Medical Transcription Basics

Medical transcription training and schooling tips

Tag: medical transcriptionist online course

Which Online Medical Transcription Schools Take Less Time to Complete?

You’re eager to start working as a medical transcriptionist, and you’ve seen that some online medical transcription schools promise that you can get a fast start. That only makes you more eager to get things going. Which ones take the least time to complete your training so you can start working as a medical transcriptionist?

You’re asking the wrong question. It doesn’t matter how fast the school lets you complete your training if you don’t learn enough to work as a medical transcriptionist. Consider the quality of training first, then look at how long it’s going to take you.

Want the fastest way to finish your training? Go with one of the high quality online medical transcription schools that allow you to train at your own pace. This way the training will only take as long as you need to absorb all of the information and to get enough actual transcription practice to do the work successfully.

Here are some tricks to speed up your training:

1. Set up a quiet home office.

The fewer distractions you deal with as you study, the faster and better you can learn the material. Ideally this would be a space where you can close the door and work. Second best is a room away from the television and other activities in the home.

Quiet is a huge help when you’re trying to transcribe a report. It’s not just about your focus. It’s that many doctors are very difficult to understand, something you will quickly learn when doing your practice dictation, and have emphasized when you start working as a medical transcriptionist. Quiet means you can figure it out with less background noise jumbling things still more.

2. Treat your studies as a full time job.

If you can study as though it’s a full time job, that’s how you’ll finish more quickly. The number of hours will help tremendously. If you can find a way to study at home full time, do so. It will be tiring, especially if you have another job, but it will get you through your classes more quickly.

If you can only study part time, make sure you take those hours seriously. Schedule them into your day and don’t drop them lightly.

In either case, make your studies a part of your routine. Treat it as you would treat a job. Don’t just take off and say you can do the work later.

3. Ask for help when you need it.

Don’t be afraid to ask your teachers for help when you don’t quite understand something. That’s what they’re there for. Things aren’t always perfectly clear when you see them in your books or online study materials. If you need help, get it rather than waste time trying to puzzle things out on your own.

4. Don’t stress about how long your studies are taking.

Sure, you want to get your career started. That’s perfectly reasonable. Just remember that you need to learn the material well if you want to work in medical transcription. Going so fast that you don’t remember what you “learned” after the test on that section is not going to make you a good transcriptionist. It’s not going to help you find a job either.

Expect a minimum of four months of study, and don’t be surprised at nine months or longer. That’s normal. This is a complex career with a lot of information you need to learn. You need to learn the material thoroughly if you want a job later.

Get free information from Career Step about their online medical transcriptionist training.

What Are the Best Medical Transcriptionist Online Classes Available?

It takes solid training to become a medical transcriptionist. It’s not something many people get to just learn on the job. You have to take the initiative and go to classes to learn it on your own. That makes it important to find the best medical transcriptionist online classes you can. Where are they?

First you have to know which criteria you should be considering when looking at online medical transcriptionist classes. You need to be able to sort out which are good versus which are more about getting you to pay for their classes with little regard for how your career goes after.

You should expect a great deal of training in medical terminology, anatomy, physiology, pharmacology, medical report formatting, ethics and more. These are the basic things you will need to know in order to work in medical transcription. Some of it is quite complex, and it takes time to learn it all.

You’ll also do a number of hours of real doctor dictation in any good program. This is one of the most important parts. You can know the terminology, but if you haven’t transcribed it, you don’t realize how different it can all sound depending on how the doctor says it.

It’s not just about accents, although that certainly plays a role. Doctors usually speak quickly when doing their dictation. They want to get it out of their way. They may also eat as they dictate, drive a car, and so forth. The dictation is not always their only focus at the moment. It takes a lot of practice to not only understand what they’re saying, but to transcribe it accurately and quickly.

Just a few hours will not be enough. The amount of practice needed may seem excessive when you first start, but it’s necessary. This is the major skill you bring to the job, and it’s why nurses and other medical professionals often still need to take classes in order to become medical transcriptionists themselves.

