7 Keys To Finding A Quality Medical Assistant School
There are tons of colleges and schools offering a Medical Assistant Program. Most of these schools will promise quick training and job placement, but what about your learning experience?
The last thing you want to do is join a Medical Assistant Program and find out half-way through that you don’t like it anymore. So it’s important you take the time to research the school and the program to ensure that you will complete and be satisfied with your medical training.
Here are 5 keys to look for when considering a Medical Assistant School.
Well-Rounded, Accredited Curriculum
You want to make sure the school is going to give you all the basic knowledge you’ll need to work as a medical assistant. Ask to take a look at the books, and you’ll find out if the school is giving you practical education you’ll use on a daily basis.
You also want to make sure the Medical Assistant Program you join is accredited and recognized by your state. You don’t want to enter a program that isn’t accredited by the state because it means you don’t know if they are really teaching what you need to know.
Extensive Hands-On Training
Needless to say, but you want a career school that is going to provide you with hands-on training. Hands-on training in a Medical Assistant Program means you’ll gain the practical experience taking blood pressure, working with patients, drawing blood, doing lab work, handling billing issues, etc.
You want to graduate from the program with enough hands-on training that you feel confident and ready to start your career as an experienced medical assistant. If they don’t offer much hands-on training, the school isn’t going to be very valuable to you. The whole point of getting trained as a medical assistant is to get experience—not just book knowledge.
And if they offer hands-on training, find out how much of the program is dedicated to giving you a chance to practice what you learned. Ask how soon you’ll start getting hands-on training, and how many hours are dedicated to giving you experience.
Another crucial issue is to find out if the hands-on training includes an internship in a real medical office. Sometimes schools call these “externships.” Although internships are not vital to getting a job after graduation, it definitely will help you with hands-on training and also getting references on your resume.
It’s important when finding a Medical Assistant School that they will train you quickly and efficiently. You don’t want to spend two to four years getting trained. You also don’t’ want a shot-term program that isn’t going to give you enough time to get trained. You need to find the balance.
There’s no reason why you can’t find a medical school that can train you in less than a year. Many programs suggest you can finish in 9 months, which is wonderful. This means you’ll probably start working in less than a year.
Excited Teachers And Motivated Students
One of the best ways to find out about the quality of the Medical Assistant School you’re considering, you should definitely talk with the students and teachers.
Walk around the school and talk with a medical assisting student. Find out what he or she likes about the school. Ask him or her what it’s like being a medical assisting students. Ask about the teachers. Ask about the career placement department. Ask about the hands-on experience. The students are going to reveal a lot about the school that you can’t find anywhere else.
You also should talk with the teachers. Find out how much they love teaching and what they do to make the classes fun. Ask them what to expect as a medical assisting student.
Even brief conversations with teachers and students will give you tremendous insight into that school, and will help you decide on what Medical Assistant School to join.
Does the school you’re considering have a good reputation? What do others in your community think of the school? Has the school been around awhile?
If you have time, you should call the school’s career placement department and ask for a list of employers that hire their medical assisting graduates. Call the employers and find out their opinion of the graduates they’ve hired. Are they well trained? How are they perceived by others in that work environment?
School reputation isn’t everything because there are new schools offering Medical Assistant Programs that don’t have any reputation yet. You just need to do the research to find out if you will enjoy your experience there and feel confident they
will help you with your job placement.
Excellent Career Placement Department
Another key to finding a great Medical Assistant School is the quality of its career placement department. Every school should have a career services department, and you’ll want to meet with the career services director or representative to find out how many graduates they place every year. The percentage of graduates placed in jobs is vital to making a decision to attend that school.
You also should find out what types of services they will provide you as a student. For example, will they help you with your resume? Will they help you prepare for the interview? Will they find you jobs within the area? How committed will they be to help you?
Research, Research, Research
When deciding on a Medical Assistant Program, the reputation of the school, career placement department, core curriculum, short-term training, and motivated staff are all keys to finding a great school.
You’ll only find this out by researching the schools in your area. Don’t stop researching until you have all the answers to your questions.
You may not find a school in your area that has all the qualities you want. That’s okay. You just want to make sure that as you visit different schools that you know what to look for. These keys will help you make an educated decision that you’ll feel good about.