UC Blue Ash College

Medical Assisting


Why study Medical Assisting?

The Medical Assisting Certificate program is designed to prepare students for a career as a health professional in a physician's office, clinic, or urgent care (ambulatory) setting. In order to meet the program objectives, the curriculum provides a rigorous foundation in clinical, patient care, and office administration courses. Clinical and patient care courses include introduction to anatomy and physiology, medical terminology, clinical techniques, laboratory procedures, and physician assisting procedures for various types of ambulatory medical settings. Administrative courses include study in medical office procedures, computers, and oral and written communication.

Graduates of the Medical Assisting Certificate program will have the formal education required to apply for the nationally recognized certification examination of the American Association of Medical Assistants. Most employers in the health care environment recommend that medical assistants have the Certified Medical Assistant (CMA(AAMA)) credential.

Admission Requirements

The Medical Assisting Certificate program admits students through a selective admission process each year. Incoming students who wish to pursue a University of Cincinnati Blue Ash College Certificate in Medical Assisting (28CRT-MA C2) should apply through UC admissions to be admitted to the UC Blue Ash College and choose the Pre-Health Professions (non-degree) program. Current UC students in other majors may also apply. Internal applications for selective admission to the Medical Assisting Certificate program for the spring semester will open on October 1 and close on December 1. Students who apply and meet the minimum selective admission criteria by the end of fall semester of the application year will be considered for admission decision.

These are the minimum criteria that must be met to be considered for the program. If you do not meet these requirements, you should not submit a selective program admission application. By enrolling in Pre-Health Professions, you are able to work towards these requirements at UC Blue Ash College and apply once they are met. The Pre-Health Professions advisor can assist with putting together a plan. Learn more about parallel plans.

This program is open to all students with a high school diploma or GED and the desire to succeed in college. Although admission is open, students accepted into the program must meet the academic standards of the program to advance to upper levels of study. The program is a two-tiered selective admission process of education over 4 semesters.  The first fall semester is composed of 4 courses including The Medical Assisting Profession (MA1001), Introduction to Anatomy & Phsiology (BIOL1015), English Composition (ENGL1001), and Medical Terminology (HLSC2012). After completion of these 4 fall semester courses, students will apply for selection into the Medical Assistant (MA) certificate Professional Cohort. Grades from the initial 4 courses will be used to help select students for admission into the professional cohort for the 3 remaining semesters. The second tier begins spring semester after an applicant has been accepted into the MA professional cohort. This phase contains in-depth medical assistant coursework required to graduate from the program and apply for the national certification exam through the American Association of Medical Assistants (AAMA).

As a first-year student, you will need to take an English and mathematics placement test if you have not obtained the minimum ACT/SAT score required for exemption. These tests do not affect your admission; however, the results are essential for your proper placement in classes. You must complete placement tests before you register for English or mathematics courses. All placement tests are given free of charge.

Students who will meet the minimum selective program admission criteria below by the end of fall semester of the application year are encouraged to apply to the program via the electronic application available between October 1 and December 1.  All applications must be submitted no later than December 1 even if the minimum criteria will not be met until the end of the fall semester.

  • Confirmed admission to the University of Cincinnati
  • Content GPA 2.5 (MA1001, BIOL1015, ENGL1001, HLSC2012) for new and transfer students
  • Placement Test:
    • STAT1031 Ready (or completion of MATH0029 with minimum grade of C-)
    • ENGL0099 Ready OR ACT ELA1 or ENGL minimum score of 18 OR UC English placement test minimum score of 5

In addition to the minimum qualifications, you are required to provide an essay as a part of the application process for the Medical Assisting Certificate program.  

The Reflective Essay:

In addition to the minimum academic qualifications, each applicant is required to submit a reflective essay.  The prompt for the reflective essay is, "Why are you interested in the Medical Assisting profession? Describe two characteristics you possess and how they will help you succeed as a student in the Medical Assisting Certificate program and as a medical assistant in professional practice.”

Your document should be formatted as follows:

  • Word document
  • Name should appear at the top of the first page of the essay
  • 500 words or less
  • Times New Roman
  • Size 12 font
  • Double spaced
  • One-inch margins on all sides
  • Text aligned to the left only
  • References cited in  APA format
  • The name of your Word file must begin with your UC Username (6+2 login used to access your UC email and accounts)

Essays that meet the following criteria will be awarded the highest score:

  • Demonstrated knowledge of the profession of Medical Assisting
  • Clearly-explained characteristics that would contribute to their success as a student and professional MA with references cited in APA format
  • Information is well organized, sequenced, and constructed
  • No misspellings, punctuation, or grammatical errors
  • All of the document formatting and length requirements were followed.