How long the course is expected to take overall matters too. It shouldn’t be short. A mere eight weeks really isn’t enough, not by the time you add in the hours needed to really practice transcribing. You can learn a lot in that time, but you won’t have learned enough. Expect a minimum of four months, but accept that a self paced course may well take you nine months or even a year to complete. That’s not at all unusual.

Cost matters to most of us as well. A good course is not cheap. $1800 isn’t unusual, and many courses cost more. This is not something to go too cheap with. Just remember that the quality of training you get will help to pay back the investment you make in your training. Work hard in your classes, find that first job, and you’ll earn it back in a reasonable time period. It’s still less than the cost of many colleges for a year.

Finally, make sure you check the reputation of the school in the medical transcription field. It doesn’t matter if they’re great elsewhere – how well will you be trained for the job you’re after? You want the best you can find in that area.

Get free information from Career Step about their online medical transcriptionist training.

Where Are the Certified Online Courses to Become a Medical Transcriptionist?

Figuring out how to become a medical transcriptionist can be a bit confusing. Sometimes people are surprised to find out that they have to pay for training to get into this career. Once they get past that, the next question is very natural. Where are the certified online courses to become a medical transcriptionist?

A search online can add to the confusion. There are a number of schools out there, and of course they’re all trying to look good to you. Probably several are good, but you don’t know how to check them to see if they’re certified or otherwise a good program to teach you how to become a medical transcriptionist.

Certification isn’t precisely what you’re looking for, however. It’s too easy for a course to say that it’s certified or accredited in this way or that. I much prefer to suggest that you consider AHDI Approval, as it is entirely about the medical transcription training course, not about anything else the school may teach. AHDI considers several factors to determine whether a medical transcription training course is offering the right sort of training to prepare students to work in medical transcription.

It’s pretty easy to find out which courses have this. They’re listed on the AHDI website.

You can check the websites of different schools and request printed information from them. This can help you to figure out which one is going to work out well for you. You’ll want to balance the quality of the course with what you can afford to pay for it. These kinds of courses aren’t precisely cheap, but when you compare them to what you could be earning once you start working as a medical transcriptionist, they usually aren’t all that unreasonable. It’s an investment in your career.

As with any other sort of investment, make sure you do so wisely. Don’t feel you have to go for the first online course you hear about. It might be the right one for you, but it might not be. It is possible to choose a school that advertises its courses well but doesn’t really give you the training you need to do the work and doesn’t have the trust of potential employers to help you get past the experience requirements. The time you spend doing a touch of research on your options will help you to avoid such mistakes.

Just remember that it’s not certification as such that makes an online course worth taking. It’s whether or not you’re likely to gain the skills you need to work as a medical transcriptionist that matters.

Get free information from Career Step about their online medical transcriptionist training.

Which Online Colleges for Medical Transcription Are the Best Value for the Money?

No one wants to waste money on their education. You pay for college, you want to get something out of it. When it comes to learning medical transcription, however, not all colleges are worth it. Which online colleges for medical transcription give you the best value?

It takes a bit of research to find out. There are a few factors that will help you discover which colleges have a good reputation as a school and with employers. It’s that good reputation that will help you get your first medical transcriptionist job, combined with how well you do in your studies.

One way to check how employers feel about a college is to see if they regularly hire graduates from that college. Some will list employers that have hired their graduates on their sites, but you can also try contacting employers. Just remember that this does not guarantee that you will ever be offered a position with that employer, no matter how well you do in your studies. It also depends on if they’re hiring at the time and what your competition for the openings looks like.

The big national medical transcription services are some of the easiest employers to check with. They hire a lot more people, and so deal with a lot more graduates from whichever program you’re looking at.

The AHDI is another place to check. They have some colleges on their Approved list, which means the college offers what they consider to be a good training program. The college has gone through a review process with them and passed all the criteria, which go over course content, the inclusion of an experienced medical transcriptionist in the program, and other factors they believe go into making a college worth approving, and worthwhile for students to attend to learn medical transcription.

You should also consider whether the college allows you to go at your own pace, especially if the courses are offered online. Being able to go at your own pace is a huge help, especially if you’re working elsewhere at the same time. You can go faster or slower as your schedule permits. You don’t have to worry about getting to class on time.

