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What to Ask Dental Hygienist Schools
Now that you have decided to become a dental hygienist in Phenix City Alabama, you can start the process of comparing programs and schools. As we discussed at the beginning of this article, a number of potential students start by looking at the location and the cost of the colleges. Possibly they search for some online options also. Although these may be relevant initial considerations, there are a few additional questions that you should ask of the colleges you are comparing in order to make an informed decision. To start that process, we have furnished a list of questions to assist you with your evaluation and final selection of the best dental hygienist school for you.
Is the Dental College Accredited? There are a number of valid reasons why you should only enroll in an accredited dental hygienist program. If you are going to become licensed or certified, then accreditation is a requirement in nearly all states. To qualify to take the National Board Dental Hygiene Examination, your dental program must be accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation (CDA). Accreditation also helps ensure that the training you get is of the highest quality and comprehensive. Phenix City AL employers often desire or require that new hires are graduates of accredited colleges. And finally, if you are requesting financial aid or a student loan, often they are not provided for non-accredited colleges.
Is Enough Clinical Training Provided? Practical or clinical training is an essential portion of any dental training program. This applies for the online college options also. Most dental hygienist colleges have associations with local dental practices and clinics that provide clinical training for their students. It's not only imperative that the program you choose offers sufficient clinical hours but also provides them in the type of practice that you ultimately would like to work in. As an example, if you are interested in a career in pediatric dentistry, verify that the program you select offers clinical rotation in a local Phenix City AL dental office that focuses on dental services for children.
Is There an Internship Program? Verify if the dental schools you are looking at have an internship program. Internships are undoubtedly the ideal method to receive hands-on, practical 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 develop professional relationships in the Phenix City AL dentistry community. And they look good on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Help Provided? Many graduating students of dental hygienist schools require help landing their first job. Check if the programs you are reviewing have job placement programs, and what their job placement rates are. Schools with high job placement rates are likely to have good reputations within the Phenix City AL dental community in addition to broad networks of contacts where they can place their students for internships or employment.
Are Classrooms Small? Check with the colleges you are looking at how large on average their classes are. The smaller classes tend to offer a more intimate setting for training where students have greater access to the instructors. On the other hand, larger classes often are impersonal and offer little one-on-one instruction. If feasible, find out if you can attend a couple of classes at the Phenix City AL dental hygienist college that you are most interested in in order to experience first hand the degree of interaction between teachers and students before making a commitment.
What is the Overall Cost of the Program? Dental hygiene colleges can differ in cost depending on the duration of the program and the amount of practical training provided. Other factors, for instance the reputations of the schools and whether they are private or public also have an impact. But along with the tuition there are other substantial expenses which can add up. They can include costs for such things as commuting and textbooks as well as school equipment, materials and supplies. So when examining the cost of schools, remember to add all of the expenses related to your education. The majority of schools have financial aid departments, so make sure to find out what is offered as far as loans, grants and scholarships in the Phenix City AL area.
Are the Classes Convenient? Before selecting a dental hygienist school, you need to make sure that the assistant or hygienist program furnishes classes that accommodate your schedule. This is particularly true if you continue working while getting your education and have to attend classes near Phenix City AL at nights or on weekends. And even if you select an online school, you will still have to schedule your clinical training classes. Also, while making your inquiries, ask what the make-up protocol is if you should need to miss any classes due to illness, work or family responsibilities.