3 Questions To Ask When Choosing A Medical Assistant Program

Are you considering a career as a medical assistant? That could be a wise decision. Workers in the medical field are always in demand, and the field should continue to grow as the population gets older. Being a medical assistant is a great way to enter the field and gain experience quickly. Medical assistants help physicians, EMTs, and other medical professionals in various tasks. You can continue your career as a medical assistant or grow into a larger role, like a physician's assistant or a nurse. The first step is finding the right medical assistant program. Below are a few questions to ask as you search for your program.

Do they offer a certificate, an associate's degree, or both?

Some medical assistant programs offer a certificate, which is enough to get you an entry-level job in a hospital or other healthcare facility. A certificate can be appealing because it can be completed in less than a year. That will save you money on tuition and get you into a career quickly. Other programs offer associate degrees. These may take up to two years to complete. However, an associate's will likely give you more job options and potentially higher pay. It will also give you credit toward a bachelor's degree if you want to complete it in the future. Some programs offer one or the other, while others offer both types of degrees. Make sure you understand what you're getting.

Do they offer schedule flexibility?

You may be working a job while you go to school, or you could have family commitments during the day. Many schools offer flexible class times so you can work around your other commitments. For example, some may offer night classes. Some may offer a mix of online and in-person classes. Many programs have lab requirements that must be done in person, but they should also offer flexible learning times. Be sure you understand the schedule and that it works with your other commitments. 

How do they help with career placement?

Some schools award a certificate or degree but leave it up to you to find a job. Look for a school that provides career assistance. They may help you get an internship with a doctor's office or a hospital. They could provide interview guidance and even connect you with potential employers. Some schools even host job fairs so you can meet plenty of employers before you graduate. Ask about job placement before you enroll. It could make all the difference in your career success.

Ready to start your new career? Contact a medical assistant school near you to learn more. They can answer your questions and help you make the right decision.