Total credit hours: 47
The Dental Assisting curriculum prepares individuals to assist the dentist in the delivery of dental treatment and to function as integral members of the dental team while performing chairside and related office and laboratory procedures.
Course work includes instruction in general studies, biomedical sciences, dental sciences, clinical sciences, and clinical practice. A combination of lecture, laboratory, and clinical experiences provide students with knowledge in infection/hazard control, radiography, dental materials, preventive dentistry, and clinical procedures.
Graduates may be eligible to take the Dental Assisting National Board Examination to become Certified Dental Assistants (CDA). As a Dental Assistant II, defined by the Dental Laws of North Carolina, graduates work in dental offices and other related areas.
A Dental Assistant II can perform all legal expanded functions prescribed by a NC licensed dentist. Some of the many expanded functions a DA II can legally perform are: apply sealants, insert matrix bands and wedges, place cavity bases and liners, place and/or remove rubber dams, place and remove temporary restorations, take impressions and wax bites, remove sutures, expose and process radiographs, perform fluoride application and coronal polish.
Program Director: Meredith Parker
Upon successful completion of this program, the student should be able to:
- Perform as a competent entry-level Dental Assistant in the cognitive (knowledge), psychomotor (skills) and affective (behavior) learning domains.
- Demonstrate effective communication skills with clients and coworkers in the role of a dental assistant.
- Use critical thinking to recognize, analyze, and solve problems related to dental assisting.
- Perform as a dental team member who demonstrates competence in chairside skills necessary to contribute to patient care.
- Display professionalism.
The program in dental assisting is accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation. 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 (opens in new window).
Students must demonstrate English and mathematics “college readiness” levels, via college-level English/math courses or by completion of or waiver credit for specified “transition” or co-requisite courses. Students must be admitted to the Dental Assisting program before enrolling in courses with a DEN prefix. Applicants for admission to the Dental Assisting program must complete the requirements for admission as described in the Dental Assisting Admission Packet.
NOTE: Meeting all admission requirements does not guarantee placement into the Dental Assisting program.
Clinical Clearance Requirements
A criminal background check, drug screen, and up-to-date immunizations are required by the participating clinical rotation site prior to participation in the clinical component. If any clinical site denies a student’s participation in clinical experiences in that clinical site, the student will not be able to progress in the program.
A student must earn a grade of B or better in all DEN and BIO prefix courses. In addition, students must satisfactorily complete all skills assessments to progress in the program.
In addition to Davidson-Davie requirements and course objectives, there are professional standards that encompass communication, motor skills, sensory and cognitive ability and professional conduct that are essential for the competent study and practice of this profession. Dental Assisting Technical Standards (PDF opens in new window)
Students wishing to transfer courses into the Dental Assisting program must submit official transcripts to the records office. The decision regarding transfer credit for Dental Assisting courses is made by the Program Director and the appropriate academic administrator, in consultation with members of the Dental Assisting faculty. Syllabi for courses for which credit is requested may be required. Transfer credit must be evaluated by the program and is not guaranteed.