Prior to evaluating your medical assistant school alternatives, you have to decide which kind of credential you want to attain, and if you want to attend classes on-campus or online from home. After those selections have been made, you can begin the procedure of evaluating medical assistant schools. As we covered at the beginning of this article, many prospective students restrict their searches to the colleges that are nearest to Burbank California with the lowest tuition. Although location and cost are significant qualifications, they are not the only ones. There are several additional considerations that you need to look at when researching programs. To assist you with that process, below are a few questions that you need to ask about each of the schools you are considering before making your final selection.
Is the Medical Assistant Course Accredited? There are many good reasons to confirm that the school you choose is accredited. To begin with, accreditation helps ensure that the instruction you receive will be both extensive and of the highest quality. Second, if you intend to become certified, you need to enroll in 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 program is not accredited by one of these agencies, you will not be eligible to take the CMA examination. Also, if you intend on obtaining a student loan or financial aid, they are normally not offered for non-accredited programs. And last, as mentioned previously, many potential California employers will not hire a medical assistant who has not graduated from an accredited program.
What is the Program's Passing Percentage? The majority of California accredited medical assistant colleges develop their programs to prep students to pass one or more certification examinations. First, you must determine which of the certifications the colleges you are considering are preparing their students for. If you are planning on taking the CMA for instance, then of course you will want to enroll in a program concentrating on that certification. Next, ask what the school's passage rate is for the certification and compare it to the national average. This is just one of the methods to help assess the quality of a school's program. Obviously programs with low rates are those that you will prefer to eliminate.
Which Credentials are Available? As we covered earlier, there are basically two paths 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 one year. Or you can choose to obtain an Associate Degree and receive a more comprehensive education that will take approximately 2 years to accomplish in a community college or trade school. Whatever program you choose to enroll in, confirm that the California colleges you are considering provide the kind of program you have an interest in.
Are Internships Offered? Numerous medical assistant colleges offer internship programs with California healthcare providers. They are an excellent method to receive hands-on clinical experience and training. They can also help students develop relationships within the Burbank health care community. And as an additional perk, they are an asset on resumes and for job interviews as well.
Is Job Placement Help Provided? Landing that first job may be a daunting undertaking for graduating medical assistant students unless they obtain a little assistance from a job placement program. Verify that the colleges you are researching provide job placement assistance in California and find out what their placement rate is. If a program has a higher job placement rate for its students, it affirms that it has a good reputation within the medical community. It also signifies that it has a wide network of contacts to help place students in jobs.
How Big are the Classrooms? Class size can be an indicator of how much personal attention you will receive during your training. Small classes and classes with a higher teacher to student ratio are more likely to furnish greater access to teachers and face to face interaction. If practical, try to sit in on a couple of classes before choosing a college to see what the teaching atmosphere is like and just how much attention the students receive.
Is Class Scheduling Accessible? If you anticipate attending a medical assistant college while you continue to work full time, it's imperative that the college you select offers classes that accommodate your schedule. If you have to go to classes at night or on weekends near Burbank California, confirm that those times are available. You might be able to fit your classes in easier with an online program, but you will still have to schedule any internships or clinical training that might be required. Also, find out what the policy is for making up classes that you might have to miss due to work, illness or family emergencies.