In the first place, you’re going to want to learn about what accreditation is, and why it should matter to your plans of applying for dental hygiene or assisting courses.
What Is Accreditation
With colleges, accreditation is a term you’re going to come across a great deal. This is because accreditation, although voluntary, is extremely important.
Accreditation refers to institutions that have submitted to one or several voluntary standards of quality. These standards are established and maintained by a governing body. Although standards of quality can be similar from one accreditation method to the next, there are also significant differences that should be noted, as well.
It is also worth keeping in mind that although the U.S. Department of Education does not require that an institution of higher learning have accreditation, nor do they offer accreditation on their own, they do maintain a comprehensive database of schools that have been accredited.
You may understand what accreditation consists of, but do you know why accreditation matters?
Why Accreditation Matters
It is true that you do not have to study dental hygiene and assisting at an accredited institution of higher learning. However, the ADA and other trusted organizations will always tell you that when it comes to getting your education, accreditation is always the way to go.
There are at least a couple of crucial reasons as to why this is the case. In the first place, accreditation through a trusted source means the institution you are considering is adhering to the standards of education that dictate much of the industry. These are the same standards that are going to help you to determine whether or not you are able to enjoy a successful career in the field.
In other words, accreditation matters on every imaginable level.
Finding Out If Your School Is Accredited
As mentioned before, the U.S. Department of Education offers a comprehensive database on accredited institutions of higher learning throughout the country. You’ll just want to keep in mind that this database is not exclusive to dental hygiene and assisting.
In the end, it is best to investigate each school you are interested in. Red flags to watch out for include not being able to apply for financial aid, and being able to receive credits without doing any significant work.