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Industry Information

Medical Assistants help physicians examine and treat patients and perform routine tasks to keep offices and clinics running smoothly. MAs usually handle clerical and clinical duties and report directly to the office manager or physician. Some clerical duties include answering phones, greeting patients, updating patient medical records, filling out insurance forms, and arranging for hospital admission and lab services. Some clinical back-office duties include taking and recording vital signs and medical histories, explaining treatment procedures to patients, preparing patients for exams, and assisting during the exam.

Medical assistant employment is expected to grow by 39% in the next decade, which is much faster than average for all other occupations. The expansion of healthcare industries and an emphasis on cost containment will result in an increased use of medical assistants by healthcare establishments.

Imperial Valley College has classes in Medical Assisting that prepare students to take a State exam and be certified as medical assistants in California. National certification is also available. Both front and back office courses (Basic Administrative and Clinical) are offered. A total of 26.5 units is required to obtain a certificate of completion at IVC.

The program is anticipated to be completed in 3 semesters, longer if classes are not available. The reduction of Summer and Winter sessions has impacted the program. Students are advised to take the recommended courses in between the AHP classes. All classes must be completed in sequence and require a grade of C or higher to pass. Students with previous MA experience may petition for advance placement.

The program is designed to take 30 months to complete, with part-time attendance.

Note: Less than 15 completed this program in academic year 2011 - 2012.

Certificate Requirements

The courses and requirements described herein are subject to change. Students should consult a counselor and the appropriate materials, as directed, to receive the most current requirements.

Download Degree and Certificate Catalog


Medical Assistant Program General Information
Uniform Code
Malpractice Insurance

Program Cost

MS Enrollment Fees: $1,790* (Tuition $60/unit* subject to change without notice, $18 Health Fee, $1 Student Rep Fee, and optional Parking Fee $20.)

Books, Supplies & Uniforms: $2,484 (Typical costs)

Campus room & board: $00 (not offered)

* Assumes CA residents. Non-Resident tuition is $200/unit and is subject to change without notice.


Career Opportunities

Some of the career opportunities listed may require additional training or completion of a four-year college/university degree. Students intending to transfer to a four-year college should consult a counselor for specific requirements.

*Standard Occupational Classification Code

Medical Assistant positions are found in the following areas:

  • Clinics and Health Centers
  • Physician Offices
  • Ambulatory Surgery Centers
  • Rehabilitation Centers

Industry Certification and Licensure

State Certification - CCBMA // year-round computer based testing in many locations in California. To be fully certified, students must take all sections of the exam - Basic plus Administrative and Clinical. Separate testing options are also available pending which area to be certified. For Front Office certification only (Basic and Administrative), students must complete AHP 100, 070, 072, and 074. Experience has shown that students who are fully certified as Medical Assistants increase their chances for employment. More information on the test and study materials is available from the website or by calling 1-866-622-2262.


Imperial Valley College maintains faculty-approved formal course articulation agreements with Imperial Valley high schools and the Imperial Valley ROP (Regional Occupation Program). Courses with articulation agreements follow the California Career Statewide Pathways Templates in the areas of: Administration of Justice, Allied Health Programs, Business, Automotive Technology, Building Construction Technology, Child Development, Computer Information Systems, Health Assistant and Welding.

Students who complete an articulated class offered through a partnering high school or ROP program, receive a qualifying grade in their course, and pass the IVC Credit-by-Exam for the subject area, will be eligible to receive college credit for the articulated corresponding Imperial Valley College class posted to their official transcript. Eligible students will work with the Applied Sciences Office at IVC for the awarding of college credit.

For specific articulation agreements please contact the Applied Sciences Office or the IVC Articulation Officer.


Imperial Valley College does not promote nor endorse these web sites. They are provided for your reference and convenience only.

Department Contacts

The Nursing and Allied Health Office (Rm 2155) is in Building 2100

  • Dolores Hartfield, Staff Secretary
    Office: 760-355-6468 Fax: 760-355- 4636
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  • Laura Hartsock, Administrative Secretary
    Office: 760-355-6348
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