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Medical Assisting

A rewarding career. It's one of the nation's most in-demand occupations, with job growth projected to increase by 29 percent from 2016 to 2026.


Program Application Information & Checklist

Medical Assisting is a limited access program so in addition to the general College online application, students must also complete the Limited Access Program Application.  See more details below.

Application Checklist

Your application will not be complete unless you:

1. Submit the online College application if you are a first-time Palm Beach State student.

2. Arrange for the submission of official transcripts from your high school, GED or validated foreign equivalent, as well as college transcript(s), if applicable.

3. Arrange to take the Test of Adult Basic Education. (TABE is not required for admission, but must be taken before classes begin, unless exception criteria are met.)

4. Apply NOW for Financial Aid using the Steps to Apply

  • Use primary objective program code 5236
  • For assistance with Financial Aid, call 561-868-3330

5. Attend one Medical Assisting Information Session. (Not required to apply).

6. Submit the Medical Assisting Limited Access Application. This must be received by Admissions Office no later than the application deadline date. Applications will also be distributed at the Information Sessions.

To Apply

Download and read the Medical Assisting Limited Access Application. This document contains:

  • Full details on entry requirements and steps for meeting requirements
  • Instructions on completing necessary applications for both the College and program
  • Review of applicant point system for selection
  • The one-page Medical Assisting program application (last page of document)

Please note: All students meeting minimum program application requirements are encouraged to apply. However, meeting criteria for selection does not guarantee admission and not all applicants will be accepted. Final selection will be based on the applicant pool.

After submitting your application

To monitor your Limited Access Program Application Status:

1. Go to your PBSC Student Email account:
2. Log on using your Palm Beach State student ID number and pin.
3. This takes you to your student Panther Web page.
4. Click on "Limited Access Application status."

Applicants who are selected will be notified 1-2 weeks after the deadline date.

Administrative Duties:

  • Using various computer software programs
  • Greeting patients and managing appointment schedule
  • Maintaining patient medical records
  • Transferring medical documents into electronic health records
  • Coding and completing insurance forms
  • Arranging for hospital admissions and laboratory services
  • Handling correspondence, billing and bookkeeping

Clinical Duties (varies by state law):

  • Taking and recording vital signs and medical histories
  • Preparing patients for examination
  • Assisting the physician during exams and minor surgeries
  • Collecting and preparing laboratory specimens
  • Performing basic laboratory tests and ECGs
  • Drawing blood
  • Administering medications and injections
  • Educating patients about treatment procedures and special diets

Medical assistants are essential members of the health care team in a variety of settings, including:

  • Private and hospital physician offices (both primary care and specialty practices)
  • Hospital outpatient clinics and emergency rooms
  • Offices of other health care practitioners
  • Ambulatory surgery centers
  • Urgent care clinics
  • Medical and diagnostic laboratories
  • Kidney dialysis centers

Program Entry: Approximately 30 students are accepted into the program twice a year (Summer/Fall).

Program Length: Approximately 13 months (No prerequisites; includes final semester Externship)

Program Clock/Contact Hours: The program consists of 1300 clock/contact hours, including 173 hours required for the Externship.

Program Location: Lake Worth campus (Externship options throughout Palm Beach County)

Program Schedule: Monday - Friday; full-time days. Program cannot be taken part-time. Summer sessions are four days a week, full-time. Classes and labs are held during the day, between 8:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m., with some variation according to semester.

Program Costs: As a public institution, Palm Beach State's tuition is affordable. Currently, the approximate cost of the Medical Assisting program for Florida residents is under $6,000, which includes tuition, textbooks, criminal background and drug screening), physical examination, immunizations, AAMA membership and CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination fee, and uniforms and name badge. Out-of-state residents pay a higher tuition and all costs are subject to change. Tuition and other costs are reviewed at our Information Sessions.

Financial Aid: Financial aid is available for this program and it is recommended that you apply early at In addition, there are a limited number of scholarships available through the Palm Beach State College Foundation (

  • Apply NOW for Financial Aid using the Steps to Apply
    • Use the Medical Assisting primary objective program code: 5236
    • For assistance with Financial Aid, call 561.868.3330

Graduation Certificate: Graduates of the Medical Assisting program will receive a Career Certificate Program (CCP).

Professional Certification/Licensure: The CMA (AAMA) credential represents a Certified Medical Assistant (CMA) who has achieved certification through the American Association of Medical Assistants (AAMA).  The current cost of the exam is $125.00. This is mandatory and payable BEFORE students enter their 4th Sequence of the program—Externship. The CMA (AAMA) credential is awarded to candidates who pass the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination. The CMA (AAMA) credential must be recertified every 60 months by the continuing education or reexamination method in order to use the credential in connection with employment.

Program Curriculum: Please see Catalog Program Details for more details on Medical Assisting courses, including links to course descriptions.

Graduate Outcomes

  • The Medical Assisting Program at Palm Beach State College has a Retention rate of 67% for the admission cohort that entered in 2016, and there are a number of support services available to students so that they can successfully complete the program.
  • The Medical Assisting Program at Palm Beach State College has an Employer Survey satisfaction rate of 100% for the admission cohort that entered in 2016.

Where You Study Matters

Based on Palm Beach State's Lake Worth campus, this 13-month certificate program, which has no prerequisites, provides high-quality training in medical assisting at an affordable cost. As a state college, our tuition is a fraction of what private schools cost. When you also consider our experienced and credentialed instructors, small class sizes and modern medical office training lab, you'll see why Palm Beach State is the smart place to start your medical assisting career.

What is Required to Get Started?

You must hold a standard high school diploma or GED. See Catalog Program Details and read Program Facts above for more information.

A Nationally Accredited Program

The Palm Beach State's Medical Assisting program is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) upon the recommendation of Medical Assisting Education Review Board (MAERB).

Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs
25400 U.S. Highway 19 North, Suite 158
Clearwater, FL 33763

Medical Assisting Education Review Board (MAERB)
20 N. Wacker Drive, Suite 1575
Chicago, Illinois 660606

Become a Certified Medical Assistant: CMA (AAMA)

Because Palm Beach State's Medical Assisting Program is CAAHEP-accredited, our graduates are eligible to take the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination. The Certified Medical Assistant credential known as the CMA (AAMA) is awarded by the American Association of Medical Assistants and considered the gold standard of medical assisting professionalism. This credential is increasingly required by employers.

CMA (AAMA)--Recognized Worldwide
The Certifying Board of the AAMA has achieved international accreditation as a personnel certifying body from the International Accreditation Service (IAS). In addition to ensuring the CMA (AAMA) represents a world-class certification, IAS accreditation also validates the credential as an internationally recognized certification, enabling CMAs (AAMA) to obtain similar positions outside of the United States.

Basic X-ray Operator License: During the program, students also may pursue a Basic X-ray Operator License through the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT) and the Florida Department of Health.

Helpful Links

Contact & Office Info

Barbara Kalfin, Medical Assisting Program Director
Phone: 561-868-3562  |  Email:

The ETA (Education & Training Center) building is located on the corner of Lake Worth Road and Congress Avenue.
Directions & Map

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