Medical Assistant Certificate

Course Requirements

This program of study is designed for a full-time student who completes all requirements within 3 semesters. This plan will vary for any student who has transfer credits, or who plans on completing the program over a period greater than 3 semesters.  Please consult with your program director for additional information. 

ID Title Class Lab Credits
Spring Semester
ALHT102R Medical Terminology 3 0 3
ALHT166R Legal and Ethical Issues in Health Care 3 0 3
PSYC101R Introduction to Psychology 3 0 3
Summer Semester
BIOL103R Human Biology 4 0 4
BCPT101R Introduction to Computer Applications 2 3 3
Fall Semester
ALHT101R Communications for the Allied Health Professional  3 0 3
ALHT110R Pharmacology# 3 0 3
ALHT121R Medical Office Practice I# 2 3 3
ALHT130R Clinical Procedures I# 3 3 4
Spring Semester 
ALHT126R **Introduction to Laboratory Procedures#  2 3 3
ALHT124R Medical Office Practice II# 2 3 3
ALHT135R Clinical Procedures II# 3 0 3
ALHT190R MA Practicum
(160 hrs)#
0 0 3
ALHT192R MA Senior Seminar# 0 0 1
Co/prerequisites Required. See Course Descriptions.
Program of Study is subject to change.
*Matriculation in MLT program, PHBC110R, or MA program iwht ALHT130R, ALHT135R or POI
**Students who have completed PHBC110R or a certified Phlebotomy course or sufficient experience as a Phlebotomist and have the permission of the instructor and their program director may take Introduction to Lab Procedures (Bridge - ALHT127R) course in lieu of Introduction to Laboratory Procedures - ALHT126R. Speak to your Program Director directly for advising.

For more information about this program, please contact Lisa Gould at or 603-542-7744 x5428. 

What is a Medical Assistant? Medical assistants work alongside physicians, mainly in outpatient or ambulatory care facilities, such as medical offices and clinics.

CMA (AAMA) Certification ‑ Many employers of allied health personnel prefer, or even insist, that their medical assistants are CMA (AAMA) certified.

What is a CMA (AAMA)? The CMA (AAMA) credential designates a medical assistant who has achieved certification through the Certifying Board of the American Association of Medical Assistants (AAMA). The CMA (AAMA) is becoming the allied health professional of choice for ambulatory health care delivery settings.

CMA (AAMA) Education - The CMA (AAMA) is the only medical assisting certification that requires graduation from a postsecondary medical assisting program. The RVCC Medical Assisting program is CAAHEP accredited.  The Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs is the largest programmatic accreditor of the health sciences professions. After completing the program, RVCC students are immediately eligible to sit for the CMA (AAMA) National Exam.

In Demand  Employment of medical assistants is projected to increase 29 percent from 2016 to 2026, which is much faster than average for all occupations (7 percent).

You can see this data and more concerning the job outlook for medical assistants on the Bureau of Labor Statistics website.

Job Responsibilities ‑ Medical assistants are cross-trained to perform administrative and clinical duties. Overview of duties (these may vary from office to office depending on location, size, specialty, and state law):

Administrative Duties (may include, but not limited to):
• Using computer applications
• Answering telephones
• Greeting patients
• Updating and filing patient medical records
• Coding and filling out insurance forms
• Scheduling appointments
• Arranging for hospital admissions and laboratory services
• Handling correspondence, billing, and bookkeeping
Clinical Duties (may include, but not limited to):
• Taking medical histories
• Explaining treatment procedures to patients
• Preparing patients for examination
• Assisting the physician with procedures
• Collecting and preparing laboratory specimens
• Performing basic laboratory tests
• Instructing patients about medication and special diets
• Preparing and administering medications as directed
• Authorizing prescription refills
• Drawing blood
• Taking electrocardiograms
• Removing sutures and changing dressings

Patient Liaison ‑ Medical assistants are instrumental in helping patients feel at ease in the medical office and often explain the provider’s instructions.

PCMH Team Member ‑ Medical assistants are essential members of the Patient-Centered Medical Home team. According to a survey by the Healthcare Intelligence Network, medical assistants ranked as one of the top five professionals necessary to the PCMH team.

Admission Requirements
• Meet the college requirements for admission
• Minimum Accuplacer score for course registration: BIOL103 Human Biology - Reading Score 70
Program Requirements
• Have manual dexterity, hearing, and visual abilities, that meet technical standards for a medical assisting career.
• Participate in a personal interview with the Program Director.
• Students will be required to submit documents for practicum that may include: proof of immunizations, a criminal background check, BEAS report, drug screening, and others as requested by the workplace based learning site.
• Students that have been found guilty of a felony, pleaded guilty to a felony, or had a professional license, registration, or certification denied, revoked, suspended, or subjected to probationary conditions by a regulatory authority or certification board are not eligible for the CMA (AAMA) Exam. The Certifying Board may grant a waiver based upon mitigating circumstances.

Applicants must submit a Request for a Waiver- forms are available on line.

• Students who have misdemeanor or felony charges involving theft, abuse, or drugs may be prevented from participating in required courses to complete the Medical Assistant Certificate.
• Students must earn a minimum grade of “C” in all required courses to progress within the program, register for Practicum, and graduate.
The River Valley Community College Medical Assistant Program is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs ( upon the recommendation of Medical Assisting Education
Review Board (MAERB). Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs 25400 US Highway 19 North, Suite 158, Clearwater, FL 33763 (727) 210-2350,

The MA Practicum is an unpaid, supervised on-site work experience consisting of a 160 hour clinical rotation in an ambulatory healthcare setting, performing psychomotor and affective competencies. Transportation to the site is the student’s responsibility.

Medical Assistant students may choose a dual enrollment in the Medical Administrative Assistant Program. The MA curriculum may also be applied towards earning an Associate in Science Degree.


In the 2015 Standards and Guidelines for the Accreditation of Educational Programs in Medical Assisting, Standard V.A.4 states the following:

The Sponsor must maintain, and make available to the public, current and consistent summary information about student/graduate achievement that includes the results of one or more of the outcomes assessments required in these Standards

For the Fall of 2018, the Medical Assisting Program at RVCC reports graduates of the past 5 years averaged a retention rate of 90%, a job placement rate average of 93.3% and a passing rate of 83% for the CMA (AAMA) Certification exam. 

American Association of Medical Assistants

2018 CMA (AAMA) Compensation and Benefits Report

Gainful Employment Disclosure Statement



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