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Best Online Medical Assistant Programs and Schools

(Updated Jan 26, 2017)top_medical_assistant_programs

Generally, medical assistants work in doctor’s offices, hospitals, and other healthcare facilities. Although duties may vary according to their place of work, medical assistants usually take care of  administrative, clerical and clinical tasks such as scheduling appointments, helping with examinations, blood preparation, recording patient history and information, and recording vital signs. Professionals with a diploma, certificate, or associate’s degree may find that employers are more inclined to hire and train them.

In today’s economy, the decision to enroll in a medical assistant program can be a difficult one. Potential students have the challenge of balancing their choices with the benefits of available choices as well as the cost, and overall program length. While many traditional technical institutes and community colleges offer programs, a number of programs have established a growing online presence. Indeed, the convenience of an online program can help students save a significant amount of money while living anywhere they can or please.

If you’re not sure where to begin your search for affordable, quality programs, we have ranked the top ten medical assistant schools in terms of best value for education and affordability. The main difference in prices comes from whether students want to graduate with a certification, a diploma, or an associate’s degree. While a diploma or certification takes less time and can get you into the workforce right away, an associate’s degree can open doors and allow for more upward mobility. An associate’s degree also reduces the overall amount of needed credits if you choose to continue with a bachelor’s degree. A bachelor’s will also qualify you for quicker upward movement within your profession.Aspiring medical assistants have many different training options from which to choose. State exams and other requirements may apply. Most medical assistant programs can be completed in a relatively quick time. Junior, community, and technical colleges or vocational schools often offer programs that can be completed in two years or less.

Aspiring medical assistants have many different training options from which to choose. State exams and other requirements may apply. Most medical assistant programs can be completed in a relatively quick time. Junior, community, and technical colleges or vocational schools often offer programs that can be completed in two years or less. These colleges and schools offer associate degree programs and bachelor’s degree programs. Not only do students learn in the classroom, they also receive hands-on training and real-world experience with patient care.

Are you looking to become a medical assistant but don’t have the time to go to a college campus? Online medical assistant programs can be taken anywhere you have access to wi-fi. With online medical assistant courses, you can still keep your current lifestyle while pursuing a rewarding and fulfilling career. makes it easy to apply to top-notch schools with our list or top online medical assistant programs. We’ve done the research and here’s the best of the best for online medical assisting schools.

Top 10 Online Medical Assistant Programs 2016-2017

Ranking Factors

  • Net Price
  • Retention Rate
  • Graduation Rate
  • % Receiving Financial Aid

Each factor was weighted equally. Each school was assigned a weighted value and ranked in descending order.


1. Midway University

Midway University, formerly Midway College, is a non-profit, private liberal arts college that provides online undergraduate and graduate programs. Although this is the only all women’s school in Kentucky, the online school allows enrollment for both men and women. Midway provides an Associate’s of Science in Medical Assisting degree with accelerated, 8-week courses with 5 start times each year. this degree focuses on medical office management, medical assisting clinical procedures, laboratory procedures, software applications, and microbiology for medical programs. Credits earned at Midway are likely to transfer to other colleges if students decide to transfer.

Fast Facts

Tuition: $22,250
Net Price: $18,346
% Receiving Financial Aid: 100%
Retention Rate: 80%
Graduation Rate: 43%

2. Kaplan University

Kaplan University offers excellent academic and student support. This program is fully accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs and offers a 92 credit (15 core) associate of applied science in medical assisting that prepares students for various tasks in their careers. Kaplan University’s online bachelor’s programs hold a top ranking in the and World Report, Best Online Bachelor’s Programs ranking report. Kaplan is known for their quality online medical degrees, and it’s no different for their online medical assisting program either. Kaplan offers financial aid based on the FASFA application. If you’re looking for high-quality education and training to become a medical assistant. Kaplan is a wise choice. For this reason, they are #1 on our list.

