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Questions to Cover With Dental Hygienist Programs
Now that you have decided to become a dental hygienist in Catalina AZ, you can begin the process of comparing programs and schools. As we covered at the beginning of this article, a number of students begin by checking out the location and the cost of the colleges. Possibly they look for several online options also. Even though these may be significant initial points to consider, there are several additional questions that you should address to the schools you are reviewing in order to arrive at an informed decision. Toward that end, we have included a list of questions to help you with your due diligence and ultimate selection of the ideal dental hygienist college for you.
Is the Dental College Accredited? There are many important reasons why you should only select an accredited dental hygienist school. If you are intending to become licensed or certified, then accreditation is a prerequisite in nearly 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 establish that the training you receive is of the highest quality and comprehensive. Catalina AZ dental practices frequently prefer or require that new hires are graduates of accredited schools. And last, if you are applying for financial aid or a student loan, usually they are not obtainable for non-accredited colleges.
Is Sufficient Clinical Training Included? Practical or clinical training is an important portion of every dental training program. This is true for the online college options also. Many dental hygienist colleges have partnerships with regional dental practices and clinics that provide clinical training for their students. It's not only important that the college you select provides sufficient clinical hours but also provides them in the type of practice that you subsequently would like to work in. As an example, if you are interested in a career in pediatric dentistry, verify that the program you enroll in offers clinical rotation in a local Catalina AZ dental practice that focuses on dental care for children.
Is There an Internship Program? Find out if the dental programs you are considering sponsor an internship program. Internships are undoubtedly the ideal means to get 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 build working relationships in the professional dental community. And they are attractive on resumes too.
Is Job Placement Support Furnished? Many graduating students of dental hygienist schools need help obtaining their first job. Check if the schools you are researching have job placement programs, and what their job placement rates are. Schools with higher job placement rates are likely to have good reputations within the Catalina AZ dental profession as well as large networks of contacts where they can refer their students for internships or employment.
Are the Classrooms Smaller? Check with the schools you are looking at how large typically their classes are. The smaller classes tend to offer a more personal atmosphere for training where students have increased access to the teachers. Conversely, larger classes tend to be impersonal and provide little one-on-one instruction. If practical, find out if you can monitor a couple of classes at the Catalina AZ dental hygienist school that you are leaning toward in order to witness first hand the level of interaction between students and instructors before enrolling.
What is the Overall Expense of the Program? Dental hygiene programs can fluctuate in cost depending on the duration of the program and the volume of practical training provided. Other factors, such as the reputations of the colleges and if they are private or public also come into play. But besides the tuition there are other significant 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 examining the cost of schools, don't forget to include all of the costs associated with your education. Most schools have financial aid departments, so be sure to ask what is offered as far as loans, grants and scholarships in the Catalina AZ area.
Are the Classes Convenient? Before selecting a dental hygienist school, you need to make sure that the hygienist or assistant program offers classes that suit your schedule. This is particularly true if you continue working while acquiring your education and have to attend classes near Catalina AZ in the evenings or on weekends. And even if you choose an online school, you will still be required to schedule your practical training classes. Also, while addressing your concerns, ask what the make-up procedure is if you should have to miss any classes because of work, illness or family responsibilities.