Prior to assessing your medical assistant school options, you have to choose which kind of credential you want to earn, and if you would prefer attending classes on campus or online at home. As soon as those choices have been made, you can begin the procedure of researching medical assistant schools. As we covered at the opening of this article, a number of prospective students limit their searches to the colleges that are nearest to El Mirage Arizona with the lowest tuition. Although cost and location are significant qualifiers, they are by no means the only ones. There are a number of additional factors that you should examine when evaluating schools. To assist you with that task, following are some questions that you should ask about each of the schools you are thinking about before making your final choice.
Is the Medical Assistant School Accredited? There are a number of good reasons to make certain that the college you enroll in is accredited. To begin with, accreditation helps ensure that the education you receive will be both comprehensive and of the highest quality. Second, if you plan on becoming certified, you need to 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 allowed to take the CMA examination. Additionally, if you intend on applying for a student loan or financial aid, they are frequently not offered for non-accredited programs. And last, as previously mentioned, a number of potential Arizona 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 Arizona accredited medical assistant colleges design their programs to prepare students to pass one or more certification exams. To begin with, you need to determine which of the certifications the colleges you are looking at are preparing their students for. If you are interested in taking the CMA for instance, then naturally you will want to enroll in a program focused on that certification. Next, learn what the program's passage rate is for the certification and compare it to the national average. This is just one of the methods to help evaluate the quality of a school's program. Naturally programs with lower rates are ones that you will prefer to avoid.
Which Credentials are Provided? As we covered earlier, there are basically two routes to obtaining medical assistant training. You can choose a diploma or certificate program and receive entry level training in the fastest amount of time, starting at just 6 months, however the average is about one year. Or you can choose to obtain an Associate Degree and receive a more comprehensive education that will take approximately two years to accomplish in a community college or trade school. Whichever program you elect to pursue, verify that the Arizona schools you are looking at provide the kind of program you have an interest in.
Are Internships Sponsored? A large number of medical assistant colleges sponsor internship programs with Arizona medical care providers. They are a great means to get hands-on practical training and experience. They may also assist students develop relationships within the El Mirage healthcare community. And as an added benefit, they are an advantage on resumes and for job interviews as well.
Is Job Placement Support Offered? Finding that initial job can be a challenging task for graduating medical assistant students unless they obtain a little help from a job placement program. Confirm that the colleges you are interviewing offer job placement assistance in Arizona and find out what their placement rate is. If a college has a higher job placement rate for its students, it affirms that it has an excellent reputation within the health care community. It also signifies that it has a broad network of contacts to help place students in positions.
How Big are the Classes? Class size can be an indicator of how much individual attention you will get throughout 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 convenient, try to monitor a couple of classes before enrolling in a college to see what the teaching atmosphere is like and how much attention the students get.
Is Class Scheduling Accessible? If you anticipate attending a medical assistant school while you continue to work full time, it's important that the program you enroll in offers classes that accommodate your schedule. If you need to attend classes at night or on weekends near El Mirage Arizona, confirm that those times are offered. You may be able to fit your classes in more easily with an online school, but you will still have to schedule all internships or clinical training 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 emergencies.