Fast Facts

Tuition: $14,241
Net Price: $16,023
% Receiving Financial Aid: 90%
Retention Rate: 33%
Graduation Rate: 21%

3. Herzing University

Herzing University offers the choice of an Associate’s degree in Medical Assisting (16-24 months) or a Certificate/Diploma program (12-20 months). Both degrees prepare students for the American Medical Technologists Association certification exams. Herzing University’s online medical assistant courses are accredited by the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES), CAAHEP, and Medical Assisting Education Review Board (MAERB). Students who want to attend a campus-based medical assisting program from Herzing have the choice of campuses in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Minnesota, Nebraska, Ohio, and Wyoming. Herzing offers multiple programs beyond medical assisting to help students further their careers. The school also offers private scholarships and FASFA to help students cover costs.

Fast Facts

Tuition: $13,090
Net Price: $19,364
% Receiving Financial Aid: 96%
Retention Rate: 33%
Graduation Rate: 42%

4. The College of Health Care Professions (CHCP)

The College of Health Care Professions (CHCP) offers a medical assisting certificate and a Healthcare Management degree for further career advancement. This school is accredited by the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES). Online medical assisting courses from CHCP allow students to complete labs and lectures online with the option of in-field clinical experience at local campuses across the U.S. Students who graduate from their online medical assisting program are eligible to become a Certified Medical Assistant (CMA) through the American Association of Medical Assistants. The associate’s in medical assisting online at CHCP is designed to take 80 weeks to complete. In 2014-205, 51% of enrolled students finished within that time. For CHCP’s gainful employment disclosure, visit: For more information about our graduation rates, the median debt of students who completed the program, and other important information, please visit our website at,

Fast Facts

Tuition: $24,133
Net Price: $23,530
% Receiving Financial Aid: 97%
Retention Rate: 75%
Graduation Rate: 71%

5. Ultimate Medical Academy

Ultimate Medical Academy is fully accredited by the Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools (ACICS), the largest national accrediting organization of degree-granting institutions. All degrees and programs are also accredited by the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools. This school offers an Associate of Science in Medical Administrative Assisting at 60 credit units of courses (61-96 weeks). All medical assisting classes online are only five weeks long. This provides students the option to complete this degree solely at their pace instead of piling the course loads according to a program schedule. That being said, most students charge through classes to finish as quickly as possible. The program can even be completed in a little over a year with the proper schedule. Students who graduate from this online medical assistant program are eligible to sit for the Registered MA and Certified MA Exams. This school uses FAFSA to determine financial aid.

Fast Facts

Tuition: $15,500
Net Price: $18,988
% Receiving Financial Aid: 74%
Retention Rate: 61%
Graduation Rate: 62%

6. Keiser University

Keiser University offers certificates, associate’s, bachelor’s and graduate degrees at 20 campuses in Florida, as well as online courses. Keiser offers two options for the medical assisting program:

  • Associates of Arts in Health Services Administration. With this degree, you can become a medical assistant in as little as two years with summer school.
  • Associates of Science degree with the requirement of attending classes at one of the 14 Florida campuses

All degrees are accredited by the  Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on College. Students receive training for various medical assisting duties including clinical and administrative courses. Students can receive financial aid for this program via the FAFSA.

Fast Facts
Tuition: $17,664
Net Price: $21,129
% Receiving Financial Aid: 97%
Retention Rate: 75%
Graduation Rate: 55%

7. Liberty University

Liberty University is one of the word’s largest online universities, boasting over 95,000 students. Liberty is a non-profit, Christian school that offers degrees from the certification to the doctoral level. Liberty is accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. This school offers an Associate of Applied Science in Medical Office Assisting program, which consists of 61 credit units that prepare students to work as assistants in healthcare environments, including healthcare clinics, local and state public health offices, hospitals, and doctor’s offices. Fast Facts Tuition: $20,109 Net Price: $23,367 % Receiving Financial Aid: 96% Retention Rate: 69% Graduation Rate: 50%

8. Harrison College

Harrison College is a for-profit college with locations across Indiana and Ohio. This school offers a degree and diploma in medical assisting. Harrison is one of two distance learning CAAHEP-accredited medical assisting programs in the nation–CAAHEP is the largest programmatic accreditor in the health sciences field. The online associate of applied science in medical assisting is a 96 credit program that lasts roughly two years, with a medical assistant externship included. Students learn about running laboratory tests, administering medications, checking vital signs, ECG machine training, and other tasks related to medical assistance. The program prepares students to work in doctor’s offices, laboratories, and public health agencies.
Fast Facts
Tuition: $17,100
Net Price: $19,476
% Receiving Financial Aid: 91%
Retention Rate: 42%
Graduation Rate: 50%

