The certificate program is best suited to a student who is just starting and simply wants to qualify to seek employment as an MA. Because it's the shorter of the two its best for part-time students as well.
The degree program is suited for the student who may already have some general education courses, wants the associate's degree and is thinking of possibly furthering their education in the future. HACC has an association with Shippensburg that would allow an associate degree MA to go for a bachelors degree in Health Care Administration which would qualify them to be employed as an Office Manger.
The only difference between the two options in the core/clinical portion of training is the degree requires an externship in phlebotomy, a course in health care law and ethics and 1-3 credits of health care related electives. Graduation from either program qualifies the student to sit for the nationally recognized certification exam and generally speaking a degree does not make one more employable than the certificate. Salaries are also similar.
Medical Assistant Certificate or Associate Degree Program Recommended Course Sequence (taken upon acceptance into the clinical phase)
Fall Semester - MA 220, AH 150, MA 142, AH 213
Spring Semester - MA 221, MA 212, MA 201, AH 141, *AH 210
Summer Semester - MA 230 - externship - 240 hours required (usually 6 wks full-time)
Certificate Program Part Time Option:
After being admitted to the program, the course sequence for the Medical Assisting Certificate can be modified to allow a student to complete the required course work on a part time basis. A minimum of two courses must be taken per semester. This course sequence is based on students already having taken and passed BIOL 105, BIOL 111 and CIS 105:
Fall I Semester - MA 220, AH 213
Spring I Semester - MA 221, AH 209
Summer I Semester - AH 140
Fall II Semester - MA 142, AH 150
Spring II Semester - AH 141, MA 201, MA 212
Summer II Semester - MA 230 - externship - 240 hours required (usually 6 wks full-time)
Medical Assistant Program Contacts
If you have specific questions about the Medical Assistant program, contact Health Careers
717-780-1988 or 800-222-4222, ext. 211988
Medical Assisting Program Office:
HACC Harrisburg Campus
Blocker Hall 106
One HACC Drive
Harrisburg, PA 17110
717-221-1326 or 800-222-4222, ext. 211326