About the Dental Assistant Program
Dental Assistant Program Details
|Dental Assisting Program Choices||Length||Start Dates||Class Days||Class Times||Clinical Days (Spring and Summer semester)||Estimated Cost*|
|Certificate only Total-37 hrs||11 months||August||Monday-Thursdays||9am-4pm||Depends on dental office||$6,666|
|Associates in Applied Science Total-60 hrs
(23 hrs of general education courses + 37 certificate hrs)
|2 years||Varies||Varies||Varies||Depends on dental office||$10,420|
*Cost is based on 2017-2018 academic year. Books and fees are included. Kansas resident rates only.
What is a Dental Assistant?
A dental assistant's primary duties are to assist the dentist with varied oral health care procedures. The career entails extensive knowledge of dental procedures and practices, four-handed dentistry, dental terminology, dental technology, general office duties, patient intake, x-ray safety and performance, laboratory duties, teamwork, and above all assisting dentists with improving patient oral health.
It is an engaging career where one day will never be the same as the next. Becoming a dental assistant may also serve as a jumping-off point for other dental careers, such as becoming a dental hygienist.
About the Dental Assisting Career
There is significant job potential for dental assistants. The Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates that employment of dental assistants is expected to increase by 31% through 2020. The Kansas Department of Labor estimates jobs in Kansas will grow by 26.4% (714 additional) through 2016 and jobs in Southeast Kansas will grow by 44.2% (61 additional).
Estimated Starting Wages
|Estimated Starting Wages||Date||Entry Level||Median||Experienced|
|U.S. Department of Labor||May 2010||$27,400||$33,470||$47,090|
|KS Department of Labor||2010||$23,360||$31,400||$36,640|
Source: U.S. Department of Labor Bureau of Labor Statistics (https://www.bls.gov/ooh/healthcare/dental-assistants.htm) and the Kansas Department of Labor Information Center (https://klic.dol.ks.gov/)
The program in dental assisting is accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation and has been awarded full accreditation without reporting requirements. The Commission is a specialized accrediting body recognized by the United States Department of Education. The Commission on Dental Accreditation can be contacted at (312) 440-4653 or at 211 East Chicago Avenue, Chicago, IL 60611. The Commission’s web address is: http://www.ada.org/100.aspx.