Dental Assistant

Dental Assistant Overview

If you are interested in a career that can help bring a smile to someone's face , then check out our Dental Assistant field. In 1.5 years, through our year-round schedule, you can earn an Associate of Applied Science degree in Health Science with a concentration in Dental Assisting.

According to the U.S. Department of Labor, employment of dental assistants is expected to grow by 31 percent from 2010 to 2020, much faster than the average for all occupations.*

  • Research linking oral health and general health will likely continue to increase the demand for preventive dental services.*
  • Dentists will likely continue to hire more dental assistants to complete routine tasks, allowing the dentist to see more patients in their practice and spend their time on more complex procedures.*
  • As dental practices grow, more dental assistants will be needed.*
  • As the large baby-boom population ages, and as people keep more of their original teeth than did previous generations, the need to maintain and treat teeth will continue to increase the need for dental assistants.*

Office duties may include:

  • Reception
  • Insurance
  • Clerical Billing
  • Record keeping
  • General Office Procedures

Patient-related responsibilities typically include:

  • Preparing patients for examinations
  • Conducting patient interviews
  • Charting histories
  • Taking vital signs
  • Assisting during minor surgeries and laboratory procedures

* Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2012-2013 Edition

For more information about this program and its outcomes, please see the program description in the University Catalog. Dental Assistant Program Description

What You Can Learn in Dental Assistant

A Dental Assistant student is educated in:

  • Clinical procedures
  • Radiographic procedures
  • Administrative procedures

Part of this instruction includes an externship so that the dental assistant student can experience a real world environment firsthand.

Where You Can Go in Dental Assistant

A graduate is likely to launch his or her career in an entry-level Dental position at a:

  • Dental Office
  • Dental Supply Manufacturer
  • Hospital Dental Department
  • Insurance Company