A study published in the Health Services Research journal found that certified medical assistants are playing increasingly influential and diverse roles in healthcare settings and, as such, have more job opportunities available to them than ever before. Earning a medical assistant certification online in Texas is one of the fastest ways to enter the healthcare field and build a foundation in basic medical terminology, procedures, and anatomy. Graduates of these Texas programs can take advantage of a positive job growth rate nearly double the national average.
If you’ve come this far, you’re probably familiar with the importance and benefits of earning an online certification in medical assisting, but you may not know how to pick the right one for you. That’s why we’ve created this guide, showing you not only how to compare the most important features of these programs — including cost, academic rigor, accreditation, and more — but spotlighting top schools and answering your most pressing questions.
Profiling Top-Tier Texas Programs
Before enrolling in an online medical assistant certification in Texas, it’s best to explore your options. That said, it can be difficult to sift through the many programs out there. To make your search easier, we did some of the preliminary research. The three schools we’ve featured below stand out in terms of accreditation, affordability, academic rigor, and student support services. Use these as a jumping off point to dig deeper your search for the perfect program for you.
Texas A&M International University
Texas A&M International University houses one of the most robust online medical assistant certification programs in Texas. Offered through Texas A&M University, this fully online program is accredited by the National Healthcareer Association and is open to students from across the country. The curriculum covers topics from HIPPA, to basic medical terminology, to the functions of the body. It also educates students on government and private medical insurance, the types of medical records, and the process of obtaining and modifying patients’ medical histories.
Courses are divided into two sections: a theoretical medical terminology section and a practical certified clinical medical assistant section. Students can graduate in as few as six months, at which time they are prepared to work in a variety of medical settings, though the curriculum focuses heavily on ambulatory settings and emergency medical offices. Other than a high school diploma, there are no prerequisites to this program.
Tyler Junior College
Tyler Junior College hosts another one of Texas’ top Clinical Medical Assistant Online Certification Programs that can be completed in as few as six months. At just $2,199, this program’s total tuition is especially affordable while still providing the in-depth coursework necessary for students to become certified clinical medical assistants. Students learn about the legal aspects of healthcare, HIPPA requirements, and regulatory issues in the field. They also learn how to record vital signs, conduct laboratory procedures, and undertake clinical responsibilities. Tyler Junior College’s curriculum consists of classes in medical terminology, basic anatomy, phlebotomy, cardiology, and medical documentation. Graduates are certified to work as medical assistants across the healthcare field. All coursework takes place online and students have 24/7 access to prerecorded lectures, class resources, and assignments. Enrollment in the program is open to all students who have a high school diploma or GED.
University of Houston
The University of Houston hosts a fully online Clinical Medical Assistant Training program. One of the most popular online medical assistant certification courses in Texas, this program covers the essentials students need to enter the field, including basic anatomy, medical documentation, and medical terminology. After establishing a foundation in these subjects, students learn about legal regulations, HIPPA requirements, and other policies that impact medical care. Students also gain a deeper understanding of how to handle cases where patients are insured by private and government insurance plans. While graduates are prepared to work in the healthcare setting of their choice at the end of the program, the program emphasizes the knowledge and skills expected of medical assistants in ambulatory settings. The program is accredited by the National Healthcareer Association, meaning graduates are eligible to sit for the certified clinical medical assistant exam. Other than a high school diploma or GED, there are no entry requirements for this program. All coursework can be completed online, and students have 24/7 access to lectures, assignments, and course resources.
What to Look for in Online Medical Assistant Programs in Texas
Applying to an online medical assistant certification program in Texas is as much about guaranteeing the program is right for you as it is about meeting the admissions requirements. That’s why we’ve compiled a list of key features you should look for before sending in your application. After all, getting into a program matters, but getting into a program with the right accreditation, curriculum, and certification exam eligibility can make your career.
