The Dental Assistant Program is a 79.5 Quarter Credit Hour program of study containing 1060 hours of training that prepares the student for entry-level employment as a Dental Assistant. Dental Assistants work in dental facilities assisting the Dentist with the operations of the facility. Their duties may include: working chairside with the Dentist, preparing patients for treatment, sterilizing and disinfecting instruments and equipment, preparing tray set-ups for dental procedures, making casts of teeth and mouth, cleaning and polishing removable appliances, making temporary crowns, exposing and processing dental x-ray film as directed by the Dentist, scheduling appointments and ordering dental supplies and materials. The Dental Assistant curriculum stems from the philosophy of the Capps organization and the standards of the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES). The program of study provides educational preparation for the dental assistant occupation by combining classroom and clinical experiences with a supervised externship to validate competencies in both administrative and clinical skills. Normal completion time for day students is ten months (40 weeks). Classes are conducted Monday through Thursday. Day students attend class six hours a day, for thirty-five weeks. The clinical rotation portion is forty hours per week for five weeks (200 hours). The program of study comprises 1.3 academic years. Dental Assistant students are required to take and successfully pass the national certification examination for Dental Assistants (RDA) administered through American Medical Technologists (AMT) as a prerequisite for assignment to externship. Drugscreen and background checks are also required. As of the publication date of this catalog, licensing is not required by the States of Alabama or Florida. Licensing requirements vary by State. A diploma is awarded to graduates.
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