Can You Take the Medical Assistant Exam Without Going to School

Medical assisting is a rewarding career that allows you to help others while earning a decent salary. It can also be a good stepping stone to more advanced healthcare jobs.

While it's typically not required to get your medical assistant certification, having one can help you stand out among job applicants and help you earn more.

But can you take a medical assistant certification exam without going to school?

While you can't take the Certified Medical Assistant (CMA) exam without completing an accredited program, you can take the Certified Clinical Medical Assistant (CCMA), Registered Medical Assistant (RMA), and National Certified Medical Assistant (NCMA) exams without going to school. Instead, you have to work full-time for a certain number of years which varies based on the certification.

Here's a quick breakdown of the medical assistant certification exams you can take without going to school:

  • Certified Clinical Medical Assistant (CCMA). To take the CCMA exam without going to school, you must have worked full-time as a medical assistant for at least 1 year.
  • Registered Medical Assistant (RMA). To take the RMA exam without going to school, you must have 3 years of medical assistant work experience in the past 7 years, work as a medical assistant instructor for 5 years, or work as a medical assistant instructor for 1 year along with working in a related healthcare field for at least 3 years.
  • National Certified Medical Assistant (NCMA). To take the NCMA exam without going to school, you must have 2 years of full-time work experience as a medical assistant in the past 5 years.

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