The Dental Assistant program prepares the student, as a member of the dental health team, to assist the dentist in all phases of dentistry. The program includes general and specialty dentistry, chairside procedures, radiology, laboratory and business office assisting.
An integral part of the educational program is clinical experience; this is provided by rotation through various dental facilities.
The program in dental assisting is accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation [and has been granted the accreditation status of “approval without reporting requirements”]. The Commission is a specialized accrediting body recognized by the United States Department of Education. The Commission on Dental Accreditation can be contacted at (312) 440-4653 or at 211 East Chicago Avenue, Chicago, IL 60611. The Commission’s web address is: http://www.ada.org/en/coda.
Note: Criminal background checks will be completed on each student. Criminal convictions or documented history of abuse may delay or prevent students from participating in clinical education experiences. Students unable to participate in clinical education will be unable to complete the Dental Assistant program.
For more information about the Dental Assistant program, please visit our website at www.dmacc.edu/programs/dentalassistant.
Students start Fall semester
Program Entry Requirements
- Complete an application for admission.
- Satisfy the assessment requirement by taking the Reading and English sections of the COMPASS test and obtain a minimum ACCUPLACER Next Gen Reading score of 248 or a minimum ACT Reading score of 19.
- Obtain a minimum ACCUPLACER Next Gen Writing score of 254 or a minimum ACT Writing score of 19.
- Submit proof of high school graduation or GED prior to enrollment.
- High school biology or equivalent with a grade of “C” or better is required.
- Attend any required information/registration session.
- Keyboard skills of 35 NWPM with no more than five errors is strongly recommended.
To earn a Dental Assistant diploma, a student must complete all coursework as prescribed and maintain a 2.0 grade point average.
Option 1 - Select 1 Course
Option 2 - Select 1 Course
Graduates may immediately sit for the National Board exam to become a Certified Dental Assistant.
Total Credits Required to Complete this Diploma - 47
Tuition……………………………………………………………………………………..$174.00 per credit
The costs for each program are estimates and subject to change.
|DANB & Iowa Dental board exam fees
|Transportation to clinical
|Student Association Dues
|Lab Fees, Dental Materials, Radiography, Principles
||150 (Radiography Clinical Dental Assisting Lab Fees)
Approximate total for the program: $11,873**
**Program entry requirements are not included in the total approximate cost.
The Dental Assistant program utilizes a background check service, www.certifiedbackground.com, to conduct criminal background/abuse checks and to track immunizations, health records and CPR certification for each student after the iracceptance into the program. Students are responsible for the cost of this service (approximately $58).
What Kind of Work Will You Do?
- Assist dentist at chairside in delivering care to a patient. This may include seating the patients, adjusting the chair, placing a bib on the patient, operating the x-ray machine, developing and mounting x-rays, mixing filling materials and dental cements, and handing them to the dentist when they are needed.
- May serve as a receptionist, office manager, bookkeeper, secretary, laboratory assistant or preventive assistant.
- Might work for a specialist in the dental field such as an orthodontist who straightens teeth, an oral surgeon who removes teeth and performs other surgical procedures on the mouth, or a pedodontist who works on child patients only.
- Perform intraoral functions as delegated by the dentist within the limits of the State Practice Act.
- Sterilize instruments and pour plaster and stone models in the laboratory.
- Infection control and hazardous waste management.
What Skills and Abilities Will You Need?
- Knowledge of high school biology and ability to type 35 WPM is necessary to be successful.
- Excellent attendance and promptness are necessary.
- Perform activities in an organized and detailed manner.
- Apply knowledge from the biological, physical and social sciences.
- Take initiative in resolving patient care problems.
- Communicate easily with patients and coworkers.
- Good finger dexterity and eye/hand coordination.
What Else Should I Consider about this Diploma program?
- You will have to put your fingers in the patient’s mouth.
- Necessary physical and emotional stamina to meet demands of rigorous program.
- Must provide own transportation to clinical sites.
- Dealing with the diversity of patients’ personalities and dental problems is challenging and rewarding.
- You may have to work some Saturdays and evenings.
- Criminal background checks will be completed on each student. Criminal convictions or documented history of abuse may delay or prevent students from participating in clinical education experiences. Students unable to participate in clinical education will be unable to complete the Dental Assistant program.
- Average starting salary $30,180 (2014-2015 Placement Report).
- Understand the workplace basic skills of listening, writing, computing, problem solving, interpersonal relationships, and leadership
- Demonstrate the ability to operate and maintain equipment and instruments used in the dental office
- Communicate how anatomy and physiology, microbiology, oral pathology, pharmacology, and nutrition may affect the oral cavity
- Demonstrate four-handed dentistry
- Select and assemble proper procedural tray set-ups.
- Demonstrate ability to review patient health history, and obtain vital signs
- Assist dentist with assessing patient needs and concerns.
- Document procedures, notes, medical information in patient record
- Practice appropriate patient management techniques
- Administer proper infection control protocols
- Utilize proper general and hazardous waste control measures
- Communicate effectively with patients and other healthcare/dental professionals
- Demonstrate the ability to be flexible and adaptable
- Employ office management organizational skills
- Maintain business office records
- Select and manipulate dental materials for proper use
- Maintain inventory control
- Perform radiographic techniques and safety measure
- Explain, recommend and demonstrate patient oral hygiene care/education
- Respond to medical emergencies which may occur in the dental setting
- Display time management techniques
- Demonstrate ethical conduct
- Recognize and support laws and regulations governing dental professions in the state of Iowa
Des Moines Area Community College shall not engage in nor allow discrimination covered by law against any person, group or organization. This includes in its programs, activities, employment practices, or hiring practices, and harassment or discrimination based on race, color, national origin, creed, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, age, disability, genetic information (in employment) and actual or potential parental, family or marital status. Veteran status in educational programs, activities, employment practices, or admission procedures is also included to the extent covered by law.
Individuals who believe they have been discriminated against may file a complaint through the College Discrimination Complaint Procedure. Complaint forms may be obtained from the Campus Provost’s office, the Academic Deans’ office, the Judicial Officer, or the EEO/AA Officer, Human Resources. ADA questions and concerns may be directed to the Section 504/ADA Coordinator at 2006 S. Ankeny Blvd, Bldg 6, Ankeny, IA 50023, phone 515/964-6857, email@example.com. Title IX questions and concerns may be directed to the Title IX Coordinator at 2006 S. Ankeny Blvd, Bldg 1, Ankeny, IA 50023, phone 515/964-6216, Title9@dmacc.edu. Questions or complaints about this policy may be directed to the Director of the Office for Civil Rights, U.S. Department of Education, Citigroup Center, 500 W. Madison, Suite 1475, Chicago, IL 60661-7204, phone 312/730-1560, fax 312/730-1576, email OCR.Chicago@ed.gov.
DMACC offers career and technical programs in the following areas of study:
Agriculture, Natural and Environmental Science
Architecture, Engineering, and Construction
Arts, Design, and Visual Communication
Business, Management, and Marketing
Education, Public, and Human Services
Hospitality and Culinary
Transportation & Logistics
Entrance requirements for specific programs can be found at https://www.dmacc.edu/admissions/Pages/checklist.aspx. (2021)