Dental Assistant Schools: CODA-Accredited & Online Programs

The employment outlook in the U.S. for dental assistants is strong, with faster than average job growth projected; in fact, there’s an 8 percent increase in openings nationally predicted between 2021 and 2031. Preventive dental services are in demand as the population ages, and the body of research demonstrates the link between oral health and general health.

Dental assisting can be a rewarding career for those who enjoy working with people and in teams, as well as for those wishing to explore the field of dental hygiene or dentistry as a future career goal.

Dental assistants support dentists in tending to patients’ dental care and oral health needs, in addition to running the office and processing laboratory work. General dental assisting duties involve preparing and sterilizing instruments and equipment, assisting dentists with treatments and procedures, gathering patient information and histories, and communicating post-surgery instructions to patients. Other duties may include passing instruments to the dentist, setting up and breaking down operatory rooms, and tending to office management and administrative tasks.

Depending on the state of practice, dental assistants may also perform patient care tasks independently such as taking impressions, taking and developing radiographs, removing sutures, and fitting crowns and orthodontic brackets. With experience, some dental assistants move into related roles such as dental office management, oral health education, or dental product sales.

Dental Assisting National Board (DANB) certified assistants may earn a higher wage than non-certified full-time assistants and may be more likely to enjoy benefits such as dental care, pension plans, paid sick leave, holidays, and vacations. Dental assistants may take the certified dental assistant (CDA) exam if they have completed a dental assisting program accredited by the American Dental Association Commission on Dental Accreditation (CODA). Graduates of non-accredited programs, or those that received on-the-job training, are eligible to take the exam once they have two years of full-time dental assisting work experience.

Read on to discover CODA-accredited dental assistant programs, as well as three exceptional professors in the field.

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List of Dental Assistant Schools

