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Questions to Ask Dental Hygienist Colleges
Now that you have decided to become a dental hygienist in Prattville AL, you can start the procedure of comparing programs and schools. As we discussed at the opening of this article, a number of students begin by checking out the cost and the location of the colleges. Maybe they search for some online options as well. Even though these may be important initial points to consider, there are several additional questions that you need to ask of the programs you are comparing in order to make an informed decision. Toward that end, we have provided a list of questions to help you with your evaluation and ultimate selection of the best dental hygienist school for you.
Is the Dental College Accredited? There are several valid reasons why you should only choose an accredited dental hygienist program. If you are intending to become certified or licensed, then accreditation is a prerequisite in virtually all states. In order to take the National Board Dental Hygiene Exam, your dental program must be accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation (CDA). Accreditation also helps guarantee that the education you get is comprehensive and of the highest quality. Prattville AL dental practices typically desire or require that new hires are graduates of accredited schools. And last, if you are requesting financial aid or a student loan, frequently they are not provided for non-accredited colleges.
Is Enough Practical Training Provided? Clinical or practical training is an essential part of any dental training program. This holds true for the online school options also. A number of dental hygienist schools have partnerships with regional dental offices and clinics that furnish clinical training for their students. It's not only imperative that the program you enroll in offers enough clinical hours but also provides them in the type of practice that you ultimately want to work in. As an example, if you are interested in a career in pediatric dentistry, confirm that the college you enroll in offers clinical rotation in a local Prattville AL dental office that specializes in dental services for children.
Are Internships Available? Find out if the dental colleges you are looking at have internship programs. Internships are undoubtedly the ideal means to get hands-on, practical experience in a professional dental practice. They help students to transition from the theoretical to the practical. They can also help students establish working relationships in the professional dental community. And they are attractive on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Support Furnished? Most students that have graduated from dental hygienist colleges require help obtaining their first job. Find out if the programs you are looking at have job assistance programs, and what their job placement rates are. Schools with higher job placement rates are likely to have good reputations within the Prattville AL dental community in addition to extensive networks of contacts where they can position their students for internships or employment.
Are the Classrooms Smaller? Check with the colleges you are looking at how big typically their classes are. The smaller classes generally provide a more personal environment for training where students have greater access to the teachers. On the other hand, larger classes tend to be impersonal and provide little individualized instruction. If feasible, find out if you can sit in on a few classes at the Prattville AL dental hygienist college that you are most interested in in order to experience first hand the degree of interaction between students and teachers before making a commitment.
What is the Total Expense of the Program? Dental hygiene programs can vary in cost depending on the duration of the program and the volume of clinical training provided. Other factors, such as the reputations of the schools and whether they are private or public also have an impact. But in addition to the tuition there are other substantial costs which can add up. They can include costs for such things as commuting and textbooks as well as school materials, equipment and supplies. So when examining the cost of colleges, remember to include all of the costs associated with your education. The majority of schools have financial assistance departments, so be sure to find out what is offered as far as loans, grants and scholarships in the Prattville AL area.
Are the Classes Accessible? Before enrolling in a dental hygienist college, you must confirm that the hygienist or assistant program furnishes classes that fit your schedule. This is particularly true if you will be working while acquiring your education and need to go to classes near Prattville AL at nights or on weekends. And even if you select an online college, you will still be required to schedule your practical training classes. Also, while making your inquiries, ask what the make-up practice is if you should have to miss any classes because of illness, work or family emergencies.