Medical Office Assistant

About This Program

The Medical Office Assistant Certificate is a fast-paced program that is offered in-class on a part-time format. Student should be comfortable using a computer and open to learning software programs. 

In order to complete the Certificate, students must:

  • successfully complete all of the courses listed below.
  • apply for the Certificate upon successful completion of all required courses. Certificate request forms are available at the Continuing Studies office.
  • complete all of the course requirements within 3 years


  • Expect to dedicate significant time and effort on homework and studying.
  • Regular attendance is expected and required. 

If you are a graduate of Medicine Hat College's Administrative Office Professional (AOP) certificate, you can receive advanced standing in the Medical Office Assistant certificate program. With your AOP certificate, and successful completion of Medical Terminology, Procedures and Ethics, and Standard First Aid with Level C CPR, you will receive a Medical Office Assistant certificate. PLAR (prior learning assessment and recognition) will be provided for the computer skills training and keyboarding requirements, as well as the "Productivity and Workplace Communication" course requirements.

For more information or to register, call registration at 403.529.3844 or visit Continuing Studies. Courses can be found under the Business & Leadership and Computer & Technology sections.

The Medical Office Assistant duties can include front desk reception, making patient/client appointments, preparing charts, record keeping, Alberta Health Care billing, basic medical transcription and working with different departments within hospitals. An in-depth foundation in medical terminology provides a base for working in the medical field.

Medical Assistants demonstrate the following characteristics:

  • the ability to maintain patient confidentiality
  • excellent oral and written communication skills
  • good organizational and time management skills
  • strong computer skills and confidence in operating other office equipment
  • the ability to maintain accuracy while multi-tasking or working under pressure
  • a mature attitude toward the human body, wellness and disease processes
  • the ability to follow directions closely and accurately
  • the ability to establish a professional rapport with and instil confidence in patients
  • the ability to deal effectively with the difficult behaviours sometimes exhibited by people in distress
  • the ability to work independently or as part of a team

According to the 2015 Alberta Wage and Salary Survey, Albertans in the Medical Office Assistant occupational group earned a starting wage from $24.00 – $29.88 an hour. The average wage was $27.92 an hour. (

For upcoming dates and times and to register for courses, please click here.

Medical Terminology
Tuition: $695 + GST
Textbook: $135 + GST
Material Fee: 35 + GST
Hours: 42

By studying rules, word roots, prefixes, suffixes and combining forms, students will be able to build, use and spell medical words related to body systems and organization. Students will:

  • learn anatomical, physiological and pathological body systems and terms
  • develop a solid foundation for medical terms related to the biology and language of each specific body system studied

Successful completion of Medical Terminology is a prerequisite to entering the Medical Office Assistant and Hospital Unit Clerk certificate programs. In order to successfully complete the course, students must earn a grade of 75% or better and have a minimum of 85% attendance and active participation in class.

Procedures and Ethics for the Medical Office
Tuition: $675 + GST
Material Fee: $45 +GST
Hours: 36

Prerequisite: Medical Terminology
This course focuses on learning the skills necessary to be a vital and important part of the medical office. Topics covered include: proper telephone etiquette, communicating with patients and physicians, organizational skills, records management, and appointment scheduling, Alberta Health Care billing, WCB claims, transcribing/typing of medical letters, and understanding confidentiality within the medical field. NOTE: In order to successfully complete the course, students must earn a grade of 75% or better and have a minimum of 85% attendance. Maximum 12 students

Productivity & Workplace Communication
Tuition: $395 + GST
Hours: 12

This specially designed 2 day series is focused on increasing your productivity and enhancing your skills in the workplace, dealing with challenging people, and conflict resolution. You will learn:

  • to manage tasks and workload to achieve the right results
  • the barriers to personal efficiency and effectiveness and how to eliminate or reduce them
  • to maximize effectiveness with the use of planning and organizing tools
  • a Conflict Resolution process to improve outcomes
  • strategies to effectively assist the clients and people you work with. Clients dealing intense personal issues can present special challenges.

Keyboarding/Skillbuilding I
Tuition: Free

Student self-directed study: After an initial assessment, students practice to master the touch typing technique and improve speed and accuracy on timed writings. Proof of typing a minimum of 30 wpm with 90% accuracy is required to pass this course and earn the Certificate.

Introduction to Microsoft Office Applications for the PC
Tuition: $159 + GST
Hours: 6

You can learn more about computers, even if you aren’t sure of your next step. We will cover the basics of Microsoft Word, Excel and PowerPoint so that each student can decide which program will work for them. You will recognize the purpose of the applications, the look of each program, and create basic documents.

Ed2Go Online Equivalent: Computer Skills for the Workplace

Microsoft Word Level 1: Formatting for Clarity
Tuition: $195 + GST
Hours: 6

Enhance and add clarity to improve the appearance of your documents. 

  • Set, use and modify tabs
  • Align paragraphs and adjusting spacing
  • Add bullets or numbers to your text
  • Use page numbers, headers and footers
  • Adjust margins, orientation and page layout
  • Simplify proofreading of documents by checking spelling, enhance productivity by using AutoCorrect and AutoText, and streamline document creation by using templates.

Prerequisite: Fundamentals of Microsoft Word or equivalent experience.
Ed2Go Online Equivalent: Introduction to Microsoft Word 2019/Office 365

Standard First Aid with Level C CPR
Tuition: Approx. $150

Standard First Aid with Level C CPR can be taken through any authorized training provider. Please note: This course must be successfully completed before the Medical Office Assistant Certificate will be awarded.  

Additional Notes:

  • The ‘Medical Terminology’ course offered through ed2go is not an acceptable prerequisite.
  • Material fees and textbooks costs will not be refunded after the Registration Deadline. Textbook fees are subject to change.
  • Certificate exams are required for each computer course. The Certificate exam fee is $15 + GST per exam. Pre-registration is required. Re-tests will be treated as challenge exams. Pass Mark: 75%.
  • Microsoft courses can be challenged. The challenge exam fee is $75 + GST per exam.


Successful completion of Medical Terminology (CA 0005) is a prerequisite to entering the Medical Office Assistant certificate program.

To earn the Medical Office Assistant Certificate, students must achieve a grade of 75% on each of the required courses. The class will require a minimum of 85% attendance, class participation and presentation that will be graded.

Upon success completion of the required courses, students must apply for the certificate by contacting the Continuing Studies Office at 403.529.3874.

The Hospital Unit Clerk student is prepared to work in a hospital setting. The program includes skills in processing medical orders, operating hospital information system software, and general skills for a hospital nursing unit. Some health regions will specify that a Hospital Unit Clerk Certificate is a job requirement. However, Hospital Unit Clerk graduates have transferable skills that enable them to find employment in other health settings.

The Medical Office Assistant student is prepared to work in a medical or private office or clinic. The program includes training in specific clinical skills for the medical office or clinic, basic financial skills, medical billing, and the use of health care software for medical offices or clinics.

There are several courses that are identical in the two programs. If a student completes one of the programs, and wishes to gain a Certificate in the other, the student can apply for transfer credit for these identical courses.

Program Contact

For more information, contact:

Shannan Hurlbut
Continuing Studies

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