Filter by state :
School City State Website grads (2018)
Vista College El Paso Texas 252
Concorde Career College-San Antonio San Antonio Texas 199
Porter and Chester Institute of Stratford Stratford Connecticut 189
MedQuest College Louisville Kentucky 179
San Joaquin Valley College-Visalia Visalia California 144
Carrington College-Sacramento Sacramento California 142
YTI Career Institute-York York Pennsylvania 124
New York School for Medical and Dental Assistants Long Island City New York 121
Fortis College-Landover Landover Maryland 120
Fortis Institute-Wayne Wayne New Jersey 120
Charter College Vancouver Washington 119
Ivy Tech Community College Indianapolis Indiana 117
Concorde Career Institute-Tampa Tampa Florida 116
Concorde Career College-Aurora Aurora Colorado 109
Carrington College-San Jose San Jose California 103
Compu-Med Vocational Careers Corp Hialeah Florida 103
Concorde Career College-San Bernardino San Bernardino California 103
Astrodome Career Centers Houston Texas 102
Harris School of Business-Upper Darby Campus Upper Darby Pennsylvania 98
American Career College-Los Angeles Los Angeles California 97
Concorde Career Institute-Orlando Orlando Florida 97
Concorde Career College-Memphis Memphis Tennessee 96
Concorde Career College-Grand Prairie Grand Prairie Texas 95
Mountainland Technical College Lehi Utah 95
Carrington College-Phoenix North Phoenix Arizona 93
Eastern College of Health Vocations-Little Rock Little Rock Arkansas 93
United Education Institute-Morrow Morrow Georgia 91
Pima Medical Institute-Albuquerque Albuquerque New Mexico 90
Concorde Career College-Dallas Dallas Texas 85
Delta Technical College Horn Lake Mississippi 84
National University College Bayamon Puerto Rico 84
Northwest Career College Las Vegas Nevada 84
Blue Cliff College-Metairie Metairie Louisiana 83
ECPI University Virginia Beach Virginia 83
Pima Medical Institute-Tucson Tucson Arizona 83
Concorde Career College-San Diego San Diego California 82
United Education Institute-Huntington Park Campus Huntington Park California 82
Concorde Career College-Portland Portland Oregon 80
Instituto de Banca y Comercio Inc Guaynabo Puerto Rico 80
UEI College-Bakersfield Bakersfield California 79
Foothill College Los Altos Hills California 78
West Georgia Technical College Waco Georgia 77
Century College White Bear Lake Minnesota 75
Florida National University-Main Campus Hialeah Florida 75
Platt College-STVT-McAllen McAllen Texas 75
Concorde Career College-Kansas City Kansas City Missouri 73
Texas State Technical College Waco Texas 73
Advantage Career Institute Eatontown New Jersey 71
UEI College-Riverside Riverside California 71
Ozarks Technical Community College Springfield Missouri 70
Concorde Career College-Garden Grove Garden Grove California 68
Concorde Career College-Southaven Southaven Mississippi 67
Hennepin Technical College Brooklyn Park Minnesota 67
Pima Medical Institute-Houston Houston Texas 66
Pima Medical Institute-Renton Renton Washington 66
Pima Medical Institute-Colorado Springs Colorado Springs Colorado 65
Ponce Paramedical College Inc Ponce Puerto Rico 65
Pima Medical Institute-Denver Denver Colorado 64
United Education Institute-Encino Encino California 64
Concorde Career Institute-Miramar Miramar Florida 63
United Education Institute-Chula Vista Chula Vista California 62
American Career College-Ontario Ontario California 61
Westchester School for Dental Assistant Elmsford New York 61
United Education Institute-UEI College Stockton Stockton California 60
Fortis College Mobile Alabama 59
Camden County College Blackwood New Jersey 57
UEI College-Gardena Gardena California 56
United Education Institute-West Covina West Covina California 56
Lincoln Technical Institute-Somerville Somerville Massachusetts 54
Carrington College-Mesa Mesa Arizona 53
Dorsey Business Schools-Dearborn Detroit Michigan 53
Kirkwood Community College Cedar Rapids Iowa 53
Pima Medical Institute-Mesa Mesa Arizona 53
South Texas Vocational Technical Institute-Brownsville Brownsville Texas 53
United Education Institute-Anaheim Anaheim California 53
UEI College-Fresno Fresno California 52
Remington College-Nashville Campus Nashville Tennessee 51
Florida Career College-Orlando Orlando Florida 51
Fortis Institute-Towson Towson Maryland 51
Fortis College-Columbia Columbia South Carolina 50
Central Career Institute LLC South Plainfield New Jersey 49
Chattanooga State Community College Chattanooga Tennessee 49
Concorde Career Institute-Jacksonville Jacksonville Florida 49
Midwest Institute Fenton Missouri 49
Remington College-Cleveland Campus Cleveland Ohio 48
American Career College-Anaheim Anaheim California 48
South Texas Vocational Technical Institute-Weslaco Weslaco Texas 48
Stark State College North Canton Ohio 48
Eastern College of Health Vocations-New Orleans New Orleans Louisiana 47
Florida Career College Pembroke Pines Florida 47
Pima Medical Institute-Seattle Seattle Washington 47
Concorde Career College-North Hollywood North Hollywood California 46
San Jose City College San Jose California 46
Tulsa Technology Center Tulsa Oklahoma 46
Midwest Technical Institute-Ridgeland Ridgeland Mississippi 45
Unitek College Fremont California 45
Carrington College-Albuquerque Albuquerque New Mexico 45
Carrington College-Citrus Heights Citrus Heights California 45
