Studying online is appealing for a number of reasons. To name just a few, you have no need to commute, you can study at a time that suits you, and you can continue working. There are many medical coding certification online programs available, which give you a taste of how working at home could feel. However, there are also a number of disadvantages to these programs that you should take into account before deciding to choose an online course of a program on campus.
1. Need for Self-Discipline
Some students struggle to keep up with their work when they lack a defined schedule. It is easy to become distracted and end up wasting your time on other things. Procrastinate too long and you’ll find the workload harder than you can handle.
Not a big deal if: You possess good time-management skills
2. Support with Technology
Medical billing and coding involves using new and unfamiliar software. Students who have little experience with computers may run into problems that can be complicated to resolve over the Internet. In comparison, with an in-person course, your teacher is able to explain the process quickly by walking you through the task, something it is much more difficult with written instructions or video.
Not a big deal if: You are comfortable using computers
3. Lack of Interaction
Online courses also distance you from other students, and for many people, interacting with others is a integral part of the school experience. Contact with others allows you to share notes, form study groups, and discuss the program to clear up doubts and concerns. Although you will be able to communicate with students online, the dynamics are completely different when you are not in the same physical location.
Not a big deal if: You enjoy working alone
4. Quality of Education
Online billing and coding courses (particularly free programs) can be much lower quality than the education you receive at a vocational school. Studying such programs puts you at a disadvantage — you’ll have a poor knowledge of the subject and may be unable to pass exams for essential certifications, like the Certified Billing and Coding Specialist (CBCS), Electronic Health Records Specialist (EHRS), and Medical Administrative Assistant (CMAA). Even if you do pass, employers are far less likely to hire graduates from these low-quality courses.
Not a big deal if: You study through an accredited school
A medical coding certification online program is not for everyone, but it could be the right move for you. If you decide that the benefits outweigh the potential disadvantages, don’t hesitate to enroll in a course at an accredited school.