Prior to assessing your medical assistant school options, you must decide which kind of credential you want to earn, and if you want to attend classes on-campus or online from home. As soon as those choices have been made, you can begin the process of evaluating medical assistant schools. As we discussed at the beginning of this article, many potential students restrict their searches to the colleges that are nearest to Camarillo California with the lowest tuition. Although location and cost are significant qualifications, they are by no means the only ones. There are several additional factors that you need to explore when researching programs. To assist you with that task, below are a few questions that you should ask about all of the programs you are thinking about before making your ultimate choice.
Is the Medical Assistant Course Accredited? There are a number of great reasons to make sure that the college you enroll in is accredited. To begin with, accreditation helps ensure that the training 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 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 plan on obtaining a student loan or financial assistance, they are frequently not offered for non-accredited programs. And last, as previously mentioned, many potential California employers will not employ a medical assistant who has not graduated from an accredited school.
What is the School's Passage Rate? The majority of California accredited medical assistant schools design their programs to prep students to pass one or more certification examinations. First, you must find out 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 naturally you will need to choose a program concentrating on that certification. Next, find out what the school's passage rate is for the certification and compare it to the national average. This is one of the methods to help evaluate the quality of a school's program. Naturally schools with low rates are those that you will prefer to eliminate.
Which Credentials are Provided? As we covered earlier, there are generally two paths to obtaining medical assistant training. You can enroll in a certificate or diploma program and receive entry level training in the shortest amount of time, from as little as 6 months, although the average is closer to 1 year. Or you can choose to acquire an Associate Degree and receive a more comprehensive education that will take about two years to accomplish in a community college or vocational school. Whatever program you decide to pursue, make sure that the California schools you are considering provide the type of program you are interested in.
Are Internships Available? A large number of medical assistant colleges offer internship programs with California medical care providers. They are a great means to obtain hands-on clinical training and experience. They may also help students build relationships within the Camarillo health care community. And as an additional benefit, they are an advantage on resumes and for job interviews as well.
Is Job Placement Service Furnished? Getting that initial job can be a difficult task for medical assistant school graduates unless they obtain some assistance from a job placement program. Confirm that the schools you are interviewing provide job placement assistance in California and ask what their placement rate is. If a school has a high job placement rate for its graduates, it affirms that it has a good reputation within the medical community. It also indicates that it has a broad network of contacts to help place students in jobs.
How Large are the Classes? Class size may be an indication of how much individual instruction you will receive throughout your training. Small classes and classes with a higher teacher to student ratio are more prone to furnish greater access to instructors and face to face interaction. If practical, try to monitor a few classes before enrolling in a college to observe what the teaching atmosphere is like and just how much attention the students get.
Is Class Scheduling Practical? If you plan on attending a medical assistant program while you continue working full-time, it's important that the program you select provides classes that accommodate your schedule. If you need to go to classes at night or on weekends near Camarillo California, verify that those times are offered. You might be able to fit your classes in easier with an online school, but you will still need to schedule all internships or practical training that may be required. Also, find out what the protocol is for making up classes that you may have to miss because of illness, work or family responsibilities.