Carrington College-San Leandro San Leandro California 45
Carrington College-Stockton Stockton California 45
Platt College-Moore Moore Oklahoma 45
Salish Kootenai College Pablo Montana 45
Carrington College-Spokane Spokane Washington 44
Midwest Technical Institute-East Peoria East Peoria Illinois 44
Phoenix College Phoenix Arizona 44
Platt College-Berks Technical Institute Wyomissing Pennsylvania 44
Ultimate Medical Academy-Clearwater Clearwater Florida 44
Western Iowa Tech Community College Sioux City Iowa 44
Community Care College Tulsa Oklahoma 43
Harris School of Business-Voorhees Campus Voorhees New Jersey 43
Lake Washington Institute of Technology Kirkland Washington 43
Madison Area Technical College Madison Wisconsin 43
Pima Medical Institute-Chula Vista Chula Vista California 43
Centura College-Norfolk Norfolk Virginia 42
Florida Career College-UEI College-Phoenix Phoenix Arizona 42
Gwinnett Technical College Lawrenceville Georgia 42
Harris School of Business-Wilmington Campus Wilmington Delaware 42
Pima Medical Institute-Las Vegas Las Vegas Nevada 42
First Institute of Travel Inc. Crystal Lake Illinois 41
Midwest Technical Institute-Springfield Springfield Illinois 41
Renton Technical College Renton Washington 41
Unitech Training Academy-Lafayette Lafayette Louisiana 41
Fortis Institute-Pensacola Pensacola Florida 40
American College for Medical Careers Orlando Florida 40
American Institute-Clifton CLIFTON New Jersey 40
Carrington College-Pleasant Hill Pleasant Hill California 40
Carrington College-Portland Portland Oregon 40
Dakota County Technical College Rosemount Minnesota 40
United Education Institute-Ontario Ontario California 40
Elgin Community College Elgin Illinois 39
Midwest Technical Institute-Springfield Springfield Missouri 39
Milan Institute-Visalia Visalia California 39
San Antonio College San Antonio Texas 39
Vatterott College-Dividend Memphis Tennessee 39
Remington College-North Houston Campus Houston Texas 38
Broward College Fort Lauderdale Florida 38
Portland Community College Portland Oregon 38
United Education Institute-UEI College San Marcos San Marcos California 38
Arizona College-Glendale Glendale Arizona 37
Fortis College-Orange Park Orange Park Florida 37
Milwaukee Area Technical College Milwaukee Wisconsin 37
Pearl River Community College Poplarville Mississippi 37
Platt College-Lawton Lawton Oklahoma 37
Riverside County Office of Education-School of Career Education Indio California 37
The College of Health Care Professions-McAllen Campus McAllen Texas 37
The College of Health Care Professions-Northwest Houston Texas 37
Alamance Community College Graham North Carolina 36
Allan Hancock College Santa Maria California 36
ATA College Louisville Kentucky 36
Bellingham Technical College Bellingham Washington 36
Carrington College-Tucson Tucson Arizona 36
Monroe Community College Rochester New York 36
South Puget Sound Community College Olympia Washington 36
Carrington College-Las Vegas Las Vegas Nevada 35
Citrus College Glendora California 35
Downey Adult School Downey California 35
Reedley College Reedley California 35
Rogue Community College Grants Pass Oregon 35
Ross Medical Education Center-Fort Wayne Fort Wayne Indiana 35
Spokane Community College Spokane Washington 35
Tyler Junior College Tyler Texas 35
Dental Assistant Pro LLC-Columbus Westerville Ohio 34
Dorsey Business Schools-Roseville Roseville Michigan 34
Greater Altoona Career & Technology Center Altoona Pennsylvania 34
Ross Medical Education Center-Cincinnati Cincinnati Ohio 34
All-State Career School-Allied Health Campus Essington Pennsylvania 33
Fortis Institute-Birmingham Birmingham Alabama 33
North-West College-West Covina West Covina California 33
Pickens Technical College Aurora Colorado 33
Pima Medical Institute-Aurora Aurora Colorado 33
Orange Coast College Costa Mesa California 32
Remington College-Fort Worth Campus Fort Worth Texas 32
Bridgerland Technical College Logan Utah 32
Indian River State College Fort Pierce Florida 32
Milan Institute-Boise Boise Idaho 32
Milan Institute-Merced Merced California 32
Onondaga Cortland Madison BOCES Liverpool New York 32
Ross Medical Education Center-Johnson City Johnson City Tennessee 32
The College of Health Care Professions-Austin Austin Texas 32
Unitech Training Academy-Alexandria Alexandria Louisiana 32
Lincoln Technical Institute-Lincoln Lincoln Rhode Island 31
Fox Valley Technical College Appleton Wisconsin 31
Hinds Community College Raymond Mississippi 31
Midwest Technical Institute-Moline Moline Illinois 31
Unitech Training Academy-West Monroe West Monroe Louisiana 31
Wichita State University-Campus of Applied Sciences and Technology Wichita Kansas 31
Bradford School Pittsburgh Pennsylvania 30
Carrington College-Boise Boise Idaho 30
Fortis Institute-Port Saint Lucie Port Saint Lucie Florida 30
Medical Career & Technical College Richmond Kentucky 30
Monroe 2 Orleans BOCES-Center for Workforce Development Rochester New York 30
Unitech Training Academy-Metairie Metairie Louisiana 30
Vatterott College-Springfield Springfield Missouri 30
Career Care Institute Lancaster California 29
Clover Park Technical College Lakewood Washington 29
Des Moines Area Community College Ankeny Iowa 29
Fortis College-Montgomery Montgomery Alabama 29
