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Questions to Cover With Dental Hygienist Schools
Now that you have decided to become a dental hygienist in Auburn Alabama, you can begin the process of comparing programs and schools. As we discussed at the opening of this article, a number of prospective students begin by checking out the cost and the location of the schools. Possibly they look for several online options also. Although these are relevant initial points to consider, there are a few additional questions that you need to ask of the schools you are reviewing in order to arrive at an informed decision. To start that process, we have included a list of questions to help you with your evaluation and final selection of the ideal dental hygienist school for you.
Is the Dental Program Accredited? There are a number of important reasons why you should only select an accredited dental hygienist program. If you are going to become certified or licensed, then accreditation is a requirement in nearly all states. To qualify to take the National Board Dental Hygiene Exam, your dental college must be accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation (CDA). Accreditation also helps guarantee that the instruction you receive is comprehensive and of the highest quality. Auburn AL employers frequently prefer or require that new hires are graduates of accredited colleges. And finally, if you are requesting financial aid or a student loan, usually they are not obtainable for non-accredited colleges.
Is Enough Practical Training Included? Clinical or practical training is a vital part of every dental training program. This is true for the online school options as well. Most dental hygienist schools have partnerships with local dental offices and clinics that furnish clinical training for their students. It's not only essential that the program you choose offers enough clinical hours but also provides them in the kind of practice that you ultimately want to work in. For example, if you are interested in a career in pediatric dentistry, check that the school you select offers clinical rotation in a local Auburn AL dental office that specializes in dental care for children.
Is There an Internship Program? Verify if the dental colleges you are considering sponsor internship programs. Internships are probably the most effective way to get hands-on, practical experience in a professional dental practice. They make it easier for students to transition from the theoretical to the practical. They can also help students establish professional relationships in the Auburn AL dentistry community. And they are attractive on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Support Provided? Most graduating students of dental hygienist programs need help obtaining their first job. Find out if the colleges you are looking at have job placement programs, and what their job placement rates are. Colleges with higher job placement rates are likely to have good reputations within the Auburn AL dental profession in addition to broad networks of contacts where they can position their students for employment or internships.
Are the Classrooms Smaller? Find out from the schools you are interested in how large typically their classes are. The smaller classes usually offer a more personal environment for training where students have greater access to the teachers. On the other hand, larger classes can be impersonal and provide little individualized instruction. If practical, ask if you can attend a couple of classes at the Auburn AL dental hygienist school that you are leaning toward so that you can witness first hand the amount of interaction between instructors and students before making a commitment.
What is the Overall Cost of the Program? Dental hygiene programs can vary in cost dependent on the duration of the program and the amount of practical training provided. Other factors, such as the reputations of the colleges and whether they are private or public also have an impact. But in addition to the tuition there are other significant expenses which can add up. They can include expenses for such things as textbooks and commuting as well as school materials, equipment and supplies. So when comparing the cost of schools, remember to add all of the expenses related to your education. Most schools have financial aid offices, so be sure to find out what is offered as far as loans, grants and scholarships in the Auburn AL area.
Are the Classes Accessible? Before selecting a dental hygienist college, you must make sure that the hygienist or assistant program provides classes that accommodate your schedule. This is especially true if you will be working while receiving your education and must go to classes near Auburn AL in the evenings or on weekends. And even if you select an online school, you will still have to schedule your practical training classes. Also, while addressing your concerns, ask what the make-up practice is if you should need to miss any classes because of work, illness or family issues.