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Certification Matters!

How to certify in your career

A major advantage of taking an accredited career training program through Blackstone is that most of our programs prepare students to sit for professional certifications. Gaining professional certification(s) provides a competitive advantage as it validates your skills to employers and may lead to a salary increase.

Find your career below and read more about further certification options after completing your course with Blackstone Career Institute.

Paralegal/Legal Assistant

Certification as a Professional Paralegal (PP) through NALS, the association of Legal Professionals, requires the completion of an accredited program that consists of a minimum of 900 clock hours of which a minimum of 225 clock hours are substantive law.

Graduates with a Paralegal Certificate from Blackstone will also meet the accredited business/legal course criteria needed to sit for the Certified Legal Assistant/Certified Paralegal (CLA/CP) exam given by the National Association of Legal Assistants (NALA).


Medical Billing and Coding

To qualify as a Certified Professional Coder with the AAPC, you must have two years of coding experience along with a copy of your diploma from BCI with the exam application.

The American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA) offers two different certification opportunities for Medical Billers/Coders. One option is the Certified Coding Associate exam which requires six months of coding experience that directly applies codes or the completion of other coding training programs that includes the following: anatomy & physiology, medical terminology, basic ICD diagnostic/procedural and basic CPT coding. Blackstone’s career training program covers all these topics. In addition, a high school diploma or GED is required. It is strongly recommended that candidates have at least six months of experience in a healthcare organization. This exam is designed for someone who is just starting out in this field.

The Certified Coding Specialist (CCS) is the other option through AHIMA. Graduates qualify for this in three ways: By Credential (RHIA®, RHIT®, or CCS-P®) OR through Education which requires the following mandatory courses: anatomy & physiology, pathophysiology, pharmacology, medical terminology, reimbursement methodology, intermediate/advanced ICD diagnostic/procedural and CPT coding. The final way to qualify is by Experience: Minimum of two (2) years of related coding experience directly applying codes; OR By Credential with Experience: CCA® plus one (1) year of coding experience directly applying codes; OR Other Coding credential from other certifying organization plus one (1) year coding experience directly applying codes.

Blackstone’s Medical Billing and Coding program is not AHIMA-approved but it does fit into the category of other formal coding training programs.

The American Medical Billing Association (AMBA) is another organization that offers certification as a Certified Medical Reimbursement Specialist (CMRS). No formal requirements are listed to take this exam, however, you should have either experience in billing or have a good foundation of knowledge on medical billing with a high school diploma or GED as the minimum level of education. This certification does require candidates to be an AMBA member.


Pharmacy Technician

Pharmacy Technicians can become Certified Pharmacy Technicians through the ExCPT exam offered by the National Healthcareer Association (NHA). This will require candidates to be 18 years of age or older, possess a high school diploma or GED, and cannot have been convicted of a felony. The same qualifications apply for the PTCE Exam with the Pharmacy Technician Certification Board.


Medical Office Assistant

Graduates of Blackstone’s Career Institute’s Medical Office Assistant training program are qualified to sit for the National Certified Medical Office Assistant (NCMOA) exam administered by the National Center for Competency Testing (NCCT).


Medical Transcription

Certify in Medical Transcription as a Registered Healthcare Documentation Specialist (RHDS) with AHDI by attaining two years of experience in acute care Transcription prior to sitting for the RHDS Exam.

Graduates of Blackstone‘s Medical Transcription training program may also qualify for the Certified Healthcare Documentation Specialist (CHDS) exam based on the AHDI Medical Transcriptionist Job Descriptions. Candidates who do not already possess an RHDS credential can take the RHDS alone or opt for the Credential Qualifying Exam.


Dental Office Assistant

The Dental Assisting National Board (DANB) offers two certifying exams: The National Entry Level Dental Assistant (NELDA) and the Certified Dental Assistant (CDA).

The NELDA requires completion from a dental assisting program located within a post-secondary institution that is accredited by an organization recognized by the U.S. Department of Education, high school graduation or equivalent, and current CPR, BLS or ACLS from a DANB-accepted provider.

The CDA requires a minimum of two years of experience in a full-time related position or 3,500 hours over a 2-4 year period. Employed verification is necessary to qualify along with a copy of a high school diploma and CPR certification.


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