Medical Coding Specialist


Recent Graduates

There are 23 recent graduates of this Madison College program.


Student Satisfaction

94% of our recent graduates report they are satisfied with their Madison College education.


Annual Salary

Our recent graduates of this program reported an average starting salary of $37,032.

Technical Diploma

Program Number: 315302

Credits: 35

Area of Study: Health Sciences

Delivery Method:
100% Online*
Some Online / Some In Person*

Financial Aid Available

Estimated Program Cost:

Tuition - $4,861.50
Materials/Supplemental Costs
Other Costs
Total Estimated Program Costs*:

Medical Coding Specialists translate written medical documentation, provided by physicians and other health care providers, into a numeric form. The Medical Coding Specialist assigns and sequences diagnostic and procedural codes using universally recognized coding systems, e.g., an anterolateral myocardial infarction (heart attack) is translated to I21.09.

Coded information serves many purposes:

  • Reimbursement - codes are printed on the claims submitted to insurance companies, Medicare and Medicaid. 
  • Research - physicians can access medical records for research purposes based on coded information. For example, a physician may request to see the medical records for all patients who were treated for gastric (stomach) ulcers in the past two years. These records would be identified in a computer list of patients with diagnosis codes of K25.0-K25.9.
  • Public health - a government or public health agency may use coded diagnostic information to track the occurrence of certain diseases. For example, they may find an increased incidence of a certain type of cancer in a certain region of the country.
  • Patient care - a medical device manufacturer may issue a recall on a specific device, such as a pacemaker, and the records of such patients could be identified and retrieved based on the procedure code for pacemaker insertion.

The one-year Medical Coding Specialist technical diploma at Madison College will prepare you for a career in this high-demand field. 

Aptitudes and interests that may help you succeed in the Medical Coding Specialist program include:

  • Ability to be precise and detail-oriented
  • Ability to adhere to standards and guidelines
  • Passion for medical information
  • Ability to communicate well with others
  • Ability to accept challenges and problem-solve
  • Respect for confidential information

Program Details

Wisconsin law requires background checks for persons who provide care for others or have access to people who receive care. This law applies to students in many School of Health Sciences programs. Please review the Caregiver Background Check information on the School of Health Sciences Forms and Policies.

The Medical Coding Specialist Program is offered on a part-time basis only.  Classes are offered in the online format, including optional online-live discussions in some classes.  

Medical Coding Specialist program classes may be offered at these Madison College campuses:

  • Madison - Truax

Explore financial aid eligibility for this program. 

Medical Coding Specialist


To Apply

Students need to complete the petition process to get into core-program classes for this program. Before submitting an application, it’s important to review the Petition Process webpage which also includes estimated wait times for each program.

After Acceptance

Once you have been accepted into a pre-program status, your next step is to complete the Medical Coding Specialist Petition Requirements.

                 Fall 2020 and Spring 2021                    Fall 2021 and Spring 2022                                                         


Contact Enrollment Services at or (608) 246-6210.


Prospective program students, the information below reflects the basic requirements for students admitted for the 2021-2022 academic year. To learn more about Madison College, visit us.

Current program students (including newly admitted), go directly to your Degree Progress Report (also referred to as an Advising Report or Academic Requirements) to view:

  • Progress toward your specific requirements
  • Alternative (in lieu of) courses to meet specific requirements

If you have questions after reviewing your report, please see Advising Services.


There are currently no Transfer Partnerships for this program. Review our Transfer Opportunities page for information on all Madison College transfer options.


After completing the Medical Coding Specialist program at Madison Area Technical College, you will be prepared to:

  • Collect health data
  • Apply coding and reimbursement systems
  • Model professional behaviors and ethics
  • Use electronic applications to support coding and data collection

The Medical Coding Specialist program will prepare you for entry-level coding specialist positions in health care facilities such as hospitals, managed care organizations, skilled nursing facilities, coding and billing services, physician practice groups, governmental agencies, home health agencies, computer software companies, clinics, consulting firms, insurance companies and veterinary hospitals. 

Career Outlook and Salary

The US Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts that employment in the health information management field will grow faster than average (11% or more) through 2028.  

The 2018 Madison College Graduate Employment Report (six months after graduation) indicates an average annual salary of $47,715 ($22.94/hour) for new graduates of this program.

A 2019 national survey done by the American Academy of Professional Coders (AAPC) indicates the average annual wage for certified professional coders (CPC) is $57,201 ($27.50/hour) and for certified outpatient coders (COC) is $65,028 ($31.26/hour). Survey results for Wisconsin show the average annual wage for coding and billing professionals to be $55,979 ($26.91/hours).

A 2019 national survey done by the American Health Information Management Association indicates the average annual salary for a coding professional is $66,370 ($31.90/hour). It also showed those with mastery-level coding credentials (CCS and CCS-P) garnered higher average salaries than those with entry-level coding credential (CCA): CCS $79,060; CCS-P $77,790: CCA $53,790.

