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Subjects to Ask Dental Hygienist Programs
Now that you have decided to become a dental hygienist in Flagstaff AZ, you can begin the procedure of comparing schools and programs. As we discussed at the start of this article, many students start by checking out the cost and the location of the schools. Maybe they search for some online options as well. Although these may be relevant initial points to consider, there are a few additional questions that you should address to the programs you are comparing in order to arrive at an informed decision. To start that process, we have included a list of questions to assist you with your due diligence and final selection of the right dental hygienist school for you.
Is the Dental College Accredited? There are a number of valid reasons why you should only enroll in an accredited dental hygienist school. If you are going to become certified or licensed, then accreditation is a condition in nearly all states. To qualify to take the National Board Dental Hygiene Examination, your dental program must be accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation (CDA). Accreditation also helps ensure that the education you receive is of the highest quality and comprehensive. Flagstaff AZ dental practices often desire or require that new hires are graduates of accredited colleges. And last, if you are requesting a student loan or financial aid, usually they are not offered for non-accredited colleges.
Is Sufficient Practical Training Provided? Practical or clinical training is an essential component of any dental training program. This holds true for the online college options also. Many dental hygienist colleges have partnerships with local dental offices and clinics that furnish practical training for their students. It's not only essential that the program you choose provides enough clinical hours but also provides them in the type of practice that you subsequently want to work in. As an example, if you have an interest in a career in pediatric dentistry, make sure that the school you choose offers clinical rotation in a local Flagstaff AZ dental office that specializes in dental treatment for children.
Is There an Internship Program? Ask if the dental colleges you are exploring sponsor internship programs. Internships are undoubtedly the most effective way to receive hands-on, practical experience in a real dental practice. They make it easier for students to transition from the theoretical to the practical. They can also help students form working relationships in the professional dental community. And they are attractive on resumes too.
Is Job Placement Support Furnished? Most graduating students of dental hygienist programs need help landing their first job. Find out if the colleges you are considering have job assistance programs, and what their job placement rates are. Colleges with higher job placement rates probably have excellent reputations within the Flagstaff AZ dental profession as well as broad networks of contacts where they can refer their students for employment or internships.
Are the Classes Small? Check with the colleges you are looking at how large on average their classrooms are. The smaller classes usually offer a more personal atmosphere for training where students have increased access to the instructors. Conversely, bigger classes often are impersonal and provide little one-on-one instruction. If practical, ask if you can attend a few classes at the Flagstaff AZ dental hygienist college that you are leaning toward so that you can witness first hand the amount of interaction between instructors and students before making a commitment.
What is the Entire Expense of the Program? Dental hygiene schools can vary in cost based on the duration of the program and the amount of practical training provided. Other variables, for instance the reputations of the colleges and if they are private or public also come into play. But in addition to the tuition there are other substantial costs which can add up. They can include costs for such things as textbooks and commuting as well as school equipment, materials and supplies. So when comparing the cost of programs, don't forget to include all of the costs associated with your education. Most schools have financial aid departments, so make sure to check out what is offered as far as grants, loans and scholarships in the Flagstaff AZ area.
Are the Classes Accessible? Before selecting a dental hygienist school, you must confirm that the hygienist or assistant program furnishes classes that suit your schedule. This is particularly true if you continue working while getting your education and have to attend classes near Flagstaff AZ at nights or on weekends. And even if you select an online college, you will still have to schedule your clinical training classes. Also, while addressing your concerns, ask what the make-up protocol is if you should need to miss any classes because of illness, work or family emergencies.