Online Medical Assisting Classes and Schools

You can earn a certificate, diploma or Associate of Applied Science (A.A.S.) in Medical Assisting through distance learning. Hybrid programs give you the ability to complete your coursework online and conduct a medical externship at a local hospital or medical clinic. Explore the course topics you'd study in this program, and review the certification requirements for medical assistants. Schools offering Medical Assisting degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What You Need to Know

Medical assisting is a growing field with increasing numbers of employers wanting to hire certified individuals. You can gain a certification by attending an accredited institution to get either a certificate, diploma or associate's degree in the field and then completing the certification exam.

Programs Certificates, diplomas and associate's degrees are available
Courses Introduction to diagnostic medical procedures, medical lab procedures, patient education, medical liability and ethics, medical terminology, anatomy and physiology, pharmacology and medical coding
Certification Offered by the Board of the American Association of Medical Assistants or the American Medical Technologists

How Can I Choose a Medical Assisting School?

First, you might inquire whether the school meets the standards of the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools ( to ensure that you'll be entitled to sit for the certification exam after graduating. Second, you may want to research whether the school offers internships at hospitals where you're interested in working or whether you can choose a location near your home.

What Types of Programs Are Available?

You have the option to choose between diploma and A.A.S. programs in medical assisting. Less common is a certificate in medical assisting. Typically, a diploma or certificate program is a 1-year course of study that includes a core curriculum, while the associate degree program is a 2-year course of study that includes medical assisting coursework in addition to general education classes. Both programs prepare you for an entry-level position and meet the educational requirements for certification.

Schools that have online or hybrid medical assisting diploma, certificate or associate's degree programs in medical assisting include:

  • Purdue University Global
  • Wake Technical Community College
  • Central Penn College
  • Community College of Vermont
  • Barton Community College
  • Dakota County Technical College
  • The College of Health Care Professions

What Courses Will I Take?

Medical assistant programs usually require a supervised practicum in a health care setting, and this practical training is also a requirement for certification. The core courses in an online medical assisting program may cover such topics as anatomy and physiology, medical coding and billing, pharmacology and records management. Other topics addressed in a medical assisting program include:

  • Taking vital signs
  • Blood work
  • Urinalysis
  • Radiographic imaging
  • Preparing the patient for examination
  • Vision screening
  • Introduction to diagnostic medical procedures
  • Medical lab procedures
  • Patient education
  • Medical liability and ethics

What Are the Certification Requirements?

Upon completion of an accredited degree program, you're eligible to become a Certified Medical Assistant (CMA). Certification is voluntary, but may be an asset to job seekers in the field, according the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics ( The Board of the American Association of Medical Assistants (AAMA) administers a certification exam for medical assistants ( Certification demonstrates that you have achieved a standard of education. The AAMA receives over 100 requests for certification verification a day and reports that an increasing number of medical assistant employers are requiring CMA status. After completed an approved training program or acquiring five years of professional experience, you're also eligible for certification by the American Medical Technologists (

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

  • 1. Degree Options:
The schools in the listing below are not free and may include sponsored content but are popular choices among our users. Tuition and costs will vary across programs and locations. Be sure to always request tuition information before starting a program.

Popular Schools

  1. 1
  2. 2
  3. Next »