Academic Catalog

Dental Assistant Certificate

certificate Info at a Glance
Type
Certificate
Estimated # of Quarters
This certificate is approximately 5 quarters long, depending on the time students need to satisfactorily complete all graduation requirements.
Admission Dates
Fall and spring quarters.

ADA Accredited

Download the Application Packet

Designed to prepare students for positions in the dental-assistant field. Provides a foundation of knowledge of dental sciences, dental-assisting skills, dental materials, dental laboratory procedures, radiography, infection control, and office-management skills.

Students will develop an understanding of the role of the dental assistant within the dental care team. Graduates are qualified for entry-level positions and for positions as expanded-duties dental assistants and coordinating assistants in the dental office.

Accreditation: This program is accredited through the American Dental Association (ADA). The last Friday in each of the final three quarters of study, students will be required to take one of the three components of the Dental Assistant National Board (DANB) Certification Examination. Completion of the appropriate component of the exam will be a prerequisite for continuation into the third and fourth quarters of study in the Dental Assistant program.

In addition, successful completion of the first component (Infection Control), completed at the end of the second quarter of study, is a prerequisite to entering the fourth quarter, clinical experience. The second and third components of the exam are requirements for graduation from the program. Successfully completing these exams will result in the student receiving his or her national certification from DANB, entitling him or her to use the title of Certified Dental Assistant. Included in this program are academic courses in communication (English composition, speech), quantitative reasoning (math) and social sciences (psychology, sociology) that provide knowledge and abilities upon which technical skills are built and personal development is enhanced. Students are strongly encouraged to carry personal health/medical insurance throughout their clinical rotations. Quarterly based insurance for students may be purchased; further information is available through the counseling office.

Students pursuing an AAT or AAS-T degree must complete all college degree requirements prior to graduation. This includes courses that meet the requirements for diversity, computer literacy and the capstone project.

Employability Requirements: To be employed as a dental assistant, you must apply for registration and become registered with the WA Department of Licensing. You must also complete seven hours of AIDS/HIV education and hold a current and valid healthcare provider basic life support (BLS) certification. If newly hired, you must obtain the required certification within 45 days from the date hired (WAC 246-817-720).

Prerequisites: In order to participate in the program, students must have current immunizations or laboratory verification of immune status. This includes, but is not limited to, Hepatitis B series including a positive titer, Tetanus/Diphtheria, Tuberculosis Test, Measles/Mumps/Rubella, and Varicella as required by contracts with clinical facilities and CDC recommendations. Students must have a current Basic Life Support (CPR) card for health care providers, a First Aid card, and a current dental examination form completed by their dentist.

In order to participate in the externship, students must complete all general education requirements and receive a “No Record On File” report related to crimes against persons from the Washington State Patrol. Students must be at least 18 years of age and have a high school diploma or high school equivalency diploma (per ADA standards).

To enter the program, students must be eligible the first quarter to take MAT 091, college-level English, and psychology or another social science or humanities course.

Certificate Requirements

Course NumberClass TitleCredits
DAS 103General Studies4
DAS 105Biomedical Sciences4
DAS 110Dental Sciences I5
DAS 113Dental Assisting Skills I4
DAS 116Foundations of Clinical Dentistry4
DAS 118Principles of Radiography1
DAS 120Dental Sciences II5
DAS 125Dental Assisting Skills II6
DAS 130Dental Specialties I3
DAS 135Principles of Radiography II5
DAS 140Certification Review I1
DAS 223Dental Sciences III3
DAS 224Dental Assisting Skills III7
DAS 226Dental Specialties II8
DAS 228Certification Review II1
DAS 237CAPClinical Experience I1
DAS 239CAPClinical Experience II10
DAS 241Advanced Theory4
DAS 243Certification Review III1
English Composition (or higher) or Public Speaking5
Any 100-Level Math Class5
General Psychology (or other social science or humanities class)5
 Technical Credits92

General Studies

Item #
DAS 103
Total Credits
4

Introduces the student to the dental profession and cultural diversity, including how to correctly recognize and identify the various occupations within the dental field, as well as the terminology necessary to complete all other courses. 

CLOSE

Biomedical Sciences

Item #
DAS 105
Total Credits
4

Introduces the student to the sciences of microbiology, disease transmission, occupational health and safety, ergonomics, and the processes and procedures for infection prevention, disinfection, instrument processing, and sterilization. Students will be able to demonstrate how to prevent disease transmission and the proper handling of infectious and hazardous materials.

CLOSE

Dental Sciences I

Item #
DAS 110
Total Credits
5

Students will explore information that will assist in accurately identifying oral anatomy, oral embryology, histology, common facial landmarks, and key elements of personal oral hygiene and nutrition. 

CLOSE

Dental Assisting Skills I

Item #
DAS 113
Total Credits
4

Introduces the student to the techniques that will enable them to successfully achieve the goal of proper moisture control to provide better visibility in the operating field, reduce the transmission of infectious diseases, and maintain a safe laboratory environment. Students will learn to take alginate impressions, pour and trim diagnostic study casts, and to accurately record vital signs, including blood pressure, pulse and respiration. Students will be able to accurately identify dental charting symbols. 

CLOSE

Foundations of Clinical Dentistry

Item #
DAS 116
Total Credits
4

Introduces the student to the management of a medical or dental emergency in the dental office. In addition, the student will be introduced to the dental treatment room, including the proper names, descriptions, use and care of dental instruments and equipment used in restorative dental procedures. 

CLOSE

Principles of Radiography

Item #
DAS 118
Total Credits
1

Introduces the student to the theory of radiographic techniques, including patient and operator safety while exposing radiographs.

