Medical office administrators play an essential role within health care teams, making sure that the administrative side of clinics and hospitals run smoothly so that patients can reliably receive the care and services they need.
In doing so, they draw on a broad range of skills and competencies – including a general knowledge of medical terminology. For some, learning complex and unfamiliar terms like xerosis, epistaxis, and fasciculation can seem challenging, but it doesn’t have to be. With the right methods and some practice, anyone can master the vocabulary of the medical field.
If you’re interested in training for a rewarding office administration career in a clinic, hospital, or government health agency, here are some helpful tips you can use to memorize medical terminology.
1. Knowing the Roots Will Help When You Become a Medical Office Administrator
Many medical terms are derived from Greek and Latin roots. Although medical terminology can sometimes seem complicated, becoming familiar with these basic roots can help make it easier to understand and easier to memorize. By knowing the roots of a word, you can also guess the approximate meaning of unfamiliar terms, by looking at which roots have been combined to create them.
Take the medical term hepatitis, for example. Hepatitis is formed from the combination of two roots: hepato, which refers to the liver, and itis, which is Latin for inflammation. By familiarizing yourself with these roots, you can guess approximately what the term refers to – an inflammation of the liver – and more easily understand and remember related terms, such as hepatic artery (the artery that supplies blood to the liver) and dermatitis (inflammation of the skin).
2. Flashcards Can be a Great Way to Learn New Vocabulary
Another great way to learn the vocabulary you’ll need when you become a medical office administrator is through the use of flash cards. If you’re not familiar with the flashcard method of memorization, it generally involves using index cards, with a term written on one side and its definition on the other. You can then either flip through terms, guessing at the correct definition, or flip through definitions, guessing at the correct term, always checking your answers as you go. This method can be very effective for learning full medical terms or common roots, as it provides instant feedback and can be done anywhere. With new dedicated mobile apps, you can even practice with flashcards on your phone.
3. Experiment with Different Methods to Learn What Works Best For You
It’s useful to remember that each person has a different learning style, and one of the best things you can do when memorizing new medical terminology during medical office administration training is to find the specific method that works best for how you learn.
Auditory learners, for example, learn best by using sound. If this describes you, then you might consider recording yourself sounding out vocabulary so you can listen back to it throughout the day, or creating tunes or jingles to help remember unfamiliar words. If you’re a visual learner, on the other hand, coming up with memorable mental images to associate with each new word might work better.
If you experiment with different methods, you’ll eventually find which ones work best for you. After that, it’s just a matter of practice!
Are you ready for a new career in the medical field?
Contact KLC College today to learn more about our career training in medical office administration.