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What to Ask Dental Hygienist Colleges
Now that you have decided to become a dental hygienist in Foley Alabama, you can start the procedure of comparing programs and schools. As we discussed at the beginning of this article, many potential students start by looking at the cost and the location of the colleges. Perhaps they search for some online alternatives also. Even though these may be significant initial factors to consider, there are a few additional questions that you should ask of the programs you are looking at in order to arrive at an informed decision. Toward that end, we have furnished a list of questions to help you with your evaluation and ultimate selection of the right dental hygienist school for you.
Is the Dental Program Accredited? There are a number of valid reasons why you should only choose an accredited dental hygienist school. If you are going to become licensed or certified, then accreditation is a prerequisite in nearly all states. To qualify to take the National Board Dental Hygiene Exam, your dental program must be accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation (CDA). Accreditation also helps ensure that the instruction you receive is of the highest quality and comprehensive. Foley AL employers typically desire or require that new hires are graduates of accredited programs. And finally, if you are applying for financial aid or a student loan, frequently they are not obtainable for non-accredited colleges.
Is Adequate Practical Training Included? Clinical or practical training is an important component of every dental training program. This is true for the online college options also. A number of dental hygienist programs have associations with regional dental offices and clinics that furnish practical training for their students. It's not only essential that the program you choose provides enough clinical hours but also provides them in the kind of practice that you ultimately would like to work in. As an example, if you have an interest in a career in pediatric dentistry, check that the college you select offers clinical rotation in a local Foley AL dental practice that specializes in dental treatment for children.
Are Internships Available? Ask if the dental colleges you are looking at have an internship program. Internships are probably the most effective way to get hands-on, clinical experience in a real dental practice. They make it easier for students to transition from the theoretical to the practical. They can also help students form professional relationships in the Foley AL dentistry community. And they look good on resumes too.
Is Job Placement Help Furnished? Most graduating students of dental hygienist programs require assistance getting their first job. Find out if the colleges you are reviewing have job assistance programs, and what their job placement rates are. Programs with high job placement rates are likely to have good reputations within the Foley AL dental profession as well as large networks of contacts where they can place their students for internships or employment.
Are Classes Smaller? Check with the schools you are interested in how large on average their classrooms are. The smaller classes usually offer a more intimate atmosphere for learning where students have increased access to the teachers. On the other hand, bigger classes tend to be impersonal and offer little one-on-one instruction. If feasible, ask if you can monitor a few classes at the Foley AL dental hygienist school that you are most interested in in order to experience first hand the level of interaction between students and teachers before making a commitment.
What is the Total Cost of the Program? Dental hygiene colleges can vary in cost dependent on the duration of the program and the amount of clinical training provided. Other variables, for example the reputations of the schools and whether they are public or private also come into play. But besides the tuition there are other significant expenses which can add up. They can include expenses for such things as commuting and textbooks as well as school materials, equipment and supplies. So when examining the cost of programs, remember to add all of the costs related to your education. The majority of schools have financial aid offices, so be sure to ask what is available as far as loans, grants and scholarships in the Foley AL area.
Are the Classes Convenient? Before selecting a dental hygienist college, you must confirm that the assistant or hygienist program offers classes that fit your schedule. This is particularly true if you continue working while acquiring your education and need to attend classes near Foley AL at nights or on weekends. And even if you enroll in an online program, you will still be required to schedule your clinical training classes. Also, while addressing your concerns, ask what the make-up protocol is if you should need to miss any classes because of work, illness or family responsibilities.