Best Online Associate Degree in Medical Billing and Coding of 2024

Ann Feeney, CAE
by
Updated April 15, 2024
Edited by
Medical billing and coding is one of the more lucrative nonclinical healthcare jobs. Learn about the best associate degrees in medical billing and coding.

Are you ready to discover your college program?

Medical billing and coding professionals are vital to the healthcare field, ensuring that medical bills are accurate and that payers — including insurance companies — have the correct information.

An associate degree in medical billing and coding is all you need to get started with this career, which pays slightly higher than the national median wage. Additionally, unlike many other healthcare careers that do not require a four-year degree, medical billing and coding is not physically demanding, though it does require sitting for long periods.

Featured Online Medical Billing and Coding Programs

Learn about start dates, transferring credits, availability of financial aid, and more by contacting the universities below.

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Best Online Associate Degree in Medical Billing and Coding

#1 Best Online Associate Degree in Medical Billing and Coding of 2024

Cowley County Community College

  • Location-markerArkansas City, KS
  • 2 year
  • Campus + Online
Average Tuition
  • In-State$2,040
  • Out-of-state$3,480
  • Retention Rate62%
  • Acceptance Rate0%
  • Students Enrolled2,407
  • Institution TypePublic
  • Percent Online Enrollment67%
  • AccreditationYes
#2 Best Online Associate Degree in Medical Billing and Coding of 2024

Keiser University-Ft Lauderdale

  • Location-markerFort Lauderdale, FL
  • 4 year
  • Campus + Online
Average Tuition
  • In-State$20,800
  • Out-of-state$20,800
  • Retention Rate72%
  • Acceptance Rate96%
  • Students Enrolled19,861
  • Institution TypePrivate
  • Percent Online Enrollment50%
  • AccreditationYes
#3 Best Online Associate Degree in Medical Billing and Coding of 2024

Mt Hood Community College

  • Location-markerGresham, OR
  • 2 year
  • Campus + Online
Average Tuition
  • In-State$4,248
  • Out-of-state$8,604
  • Retention Rate53%
  • Acceptance Rate0%
  • Students Enrolled5,893
  • Institution TypePublic
  • Percent Online Enrollment40%
  • AccreditationYes
#4 Best Online Associate Degree in Medical Billing and Coding of 2024

Everett Community College

  • Location-markerEverett, WA
  • 2 year
  • Campus + Online
Average Tuition
  • In-State$3,807
  • Out-of-state$9,342
  • Retention Rate61%
  • Acceptance Rate0%
  • Students Enrolled6,682
  • Institution TypePublic
  • Percent Online Enrollment86%
  • AccreditationYes
#5 Best Online Associate Degree in Medical Billing and Coding of 2024

Herzing University-Birmingham

  • Location-markerBirmingham, AL
  • 4 year
  • Campus + Online
Average Tuition
  • In-State$13,320
  • Out-of-state$13,320
  • Retention Rate50%
  • Acceptance Rate94%
  • Students Enrolled615
  • Institution TypePrivate
  • Percent Online Enrollment49%
  • AccreditationYes
#6 Best Online Associate Degree in Medical Billing and Coding of 2024

Southeast Technical College

  • Location-markerSioux Falls, SD
  • 2 year
  • Campus + Online
Average Tuition
  • In-State$3,720
  • Out-of-state$3,720
  • Retention Rate66%
  • Acceptance Rate0%
  • Students Enrolled2,381
  • Institution TypePublic
  • Percent Online Enrollment43%
  • AccreditationYes
#7 Best Online Associate Degree in Medical Billing and Coding of 2024

Northland Community and Technical College

  • Location-markerThief River Falls, MN
  • 2 year
  • Campus + Online
Average Tuition
  • In-State$5,435
  • Out-of-state$5,435
  • Retention Rate65%
  • Acceptance Rate0%
  • Students Enrolled2,716
  • Institution TypePublic
  • Percent Online Enrollment51%
  • AccreditationYes
#8 Best Online Associate Degree in Medical Billing and Coding of 2024

Northwest Technical College

  • Location-markerBemidji, MN
  • 2 year
  • Campus + Online
Average Tuition
  • In-State$6,057
  • Out-of-state$6,057
  • Retention Rate58%
  • Acceptance Rate0%
  • Students Enrolled794
  • Institution TypePublic
  • Percent Online Enrollment74%
  • AccreditationYes
#9 Best Online Associate Degree in Medical Billing and Coding of 2024

Central Maine Community College

  • Location-markerAuburn, ME
  • 2 year
  • Campus + Online
Average Tuition
  • In-State$2,880
  • Out-of-state$5,760
  • Retention Rate52%
  • Acceptance Rate0%
  • Students Enrolled3,003
  • Institution TypePublic
  • Percent Online Enrollment57%
  • AccreditationYes
#10 Best Online Associate Degree in Medical Billing and Coding of 2024

Pennsylvania Highlands Community College

  • Location-markerJohnstown, PA
  • 2 year
  • Campus + Online
Average Tuition
  • In-State$6,660
  • Out-of-state$10,170
  • Retention Rate56%
  • Acceptance Rate0%
  • Students Enrolled2,345
  • Institution TypePublic
  • Percent Online Enrollment37%
  • AccreditationYes

What Is Medical Billing and Coding?

