Though education can be a key step in reaching one’s career goals, all too often cost is an obstacle that prevents people from moving forward. And even though a program like medical assistant training will often provide an education that can help set you on the path towards a lucrative and fast-growing career, the need to make an initial investment can nevertheless still be discouraging. So, how much is medical assistant school, and what are some options for how to pay for it? Below, we have a breakdown of what paying for your program can look like.
Medical assistant school cost
The cost of getting trained as a medical assistant can vary based on several factors. For example, while the price an associate’s degree typically ranges from $6,000–15,000 per year, a certification program will have a total cost that can range from $2,500–10,000. For both of these, however, you’ll also want to consider additional costs that may be required, such as:
- Registration fees
- Equipment such as stethoscopes, scrubs, and more
- Certification exam fees if not included in the program
Getting a degree vs a certification will also impact how much time you’ll ultimately invest. While an associate’s degree takes two years to complete, a certificate program takes considerably less at less than 12 months. The overall length can also be affected by other factors, such as whether you’re in a full-time or part-time program.
An associate's degree spans about 2 years ,
and it can take less than 1 year to complete a certificate program!
How to pay for medical assistant school
Upfront, in full
If you have enough money saved up to cover your program’s tuition, any necessary supplies, and living expenses such as rent and groceries, paying out of pocket might be the best option for you. While it does require the highest upfront cost, you won’t owe any money in interest, there’s no credit check, and you won’t have to worry about remembering to make monthly payments. Since non-degree medical assistant programs can still cost over $10,000, check around to see if there are any scholarships available that can help ease the tuition amount!
Workforce development grants
Workforce development programs, such as the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA), are government-sponsored programs that provide grants and scholarships for certain technical training schools. You may be able to cover partial or full tuition for your medical assistant training program through these.
Veteran benefits (GI Bill)
If you’re eligible for veteran benefits, you may be able to pay for your medical assistant school through the GI Bill®, an education grant available to veterans and military personnel.
If you’re eligible, the GI Bill may be able to cover your full tuition. Apply on the VA website or ask your school for more information about qualification!
“GI Bill®” is a registered trademark of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). More information about education benefits offered by VA is available at the official US government website at www.benefits.va.gov/gibill.
Interest-free recurring payment plan
For those who — after looking through scholarship and grant options — are still unable to cover the tuition upfront, some schools also offer payment plan options. This allows students to make several smaller payments over the duration of the program, in order to lessen the upfront cost. It includes no credit check and no interest, so you’ll ultimately pay less than you would with a loan. However, payments are spread over a much shorter period of time than other financing options, so though you’ll pay less overall, your monthly payments will be higher.
A student loan can be a good choice for students who need to make the smallest monthly payments, rather than larger payments or all upfront. While not all medical assistant schools offer federal student loans, private student loans may still be available. Depending on the lender and loan terms available for your program, you may have the option of full deferral, interest-only deferral, or immediate full repayment.
Climb partners with several medical assistant schools for financing, and we only perform a hard credit pull once a loan is funded. So, you can submit an application to check out our options with no impact to your credit score!*
There are some things you’ll want to keep in mind, though. Most loans come with an interest rate, which means you’ll ultimately end up paying more than the tuition amount. Your credit will also be pulled, so your credit score may be impacted. At the end of the day, you’ll need to consider what works best for your situation — smaller monthly payments while paying more overall, or higher monthly payments while paying less overall.
An associate's degree can cost between $6,000–15,000 ,
and a certification program can cost about $2,500–$10,000 !
*Climb performs a “soft” credit pull to evaluate eligibility, but this soft credit check will not affect your credit score. A hard credit pull is only performed once the loan is accepted and funded.