9. Penn Foster College

Penn Foster College is a private, for-profit online college. this school offers an online Associate’s degree in Medical Assisting consisting of 65 semester units. Graduates can sit for the Registered Medical Assistant (RMA) and the Certified Medical Assistant (CMA) examinations. Penn Foster is accredited by the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools. Based on recent survey data, 94% of Penn Foster graduates were satisfied with their program, 86% felt very or well-prepared for their job, and 92% would recommend their program to a friend.

Fast Facts

Tuition: $1,260-$1,500 (only for the 15 credits of General Studies for Medical Assistant courses)
Net Price: N/A
% Receiving Financial Aid: N/A
Retention Rate: N/A
Graduation Rate: N/A
Note from Penn Foster regarding tuition:

Your program consists of three semesters in your major. You must complete a separate re-enrollment application for each semester. The tuition is based upon $79 per credit for semesters one and two. (Semester Three is included at no cost.) The Medical Assistant A.S. Degree consists of 63 credits (Prerequisite of 15 Gen Ed credits, Semester One: 17 credits, Semester Two: 18 credits, Semester Three: 15 credits). Penn Foster College reserves the right to adjust the fees in subsequent semesters. In addition, a non-refundable shipping and handling fee of $65 for each semester will be charged.

10. San Joaquin Valley College

San Joaquin Valley College is a for-profit junior college in Southern California. This school offers three programs for medical assistants:

  • Certificate-level Clinical Medical Assistant (CMA) program
  • Clinical and Administrative Medical Assistant (CAMA) program – Associate of Science (A.S.) Degree

Both programs will provide skills for finding work in the future, but the latter will offer a greater chance of employment after graduation. CMA graduates who earn their Certificates from SJVC are eligible to sit for one of the following:

CAMA graduates who earn their A.S. Degrees from SJVC can sit for one of the following:

SVJC is accredited by the Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges, Western Association of Schools and Colleges, an institutional accrediting body recognized by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation and the U.S. Department of Education.

Fast Facts

Tuition: $28,830
Net Price: $23,367
% Receiving Financial Aid: 96%
Retention Rate: 69%
Graduation Rate: 50%

Online Diploma Programs

Students have the option of obtaining training online via online trade or vocational schools. These programs typically last 12-t8 months, with some schools offering training in as little as 8 months. Students receive the training they need through self-paced study and real-time, online communication with professors and peers. Admissions generally require a high school diploma or equivalent.

Online Associate Degrees in Medical Assisting

The online AAS medical assistant degree can typically be earned in four semesters (two years) for full-time students. Coursework includes an estimated 65 credits, with 50 credits toward core medical assisting courses and 15 credits toward general electives. Students that obtain the associate degree in medical assisting can immediately enter the workforce. With an AAS in medical assisting, students are eligible to take the Certified Medical Assistant (CMA) examination as well as the Registered Medical Assistant (RMA) examination. Medical assistants with an online associate degree from an accredited institution often see top-level earnings and are prepared for other certifications that make them more marketable for attaining more lucrative jobs and positions.

Medical Assistant Certification and Certificate Programs

There is no law that states that medical assistants must be required to be licensed or certified. Voluntary certification is encouraged if you want to become a medical assistant. Generally, employers will give preference to certified medical assistants.

Certified medical assistants often earn a higher salary upon entry-level employment and increase their chances of advancing into management positions.

Certificates are offered by the AAMA Certification Department. To prepare for the CMA certification exam, aspiring medical assistants can attend an accredited medical assistant training program or a local AAMA chapter to take a medical assistant exam review course.

Students attending such programs and courses will learn about topics such as medical terminology, ethics, medical law, lab techniques, clinical and office procedures, reading medical history, and patient relations.

CMAs generally work in a doctor’s office or physician’s office.

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Salary and Career

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (, more than 138,000 jobs are expected to become available to MA’s in the United States between 2014 and 2024.