As of April 2020, the website indicates the annual salary range for medical coding specialists in the Madison area is $39,468 - $70,302 ($18.98 - $33.80/hour) with the median salary at $52,860 ($25.41/hour).

Certification Opportunities

There are several certification exams that can be taken to earn national coding credentials. The Certified Coding Associate (CCA) exam demonstrates entry-level skills. The other certification exams demonstrate mastery level (experienced) skills. Many employers require certification. Certification may result in a salary increase and/or promotion.

American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA),

  • Certified Coding Associate (CCA)
  • Certified Coding Specialist (CCS)
  • Certified Coding Specialist - Physician-Based (CCS-P)

American Academy of Professional Coders (AAPC),

  • Certified Professional Coder (CPC)
  • Certified Outpatient Coder (COC)
  • Certified Inpatient Coder (CIC)
  • Certified Professional Coder - Payer (CPC-P)
  • Certified Risk Adjustment Coder (CRC)


  • Graduate Summary
    Graduate Report Summary Overview

    Number of Program Graduates292323
    Number of Surveys Sent292323
    Number of Surveys Returned271419
    Percent of Surveys Returned93.10%60.90%82.60%
    Available for Employment261319
    Percent Available for Employment96.30%92.90%100.00%
    Not in Labor Market010
    Percent Not in Labor Market0.00%7.10%0.00%
    Available for Employment

    Graduates Employed211215
    Percent of Graduates Employed80.80%92.30%78.90%
    Employed in Related Occupation15611
    Percent Employed in Related Occupation71.40%50.00%73.30%
    Employed in Unrelated Occupation664
    Percent Employed in Unrelated Occupation28.60%50.00%26.70%
    Employed - No Response000
    Percent Employed - No Response0.00%0.00%0.00%
    Seeking Employment514
    Percent Seeking Employment19.20%7.70%21.10%
    Reaction To Training at Madison College

    Student satisfaction Mean (Out of 4)
    Number of Satisfaction Responses271419
    Very Satisfied (4)16108
    Percent Very Satisfied59.30%71.40%42.10%
    Satisfied (3)10410
    Percent Satisfied37.00%28.60%52.60%
    Unsatisfied (2)001
    Percent Unsatisfied0.00%0.00%5.30%
    Very Unsatisfed (1)100
    Percent Very Unsatisfied3.70%0.00%0.00%
    Primary Reason for Attending Madison College

    Number of Primary Reason Responses271419
    Preparation for Getting a Job836
    Percent Preparation for Getting a Job29.60%21.40%31.60%
    Career Change17711
    Percent Career Change63.00%50.00%57.90%
    Improvement of Existing Skills131
    Percent Improvement of Existing Skills3.70%21.40%5.30%
    Preparation for Further Education010
    Percent Preparation for Further Education0.00%7.10%0.00%
    Personal Interest101
    Percent Personal Interest3.70%0.00%5.30%
    Percent Other0.00%0.00%0.00%
    When Employment was Obtained

    Number of When Employment Obtained Responses211215
    Before Enrollment662
    Percent Before Enrollment28.60%50.00%13.30%
    While Attending the College722
    Percent While Attending the College33.30%16.70%13.30%
    After Training at the College8411
    Percent After Training at the College38.10%33.30%73.30%
    Location of Employment (related and unrelated)

    Number of Employment Location Responses221215
    In College District151013
    Percent In College District68.20%83.30%86.70%
    In Wisconsin, Not in District621
    Percent of In Wisconsin27.30%16.70%6.70%
    Outside of Wisconsin001
    Percent Outside Wisconsin0.00%0.00%6.70%
    Employer Location Unknown100
    Percent Location Unknown4.50%0.00%0.00%
    Salary Trend
    Salary Trend201720182019
    Full Time Employment (Related Job)Full Time Salary Count1059
    Average Monthly Wage$3,440 $3,946 $3,086
    Average Hourly Wage$20.00 $22.94 $17.94
    Average Work Hours per Week39.84140.5
    Part Time Employment (Related Job)Part Time Salary Count411
    Average Hourly Wage$21.13 $12.50 $22.00
    Average Work Hours per Week25.33032
  • Graduate Employers
    Graduate Employers for academic year: 2019
    Employer(s) Job Title City* State** Positions
    Dept of Veterans Affairs Medical Records Technician/Inpatient Coder
    Epic Systems Corp Medical Biller Verona
    NeuGen, LLC Provider Experience Representative
    St Clare Hospital & Health Services Coder 1 Baraboo
    Upland Hills Health Center Health Information Management Coder Dodgeville
    UW Medical Foundation Medical Coding Specialist 2
    Watertown Memorial Hospital Coder/Abstractor Watertown
    Wisconsin Physicians Service (WPS) PE Analyst Monona
    Wisconsin Physicians Service (WPS) Veterans Affairs Military Health Claims Processor Monona

    * - Only cities outside of Madison will display.

    ** - Only states outside of Wisconsin will display.

    *** - If you have a position to post, please contact Career and Employment Services at