Technical Standards

A candidate for the UCBA Medical Assisting Services program must have abilities and skills as follows:

  • Observation: Candidates must have sufficient sensory capacity to observe in lecture and clinical settings.  Sensory and tactile skills must be adequate to observe a patient’s condition and to elicit information through procedures regularly required in comprehensive medical assisting patient evaluation.
  • Communications: The candidate must be able to communicate effectively and sensitively with patients in order to elicit information, describe changes in mood, activity and posture; assess nonverbal communication; and be able to effectively and efficiently transmit information to patients, fellow students, faculty and staff. Candidates must demonstrate effective writing skills.
  • Motor: The candidate must have sufficient motor function to elicit information from patients by appropriate diagnostic or therapeutic maneuvers; be able to perform basic tests; be able to execute motor movements reasonably required to provide general care and emergency treatment to patients.
  • Intellectual/Conceptual, Integrative and Quantitative Abilities: The candidate must be able to measure, calculate, reason, analyze and synthesize. Problem solving, a critical skill demanded of allied health practitioners, requires all of these intellectual abilities. Candidates must be able to read and understand medical literature.
  • Behavioral and Social Attributes: The candidate must possess the emotional health required for full utilization of his or her intellectual abilities, the exercise of good judgment, the prompt completion of all responsibilities attendant to care of patients and the development of mature, sensitive and effective relationships with patients. Candidates must also be able to tolerate taxing workloads, function effectively under stress, adapt to a changing environment, display flexibility and learn to function in the face of the uncertainties inherent in clinical problems of many patients. 

Applicants to the Medical Assisting program are responsible for determining their own eligibility in light of these qualifications. It is also the responsibility of students to inform the college of any potential problem areas and to communicate with the MA faculty and Program Director any particular accommodations they may need after registering with Accessibility Resources

Students with documented disabilities are encouraged to register with Accessibility Resources to determine appropriate accommodations. You may contact the UC Blue Ash College Accessibility Resources office by calling 513-558-9414; Fax 513-792-8624, or by emailing ucbadso@ucmail.uc.edu

Students with disabilities who enter the program do so with the understanding that they will be expected to meet course requirements with any reasonable accommodation that may be provided by the college. The tardy and absence policies of the program will apply to all students. Please communicate with MA faculty and/or the Program Director for additional questions or concerns.

No accommodations can be made in the clinical areas including competency evaluations. 

Students with Special Needs

You should notify your course instructor at the beginning of the semester of any circumstances that could affect your participation in a course, including medical issues (pregnancy, pending surgeries, etc.) and military status.

The Medical Assisting Certificate program curriculum stresses professionalism, dependability, flexibility, medical ethics, communication and human relations skills. Successful students will be those who communicate effectively, openly accept critical feedback, apply critical thinking and problem-solving skills and demonstrate a genuine concern for patients.

Upon completion of the Medical Assisting Certificate program, the student will have completed the following program outcomes:

  • Demonstrate clinical and administrative (psychomotor, cognitive and affective) proficiency as outlined in the Medical Assisting 2015 Standards provided by Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) and pass 100% of the psychomotor and affective competencies.
  • Communicate appropriately and in a professional manner with patients, providers, staff, and other members of the healthcare team and community.
  • Protect the health of the patient and coworkers by carefully following Standard Precaution Guidelines and OSHA mandates and adhere to HIPAA Regulations.
  • Participate in patient care within their medical assistant scope of training.
  • Successfully meet the eligibility criteria to apply for the national certification process through the American Association of Medical Assistants (AAMA).

Graduates will have completed 200 hours of hands-on clinical practice in a medical setting under the direct supervision of a physician and are qualified to assist physicians in a private office, clinic or other health care facility. Medical assistants are trained in both administrative and clinical functions to provide invaluable skills to the physician's office.

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, "employment of medical assistants is projected to grow 23 percent from 2018 to 2028, much faster than the average of 5% for all occupations."

"The growth of the aging baby-boom population will continue to increase demand for preventive medical services, which are often provided by physicians. As a result, physicians will hire more assistants to perform routine administrative and clinical duties, allowing the physicians to see more patients."

For academic advising, students in the Medical Assisting Certificate program should contact the Program Director Jennifer Kroger-DeMichael via email at jennifer.demichael@uc.edu.

The UCBA Medical Assisting Certificate program is unique to the University of Cincinnati. In just four semesters, the Medical Assisting Certificate program allows the student an opportunity to complete a technical certificate program while earning college credit in a profession that is in high demand.

Completing the Medical Assisting Certificate Program through the University of Cincinnati Blue Ash College provides the graduate a quality education that is affordable and versatile.  

Successful certificate program graduates are eligible and required to take a highly regarded, nationally recognized credentialing exam (CMA (AAMA)). The CMA (AAMA) is the gold standard of the profession.

The faculty have many years of experience in the medical field and in the educational process. The program curriculum is up to date on the educational needs of the medical assistant and reflects current industry standards.