Medical billers and coders help ensure all medical procedures performed by a healthcare provider are accurately listed on forms using standardized medical codes. While this line of work doesn’t require computer programming or data analysis skills, you must be comfortable with computers and different software systems, have a strong eye for detail, and recognize potential errors.

An associate program in medical billing and coding provides training in standard billing procedures and different coding systems.

What Is an Online Associate Degree in Medical Billing and Coding?

An associate in medical billing and coding is a two-year technical program designed to prepare students for entry-level careers in the growing field of health information. Online accredited medical billing and coding schools attract a variety of students, including high school graduates pursuing their first career-track jobs and adults looking to change occupations.

Degrees in medical billing and coding prepare students for national coding certification exams and entry-level positions. Courses typically feature a combination of lectures, readings, and practical assignments.

Throughout your program, you’ll study topics like medical terminology, human anatomy, and insurance plans and regulations. You’ll also develop skills in medical ethics, patient account management, medical insurance claim processing, and diagnosis and procedure coding.

What Else Can I Expect From an Associate in Medical Billing and Coding Program?

If you pursue an online associate degree in medical billing and coding, you’ll complete 60 credits of coursework, including general education classes, major core classes, and electives. The curriculum prepares students for professional certification through the study of medical terminology, procedure coding systems, and software applications in healthcare.

Medical Billing and Coding Curriculum

  • Anatomy and Physiology: A course on anatomy and physiology examines the 12 major systems of the human body, including the skeletal, muscular, nervous, endocrine, and lymphatic systems. Students develop an understanding of appropriate medical terminology, cell and tissue structure, and how each system aids in maintaining human health.
  • Health Information Systems: This course introduces students to information management procedures used in American healthcare settings. Topics include filing systems, data storage, electronic health records, and patient confidentiality. Health information management concepts and skills are applied to exercises and assignments throughout the course.
  • Pathology: This course provides students with an understanding of disease processes and how the human body functions. Coursework introduces research and evidence-based knowledge about common pathologies, diseases, diagnostic testing, and treatments of internal body systems. Students also learn medical terminology they’re likely to encounter in the workplace.

What Certifications and Licenses Are Required for Medical Billing and Coding?

AAPC — formerly known as the American Academy of Professional Coders — is the world’s largest training and credentialing organization in the healthcare field, representing more than 200,000 members. Because medical coding regulations, requirements, and standards have become increasingly complex, many employers prefer to hire medical billers and coders with AAPC certification. However, some may allow new employees to earn certification shortly after being hired.

AAPC provides credentials for medical billing and coding professionals, including the certified professional coder and certified professional biller certifications. Certification exams consist of 150-200 multiple-choice questions, which assess an individual’s ability to apply codes and procedures correctly. AAPC recommends that test-takers hold an associate degree before sitting for these exams.

AAPC also offers specialized certification options like certified outpatient coder (COC) and certified professional coder-payer. COC candidates must have at least two years of medical coding experience.

Continuing education is required to maintain AAPC certification.

What Careers Can I Pursue With an Associate in Medical Billing and Coding?

Medical billing and coding accredited online schools prepare graduates for many entry-level careers in the healthcare industry. Prior to pursuing employment, many graduates obtain professional certification from AACP, AMBA, or AHIMA. Job openings can be found in hospitals, physicians’ offices, or outpatient facilities.

The majority of graduates with a medical billing and coding degree seek employment in billing and coding. However, they may also choose to embark on careers as medical assistants, health information technicians, or data analysts. Additional education and certification may be required for upward mobility or placement in advanced positions.

Take a look at three common career options for graduates below.

Medical Records Specialist Median Salary

  • Median Salary:$48,780
  • Projected Job Growth (2022-2032):8%

Medical records specialists manage and organize patient records and other health information data. Using various classification systems, these professionals code and categorize information, assisting with insurance reimbursements, clinical database upkeep, and maintenance of patients’ medical histories. They ensure the accuracy, accessibility, and security of both electronic and hard-copy files.

Billing and Posting Clerk Median Salary

  • Median Salary:$45,590
  • Projected Job Growth (2022-2032):1%

Billing and posting clerks compile, compute, and record numerical data related to the sale of goods or services. In a healthcare setting, medical billing clerks primarily work to prepare bills and invoices for medical services. This position involves frequent contact with patients to establish and follow up on payment arrangements.

Education requirements for entry-level positions vary, but employers may prefer candidates with a two-year degree and relevant experience in a billing office. Billing and posting clerks in the medical industry must understand medical terminology and have strong communication and computer skills.

Medical Assistant Median Salary

  • Median Salary:$42,000
  • Projected Job Growth (2022-2032):14%

Medical assistants handle a variety of administrative and clinical tasks in healthcare facilities. Duties may include recording patient history, measuring vital signs, giving injections or medication, and scheduling appointments. In larger practices, these professionals may specialize exclusively in administrative work, providing an attractive career for those with a degree in medical billing and coding.

Employers typically hire medical assistants with an associate degree or postsecondary certificate, though some workers have only a high school diploma and learn required skills through on-the-job training. These professionals need keen analytical, interpersonal, and technical skills.

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS)

Frequently Asked Questions About Medical Billing and Coding


All rankings and school descriptions on this page were created and reviewed independently by the TBS Rankings Team.

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