Dental Assisting


Gainful Employment Information

Program Code

Info Session

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. On a typical day, a dental assistant who delivers patient care will:

  • make patients as comfortable as possible in the dental chair, prepare them for treatment, and obtain dental records.
  • pass instruments and materials to the dentist and maintain a clear working field by using suction or other devices.
  • sterilize and disinfect instruments and equipment, prepare tray setups for dental procedures, and instruct patients on postoperative and general oral health care.
  • prepare materials for impressions and restorations as well as expose radiographs.
  • remove sutures and remove excess cement used in restorations.

Course work in this diploma program 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. Students during the course of study will take the Dental Assisting National Board Examinations to become Certified Dental Assistants. As an NC Dental Assistant II, defined by the Dental Laws of North Carolina, graduates work in dental offices and other related areas.

    The Dental Assisting Program has a 100% pass rate on the Dental Assisting National Board (DANB) Exam for Radiation Health and Safety.

    The Dental Assisting Program has a 96% pass rate on the DANB Infection Control Exam.

    Students in the Dental Assisting Program may be exposed to blood-borne pathogens and infectious diseases through the provision of clinical services. It is for this reason that students are provided instruction on infectious diseases, mechanisms of disease transmission, and infection control procedures to reduce the risk of disease transmission, including those published by national public health agencies, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

    For more information, please refer to our Student OSHA Hazardous Communication Standard and Student Exposure Classification Bloodborne Pathogens documents.