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Points to Cover With Dental Hygienist Schools
Now that you have decided to become a dental hygienist in Oro Valley AZ, you can start the process of comparing schools and programs. As we discussed at the beginning of this article, many students begin by checking out the location and the cost of the schools. Possibly they look for several online alternatives as well. Even though these are relevant initial considerations, there are a few additional questions that you should ask of the schools you are reviewing in order to make an informed decision. To start that process, we have furnished a list of questions to help you with your due diligence and final selection of the ideal dental hygienist school for you.
Is the Dental Program Accredited? There are several valid reasons why you should only enroll in an accredited dental hygienist school. If you are intending to become certified or licensed, then accreditation is a requirement in almost 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 training you get is of the highest quality and comprehensive. Oro Valley AZ dental practices typically prefer or require that job applicants are graduates of accredited schools. And last, if you are applying for financial aid or a student loan, usually they are not provided for non-accredited programs.
Is Enough Clinical Training Provided? Practical or clinical training is an important part of any dental training program. This holds true for the online college options also. Most dental hygienist schools have relationships with local dental offices and clinics that provide clinical training for their students. It's not only imperative that the college you enroll in provides adequate clinical hours but also provides them in the kind of practice that you subsequently would like to work in. For example, if you are interested in a career in pediatric dentistry, make sure that the college you enroll in offers clinical rotation in a local Oro Valley AZ dental practice that focuses on dental services for children.
Are Internships Available? Ask if the dental schools you are exploring sponsor internship programs. Internships are probably the ideal method to get 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 build working relationships in the professional dental community. And they are attractive on resumes too.
Is Job Placement Help Offered? Most graduating students of dental hygienist schools require help getting their first job. Find out if the programs you are researching have job assistance programs, and what their job placement rates are. Programs with high job placement rates are likely to have good reputations within the Oro Valley AZ dental community as well as broad networks of contacts where they can refer their students for internships or employment.
Are the Classrooms Smaller? Ask the programs you are reviewing how big typically their classes are. The smaller classes generally offer a more intimate setting for training where students have increased access to the teachers. Conversely, larger classes tend to be impersonal and offer little one-on-one instruction. If feasible, ask if you can attend a couple of classes at the Oro Valley AZ dental hygienist school that you are leaning toward so that you can witness first hand the amount of interaction between teachers and students before enrolling.
What is the Entire Expense of the Program? Dental hygiene schools can fluctuate in cost dependent on the length of the program and the amount of practical training provided. Other variables, for example the reputations of the schools and whether 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 costs for such things as commuting and textbooks as well as school equipment, materials and supplies. So when analyzing the cost of colleges, don't forget to include all of the costs related to your education. Most schools have financial assistance departments, so make sure to find out what is offered as far as grants, loans and scholarships in the Oro Valley AZ area.
Are the Classes Convenient? Before enrolling in a dental hygienist school, you need to verify that the assistant or hygienist program offers classes that fit your schedule. This is particularly true if you continue working while getting your education and need to attend classes near Oro Valley AZ in the evenings or on weekends. And even if you enroll in an online college, you will still be required to schedule your clinical training classes. Also, while making your inquiries, ask what the make-up protocol is if you should need to miss any classes because of illness, work or family responsibilities.