Health Information Technology
Frequently Asked Questions

What skills do I need?

  • Health Information Technologists/Medical Coding specialists must be able to:
    • Demonstrate accuracy and attention to detail
    • Understand technical reading material
    • Work at computer monitors for prolonged periods
    • Communicate effectively in English

What are the requirements for admission into the Health Information Technology associate and Medical Coding program?

  • You must complete the testing requirement
  • Complete the Prerequisites
  • Documentation of program required immunizations

What assessments do I have to take for Health Information Technology/Medical Coding?

  • Students must have one of the following:
    • Passing scores on a placement test for Reading, Writing, and Math.
    • Complete or Exempt status on the Reading, Writing, and Math portions of the TSI requirement
  • Visit a campus advisor to determine status.

I am a Continuing Education student. Do I still have to take an assessment test?

  • Yes, all applicants must have one of the following:
    • Passing scores on a placement test for Reading, Writing, and Math
    • Complete or Exempt status on the Reading, Writing, and Math portions of the TSI requiremet
  • Visit a campus advisor to determine status.

How are classes offered for the AAS Degree?

  • The classes in the even semester (2, 4 & 6) are offered in the spring semester.
  • The classes in the odd semester (1, 3 & 5) are offered in the fall semester
    • You must take and pass all courses in one semester before going on to the next semester. The only exception are electives wich may be taken at your convenience.
  • The course sequence can be found here

What are the prerequisites before I can sign up for the Health Information Technology degree or Medical Coding certificate classes?

  • A student must complete Medical Terminology (3-hour class), Anatomy and Physiology, and Health Data Content and Structure for admission into the Medical Coding Certificate Program
  • A student must complete Medical Terminology (3-hour class), Anatomy and Physiology, and Health Data Content and Structure, and BCIS Business Computer Applications for admission into the Health Information Technology AAS Degree program.
  • Application review begins on May 25th each year for admission during the following Fall semester. Admission is conditional on successful completion of each prerequisite course and Criminal Background Check.

Are there any challenge exams for any of the courses?

  • Yes. There are two classes you may challenge:
    • HITT 1305 Medical Terminology
    • HITT 1301 Health Data Content and Structure

How many classes are in the program?

  • There are 24 classes in the Health Information Technology Associate Degree program and 10 classes in the Medical Coding certificate program.

Can I take continuing education or credit classes?

  • Yes, the Medical Coding Certificate can be completed through Continuing Education.

I have taken classes under continuing education, how long do I have to convert these classes to credit?

  • You have two years from the time you finish your class.

Where do I go to get this done?

  • Go to Highland Business Center on the 4th floor Continuing Education department to get this converted.

Why are class sizes so small for Health Information Technology and for Medical Coding?

  • Due to limited clinical sites.

What are challenge exams?

  • Challenge exams afford students the opportunity to take the final exam for a course without having to attend class; an A or B is required to pass. There is a $10 per credit-hour fee for challenge exams.
  • There are two HITT classes you may challenge:
    • HITT 1305 Medical Terminology
    • HITT 1301 Health Data Content and Structure

What can I expect to earn?

  • Salaries for graduates of ACC's Health Information Technology and the Medical Coding program may earn between $22,000 and $35,000 a year depending on education and/or experience.

Is there a deadline for taking challenge exams?

  • Yes, you must complete any challenge exams by May 1st if you intend to enroll in Fall semester of that year.

Can I find my own clinical site?

  • No. The ACC faculty schedules the clinicals and there are various rules and regulations that we must follow. ACC faculty must have an affiliation agreement with the facility prior to going to the clinical affiliation.

How many hours are required in the clinical?

  • 128 hours per semester. The clinical is done one day per week at a clinical site and one day per week internally (in lab, online or via Blackboard) during the Fall and Spring semesters.

Is the clinical during the day?

  • Yes. Clinicals are held during daytime hours, Monday through Friday for 8 hours a day. They are not held on weekends, evenings, or holidays. The AAS has 3 clinical courses. The Medical Coding Certificate has 1 clinical course.

What is credentialing?

  • A process by which a non-governmental agency or association recognizes the competence of individuals who have met certain qualifications as determined by agency or association. To achieve certification from the American Health Information Association, individuals must meet the eligibility requirements for certification and successfully complete the certificate examination.

Why become credentialed?

  • Certification is important because it:
    • Demonstrates to colleagues and superiors a dedication to the healthcare field.
    • Sets a person apart from non-certified job candidates.
    • Sets the individual as professional that strives to achieve excellence.
    • Adds recognition to a candidate's capability while ensuring expertise with every signature.

Where do I become credentialed?

The following organizations provide credentialing for Medical Coders and Health Information Technicians. There are other organizations as well that offer specialty credentials.

  • American Health Information Management Association (www.ahima.org)
  • Radiology Coding Certification Board (www.rccb.org)
  • American Association of Professional Coders (www.aapc.com)

What are the credentials?

  • The following certifications are currently offered by AHIMA. If you are interested in taking a certification exam, please visit this website for more information on the following:
    • CCA Certified Coding Associate
    • CCS Certified Coding Specialist
    • CCS-P Certified Coding Specialist-Physician-based
    • CHP Certified in Healthcare Privacy
    • CHS Certified in Healthcare Security
    • CHPS Certified in Healthcare Privacy and Security
    • RHIA Registered Health Information Administrator
    • RHIT Registered Health Information Technician

How many graduation ceremonies does ACC have?

  • ACC has one general graduation ceremony that is held in May of each year.

If I graduate in August or December is there any ceremony available?

  • Yes. Health Sciences has their own completion ceremony that is held in the Multipurpose Conference Room at the Eastview Campus (Building 8000).

What is the cost of a cap and gown?

  • The cost is approximately $32.

What is the color of our tassel?

  • The color should be golden yellow.

When do I need to apply for Graduation?

  • You need to apply before the second Friday in October for December graduation, before the second Friday in February for May graduation, and before the Friday before the 4th of July for August graduation. You can access the form from any admissions office or online

When is a background check completed?

  • A background check is conducted at the request of the Health Sciences program. ACC has contracted with an outside agency to perform the screenings. Health Sciences program applicants are charged a nonrefundable fee to cover the cost of the screening.

What backgrounds result in ineligibility?

  • Please refer to the complete list on the Health Sciences homepage for ineligibility information here.

Why should something that may have happened 20 years ago affect a student’s eligibility for a Health Sciences program?

  • Clinical agencies are required to protect the safety of patients in their facilities. Students who wish to pursue a Health Sciences education have the option to appeal their ineligibility to the appropriate licensing/credentialing organizations by way of a declaratory order process.