Prior to assessing your medical assistant school alternatives, you have to choose which kind of credential you would like to earn, and if you would prefer attending classes on campus or online from home. After those choices have been made, you can start the procedure of comparing medical assistant schools. As we covered at the opening of this article, some students confine their searches to the colleges that are closest to Beverly Hills California with the most affordable tuition. Although location and cost are important qualifications, they are by no means the only ones. There are a number of additional issues that you must look at when researching programs. To assist you with that task, following are a few questions that you need to ask about all of the programs you are considering before making your ultimate selection.
Is the Medical Assistant School Accredited? There are several good reasons to make certain that the program you choose is accredited. To start with, accreditation helps ensure that the education you receive will be both comprehensive 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 qualified to take the CMA examination. Additionally, if you anticipate applying for a student loan or financial aid, they are often not offered for non-accredited programs. And last, as mentioned previously, many potential California employers will not employ a medical assistant who has not graduated from an accredited college.
What is the Program's Passage Rate? The majority of California accredited medical assistant schools create their programs to prep students to pass one or more certification examinations. To begin with, you must find out which of the certifications the colleges you are considering are preparing their students for. If you are interested in taking the CMA for instance, then of course you will want to choose a program targeting that certification. Second, ask what the school's passage rate is for the certification and compare it to the national average. This is just one of the means to help assess the quality of a college's program. Obviously programs with low rates are ones that you will want to eliminate.
Which Credentials are Offered? As we previously covered, there are generally two routes to obtaining medical assistant training. You can select a diploma or certificate program and receive entry level training in the shortest amount of time, from as little as 6 months, although the average is about one year. Or you can elect to acquire an Associate Degree and get a more comprehensive education that will require about 2 years to complete in a community college or vocational school. Whichever program you decide to enroll in, confirm that the California colleges you are reviewing offer the type of program you are interested in.
Are Internships Available? A large number of medical assistant schools offer internship programs with California medical care providers. They are a great means to receive hands-on clinical experience and training. They may also help students develop relationships within the Beverly Hills medical community. And as an added benefit, they are an asset on resumes and for job interviews too.
Is Job Placement Assistance Provided? Getting that initial job may be a difficult undertaking for graduating medical assistant students unless they receive some help from a job placement program. Verify that the colleges you are evaluating offer job placement assistance in California and ask what their placement rate is. If a school has a higher job placement rate for its students, it indicates that it has an excellent reputation within the health care community. It also indicates that it has a large network of employers to help place students in positions.
How Big are the Classrooms? Class size might be an indicator of how much individual attention you will get throughout your training. Smaller 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 practical, try to sit in on a couple of classes before selecting a school to experience what the teaching environment is like and how much attention the students receive.
Is Class Scheduling Convenient? If you anticipate attending a medical assistant program while you continue working full-time, it's imperative that the program you enroll in offers classes that fit your schedule. If you have to attend classes in the evenings or on weekends near Beverly Hills California, confirm that those times are offered. You may be able to fit your classes in more easily with an online program, but you will still have to schedule all internships or clinical training 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 emergencies.