Dental assistant training may seem pretty straight forward, but if you are new to the medical industry chances are you making a few mistakes. Before deciding that you have chosen the best dental assistant training path available, do your homework. You might be making a mistake that will cause you to sacrifice high paying job opportunities in the future.
Attending Unaccredited Dental Assistant Training Programs
Each day we see commercials and receive advertisements in the mail that promote some new dental assistant training school. Most of these schools promise low per credit hour tuition rates, low-interest financing, and job placement. The problem is, many of these schools are not actually accredited. Can they really do that? Yes, actually they can.
As long as a dental assistant training program “eludes” to providing you with the correct education, it is not a crime. The next time you see one of those dental assistant training school commercials, carefully listen to the wording. They won’t claim to provide you with certification and they won’t claim to be accredited. All in all, if you perceive them as such, they have used their clever marketing techniques well. That’s the way they look at it anyway.
Even if a dental assistant training school does claim to have accreditation, find out the name of the accreditation board and make sure they are nationally recognized. If they are not nationally recognized many future employers and other accredited institutions will not take your résumé or applications seriously. Worse, the credit hours that you have completed may not transfer to another institute, meaning you will have to start over in order to obtain additional certifications or degrees.
The job placement services that claim to have found a high number of students jobs might make you overlook the lack of accreditation, but you must make sure you have all the facts. Some schools advertise placement numbers from their best year, omitting the fact that they have had much lower placement success rates in recent years.
Taking Dental Assistant Training that Doesn’t Offer an Internship Program
Dental assistant training is more than reading books and spending time in class. The best schools encourage students to find internships, but many students make the mistake of ignoring internship opportunities. Even if a dental assistant training school or program does not require students to find internships, you should try to find a dental office willing to work with students.
A dental assistant internship will give you a chance to put what you have learned during class into practice. Completing an internship program will prepare you for working full-time in a real dental office once your dental assistant training is complete. Also, including an internship on your resume will put you one step above dental assistants who have only gone through in class training.
Skipping Out on Vital Dental Assistant Training, Such as Labs and Lectures
Dental assistant training schools usually offer night and weekend courses to accommodate working students. If you are a student who is juggling work, school, and a family skipping a few classes might be tempting. Even if you are exhausted you should always go to class or, if you have to miss a class, you should try to make up the hours missed by asking to attend the class on one of the days that you usually do not attend school.
Missing lectures and, more importantly, labs could prevent you from learning important details that may help you pass a certification exam or perform tasks when you become a dental assistant. The average dental training course load packs a great deal of information into a few long classes. Failing to attend even two laboratory demonstration or lecture could even cause you to fall behind so much that you do not pass the course.
We hope this information has been useful as you pursue a rewarding and exciting career through quality dental assistant training.