Guilford Technical Community College Jamestown North Carolina 29
Minnesota State Community and Technical College Fergus Falls Minnesota 29
Palomar College San Marcos California 29
Ross Medical Education Center-Niles Niles Ohio 29
Wiregrass Georgia Technical College Valdosta Georgia 29
Atlanta Technical College Atlanta Georgia 28
Central New Mexico Community College Albuquerque New Mexico 28
Fortis College-Smyrna Smyrna Georgia 28
Greenville Technical College Greenville South Carolina 28
Herzing University-Minneapolis St. Louis Park Minnesota 28
Milan Institute-Sparks Sparks Nevada 28
Mt. Diablo Adult Education-Mt. Diablo USD Concord California 28
San Diego Mesa College San Diego California 28
The College of Health Care Professions-Fort Worth Fort Worth Texas 28
University of Southern Indiana Evansville Indiana 28
Bates Technical College Tacoma Washington 27
American Institute-West Hartford West Hartford Connecticut 27
Charlotte Technical College Port Charlotte Florida 27
Porter and Chester Institute of Branford Branford Connecticut 27
St Cloud Technical and Community College Saint Cloud Minnesota 27
Wake Technical Community College Raleigh North Carolina 27
Lewis and Clark Community College Godfrey Illinois 26
Pima Medical Institute-El Paso El Paso Texas 26
Platt College-Miller-Motte-Raleigh Raleigh North Carolina 26
Platt College-STVT-Corpus Christi Corpus Christi Texas 26
The College of Health Care Professions-Southwest Houston Houston Texas 26
Lorenzo Walker Technical College Naples Florida 26
Remington College-Houston Southeast Campus Webster Texas 26
Career Training Academy-Lower Burrell Lower Burrell Pennsylvania 26
Central Community College Grand Island Nebraska 26
Chippewa Valley Technical College Eau Claire Wisconsin 26
College of Western Idaho Nampa Idaho 25
Asheville-Buncombe Technical Community College Asheville North Carolina 25
Autry Technology Center Enid Oklahoma 25
Daymar College-Clarksville Clarksville Tennessee 25
Lamar State College-Orange Orange Texas 25
Milan Institute-Las Vegas Las Vegas Nevada 25
Pima Community College Tucson Arizona 25
Southeast Community College Area Lincoln Nebraska 25
Tennessee College of Applied Technology-Memphis Memphis Tennessee 25
All-State Career-Baltimore Baltimore Maryland 24
ATA Career Education Spring Hill Florida 24
Delta College Inc Covington Louisiana 24
Dental Assistant Pro-Lebanon Lebanon Ohio 24
Fayetteville Technical Community College Fayetteville North Carolina 24
George C Wallace State Community College-Hanceville Hanceville Alabama 24
Manatee Technical College Bradenton Florida 24
Medical Training College Baton Rouge Louisiana 24
Oxnard College Oxnard California 24
Platt College-Miller-Motte Technical-Chattanooga Chattanooga Tennessee 24
Ross College-Sylvania Sylvania Ohio 24
University of Puerto Rico-Medical Sciences San Juan Puerto Rico 24
Central Piedmont Community College Charlotte North Carolina 23
City College of San Francisco San Francisco California 23
Dawn Career Institute LLC Newark Delaware 23
Erwin Technical College Tampa Florida 23
Grand Rapids Community College Grand Rapids Michigan 23
Middlesex Community College Bedford Massachusetts 23
North-West College-Pomona Pomona California 23
Northeast Wisconsin Technical College Green Bay Wisconsin 23
Orange Technical College-Orlando Campus Orlando Florida 23
PCI Health Training Center Dallas Texas 23
Pima Medical Institute-Phoenix Phoenix Arizona 23
Sacramento City College Sacramento California 23
Stone Academy-West Haven West Haven Connecticut 23
Washtenaw Community College Ann Arbor Michigan 23
Moreno Valley College Moreno Valley California 22
Antonelli College-Jackson Jackson Mississippi 22
Coastal Carolina Community College Jacksonville North Carolina 22
Eastern Florida State College Cocoa Florida 22
Eastern Gateway Community College Steubenville Ohio 22
Intellitec College-Grand Junction Grand Junction Colorado 22
Mandl School-The College of Allied Health New York New York 22
Caris College Jeffersonville Indiana 21
Cerritos College Norwalk California 21
College of Alameda Alameda California 21
Florida State College at Jacksonville Jacksonville Florida 21
Georgia Northwestern Technical College Rome Georgia 21
Great Lakes Institute of Technology Erie Pennsylvania 21
Hacienda La Puente Adult Education La Puente California 21
Harcum College Bryn Mawr Pennsylvania 21
Hillsborough Community College Tampa Florida 21
Lakeshore Technical College Cleveland Wisconsin 21
Lane Community College Eugene Oregon 21
Pueblo Community College Pueblo Colorado 21
Ross Medical Education Center-Kokomo Kokomo Indiana 21
Truckee Meadows Community College Reno Nevada 21
Waukesha County Technical College Pewaukee Wisconsin 21
Central Lakes College-Brainerd Brainerd Minnesota 20
Centura College-Richmond Main Richmond Virginia 20
Chemeketa Community College Salem Oregon 20
Clackamas Community College Oregon City Oregon 20
College of San Mateo San Mateo California 20
Delta College of Arts & Technology Baton Rouge Louisiana 20
Erie Community College Buffalo New York 20
Fortis Institute-Lawrenceville Lawrenceville New Jersey 20
Genesis Career College-Cookeville Cookeville Tennessee 20
High Desert Medical College Lancaster California 20
Midlands Technical College West Columbia South Carolina 20