CLOSE

Dental Sciences II

Item #
DAS 120
Total Credits
5

Explores the general characteristics and uses of dental materials, and covers oral pathology conditions in the oral cavity. This course is also designed to provide the necessary information to accurately identify each of the body’s systems, functions, and how they interact with each other. The student will explore the structures of the head and oral cavity. 

Prerequisites
Students must successfully complete DAS 103-118 prior to continuing in the Dental Assistant Program.
CLOSE

Dental Assisting Skills II

Item #
DAS 125
Total Credits
6

Introduces students to advanced study model principles, coronal polish and fluoride treatments, and advanced moisture control, including the application of rubber dams, intermediate charting, and dental instruments and hand pieces. 

Prerequisites
Students must successfully complete DAS 103-118 prior to continuing in the Dental Assisting Program.
CLOSE

Dental Specialties I

Item #
DAS 130
Total Credits
3

Explores in depth the dental specialties of endodontics, orthodontics and periodontics. This course introduces the students to periodontal charting. 

Prerequisites
Students must successfully complete DAS 103-118 prior to continuing in the Dental Assistant Program.
CLOSE

Principles of Radiography II

Item #
DAS 135
Total Credits
5

Introduces students to intraoral and extraoral radiographic imaging, legal issues associated with radiography, and manual and automatic processing techniques. 

Prerequisites
Students must successfully complete DAS 103-118 prior to continuing in the Dental Assistant Program.
CLOSE

Certification Review I

Item #
DAS 140
Total Credits
1

Prepares students to take the Infection Control Exam through the Dental Assistant National Board. 

Prerequisites
Students must successfully complete DAS 103-118 prior to continuing in the Dental Assistant Program.
CLOSE

Dental Sciences III

Item #
DAS 223
Total Credits
3

Introduces students to the science of pharmacology, including the recognition of potential drug interactions and the subject of anesthesia and pain control as it applies to dentistry. It also introduces students to anesthesia and pain control, lab and impression materials, and the medically and physically compromised patient.

Prerequisites
Students must successfully complete DAS 103-140 and complete the Infection Control component of the DANB certification exam prior to continuing in the Dental Assistant Program.
CLOSE

Dental Assisting Skills III

Item #
DAS 224
Total Credits
7

Introduces the theory and practice of chair-side assisting, including oral evacuation and instrument exchange. Students are introduced to advanced chair-side instruments, tray systems, charting, study models and rubber-dam application techniques. This course covers the assembly and placement of matrix systems. Students will expose, process and mount a minimum of three full-mouth series of radiographic images, both on film and digitally. This course’s culminating project covers the operatory preparation and assisting during restorative procedures. 

Prerequisites
Students must successfully complete DAS 103-140 and complete the Infection Control component of the DANB certification exam prior to continuing in the Dental Assistant Program.
CLOSE

Dental Specialties II

Item #
DAS 226
Total Credits
8

This course provides an in-depth exploration of the dental specialties of fixed prosthodontics, removable prosthodontics and dental implants, oral and maxillofacial surgery, and pediatric dentistry. Students will also be introduced to the expanded function of pit and fissure sealants, construction and placement of provisional crowns and bridges, polishing full and partial dentures, and retraction cord placement. Students will also prepare the operatory, give post-operatory instructions, and document in the patient chart a variety of specialty procedures.

Prerequisites
Students must successfully complete DAS 103-140 and complete the Infection Control component of the DANB certification exam prior to continuing in the Dental Assistant Program.
CLOSE

Certification Review II

Item #
DAS 228
Total Credits
1

Prepares students to take the Radiation Health and Safety exam through the Dental Assistant National Board. 

Prerequisites
Students must successfully complete DAS 103-140 and complete the Infection Control component of the DANB certification exam prior to continuing in the Dental Assistant Program.
CLOSE

Clinical Experience I

Item #
DAS 237CAP
Total Credits
1

Provides Dental Assistant students with the opportunity to use the skills and information acquired in DAS 103-228. Students will spend three hours a week — for a total of 30 hours — volunteering in an infection-control assistant capacity in a private office or dental clinic. 

Prerequisites
Students must successfully complete DAS 103-140 and complete the Infection Control certification prior to continuing in the Dental Assistant Program.
CLOSE

Clinical Experience II

Item #
DAS 239CAP
Total Credits
10

Provides Dental Assistant students with the opportunity to use the advanced skills and information acquired in DAS 103-237. Students will spend 270 hours rotating through a minimum of two private offices or dental clinics. 

Prerequisites
Student must successfully complete DAS 103-237, Infection Control certification, all college-level general education courses, and the Radiation Health & Safety component prior to continuing in the Dental Assistant Program.
CLOSE

Advanced Theory

Item #
DAS 241
Total Credits
4

Introduces students to dental business administration procedures. 

Prerequisites
Students must successfully complete DAS 103-237, their Infection Control certification and the Radiation Health & Safety component prior to continuing in the Dental Assistant Program.
CLOSE

Certification Review III

Item #
DAS 243
Total Credits
1

Prepares the student to take the final component of the Dental Assistant National Board exam, General Chairside. Upon successful completion of the exam and all Dental Assistant courses, students will receive their Certified Dental Assistant credentials and will be eligible for graduation. 

Prerequisites
Students must successfully complete DAS 103-237, their Infection Control certification, and their Radiation Health & Safety component prior to continuing in the Dental Assistant Program.
CLOSE

English Composition (or higher) or Public Speaking

Total Credits
5
CLOSE

Any 100-Level Math Class

Total Credits
5
CLOSE

General Psychology (or other social science or humanities class)

Total Credits
5
CLOSE

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This page was last updated on August 14, 2015.