Before you can start reviewing your medical assistant school options, you have to decide which type of credential you want to attain, and if you would prefer attending classes on-campus or online from home. Once those choices have been made, you can begin the procedure of comparing medical assistant schools. As we covered at the opening of this article, some prospective students confine their searches to the colleges that are nearest to Bentonville Arkansas with the cheapest tuition. Although cost and location are important qualifications, they are not the only ones. There are several additional issues that you must examine when assessing schools. To help you with that task, below are a few questions that you need to ask about all 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 confirm that the school you select is accredited. To begin with, accreditation helps guarantee that the education you receive will be both extensive and of the highest quality. Second, if you plan on becoming certified, you must complete an accredited program. Two of the accepted 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 eligible to take the CMA examination. Additionally, if you anticipate applying for a student loan or financial aid, they are frequently not offered for non-accredited programs. And finally, as previously mentioned, many prospective Arkansas employers will not hire a medical assistant who has not graduated from an accredited program.
What is the School's Passage Percentage? The majority of Arkansas accredited medical assistant schools design their programs to prepare students to pass one or more certification exams. To start with, you need to determine which of the certifications the colleges you are reviewing are preparing their students to take. If you are interested in taking the CMA for instance, then of course you will need to enroll in a program targeting that certification. Next, find out what the school's passage rate is for the certification and contrast it to the national average. Doing this is one of the methods to help evaluate the quality of a college's program. Obviously programs with low rates are ones that you will want to avoid.
Which Credentials are Provided? As we previously covered, there are essentially two routes to acquiring medical assistant training. You can choose a diploma or certificate program and obtain entry level training in the shortest amount of time, from as little as 6 months, however the average is about 1 year. Or you can decide to earn an Associate Degree and receive a more comprehensive education that will take about 2 years to complete in a community college or trade school. Whichever program you decide to pursue, make certain that the Arkansas schools you are looking at provide the type of program you have an interest in.
Are Internships Offered? A large number of medical assistant schools offer internship programs with Arkansas health care providers. They are an excellent way to get hands-on practical training and experience. They can also help students establish relationships within the Bentonville health care community. And as an additional benefit, they are an asset on resumes and for job interviews as well.
Is Job Placement Assistance Offered? Getting that first job may be a challenging undertaking for graduating medical assistant students unless they receive a little help from a job placement program. Confirm that the schools you are interviewing offer job placement assistance in Arkansas and ask 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 signifies that it has a wide network of employers to help place students in positions.
How Large are the Classes? Class size can be an indicator of how much personal instruction you will receive throughout your training. Smaller classes and classes with a higher teacher to student ratio are more likely to provide greater access to teachers and one-on-one interaction. If possible, try to sit in on a couple of classes before selecting a school to observe what the teaching environment is like and just how much attention the students receive.
Is Class Scheduling Convenient? If you plan on attending a medical assistant program while you continue working full time, it's imperative that the school you choose offers classes that accommodate your schedule. If you have to attend classes at night or on weekends near Bentonville Arkansas, make certain that those times are offered. You might be able to fit your classes in more conveniently with an online college, but you will still have to schedule any internships or practical training that may be required. Additionally, ask what the policy is for making up classes that you might have to miss because of work, illness or family issues.