Medical Assistant, Specialized Diploma

Allied Health & Sciences

Specialized Diploma conferred



Health care continues to be a growth area of our economy. Varied and satisfying employment opportunities exist, even for individuals with a minimum of science education.

Northampton developed its Medical Assistant specialized diploma program in response to requests from physicians who were looking for workers who were trained in both office and clinical skills. The coursework includes both classroom and lab instruction. Students develop their skills in the academic setting prior to experiencing hands-on clinical instruction in physician practices.

The program progresses sequentially. You will master basic skills and competencies first before moving on to more challenging procedures. Students finish the program with a capstone clinical externship in their third semester. During the externship, you will have the chance to work in the medical office setting under the supervision of a clinical preceptor.

The specialized diploma is part of a career ladder that allows successful students to gain employment at the earliest point in their academic program. Students can also choose to continue their studies full or part-time in a specialized field through direct articulation with other Medical Office Administration programs.


Students will learn clerical skills such as keyboarding and the fundamentals of health care reimbursement. Clinical skills include: history taking, vital sign measurement, documenting on the patient record, medication administration, phlebotomy and EKGs.

Students can elect to attend the program on a part-time or full-time basis, but the Medical Assistant Technique courses must be taken in sequence. This program is offered at the Fowler Southside Center and Monroe Campus.

After completing the program, students can sit for the Registered Medical Assistant American Medical Technologist (RMA-AMT) Certification Exam. The program faculty will distribute information about the exam to students at the conclusion of the program. 

Career Potential: Medical Assistant in office of: physician, dentist, podiatrist, medical clinic, chiropractor, ambulatory surgical unit, and hospital departments.

Admission Requirements

This is a selective admission program. Applicants shall have completed work equal to a standard high school course as evidenced by a diploma or GED. The minimum admission requirement to the program include: 1) one year of HS biology or NCC equivalent (BIOS105, BIOS107, BIOS115) with a grade of C or better, and 2) one year of HS algebra with a grade of C or better or NCC equivalent (MATH022).

Prior to acceptance, the student is required to take the English Placement Test (EPT) and be able to enroll in English 101 or be able to transfer English 101 or its equivalent.

After acceptance into the program, students are required to

  • Carry and maintain health insurance
  • Have physical examination
  • Submit results of required lab tests, immunizations and drug screen
  • Submit certificate in Basic Life Support for Health Care providers throughout the program
  • Submit results of Criminal History Record Information (CHRI), Child and Elder Abuse History Clearance and FBI Clearance.


In order to be considered, applicants must submit an application and all transcripts by February 1 for Fall semester start. Applications received after this date will be reviewed on a space available basis.


Graduates of the program will:

  • Demonstrate an understanding of basic human biology and medical terminology as they relate to the role of the medical assistant.
  • Perform the administrative, clerical, and clinical competencies of the medical assistant role.
  • Demonstrate knowledge of the legal and ethical responsibilities of the medical assistant.
  • Function as an assistant to the physician or health care professional in the medical office setting.
  • Demonstrate effective written and oral communication skills in the medical assistant role.
  • Integrate biopsychosocial principles in delivering care to patients and in performing the medical assistant role.


First Semester

COLS101College Success

1 credits

BIOS130Basics of Human Anatomy and Physiology

4 credits

MDAS101Medical Assistant Techniques I

5 credits

HCOA154Medical Terminology

3 credits

Total Credit Hours:13

Second Semester

MDAS105Medical Assistant Techniques II

5 credits

HCOA172Health Insurance Basics

3 credits

HCOA175ICD-10-CM/PCS Coding Methodologies

3 credits

HCOA176CPT Coding Methodology

3 credits

HCOA240Medical Office Management Practices

3 credits

Total Credit Hours:17

Third Semester

MDAS201Medical Assistant Externship

4 credits

Total Credit Hours:4

Total Credit Hours: 34