Requirements to Become a Certified Medical Assistant in Texas
So far, we’ve focused on how to find a quality program in Texas, but becoming a certified medical assistant involves more than find and applying to the right school. In addition to worrying about admission requirements, you should also be aware of and ready to meet program and licensing requirements, as well any eligibility requirements your future employers may have. Let’s take a closer look at some of these, why they matter, and how you can meet them.
Answering FAQs About Online Medical Assistant Programs in Texas
To help clarify any confusion you may be feeling after that cascade of information, we’ve answered some of the most frequently asked questions about online medical assistant programs in Texas. Read on to learn more about medical assistant program scholarships, prerequisites, and costs.
Are scholarships or grants available for online medical assistant students in Texas?
The cost of an online medical assistant certification in Texas can be expensive, but you don’t have to pay it alone. Scholarships, grants, and other resources can help ease the burden. For students in Texas specifically, some of the best scholarships include:
- TSMA Scholarships cover the academic expenses of two student members of the Texas Society of Medical Assistants each year.
- The Outstanding Rural Scholar Recognition Program covers the cost of an allied health program, including online medical assistant certification programs in Texas, for students from rural parts of the state
- American Society of Podiatric Medical Assistants Scholarships cover academic expenses for students interested in working in podiatry.
Are there professional organizations or networking opportunities for Texas medical assistants?
Yes, and there are many benefits to joining. The next step after becoming a medical assistant is finding work as one. Networking and joining professional organizations can help you learn what settings interest you most and connect with potential employers. While getting an online medical assistant certification in Texas, consider joining these organizations:
Do I need to complete any prerequisites before applying?
Although prerequisites can vary from program to program, most of Texas’ online medical assistant programs require applicants to have just a high school diploma or GED. At Houston Medical Assistant School applicants must have a high school diploma or GED while at Tyler Junior College, applicants may be considered more competitive if they show interest in continuing their medical career as an LPN, CMA, or RN.
How much should I expect to pay for my program?
The cost of online medical assistant programs can vary but we’ve crunched the numbers and found that, on average, tuition cost is roughly $3,600 in total, and doesn’t significantly between online, in-person, and hybrid courses.
For a better idea of how much specific online medical assistant certification programs in Texas cost, check out the tuition of these five accredited programs:
- Austin Medical Assistant School (hybrid): $5,790
- Dallas College (in-person): $3,160
- Texas A&M International (online): $3,950
- Tyler Junior College (online): $2,199
- University of Houston (online): $2,795
What are the admission requirements for Texas medical assistant programs?
Most online medical assistant certification programs in Texas have only one admission requirement: a high school or GED. However, some schools like Tyler Junior College have additional requirements or recommendations regarding the type of student their program is best suited for; in this case, students who intend to take the national certification exam or are interested in continuing their education in the allied healthcare field.
What does an online medical assistant curriculum in Texas cover?
Your online medical assistant curriculum will inevitably vary depending on which medical assistant program in Texas you attend — Texas A&M International, for example, offers a course on Medical Insurance and Procedures in a Clinical Setting. However, we can guarantee that a quality program will prepare you with a basic understanding of medical terminology, medical technology, and the skills you need to assist doctors and other medical professionals across a variety of healthcare settings. You can also expect to complete a clinical externship to gain hands-on experience before earning your online medical assistant certification in Texas.
Texas Medical Assistant Salary and Career Insights
Medical assistants are in demand across the United States, but that demand is much higher in Texas than the rest of the country. With a 29% job growth rate (compared to the national average of 18.4%), graduates of Texas’ online medical assistant programs should have no trouble finding jobs. A high job growth rate also means graduates will have more opportunities for both promotions and work that is tailored to their interests.
Texas medical assistant salaries are roughly on par with the national average. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median salary for medical assistants in all 50 states is $38,270 per year. Medical assistants in Texas take home salaries just shy of the national average. While there are no cities where medical assistants can expect to make more than their counterparts across the country, there are several cities, such as Austin-Round Rock, Dallas-Fort Worth, Midland, and Odessa, where graduates of online medical assistant certification programs can make significantly more than their peers in other parts of the state. For information on salary expectations in specific cities, check out the table below.