Minneapolis Community and Technical College Minneapolis Minnesota 20
Ross Medical Education Center-Grand Rapids North Grand Rapids Michigan 20
Ross Medical Education Center-Lafayette Lafayette Indiana 20
Santa Rosa Junior College Santa Rosa California 20
Spartanburg Community College Spartanburg South Carolina 20
University of Arkansas-Pulaski Technical College North Little Rock Arkansas 20
Fortis Institute-Houston Houston Texas 19
Flint Hills Technical College Emporia Kansas 19
Fortis College-Cincinnati Cincinnati Ohio 19
Indian Hills Community College Ottumwa Iowa 19
Northcentral Technical College Wausau Wisconsin 19
NorthWest Arkansas Community College Bentonville Arkansas 19
Palm Beach State College Lake Worth Florida 19
Pinellas Technical College-St. Petersburg Saint Petersburg Florida 19
Ross Medical Education Center-Charleston Charleston West Virginia 19
Ross Medical Education Center-Kentwood Kentwood Michigan 19
Rowan-Cabarrus Community College Salisbury North Carolina 19
Skagit Valley College Mount Vernon Washington 19
Unitech Training Academy-Houma Houma Louisiana 19
West Los Angeles College Culver City California 19
Albany Technical College Albany Georgia 18
Arizona College-Mesa Mesa Arizona 18
Butte County Regional Occupational Program Chico California 18
Cypress College Cypress California 18
Diablo Valley College Pleasant Hill California 18
International Business College-Indianapolis Indianapolis Indiana 18
Linn-Benton Community College Albany Oregon 18
Milan Institute-Amarillo Amarillo Texas 18
Pikes Peak Community College Colorado Springs Colorado 18
Pinnacle Career Institute-South Kansas City Kansas City Missouri 18
Red Rocks Community College Lakewood Colorado 18
Ross Medical Education Center-Knoxville Knoxville Tennessee 18
Ross Medical Education Center-Madison Heights Madison Heights Michigan 18
Ross Medical Education Center-Muncie Muncie Indiana 18
Savannah Technical College Savannah Georgia 18
Sinclair Community College Dayton Ohio 18
The College of Health Care Professions-San Antonio San Antonio Texas 18
Tri-County Technical College Pendleton South Carolina 18
Trident Technical College Charleston South Carolina 18
University of Alabama at Birmingham Birmingham Alabama 18
Westmoreland County Community College Youngwood Pennsylvania 18
York Technical College Rock Hill South Carolina 18
Lorain County Joint Vocational School District Oberlin Ohio 17
Blake Austin College Vacaville California 17
Chaffey College Rancho Cucamonga California 17
College of Southern Nevada Las Vegas Nevada 17
Community College of Rhode Island Warwick Rhode Island 17
Danville Community College Danville Virginia 17
Delta College University Center Michigan 17
Delta College-Slidell Campus Slidell Louisiana 17
El Paso Community College El Paso Texas 17
Emily Griffith Technical College Denver Colorado 17
J Sargeant Reynolds Community College Richmond Virginia 17
Luna Community College Las Vegas New Mexico 17
NHTI-Concord's Community College Concord New Hampshire 17
North Dakota State College of Science Wahpeton North Dakota 17
Northwestern Michigan College Traverse City Michigan 17
Rochester Community and Technical College Rochester Minnesota 17
Ross Medical Education Center-Elyria Elyria Ohio 17
Ross Medical Education Center-Evansville Evansville Indiana 17
Ross Medical Education Center-New Baltimore New Baltimore Michigan 17
Southeastern Technical Institute South Easton Massachusetts 17
Tennessee College of Applied Technology-Dickson Dickson Tennessee 17
American Institute-Toms River Toms River New Jersey 16
Atlantic Technical College Coconut Creek Florida 16
Central Carolina Community College Sanford North Carolina 16
College of the Redwoods Eureka California 16
First Coast Technical College Saint Augustine Florida 16
Fortis College-Centerville Centerville Ohio 16
Front Range Community College Westminster Colorado 16
Hibbing Community College Hibbing Minnesota 16
Luzerne County Community College Nanticoke Pennsylvania 16
North-West College-Glendale Glendale California 16
Ross Medical Education Center - Kalamazoo Kalamazoo Michigan 16
Ross Medical Education Center-Dayton Dayton Ohio 16
Ross Medical Education Center-Flint Flint Michigan 16
Ross Medical Education Center-Granger Granger Indiana 16
Ross Medical Education Center-Huntsville Huntsville Alabama 16
Ross Medical Education Center-Lansing Lansing Michigan 16
Salina Area Technical College Salina Kansas 16
Stone Academy-Waterbury Waterbury Connecticut 16
University of Maine at Augusta Augusta Maine 16
Wytheville Community College Wytheville Virginia 16
Tennessee College of Applied Technology-Knoxville Knoxville Tennessee 15
Buckeye Joint Vocational School New Philadelphia Ohio 15
Chattanooga College Medical Dental and Technical Careers Chattanooga Tennessee 15
Choffin Career and Technical Center Youngstown Ohio 15
Daytona State College Daytona Beach Florida 15
Eastern Iowa Community College District Davenport Iowa 15
Fortis College-Richmond Richmond Virginia 15
Harrisburg Area Community College Harrisburg Pennsylvania 15
Humacao Community College Humacao Puerto Rico 15
Illinois Valley Community College Oglesby Illinois 15
Lanier Technical College Gainesville Georgia 15
Meridian College Sarasota Florida 15
New Mexico State University-Dona Ana Las Cruces New Mexico 15
