Associate in Applied Science - Dental Assisting
Certificate - Dental Assisting
Spokane Community College
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If you enjoy working with people—and you want to help give them healthy smiles—a career as a dental assistant could be a good fit for you.
In this accredited program, you’ll gain the skills and knowledge to care for patients as an important part of the dental team. You’ll learn to assist dentists with charting, instruments, X-rays, patient education, office management, patient records and other duties essential to a successful dental practice. Your training will include hands-on practice and learning experiences in real dentist offices.
Job opportunities in the field are excellent. Whether you want to work in general dentistry, pediatric dentistry, oral surgery or orthodontics, wherever there are dentists, there is a need for qualified dental assistants.
Enrollment in the dental assisting program is limited to 24 students. The admissions process is competitive. No assurance is given that all applicants who complete the admissions process will be admitted into the program.
Copy of High School diploma or GED certificate
Completion of 4 hours volunteerism/observation in any healthcare setting (dental observation is preferred).
One professional letter of recommendation.
Admission packets due September 1st, 2023
Send Documentation to:
Spokane Community College
Dental Assisting Department
1810 North Greene Street
Spokane, WA 99217
MS: 2090 Attn: Mrs. Pat Norman
Office: building 9 Room 021 (to drop packets off/slide under office door)
Short interviews will be conducted September 8th, 2023 for admittance into the dental assisting program. You will be contacted to schedule your interview.
Within a week after the admission interviews you will receive a letter from us letting you know if you have been accepted into the program. If you are not accepted, you may apply the next year. If you are accepted into the program we will be having a mandatory orientation/registration meeting.
A National Background Check is required with results that are acceptable for clinical sites prior to the first day of fall classes. New Student Orientation. You will be responsible for the cost of the initial background check. Once you are admitted to the program, expect the following:
A 10-panel drug screen within 30 days of clinical internship at your cost as required by selective clinical sites.
Program start: Fall (competitive entry)
Pre-requisites: No, English and Interpersonal Communication can be taken prior to or while in the program.
Program length: 3 quarters
Number of students each start: 24
Contact: Mrs. Pat Norman 509-533-7301
Applications deadline: September 1st
Admission Interviews: September 8th
Please note: It is strongly recommended that students seek advising from Dental Assisting Department prior to applying
This program is accredited by the American Dental Association. Students who successfully complete the program are eligible to take the national certification exam offered by the Dental Assisting National Board (DANB).
Dental Assisting is a nine-month Allied Health profession specifically concerned with preparing the student for employment as a chairside dental assistant to the dentist and other auxiliaries. In addition to the certificate, an additional year is available for the AAS degree.
The primary role of the dental assistant includes several modalities which include:
Chairside area: review and record medical and dental histories and any other data required; prepare treatment rooms and patients for treatment; chart and document patients information; assist the dentist and other auxiliaries in general and specialty treatment of patients; Instruct patients in oral hygiene techniques and various dental procedures; prepare various dental materials; sterilize and disinfect dental instruments and equipment. Perform a variety of expanded functions that are legal in the state of Washington. (see Department of Health WAC 246-817-520); Expose, process, and mount various types of traditional and digital radiographs becoming proficient in the various types of equipment which require a highly-skilled operator to obtain the imaging information and other data required.
Reception area: appoint patients for treatments, maintain a patient recall system, file and maintain patient and office records, complete patient insurance forms and make financial arrangements with patients; order and maintain dental supplies and equipment.
This program is accredited by the American Dental Association (http://www.ada.org/en/coda/accreditation) American Dental Association Commission on Dental Accreditation 211 East Chicago Avenue Chicago, Illinois 60611 Phone (800) 621.8099 or (312) 440.4653.
Students who successfully complete the program are eligible to take the Dental Assisting National Board exam immediately following graduation. Students in this program are required to complete three separate clinical internships.
Math placement is not required for this program.
English placement is required for this program. If your English placement is below ENGL& 101, you’ll need to take following sequence of courses, starting from the level you placed into: AE 36 → AE 46 and 47 (taken together) → AE 67 → ENGL 99 → ENGL& 101
Meet with our counselors to customize this plan just for you.
You can also search the quarterly schedule for class days and times.
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Certificate - Dental Assisting
Total Program Credits: 67
Pat Norman, RDA, CDA, EFDA, BA, graduated from the dental assisting program at SCC. She has worked in general dentistry, pediatric dentistry and periodontal surgery. She joined SCC as a part-time clinical instructor in 1988 and became a full-time instructor in 2010. In 2009, she completed the expanded function dental auxiliary program at SCC and obtained her license to place fillings and take final impressions. She also holds a BA in interdisciplinary studies from EWU.
Kammi Whitmire graduated in 2004 with an AA from Spokane Falls Community College and in 2010 with a bachelor’s degree in dental hygiene from Eastern Washington University. She has worked in private industry as both a traditional and restorative dental hygienist. She joined the SCC faculty teaching part-time in the fall of 2010 and full time in 2016, teaching in both the dental assistant and EFDA programs.
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Program Director - Dental Assisting