Prior to reviewing your medical assistant school alternatives, you need 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 selections have been made, you can begin the procedure of evaluating medical assistant schools. As we discussed at the opening of this article, a number of prospective students restrict their searches to the schools that are nearest to Sun City Arizona with the most affordable tuition. Although location and cost are important qualifications, they are not the only ones. There are several additional considerations that you must look at when researching schools. To help you with that process, following are some questions that you need to ask about all of the programs you are considering before making your final choice.
Is the Medical Assistant Course Accredited? There are a number of great reasons to confirm that the college you choose is accredited. First, accreditation helps guarantee that the instruction you receive will be both extensive and of the highest quality. Next, if you plan on becoming certified, you need to enroll in an accredited program. Two of the acknowledged 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 program is not accredited by one of these agencies, you will not be allowed to take the CMA exam. Additionally, if you anticipate obtaining a student loan or financial assistance, they are frequently not offered for non-accredited programs. And last, as previously mentioned, a number of potential Arizona employers will not hire a medical assistant who has not graduated from an accredited school.
What is the Program's Passing Rate? Most of the Arizona accredited medical assistant schools develop their programs to prepare students to pass one or more certification exams. To begin with, you must determine which of the certifications the colleges you are reviewing are preparing their students for. If you are interested in taking the CMA for example, then naturally you will need to enroll in a program targeting that certification. Next, ask what the program's passage rate is for the certification and compare it to the national average. This is just one of the ways to help assess the quality of a college's program. Naturally schools with lower rates are those that you will prefer to eliminate.
Which Credentials are Offered? As we covered earlier, there are generally two routes to getting medical assistant training. You can enroll in a diploma or certificate program and obtain entry level training in the shortest amount of time, starting at just 6 months, although the average is about 1 year. Or you can decide to obtain an Associate Degree and receive a more comprehensive education that will require approximately two years to accomplish in a community college or trade school. Whichever program you elect to enroll in, make certain that the Arizona colleges you are looking at provide the type of program you are interested in.
Are Internships Sponsored? Many medical assistant schools offer internship programs with Arizona health care providers. They are a great method to obtain hands-on practical training and experience. They may also help students develop relationships within the Sun City healthcare community. And as an added benefit, they are an asset on resumes and for job interviews too.
Is Job Placement Assistance Supplied? Landing that initial job can be a difficult task for graduating medical assistant students unless they receive some assistance from a job placement program. Confirm that the colleges you are researching 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 wide network of employers to help place students in jobs.
How Large are the Classes? Class size may be an indicator of how much individual attention you will receive throughout your training. Small classes and classes with a higher teacher to student ratio are more prone to provide greater access to teachers and face to face interaction. If convenient, try to monitor a few classes before enrolling in a program to witness what the teaching environment is like and how much attention the students receive.
Is Class Scheduling Accommodating? If you plan on attending a medical assistant program while you continue to work full time, it's essential that the college you enroll in provides classes that accommodate your schedule. If you need to go to classes in the evenings or on weekends near Sun City Arizona, confirm that those times are available. You may be able to fit your classes in more conveniently with an online program, but you will also have to schedule all internships or practical training that may be required. Additionally, find out what the policy is for making up classes that you might have to miss due to work, illness or family emergencies.