Northeast Iowa Community College Calmar Iowa 15
Ross Medical Education Center-Davison Davison Michigan 15
Ross Medical Education Center-Roosevelt Park Roosevelt Park Michigan 15
Seattle Central College Seattle Washington 15
South Central College North Mankato Minnesota 15
Summit College Colton California 15
Wayne Community College Goldsboro North Carolina 15
Western Dakota Technical Institute Rapid City South Dakota 15
Wisconsin Indianhead Technical College Shell Lake Wisconsin 15
Gulf Coast State College Panama City Florida 14
Amarillo College Amarillo Texas 14
College of Eastern Idaho Idaho Falls Idaho 14
College of Marin Kentfield California 14
Fortis College-Phoenix Phoenix Arizona 14
Gateway Technical College Kenosha Wisconsin 14
Hagerstown Community College Hagerstown Maryland 14
Hudson Valley Community College Troy New York 14
Huntington Junior College Huntington West Virginia 14
Lawson State Community College Birmingham Alabama 14
Milan Institute-Palm Desert Palm Desert California 14
Platt College-Miller-Motte-Wilmington Wilmington North Carolina 14
Robert Morgan Educational Center and Technical College Miami Florida 14
Ross Medical Education Center-Erlanger Erlanger Kentucky 14
Santa Fe Community College Santa Fe New Mexico 14
Southern Crescent Technical College Griffin Georgia 14
Southwest Wisconsin Technical College Fennimore Wisconsin 14
State Technical College of Missouri Linn Missouri 14
Universidad Ana G. Mendez-Cupey Campus San Juan Puerto Rico 14
Wayne County Community College District Detroit Michigan 14
Eastland-Fairfield Career and Technical Schools Groveport Ohio 13
Ashland County-West Holmes Career Center Ashland Ohio 13
Brookline College-Phoenix Phoenix Arizona 13
Brookline College-Tempe Tempe Arizona 13
Cape Fear Community College Wilmington North Carolina 13
Del Mar College Corpus Christi Texas 13
Fortis College-Salt Lake City Salt Lake City Utah 13
Hawkeye Community College Waterloo Iowa 13
Horry-Georgetown Technical College Conway South Carolina 13
Martin Community College Williamston North Carolina 13
Mohave Community College Kingman Arizona 13
Northern Essex Community College Haverhill Massachusetts 13
Ogeechee Technical College Statesboro Georgia 13
Rose State College Midwest City Oklahoma 13
Ross Medical Education Center-Saginaw Saginaw Michigan 13
Tennessee College of Applied Technology Nashville Nashville Tennessee 13
Miami Valley Career Technology Center Englewood Ohio 12
ATA College Tri-County Springdale Ohio 12
Central Oregon Community College Bend Oregon 12
College of Southern Idaho Twin Falls Idaho 12
Columbus Technical College Columbus Georgia 12
Fortis Institute-Erie Erie Pennsylvania 12
Great Oaks Career Campuses Cincinnati Ohio 12
Houston Community College Houston Texas 12
Kaskaskia College Centralia Illinois 12
Labette Community College Parsons Kansas 12
Manchester Community College Manchester Connecticut 12
Massasoit Community College Brockton Massachusetts 12
Metropolitan Community College-Kansas City Kansas City Missouri 12
Minnesota West Community and Technical College Granite Falls Minnesota 12
Northern Virginia Community College Annandale Virginia 12
Northwest Florida State College Niceville Florida 12
Ohio Valley College of Technology East Liverpool Ohio 12
Platt College Tulsa Oklahoma 12
Rio Salado College Tempe Arizona 12
Springfield Technical Community College Springfield Massachusetts 12
State Career College Waukegan Illinois 12
University of Alaska Fairbanks Fairbanks Alaska 12
Volunteer State Community College Gallatin Tennessee 12
Western Technical College La Crosse Wisconsin 12
Wilkes Community College Wilkesboro North Carolina 12
University of Alaska Anchorage Anchorage Alaska 11
West Virginia Junior College-Charleston Charleston West Virginia 11
Fortis College-Norfolk Norfolk Virginia 11
Arkansas Northeastern College Blytheville Arkansas 11
Blackhawk Technical College Janesville Wisconsin 11
Career Training Academy-Pittsburgh Pittsburgh Pennsylvania 11
Fortis Institute-Scranton Scranton Pennsylvania 11
Madison Adult Career Center Mansfield Ohio 11
Medina County Career Center Medina Ohio 11
Milwaukee Career College Milwaukee Wisconsin 11
Northwest Technical College Bemidji Minnesota 11
Ogden-Weber Technical College Ogden Utah 11
St Paul's School of Nursing-Staten Island Staten Island New York 11
Tarrant County College District Fort Worth Texas 11
Tennessee College of Applied Technology-Murfreesboro Murfreesboro Tennessee 11
Traviss Technical College Lakeland Florida 11
Umpqua Community College Roseburg Oregon 11
Trinidad State Junior College Trinidad Colorado 10
Athens Technical College Athens Georgia 10
Augusta Technical College Augusta Georgia 10
Central Georgia Technical College Warner Robins Georgia 10
College of Central Florida Ocala Florida 10
Delta College of Arts & Technology-Lafayette Campus Lafayette Louisiana 10
Florence-Darlington Technical College Florence South Carolina 10
Forsyth Technical Community College Winston-Salem North Carolina 10
Fortis College-Cuyahoga Falls Cuyahoga Falls Ohio 10
Fortis College-Indianapolis Indianapolis Indiana 10
Indiana University-Northwest Gary Indiana 10
John C Calhoun State Community College Tanner Alabama 10
Marshalltown Community College Marshalltown Iowa 10
Metro Technology Centers Oklahoma City Oklahoma 10