You do have to make sure that you’re still getting the work done in a timely manner if you use a self paced training program. Go too slow and you can eventually run out of time. Colleges do not just keep you as a student until you’re done. There’s a time limit that should be plenty generous enough for the serious student, even if you work elsewhere at the same time. Set aside a couple hours several days a week at least, just as you would for a college class you would attend in person. If you aren’t doing any other work, try treating your studies as a full time job.

When you get right down to it, there are a few online colleges that will give you good value for your money. Even the best won’t give you good value unless you work at it. Don’t expect learning medical transcription to be a simple thing. It takes time and a lot of effort. Give yourself the time you need to really learn what they’re teaching you so that you make the most of your time and the money you’ve spent.

Get free information from Career Step about their online medical transcriptionist training.

How to Look Into Online Courses to Become a Medical Transcriptionist

Taking an online course to become a medical transcriptionist is one of the best ways to get started in this industry. The challenge comes in figuring out which online courses are worth taking, and which should be dropped from consideration. All the schools do their best to sound appealing, but not every school is even close to worth it.

If you want to know which ones are worth it, you need to do a bit of investigating. There are a couple of ways you can find and choose a course.

Signing up for a medical transcriptionist course without doing your research is risky. The internet makes it very easy for someone to set up what looks like a good school when it’s really a one or two person operation, poorly developed training materials, and no record of successfully training students into medical transcriptionists that an employer would hire.

At the same time, there are a number of really great online courses available to medical transcription students. Many of the best medical transcription schools are 100% online. Online courses are great for teaching you how to do the work without direct supervision, and the self paced nature of many online courses means you can fit it into your schedule more easily than classes you have to attend in person.

Employers are a pretty good place to start. If potential employers regularly hire graduates from a particular program, you can pretty well assume they’re doing a good job of teaching. Employers are quick to note when a source of employees is more trouble than it’s worth.

You can also check with the AHDI. You don’t want the school to just be a member of AHDI, you want them to be one of the Approved schools that they list on their website. That means the program has been reviewed in terms of the training in medical transcription it gives. They don’t approve schools easily.

You can look through the resources the school itself makes available to potential students. They will of course make themselves look good, but you can tell a lot about the school’s offerings, such as if a student forum is available, if a payment plan is available, and how much help they’ll give you after graduation to find that first job.

Once you’ve done your research and found a really great medical transcription online course, there’s one more very important thing to remember. You absolutely must remember that the best training course online can do nothing without you. If you aren’t a dedicated, hardworking student, you’re never going to learn the skills you need in order to succeed as a medical transcriptionist.

Get free information from Career Step about their online medical transcriptionist training.

How to Find Good at Home Medical Transcriptionist Courses

Taking an at home medical transcriptionist course is one of the best ways to learn medical transcription. At home courses are highly flexible, so you can take them around your current schedule, and adapt if your schedule changes. All you need to do is find one that’s good enough to train you for the job you hope to land after graduation. And that’s the challenge.

Not all at home courses are worth taking. Many are flat out worth avoiding. They just don’t give you enough of the skills you need if you’re going to work as a medical transcriptionist. You don’t want to take time for the classes, paying the money the course costs and then find out you didn’t learn enough to get a job after graduation. That’s just a waste. You want a course you can do at home that will teach you everything you need to know to find work as a medical transcriptionist after graduation.

To find an at home course that’s worth taking, you need to know a bit about the school offering the course. Medical transcription can be taken from a variety of schools, even your local community college may offer one that you have to attend in person, but some of the best focus exclusively on training for various careers in the medical field.

Don’t assume that accreditation means something. There are many accrediting agencies out there, and some mean more than others. For medical transcription, AHDI Approval is more important than any other kind of accreditation, as it is specific to the medical transcription training being offered.

Another factor to consider is how employers feel about the course. If the at home medical transcriptionist course you’re considering is not well regarded by potential employers, how do you expect to find work after you graduate? You’re better off if the course is so well trusted by major employers that you can skip past the requirement that you have two years of experience. This requirement challenges many newly trained transcriptionists, and any advantage you can gain in getting past it should be considered.

