Dental Assisting, A.A.S. with Certificate Option

Program Location: Bay Minette Campus

Nursing and Allied Health Division

Length: Five Semesters (A.A.S. Degree); Three Semesters (Certificate)

This program prepares individuals to assist with the care of dental patients under direct supervision of a dentist. Dental assistants help with the provision of patient care, business office administration and laboratory procedures. Dental assistants hold a vital role in the dental healthcare team. Responsibilities include recording patient’s dental and health history, taking and recording vital signs, patient reassurance, treatment and instrument preparation, mixing and transferring dental materials, processing and sterilizing instruments, maintaining infection control, maintaining inventory control, exposing and processing radiographs, dental equipment maintenance, and providing patients pre-op, post-op, and oral hygiene instructions. The program is accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation and currently holds the status of “approval without reporting requirements.” Students are required to take the Dental Assisting National Board Infection Control Exam, the Radiation Health and Safety Exam, and General Chairside Exam.

PROGRAM EXPECTATIONS: 

The dental assisting process incorporates scientific principles, interpersonal and psychomotor skills. Dentistry takes place in an ever changing health care system and requires caring, critical thinking, competency, legal/ethical accountability, dedication to an evolving body of knowledge, life- long learning, and continuous patient care.

The program requires a "C" in academics and a passing grade in each corresponding skill. (100 by the 3rd attempt.) A student cannot progress to the next semester if this is not achieved, however, may reapply and re-enter the next year if all of the application criteria are met. A student may only reapply to the program once.

Please see the DAT Orientation and Policy Manual link on the dental assisting web page for detailed information.

PROGRAM COSTS: Refer to the Dental Assisting Program on Coastal Alabama’s website at www.CoastalAlabama.edu for a complete list of costs.

DAT Program Requirements:

To the office of admissions:

Current Completed Coastal AL Application-submitted before July 1st to the office of Admissions

Transcripts from all colleges and high school or a GED- submitted before July 1st to the office of Admissions

Scores necessary to be placed in English 101 (for program entry.)

To the dental assisting department:

Current Completed Dental Assisting Program Application- submitted by July 1st at 5:00 pm CST

Completed packets including current DAT Physical Exam Form and DAT Immunization Form, and observation form. No blue cards are accepted (can be submitted no later than mandatory orientation)

A consent signed stating that there is an understanding that applicant may undergo random drug testing during clinical externship. (to be signed at mandatory DAT orientation)

Unofficial transcripts attached to the DAT application showing a minimum GPA of 2.3 (for the last 12 hours of college credit or a minimum of 2.5 high school credit without college coursework) GED equivalent if 2.5

It the program has more than 24 eligible applicants, students are selected based on the following point system:

_____GPA= point for points with a maximum of 4.0 and a minimum of 2.3 with college credit or 2.5 with high school diploma or GED

____ORI 101, ENG 101, PSY 200, SPH 107 awarded 1 point for all completed with a C or better. Math higher than 100 = additional 5 pts but not necessary.

If the above components are met the additional points will be awarded:

_____CIS 146, ART or MUS 101, SOC 200 awarded 1 point for all completed with a C or better.

_____BIO 103 = A=3pts, B=2pts, C=1 pts

_____BIO 201,202, or BIO 220= additional 5 pts for each completion with a C or better

_____PSY210 = 3 pts for completion with a C or better

_____Maximum possible pts=42   Median range of pts = 9 to 14

*24 spaces are available

*Upon program acceptance, Hands-on Healthcare Provider CPR or Adult, Infant, and Child AED CPR will be required.

CPR Can be taken prior through Complete Safety Works or American Red Cross and must include infant, child, adult, AED with hands-on testing. Check your Community Public resources as well.

Only eligible completed applicants will be accepted after July 1st on a first-come, first serve, space available basis.

No student will be admitted into the Dental Assisting Program without the completion of all entry requirements prior to registration and/or program orientation.

SELECTION: There are 24 available spaces. If over 24 qualified applications are received, in addition to the above, points will be awarded first for ENG 101, MTH 116, PSY 200, and SPH 107. In the event of a tie, points will be awarded for ART 100 or MUS 101, CIS 146, BIO 103, and SOC 200.

DEGREE: A certificate is awarded upon completion of the DAT courses, ENG 101, MTH 100, PSY 200, and SPH 107 for a total of 48 credit hours. Students may work as dental assistants after successful completion of the certificate. Additional requirements for the Associate of Applied Science degree are ART or MUS, CIS 146, BIO 103, and SOC 200.

This is a career program designed for students to go directly into the labor market upon completion. Although some of the courses in this program will transfer to four-year institutions, this program is not designed to be a transfer program of study; therefore, it is not subject to the terms and conditions of STARS.

SUGGESTED PRIOR TO PROGRAM ADMISSION

It is suggested that students complete the following general education courses required prior to program admission.  ORI 101 may not be required for those with prior college coursework.

Item #
Title
Credits
MTH 116 or more advanced  +
3
Sub-Total Credits
12-13

SUGGESTED PRIOR TO PROGRAM ADMISSION

It is suggested that students complete the following general education courses prior to program admission if intending to complete the associate degree.

Item #
Title
Credits
CIS Elective II  +
3
Sub-Total Credits
13

Semester One

DAT 101 and DAT 102 procedures are taught to laboratory competence.  ENG101 is required if not already successfully completed.

Item #
Title
Credits
Sub-Total Credits
13-16

Semester Two

DAT 112 procedures are taught to clinical competence.  MTH 116 and PSY 200 are required if not already successfully completed.

Item #
Title
Credits
MTH 116 or more advanced  +
3
Sub-Total Credits
13-19

Semester Three

SPH 107 is required if not already successfully completed.

Item #
Title
Credits
Sub-Total Credits
10-13
Total credits:
61-62

Overview

Program

Type

A.A.S.

Dental Assistant Website