There are many things you need to do before taking your Surgical Technicians Exam. This is not a test you can simply sign up for and take. Most places require that you do enroll in some sort of study, whether it’s a degree program offered by a university or a community college. There may also be a vocational school in your area.
Most programs generally take from 9 months to 2 years. One thing you should make sure of is that the program you enroll in is accredited. This means that the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) and or the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES) has approved the program. The only way to get certified is to have attended an accredited program. Having an accredited degree will give you more leverage in the work field. You will be highly qualified to find a job. Most employers will be looking to hire certified technicians.
Once you have graduated from an accredited program, you need to take a surgical technician exam. The exam is administered by the National Board of Surgical Technology and Surgical Assisting (NBSTSA). The exam is a multiple choice exam. Once you pass the exam you are considered a Certified Surgical Technologist (CST).
Another center that offers an exam is the National Center for Competency Testing (NCCT). Those who pass this exam are certified as a Tech in Surgery (TS-C). The difference in certification is just which center the test was taken. They are both national centers for certification. Your certification needs to be updated every 4 years.
As with every test you take, the key is being prepared. If you have studied hard and take your studies seriously, you should do fine on the exam. Make sure you take good notes during your course of study. Remember to check back frequently to your notes to keep ideas fresh. There is a lot to learn, so staying on top of it is necessary. Always have a quiet place to study. Stay organized and be prepared. Sometimes it helps to work with a group. Others may have ideas or questions that you have been wondering about also. The most important thing is to have confidence in yourself and know that you can do this!
Once you are a certified CST, you can further your career and become a First Assistant or Surgical Assistant. There are so many possibilities as this field is expected to grow.