Cost is naturally a factor, especially in an area like medical transcriptionist training, where few schools have grants or student loans directly available. You should balance cost with attending a good at home course. You don’t have to sign up for the most expensive courses to get good training, but you should usually avoid the cheapest, as they may not offer really good training.

Fortunately, while many don’t directly offer loans, they may offer a payment plan so you can spread the cost out a little. Alternatively, they may offer a discount for payment in full at the start. Sometimes one or the other will be just enough to allow you to pay for the course. Offers may change from month to month, but if you don’t see what you need, contact the school to see if you’ve missed information that may help you to pay for training.

There’s even a program for military spouses to get medical transcriptionist training through MyCAA. This may cover the entire cost for military spouses.

Don’t sign up for just any course without doing a bit of research on it, no matter how good it looks at first. You want to be sure you’re getting the benefits you need for the cost of the training. There are some really great home based programs available to you, and that’s probably what you want to sign up for.

Get free information from Career Step about their online medical transcriptionist training.

How to Look Into Online Courses for Medical Transcriptionist Education

Medical transcription is a great career once you have the training. This means you need to take some time to do some research. What are the best ways to look into online courses for medical transcriptionist education?

It’s not as simple as looking through the sites on your favorite search engine. Some of the schools are really great at teaching medical transcription, others are not, but they will all tell you that they offer great training. They’d like you as a student, after all.

The key is figuring out which ones really are good.

Odds are you’d like to finish your training quickly, so that you can begin working as soon as possible. Too fast is a bad idea, however. If the school says you can finish in as little as eight weeks, odds are it’s not that great a program. There’s too much to learn in that short a time. It’s better that you take a bit more time and really learn the skills a medical transcriptionist needs than it is to be told you’re graduating when you really don’t know as much as the school has let you think you know.

Most online courses for medical transcriptionists tell you to expect to take at least four months, and nine months is not at all uncommon. They’re often self paced, which is great for fitting your training into your current schedule. You can study while keeping your current job and dealing with the rest of your daily life. You won’t have to worry about a change in schedule or particularly busy day keeping you away from an important class. You can do it in your own time and learn at your own pace.

This doesn’t mean you can dawdle your way through. There’s usually a more than generous time limit for completing the entire course. Work hard on your studies, and it should not be too hard to complete them within the time frame allowed by the school.

You want your medical transcriptionist education to be well regarded by potential employers. While it’s no guarantee of future employment, any school that has a good relationship with several employers gives you a good chance at getting a job after graduation, skipping the usual requirement of two years of experience that plagues graduates of programs that aren’t so well regarded.

Cost is a major deciding factor for many potential students. Cheap is not the best way to go, however. Your education has a high value in terms of your future career, and you should value it as such. Go too cheap with too little research, and it may be difficult to impossible to get a job, as the quality of your training may suffer.

This doesn’t mean you need to go to the most expensive schools either. There are some very good schools that are on the high range of prices for medical transcriptionist education. Some are excellent, but others merely have a high price and nothing else going for them. Do your research to be sure your school is worth it.

Some midrange schools are quite acceptable in terms of price and quality. Check into their reputations and you may find one that’s not too hard on your education budget, and has the quality you need to give you a good shot at the job you’re after.

Get free information from Career Step about their online medical transcriptionist training.

How to Become a Medical Transcriptionist via Online Courses

You know you have to study in order to become a medical transcriptionist, and you’ve decided that online courses are the way to go. That’s probably a good decision, as some of the best medical transcriptionist courses are the online programs, and that’s a benefit to your overall career.

You have to find the right online course. They aren’t all created equal, and they certainly aren’t all worth paying for. You’re better off being certain that you aren’t signing up for a program that’s more interested in your money than in training you for your new career.

Even before you choose a course, however, you need to make sure you’re ready to take it. Your basic skills should be up to par in a few areas before you start studying medical transcription. Otherwise you’ll spend too much time building skills you should already have. Worse, some programs won’t accept you if you don’t have these basic skills.

