If you are interested in taking your healthcare education to the next level, you are in luck. The American Council on Education (ACE) and the National Healthcareer Association (NHA) have partnered up by allowing you to earn college credit for passing certification exams, such as the Certified Clinical Medical Assistant (CCMA) exam.
ACE is a national membership organization that works to improve the quality of higher education. One way that they do this is by helping students earn college credit from pursuing education through other means, such as certification programs and examinations.
NHA is an organization that helps people achieve their goals of pursuing a healthcare career. They are most well-known for their certification exams, one of which is the CCMA exam. Passing this exam proves that you have met the highest standards for success in the clinical medical assistant field.
Through this partnership, ACE has thoroughly reviewed various NHA certification exams and determined that they meet the highest quality standards. As a result, several NHA certification exams have been approved to provide college credit.
After passing an approved NHA exam, all you need to do is complete a simple process to earn college credit and an ACE transcript. In some cases, this credit can also be used to satisfy employer or continuing education (CE) requirements.
This article will discuss how this partnership works and how it can help you achieve your healthcare career goals.
More About ACE Learning Evaluations Service
One of the goals of ACE is to integrate workplace and employee training with traditional college education. One of the ways that they do this is through the ACE learning evaluations program.
Through this program, ACE evaluates certification exams, such as the CCMA exam, to determine if they meet their quality standards. They look over certain metrics including rigor, testing procedures, exam construction, and validity.
If they approve the exam, then it becomes eligible to be recognized for college credit upon passing. This credit can be used to help satisfy requirements for certain degree programs. However, the final say on whether this credit is accepted or not is up to the educational institution.
Which NHA Certification Exams Have Been Approved by ACE
The ACE has approved four NHA certification exams. The credit earned is labeled in terms of semester hours. In addition, the credit will fall into a category that describes the type of programs the credit can be awarded to. The approved NHA certification exams are:
- Certified Clinical Medical Assistant (CCMA). Fulfills 2 semester hours and can be used for lower-division baccalaureate or associate degree programs.
- Certified EKG Technician (CET). Fulfills 2 semester hours and can be used for lower-division baccalaureate or associate degree programs.
- Certified Patient Care Technician/Assistant (CPCT/A). Fulfills 1 semester hour and can be used for lower-division baccalaureate or associate degree programs.
- Certified Phlebotomy Technician (CPT). Fulfills 2 semester hours and can be used for lower-division baccalaureate or associate degree programs.
How to Receive an ACE Credit Transcript After You Pass Your NHA Certification Exams
Once you pass your exam, the hard part is over. The process for receiving your credit transcript is quick and straightforward. Here are the steps:
- Check your email. Look out for an email from firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Accept your badge. On the email, click on the “accept your badge” option. Your “badge” is the same thing as your ACE credit transcript.
- Sign up for Credly.com. Create an account on https://www.credly.com/. They are partners with the ACE. This site will be where you can access, order, and share your transcript.
- Order and send your transcript. After accepting your badge/credit transcript, you can send it to educational institutions of your choice.
How You Can Use Your ACE Credits
There are several ways you can use your credits to further your education and career.
1) Get College Credits
You can send your ACE transcript to colleges of your choice for credit. This can help you finish your program faster. After receiving the transcript, the school will ultimately determine whether to honor the credit or not.
For example, if you are a medical assistant trying to become a registered nurse or physician assistant, you may be able to earn college credit if you passed the CCMA exam, saving you time and money.
2) Receive an ACE Transcript
Your ACE transcript (or badge) is like a typical college transcript that outlines what you got credit for. It will be your record that shows you have passed one of the NHA certification exams.
3) Get Credit for Continuing Education
In certain cases, you can use your credits to satisfy employer or continuing education requirements. For example, employers may want you to demonstrate your competence in your field or participate in additional training. One important exception is that you cannot use your ACE credits to satisfy NHA recertification requirements.
FAQs About the ACE/NHA Partnership
When is the earliest time you could have passed the certification exam in order to be eligible for credit? For the CCMA and CPT exams, you need to have passed the exam after January 1, 2020, to be eligible for college credit. For the CET and CPCT/A exams, you need to have passed the exam after June 1, 2022, to be eligible for college credit.
Does this program apply to any of the other NHA certification exams? At the time of this article’s writing, only the 4 previously mentioned exams are approved for college credit. However, the ACE learning evaluations program works regularly to evaluate other certification exams to see if they meet their quality requirements.
How can I know for sure if an institution will recognize my credits? Each institution has their own policies and requirements. The best way to know for sure if your credits will be honored is to check your institution’s website or contact them directly.