If a program has a higher job placement rate for its students, it affirms that it has an excellent reputation within the healthcare community. It also indicates that it has a large network of employers to help place students in jobs.
How Large are the Classrooms? Class size may be an indicator of how much personal attention you will get throughout your training. Smaller classes and classes with a higher teacher to student ratio are more prone to offer greater access to instructors and face to face interaction. If convenient, try to attend a few classes before selecting a program to observe what the teaching atmosphere is like and how much attention the students receive.
Is Class Scheduling Convenient? If you anticipate attending a medical assistant program while you continue to work full-time, it's imperative that the program you choose provides classes that accommodate your schedule. If you have to attend classes at night or on weekends near San Luis AZ, make sure that those times are available. You may be able to fit your classes in more easily with an online school, but you will also have to schedule any internships or practical training that may be required. Also, find out what the policy is for making up classes that you may have to miss due to illness, work or family emergencies.