Typing speed is one of those skills. If you aren’t a good typist, you aren’t going to be a good medical transcriptionist. If the position you get pays on production and you don’t type well, you aren’t going to earn much. You should be able to type at least 45 wpm before you even start your medical transcription course.

Your basic grammar and spelling skills should also be excellent. If you struggle with spelling and grammar, or just can’t be bothered to correct the mistakes you make in those areas, medical transcription may not be for you. These are mistakes that are not acceptable in people’s medical records, especially as some mistakes can change the entire meaning of a sentence. Saying a panda eats shoots and leaves is entirely different from saying a panda eats, shoots and leaves.

With your basic skills in good shape, you can consider which online course to sign up for. There are quite a number of them available, but you want to sign up for one that will give you high quality training so you can get a job after graduation. Who cares about being trained as a medical transcriptionist if you never become one?

There are a few good signs to look for in an online course. The first is AHDI Approval, which means their course has been reviewed by the AHDI for quality. The next is how employers feel about the program. If there are a number of employers willing to hire graduates without requiring that they get two years of experience first, that’s a good sign that the training is good. It’s also a sign that if you do well, you will have a chance at a job after graduation.

No matter how good the program is however, if you aren’t a good student, it’s not going to do you a lot of good. You must work hard and really build your skills. Not only does this improve your chances of employment after graduation, it means you’ll be a more productive employee. As many positions are paid on production in medical transcription, this can effect how much you earn for the work you do. This should be excellent motivation to master the skills a medical transcriptionist needs.

Get free information from Career Step about their online medical transcriptionist training.

Which Medical Transcriptionist Online Course Should You Avoid?

If you’ve looked at medical transcriptionist online courses much at all, you know there are a lot of them available. There’s a lot of information out there, and it’s hard to sort through it all to decide what’s worth signing up for and what’s going to waste your money.

There are many hints that you should avoid a particular medical transcriptionist online course. Some are in plain sight while others take a bit more research to figure out.

Sign 1: Extravagant Promises

What are they promising you when you graduate from their program? Do they go on and on about earning up to $50,00 a year as a medical transcriptionist without solid statistics to back that number up? Do they rave about the flexibility you will enjoy as you work from the comfort of your own home?

It’s true enough that some medical transcriptionists earn that much a year. Some. Big emphasis on some. Most by far do not.

That doesn’t mean you don’t earn good money. The pay is still pretty good, with the median hourly rate being about $15.

It’s also true enough that you may end up working a highly flexible position from the comfort of your own home. Many medical transcriptionists do. But you can’t always get a home based position right away, and even if you do, you will be expected by most employers to keep to the schedule you’ve written or to set deadlines.

I have to admit, the scheduling thing isn’t that bad. Just don’t think the life of a medical transcriptionist at home is one of near complete leisure with just a bit of work to do. You’ll probably be paid on production, and the work is not always all that easy. You may even need to pay for childcare if you have kids who are too distracting while you work. Sure nice to avoid the commute, though.

Sign 2: Cost of Your Education

A good education in medical transcription online isn’t going to be just a few hundred dollars. The education may be virtual, but any online course worth taking has experienced medical transcriptionists involved in the learning process. They have other expenses as well.

While costs do vary, expect a good program to run over $1500 at the very least. That’s not a bad cost at all if you think about it, and not too hard to make up once you get a job and really start working.

Never go for a free medical transcription course or with a company that promises on the job training if you’ll just buy their software. It’s not going to work out. These aren’t legitimate offers.

Sign 3: Accreditation

Many schools out there are accredited. That only means so much until you check them out. Not every accreditation is equal.

For medical transcription, the one that matters is AHDI Approval. That one is specific to medical transcriptionist training. It’s not a bad thing for a school to have other accreditation, but it doesn’t mean as much if the medical transcription course hasn’t been specifically reviewed.

A bit of caution goes a long way when you’re looking into becoming a medical transcriptionist. Don’t pay for an medical transcriptionist online course until you’re sure you’re picking a good one.

Get free information from Career Step about their online medical transcriptionist training.