Montgomery Community College Troy North Carolina 10
Northwest Suburban College Rollng Meadows Illinois 10
Owens Community College Perrysburg Ohio 10
Pasco-Hernando State College New Port Richey Florida 10
Polaris Career Center Middleburg Heights Ohio 10
Ross Medical Education Center-Canton Canton Michigan 10
Stone Academy-East Hartford East Hartford Connecticut 10
Vatterott College-Fairview Heights Fairview Heights Illinois 10
Virginia Highlands Community College Abingdon Virginia 10
Western Piedmont Community College Morganton North Carolina 10
Yakima Valley College Yakima Washington 10
Purdue Global-Omaha Omaha Nebraska 9
Aiken Technical College Graniteville South Carolina 9
Antonelli College-Hattiesburg Hattiesburg Mississippi 9
Blue Mountain Community College Pendleton Oregon 9
Cape Coral Technical College Cape Coral Florida 9
Eagle Gate College-Murray Murray Utah 9
Francis Tuttle Technology Center Oklahoma City Oklahoma 9
IBMC College Fort Collins Colorado 9
Iowa Western Community College Council Bluffs Iowa 9
Miami Lakes Educational Center and Technical College Miami Lakes Florida 9
Quinsigamond Community College Worcester Massachusetts 9
Ross Medical Education Center-Portage Portage Michigan 9
Southwestern Oregon Community College Coos Bay Oregon 9
Tunxis Community College Farmington Connecticut 9
Vatterott College-Kansas City Kansas City Missouri 9
YTI Career Institute-Altoona Altoona Pennsylvania 9
Eastern Arizona College Thatcher Arizona 8
Franklin Technology-MSSU Joplin Missouri 8
Great Falls College Montana State University Great Falls Montana 8
Gurnick Academy of Medical Arts San Mateo California 8
Metropolitan Community College Area Omaha Nebraska 8
Moore Norman Technology Center Norman Oklahoma 8
Mount Wachusett Community College Gardner Massachusetts 8
Ocean County Vocational-Technical School Toms River New Jersey 8
Pittsburgh Career Institute Pittsburgh Pennsylvania 8
Tallahassee Community College Tallahassee Florida 8
The College of Health Care Professions-Dallas Dallas Texas 8
Cuyahoga Valley Career Center Brecksville Ohio 7
Charles H McCann Technical School North Adams Massachusetts 7
Davis Technical College Kaysville Utah 7
Germanna Community College Locust Grove Virginia 7
John A Logan College Carterville Illinois 7
Lake Michigan College Benton Harbor Michigan 7
Lancaster County Career and Technology Center Willow Street Pennsylvania 7
PCI College Cerritos California 7
Saint Louis Community College Bridgeton Missouri 7
South Florida State College Avon Park Florida 7
West Virginia Junior College-Bridgeport Bridgeport West Virginia 7
Central Wyoming College Riverton Wyoming 6
H Councill Trenholm State Community College Montgomery Alabama 6
Manor College Jenkintown Pennsylvania 6
Meridian Community College Meridian Mississippi 6
Nevada Career Institute Las Vegas Nevada 6
Platt College-OKC-Memorial Oklahoma City Oklahoma 6
Ross Medical Education Center-Morgantown Morgantown West Virginia 6
University of New Mexico-Gallup Campus Gallup New Mexico 6
American College of Healthcare and Technology Riverside California 5
Antonelli College-Cincinnati Cincinnati Ohio 5
Canadian Valley Technology Center El Reno Oklahoma 5
Central California School of Continuing Education San Luis Obispo California 5
Central Pennsylvania Institute of Science and Technology Pleasant Gap Pennsylvania 5
Mid-Plains Community College North Platte Nebraska 5
Mott Community College Flint Michigan 5
Ross Medical Education Center-Ann Arbor Ann Arbor Michigan 5
Ross Medical Education Center-Brighton Brighton Michigan 5
Ross Medical Education Center-Owensboro Owensboro Kentucky 5
Galaxy Medical College North Hollywood California 4
Herzing University-Akron Akron Ohio 4
InterCoast Colleges-Riverside Riverside California 4
Monterey Peninsula College Monterey California 4
National Career College Panorama City California 4
Northeast State Community College Blountville Tennessee 4
Provo College Provo Utah 4
Wayne County Schools Career Center Smithville Ohio 4
Western Technology Center Burns Flat Oklahoma 4
Abdill Career College Inc Medford Oregon 3
California Healing Arts College Carson California 3
Institute of Medical Careers Pittsburgh Pennsylvania 3
North-West College-Van Nuys Van Nuys California 3
Pasadena City College Pasadena California 3
San Jacinto Community College Pasadena Texas 3
Institute of Professional Careers Las Vegas Nevada 2
Academy of Careers and Technology Beckley West Virginia 2
Coastal Alabama Community College Bay Minette Alabama 2
Kapiolani Community College Honolulu Hawaii 2
Lincoln College of New England-Southington Southington Connecticut 2
Mech-Tech College Caguas Puerto Rico 2
Palladium Technical Academy Inc Temple City California 2
Platt College-Miller-Motte Technical-Columbus Columbus Georgia 2
Putnam Career and Technical Center Eleanor West Virginia 1
American Institute-Somerset Somerset New Jersey 1
Berks Career & Technology Center Leesport Pennsylvania 1
Daymar College-Murfreesboro Murfreesboro Tennessee 1
Monongalia County Technical Education Center Morgantown West Virginia 1
North Central State College Mansfield Ohio 1
O C Collins Career Center Chesapeake Ohio 1
Prestige Health & Beauty Sciences Academy North Miami Beach Florida 1
2017-2018 School Data from IPEDS (Sourced in November, 2019)

