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Subjects to Ask Dental Hygienist Programs
Now that you have decided to become a dental hygienist in Juneau Alaska, you can begin the procedure of comparing programs and schools. As we discussed at the opening of this article, many potential students begin by looking at the location and the cost of the colleges. Perhaps they search for several online alternatives also. Although these may be important initial considerations, there are several additional questions that you should address to the programs you are looking at in order to arrive at an informed decision. To start that process, we have furnished a list of questions to help you with your evaluation and final selection of the ideal dental hygienist college for you.
Is the Dental Program Accredited? There are a number of good reasons why you should only select an accredited dental hygienist school. If you are planning to become certified or licensed, then accreditation is a condition in virtually all states. In order to take the National Board Dental Hygiene Examination, your dental program must be accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation (CDA). Accreditation also helps guarantee that the instruction you get is of the highest quality and comprehensive. Juneau AK employers frequently prefer or require that job applicants are graduates of accredited schools. And finally, if you are requesting a student loan or financial aid, often they are not offered for non-accredited programs.
Is Enough Clinical Training Provided? Clinical or practical training is a vital portion of any dental training program. This applies for the online school options as well. Many dental hygienist colleges have associations with area dental offices and clinics that furnish clinical training for their students. It's not only imperative that the college 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, verify that the school you select offers clinical rotation in a local Juneau AK dental office that specializes in dental care for children.
Are Internships Available? Find out if the dental programs you are looking at have an internship program. Internships are probably the ideal method to obtain hands-on, clinical experience in a real dental practice. They help students to transition from the theoretical to the practical. They can also help students create working relationships in the professional dental community. And they look good on resumes too.
Is Job Placement Assistance Furnished? Most graduating students of dental hygienist colleges require assistance getting their first job. Ask if the colleges you are looking at have job placement programs, and what their job placement rates are. Colleges with high job placement rates probably have excellent reputations within the Juneau AK dental community as well as broad networks of contacts where they can refer their students for internships or employment.
Are Classes Small? Find out from the colleges you are interested in how big on average their classrooms are. The smaller classes generally offer a more intimate setting for learning where students have increased access to the instructors. Conversely, large classes tend to be impersonal and offer little one-on-one instruction. If feasible, find out if you can monitor a couple of classes at the Juneau AK dental hygienist school that you are leaning toward so that you can experience first hand the degree of interaction between students and instructors before making a commitment.
What is the Overall Cost of the Program? Dental hygiene schools can differ in cost dependent on the duration of the program and the volume of practical training provided. Other factors, for example the reputations of the colleges and if they are private or public also have an impact. But in addition to the tuition there are other substantial 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 comparing the cost of schools, don't forget to include all of the costs related to your education. Most schools have financial assistance departments, so be sure to ask what is offered as far as grants, loans and scholarships in the Juneau AK area.
Are the Classes Convenient? Before enrolling in a dental hygienist school, you need to make sure that the hygienist or assistant program furnishes classes that accommodate your schedule. This is especially true if you will be working while receiving your education and must go to classes near Juneau AK in the evenings or on weekends. And even if you choose an online college, you will still have to schedule your clinical training classes. Also, while addressing your concerns, ask what the make-up practice is if you should need to miss any classes due to illness, work or family issues.