The average yearly salary for a medical assistant ranges between $22,040 and $43,880. The median annual wage for medical assistants was $30,590 in May 2015. Factors such as an employer, location, and experience determine if a person will earn more than another.

Top Medical Assistant Programs Healthcare Scholarship 2017

150-Word Essay / $1000

Are you ready to start or continue your journey to becoming a medical assistant or other healthcare professional?

Top Medical Assistant Programs (TMAP) offers $1,000 in scholarship awards every year — two $500 scholarships each year in June and December. We are currently accepting applicants for the June 2017 scholarship. A simple 150-word essay scholarship is all we’re looking for.

New for this year’s scholarship, we’ve changed the word requirement to only 150 words instead of the tedious 1500+ word-essay. It’s as simple as explaining why you are the best candidate for this scholarship award in ~150 words.

How to Apply

Click HERE to Apply

Please review the following information below before applying.

Why Only 150 Words?

We understand that the majority of scholarship applicants will not receive an award and that makes it a waste of time for them. If you are applying for multiple scholarships, applications can quickly eat up precious time. Our goal isn’t to bog you down with a huge essay. All we want is a few simple, yet powerful, sentences to help us decide the best candidate.

The current scholarship awards a one-time $500 disbursement to one winner. This scholarship is awarded on a semi-annual basis.

Essay Details

Explain why you are the best candidate for our scholarship using the following criteria:

  • Minimum 150 words, maximum 210 words describing why you are the best candidate for the scholarship
  • All essays must be written in English and should contain only a few grammar and punctuation errors
  • All personal information needs to be accurate and truthful
  • Pictures, audio, and video are accepted as part of the submission

Submit your scholarship essay via our online form HERE.

Do not forget to fill out your full name and email address to contact you if you win.

Note: If you do not provide your contact info, or provide incorrect contact info and we cannot reach you, your scholarship will be forfeited and we will be forced to choose another winner.

Scholarship Application Deadlines

Be sure to get your application in before our deadlines.

  • Scholarship #1 – Applications must be sent in between January 1st and June 30th of the current year (funds distributed by July 30, 2017)
  • Scholarship #2 – Applications must be sent between June 31st and December 31st of the current year (funds disbursed by January 30th, 2018)

Eligibility Requirements

Winning applicants will be screened prior to disbursing funds. The following requirements will be considered:

  • Currently enrolled in college or in their senior year of high school.
  • All applicants must be 18 years of age or older at the time of disbursement
  • All applicants must be a U.S. citizen.
  • Incomplete applications will not be considered.

Usage of Scholarship Funds

Once awarded, funds can be used at winner’s discretion to help cover any costs related to schooling: tuition, books, food, housing, etc.

How Are Essays Judged?

Judging will be done by TMAP’s current editor in chief. Essays will be judged on grammar, punctuation, simplicity, creativity, and originality. Relevant, supportive pictures and/or videos submitted with the essay will be taken into consideration for choosing a winner. Pictures and videos do not increase your chances of being selected. Financial aid is not taken into consideration when awarding the scholarship.

Your Privacy

Your privacy is our priority.  All scholarship application information submitted will be used solely for the purpose of notifying the winner and dispersing funds.

We do not share any scholarship application information with 3rd party websites or companies. Please see our privacy policy for further information.

Terms and Conditions
  • We will only contact the applicant who is the selected scholarship recipient and will not contact other applicants.
  • All contact information submitted by applicants will only be used by for the purpose of contacting the scholarship recipient and dispersing funds.
  • We will not share applicant contact information with third parties.
  • Any essay submitted by applicants may be published on and may also be used for marketing purposes.
  • We reserve the right to publish the winning essay and a photograph and/or video of the winner, along with the winner’s name on the website and to use the winner’s name, photograph, video or essay for marketing purposes.
  • All entries must be submitted by December 31, 2017. Any entry submitted after this date will not qualify. The winner will be notified by email and funds will be sent to them via Paypal within 28 business days from the close of the competition.
  • By submitting your essay you agree to the terms and conditions.
Ready to Apply?

Click HERE to apply for the TMAP Medical Assistant Scholarship

Click HERE to see our past scholarship winners.