  • The 2017 UC Blue Ash College Medical Assisting Graduates had a 90% pass rate on the Certified Medical Assistant CMA (AAMA) Exam.
  • Eighty percent of the 2018 Medical Assisting Graduates obtained positions in the healthcare field.
  • Employers that hired 2018 UC Blue Ash students reported 100% satisfaction with the graduate’s preparedness for professional practice. 
  • The graduate survey results of the Class of 2018 reflected that 100% of the students were satisfied with their education and experience in the program.

Know the Costs

It's important to be aware of the costs of any program, so we've put together this list of total cost estimates for the Medical Assisting Certificate program.

  • Healthcare Provider CPR Two Year Certification (from American Heart Association or The American Red Cross)
    • Spring (Semester 2)
    • Approximate Cost: $100
  • Drug Screen and Background Check
    • Summer (Semester 3)
    • Approximate Cost: $90
  • Uniforms
    • Spring (Semester 2)
    • Approximate Cost: $150
  • Uniform Shoes
    • Spring (Semester 2)
    • Approximate Cost: $100
  • CMA (AAMA) Exam Fee
    • Spring (Semester 2)
    • Approximate Cost: $125
  • Textbooks and Educational Resources (for entire program)
    • Approximate Cost: $850
  • Travel Expenses to Practicum Sites (depending on distance from residence to practicum site)
    • Approximate Cost: $200
  • Non-Tuition Cost Estimate
    • Approximate Cost: $1,615

Information regarding Tuition and Fees is available at the Office of the Bursar website.

Students of the Medical Assisting Certificate program at UC Blue Ash College are encouraged to be active in the American Association of Medical Assistants, the Ohio State Society of Medical Assistants and the two local chapters: the Ohio Regional Chapter and the Southwest Ohio Chapter. Students who have participated in these organizations have held state and local offices and taken an active part in the promotion of their profession by attending the annual state conference.

Learn more about the advantages of the American Association of Medical Assistants and the profession at their website.

Students must have a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.50 in order to graduate. Students must also complete all program courses with a final grade of C or above, fulfill the 200-hour practicum experience, and pass 100% of the Psychomotor and Affective Educational Competencies for Medical Assistants as required for CAAHEP Accredited Medical Assisting Programs based on the Medical Assisting Education Review Board (MAERB) 2015 Standards.

TOEFL (Test of English as Foreign Language) – Students who have not graduated from a U.S. or English speaking high school must complete the TOEFL examination or other exam with the designated score, as listed below. With the following exceptions:

  1. Student has taken a full year of High School in the United States and earned a passing grade in one year of Standard English (not ESL).
  2. Student has earned a passing score on the O-Level English Exam.
  3. Student has passed the first year of IB English (SL or HL) with a score of 5 or higher.
  4. Student has attended a full year of school in a country in which has been deemed as English proficient.

High Intermediate Ranges on Examination(s) - for students that do not meet one of the Four Bulleted Exceptions above.


  • Overall: 72
  • Speaking sub-score: 20
  • Listening sub-score: 17


  • Overall: 6.0
  • Speaking sub-score: 6.5
  • Listening sub-score: 5.5


  • Overall: 50 (concords to 72 on the TOEFL)
  • CEFR level B2 (easiest) = 51-58
  • CEFR level B2 = 59-75

Cambridge Assessment

  • English 175
  • IELTS 6.0 = 169-175
  • IELTS 6.5 = 176-184
  • CEFR level: B2 = 160-179

Duolingo English Test (DET)

  • Overall: 95
  • Production sub-score: 112
  • Conversation sub-score: 88

Application Deadlines

Internal applications for selective admission to the Medical Assisting Certificate program for the spring semester will open on October 1 and close on December 1.

Application to the Medical Assisting Certificate program does not guarantee admission and students can apply to the Medical Assisting Certificate program only twice.  Students who meet minimum selective admissions criteria by the end of fall semester of the application year will be considered for admission to the program and will be notified via their UC email account of acceptance by December 22.  Students must confirm their acceptance to the Medical Assisting Technical Certificate program by responding (details included in acceptance email) within one week of notice to ensure a space in the class.

The University of Cincinnati and all regional campuses are accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.


The University of Cincinnati Blue Ash Medical Assisting Certificate program is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs upon the recommendation of the Medical Assisting Education Review Board (MAERB).

25400 U.S. Highway 19 North, Suite 158
Clearwater, FL  33763

Contact Information

Allied Health Program Coordinator
9555 Plainfield Rd.
Blue Ash, OH 45236

Contact Information

Allied Health Program Coordinator
9555 Plainfield Rd.
Cincinnati, OH 45236
(513) 558-7928

Find related programs in the following interest areas:

Program Code: 28CRT-MA-C2