Project Xtern - Xterns

AAPC established Project Xtern to help newly certified medical coders qualify for a medical coding job. The program provides our members valuable work experience that can be applied to resumes and toward the removal of "apprentice" status (Project Xtern alone will not remove the apprentice designation from credential). The experience also aids members with finding employment.

Project Xtern is an ideal way to get your first taste of real-world knowledge and experience in the medical coding field and gives potential employers an opportunity to see you in action. It builds confidence and improves your research and analytical skills.

More than 200 facilities nationwide known as Approved Official Extern Site (AOES) participate in the project. Externs are placed at these facilities for typically three months, but some stay as long as 1 year. Although not paid, externs gain from this valuable mentoring, and the facility benefits from the excellent assistance a new certified coder can bring to the team. The facility can also use that time to examine the work habits and abilities of the extern for consideration as a future employee, often leading to jobs for newly certified coders.


  • Be a current member of AAPC.
  • Hold an active AAPC credential.
  • Want to learn and benefit from new ways and techniques for coding.

Program Benefits

  • Gain experience toward the removal of your "Apprentice" status and to use on your resume
  • Learn about real-world medical coding in a supportive work environment
  • Give potential employers an opportunity to see you in action
  • Earn AAPC bucks by referring facilities and helping the program grow

Get Started

You must be certified and a member of AAPC to participate in Project Xtern. You will need to update your resume and contact sites individually. Please note that our facilities are not required to provide externship opportunities to every member who contacts them. You must apply and/or interview with the contact to be considered. AAPC does not place students with facilities.

Project Xtern Resources

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