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Topics to Ask Dental Hygienist Programs
Now that you have decided to become a dental hygienist in Fultondale AL, you can begin the procedure of comparing schools and programs. As we covered at the opening of this article, a number of prospective students begin by checking out the location and the cost of the colleges. Maybe they look for several online alternatives as well. Although these are important initial points to consider, there are a few additional questions that you should ask of the schools you are comparing in order to reach an informed decision. To start that process, we have supplied a list of questions to assist you with your due diligence and ultimate selection of the best dental hygienist program 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 requirement in virtually all states. In order to take the National Board Dental Hygiene Exam, your dental college must be accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation (CDA). Accreditation also helps ensure that the training you get is comprehensive and of the highest quality. Fultondale AL dental practices typically desire or require that job applicants are graduates of accredited schools. And last, if you are applying for a student loan or financial aid, usually they are not provided for non-accredited colleges.
Is Enough Practical Training Included? Clinical or practical training is a necessary component of every dental training program. This is true for the online college options as well. Most dental hygienist schools have relationships with regional dental offices and clinics that furnish clinical training for their students. It's not only essential that the school you select offers enough clinical hours but also provides them in the kind of practice that you ultimately want to work in. As an example, if you are interested in a career in pediatric dentistry, make sure that the school you enroll in offers clinical rotation in a local Fultondale AL dental practice that focuses on dental care for children.
Are Internships Available? Verify if the dental colleges you are looking at sponsor an internship program. Internships are undoubtedly the most effective way to receive hands-on, clinical experience in a professional 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 are attractive on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Help Provided? Most graduating students of dental hygienist schools need help obtaining their first job. Find out if the schools you are reviewing have job assistance programs, and what their job placement rates are. Colleges with higher job placement rates are likely to have good reputations within the Fultondale AL dental profession as well as large networks of contacts where they can place their students for employment or internships.
Are Classrooms Small? Ask the colleges you are reviewing how large typically their classrooms are. The smaller classes generally offer a more intimate setting for training where students have greater access to the teachers. Conversely, large classes tend to be impersonal and provide little individualized instruction. If practical, ask if you can sit in on a few classes at the Fultondale AL dental hygienist school that you are leaning toward in order to experience first hand the degree of interaction between students and teachers before enrolling.
What is the Total Cost of the Program? Dental hygiene schools can vary in cost based on the length of the program and the amount of practical training provided. Other factors, for example the reputations of the colleges and whether they are private or public also come into play. But in addition to the tuition there are other significant costs 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 colleges, remember to include all of the costs related to your education. Most schools have financial assistance departments, so make sure to ask what is offered as far as grants, loans and scholarships in the Fultondale AL area.
Are the Classes Accessible? Before enrolling in a dental hygienist college, you need to verify that the hygienist or assistant program provides classes that suit your schedule. This is especially true if you continue working while acquiring your education and have to go to classes near Fultondale 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 making your inquiries, ask what the make-up protocol is if you should have to miss any classes because of illness, work or family responsibilities.