Before you can start reviewing your medical assistant school options, you need to choose which type of credential you would like to attain, and if you would prefer attending classes on-campus or online from home. As soon as those choices have been made, you can begin the process of comparing medical assistant schools. As we covered at the beginning of this article, some students restrict their searches to the schools that are nearest to Chatsworth California with the lowest tuition. Although cost and location are significant qualifiers, they are not the only ones. There are a number of additional factors that you should look at when assessing programs. To help you with that task, following are some questions that you need to ask about all of the programs you are thinking about before making your final selection.
Is the Medical Assistant College Accredited? There are a number of great reasons to confirm that the college you choose is accredited. To begin with, accreditation helps guarantee that the education you receive will be both comprehensive and of the highest quality. Second, if you plan on becoming certified, you must complete an accredited program. Two of the acknowledged 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 program is not accredited by one of these agencies, you will not be eligible to take the CMA exam. Additionally, if you anticipate applying for a student loan or financial aid, they are often not available 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 college.
What is the School's Passing Percentage? Most of the California accredited medical assistant colleges create their programs to prepare students to pass one or more certification examinations. First, you must learn which of the certifications the programs 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 select a program focused on that certification. Second, ask what the program's passage rate is for the certification and contrast it to the national average. This is one of the ways to help assess the quality of a college's program. Of course schools with low rates are those that you will prefer to eliminate.
Which Programs are Provided? As we previously covered, there are essentially two routes to acquiring medical assistant training. You can select a certificate or diploma program and get entry level training in the fastest amount of time, starting at just 6 months, however the average is about one year. Or you can choose to acquire an Associate Degree and get a more comprehensive education that will require approximately two years to accomplish in a community college or trade school. Whichever program you elect to pursue, confirm that the California schools you are looking at offer the kind of program you are interested in.
Are Internships Offered? Many medical assistant programs sponsor internship programs with California medical providers. They are an excellent method to obtain hands-on clinical training and experience. They can also assist students build relationships within the Chatsworth healthcare community. And as an added perk, they are an asset on resumes and for job interviews too.
Is Job Placement Service Furnished? Getting that first job can be a challenging task for medical assistant school graduates unless they have some assistance from a job placement program. Confirm that the colleges you are evaluating offer job placement assistance in California and find out what their placement rate is. If a program has a high job placement rate for its students, it affirms that it has a good reputation within the healthcare community. It also signifies that it has a large network of employers to help place students in jobs.
How Large are the Classes? Class size might be an indication of how much personal attention you will get throughout your training. Smaller classes and classes with a higher teacher to student ratio are more likely to furnish increased access to teachers and one-on-one interaction. If convenient, try to attend a couple of classes before choosing a program to witness what the teaching environment is like and how much attention the students receive.
Is Class Scheduling Convenient? If you anticipate attending a medical assistant school while you continue working full time, it's important that the school you enroll in provides classes that fit your schedule. If you have to go to classes at night or on weekends near Chatsworth California, make certain that those times are available. You might be able to fit your classes in more conveniently with an online program, but you will still have to schedule any clinical training or internships that will be required. Additionally, ask what the protocol is for making up classes that you may have to miss due to illness, work or family responsibilities.