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Questions to Cover With Dental Hygienist Schools
Now that you have decided to become a dental hygienist in Kodiak AK, you can start the process of comparing programs and schools. As we covered at the beginning of this article, a number of prospective students begin by looking at the cost and the location of the colleges. Possibly they look for some online options as well. Although these are important initial considerations, there are a few additional questions that you need to address to the colleges you are comparing in order to reach an informed decision. Toward that end, we have supplied a list of questions to help you with your due diligence and ultimate selection of the best dental hygienist program for you.
Is the Dental School Accredited? There are several good reasons why you should only select an accredited dental hygienist school. If you are going to become certified or licensed, then accreditation is a condition in nearly all states. In order to take the National Board Dental Hygiene Exam, your dental school must be accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation (CDA). Accreditation also helps guarantee that the training you get is comprehensive and of the highest quality. Kodiak AK dental practices often prefer or require that job applicants are graduates of accredited programs. And finally, if you are applying for a student loan or financial aid, often they are not obtainable for non-accredited colleges.
Is Enough Practical Training Included? Practical or clinical training is a necessary component of every dental training program. This applies for the online college options as well. Many dental hygienist programs have relationships with area dental practices and clinics that provide practical training for their students. It's not only important that the school you enroll in provides adequate clinical hours but also provides them in the type of practice that you ultimately want to work in. For example, if you have an interest in a career in pediatric dentistry, verify that the school you enroll in offers clinical rotation in a local Kodiak AK dental practice that focuses on dental treatment for children.
Is There an Internship Program? Ask if the dental colleges you are looking at have an internship program. Internships are undoubtedly the ideal way to receive hands-on, clinical experience in a professional dental practice. They make it easier for 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 too.
Is Job Placement Support Provided? Most students that have graduated from dental hygienist programs need assistance obtaining their first job. Ask if the programs you are researching have job placement programs, and what their job placement rates are. Colleges with higher job placement rates probably have excellent reputations within the Kodiak AK dental profession as well as extensive networks of contacts where they can position their students for internships or employment.
Are the Classes Smaller? Find out from the colleges you are evaluating how large typically their classrooms are. The smaller classes tend to offer a more personal atmosphere for learning where students have increased access to the teachers. Conversely, bigger classes can be impersonal and provide little individualized instruction. If practical, ask if you can attend a couple of classes at the Kodiak AK dental hygienist college that you are most interested in in order to witness first hand the degree of interaction between instructors and students before enrolling.
What is the Entire Expense of the Program? Dental hygiene programs can fluctuate in cost based on the length of the program and the volume 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 besides the tuition there are other substantial expenses which can add up. They can include expenses for such things as textbooks and commuting as well as school materials, equipment and supplies. So when comparing the cost of schools, remember to add all of the costs related to your education. Most schools have financial aid offices, so be sure to ask what is available as far as grants, loans and scholarships in the Kodiak AK area.
Are the Classes Convenient? Before selecting a dental hygienist school, you must verify that the assistant or hygienist program furnishes classes that accommodate your schedule. This is particularly true if you continue working while receiving your education and need to go to classes near Kodiak AK in the evenings or on weekends. And even if you enroll in an online school, 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 have to miss any classes because of illness, work or family issues.