School and Ranking Information
Although there are many schools with medical assisting programs in the Dallas area, only three of them within a 25-mile radius of downtown are not-for-profit institutions. Based on program offerings and graduation rates, the following schools are among the top in the area:
- Winner: Remington College - Dallas has the highest graduation rate of these three schools. It offers a medical assisting diploma program.
- Runner-Up #1: Located about 26 miles from Dallas, Remington College - Fort Worth offers a diploma program and has the second highest graduation rate.
- Runner-Up #2: El Centro College, part of the Dallas County Community College District, features a medical assisting certificate program. It's located directly in Dallas, and it has the only program of these three to hold accreditation from a national allied health accrediting agency.
School Comparison Chart
|Category||Remington College - Dallas||Remington College - Fort Worth||El Centro College|
|Location||Garland, TX (14 miles from downtown Dallas)||Fort Worth, TX (26 miles from downtown Dallas)||Dallas, TX|
|School Type||2-year, private not-for-profit||2-year, private not-for-profit||2-year, public|
|Total Program Costs (2013-2014)||$15,995**||$15,995***||$3,294 (Dallas county residents)
$4,704 (in-state residents)
$6,510 (out-of-state residents)****
|Medical Assisting Program Levels Offered||Less Than 1-Year Diploma, 1-2 Year Diploma||Less Than 1-Year Diploma, 1-2 Year Diploma||Certificate|
|Medical Assisting Certificates or Diplomas Awarded (all levels) in 2011-2012||447*||214*||29*|
|Most Popular Medical Assisting Program in 2011-2012||Less Than 1-Year Medical Assisting Diploma (408 awarded)*||1-2 Year Medical Assisting Diploma (165 awarded)*||1-2 Year Medical Assisting Certificate (29 awarded)*|
|Undergraduate Graduation Rate (in 150% of normal program time) for 2008 Entering Class||69%*||58%*||5%*|
|Noteworthy||Tuition is all-inclusive||Career Services Department helps students find employment||Program is accredited by the CAAHEP****|
Sources: *NCES College Navigator, **Remington College - Dallas, ***Remington College - Fort Worth, ****El Centro College
Winner: Remington College - Dallas
- The school offers an 8-month MA program or 12-month MA program with X-ray and EKG training
- Training includes use of industry standard medical equipment
- According to the school, the MA program has had more than 5,000 graduates at the Dallas campus since 1997
The 8-month medical assisting program teaches students about anatomy and human health, pharmacology and patient care. The program curriculum covers patient billing, disease transmission, cardiovascular and respiratory systems, medical insurance coding, clinical procedures and medical management. Students complete classroom studies and lab experiences, and hands-on training is available through 1-month externships.
Students at the Dallas campus can earn medical assistant and phlebotomy technician certifications through the National Association for Health Professionals (NAHP). They can also earn American Heart Association CPR and First Aid credentials, as well as certifications in HIPAA and Bloodborne Pathogens in the Workplace.
Runner-Up #1: Remington College - Fort Worth
- Students work in a mock clinic where other students act as patients
- Students who excel academically are invited to join the National Technical Honor Society Chapter
- Students can complete an additional four months of training in EKG and X-ray techniques
MA students at Fort Worth learn how to put on and remove casts, record vital signs, explain treatments to patients and assist physicians with examinations. Dissection labs and suture clinics provide students with hands-on lab experience. Students are also encouraged to take the NAHP's medical assistant and phlebotomy technician certification exams prior to completing the program.
Throughout the 8-month program, MA students take field trips and visit places such as the morgue and Bodies Human Exhibit; students can also gain knowledge through various guest speakers. A 12-month program with EKG and X-ray technique training is also available that includes practice on X-ray machines, floating tables, EKG machines and Holter monitors.
Runner-Up #2: El Centro College
- Graduates of the MA program in the Dallas County Community College District had a 75% pass rate for AAMA certification, according to a 2009-2010 report from the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board
- Employment rate of graduates from Dallas County Community College District MA programs was 98.73%, according to a 2009-2010 report from the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board
- Students can join the Virtual Career Network, which offers tools to help prepare students for healthcare careers
Offered through the Division of Health and Legal Studies, El Centro College's 12-month medical assisting program requires that students complete 40 credit hours that include lectures, skill labs and a clinical externship. El Centro only admits 20-25 students into the MA program, with admission being on a first-come, first-serve basis. An applicant must meet admission requirements, which include an assessment test, completed health packet, completion of prerequisite courses, CPR certification, a criminal background check, a drug screening and attendance at an information session.
El Centro's program is accredited by the CAAHEP. Students gain clinical skills in recording vitals and drawing blood, and they learn about insurance coding and scheduling appointments. In addition to obtaining CMA certification, graduates are prepared to take the Registered Medical Assistant certification exam through the American Medical Technologists organization.