Dental Assisting Admissions Requirements & Accreditation

Dental assisting programs, whether online or on-campus, typically require the following of applicants:

  • Completed application
  • Official transcripts
  • Prerequisite coursework
  • CPR certification
  • Background check
  • Drug screening
  • Proof of health insurance
  • Dental examination with radiographs
  • Attendance at information, advising, and/or orientation sessions
  • Observation hours

With regards to the education requirements, some schools accept students working toward a GED while others require it in hand prior to admission. Similarly, prerequisite coursework in subjects like math, English, and reading, as well as observation hours in a professional dental office, are required for admission to some (but not all) programs. Other pre-admission activities such as information or orientation sessions and advising may take place in person, by phone, or virtually.

Dental Assisting programs with accreditation from the American Dental Association (ADA) Commission on Dental Accreditation (CODA) are highly esteemed. CODA makes use of a collaborative peer-review accreditation process known for its rigor. Thus, programs earning this recognition are highly regarded within the profession, enhancing employment prospects for certification holders from accredited dental assisting programs. CODA evaluates predoctoral, advanced, and allied dental education programs.

School City State Website grads (2018)
Carrington College-Sacramento Sacramento California 142
Carrington College-San Jose San Jose California 103
Carrington College-Citrus Heights Citrus Heights California 45
Carrington College-Stockton Stockton California 45
Carrington College-Pleasant Hill Pleasant Hill California 40
Lake Area Technical Institute Watertown South Dakota 37
Santa Fe College Gainesville Florida 18
Eastern Iowa Community College District Davenport Iowa 15
Indiana University-Purdue University-Indianapolis Indianapolis Indiana 12
Siena Heights University Adrian Michigan 3
2017-2018 School Data from IPEDS (Sourced in November, 2019)

On-Campus Dental Assisting Programs

College of Alameda

The dental assisting program at the College of Alameda is full-time and includes classroom-based lectures and laboratory practice. Course topics include the study of head and neck anatomy, dental materials, chair-side skills, infection control, dental radiology, use of technology in dentistry, California dental law, ethics, and professionalism.

During the spring semester, students participate in a clinical internship in a private dental office or in one of the clinics of the University of California or the University of Pacific Dental Schools. Program completion earns a certificate of completion, and graduates may take additional general education courses for an associate in science (AS) degree.

Required prerequisite courses include first aid and safety (HLTED 9) and cardiopulmonary resuscitation (HLTED 11). Candidates also are advised to take keyboarding (BUS 230) and computer literacy (CIS 205) before enrollment.

Graduates will be ready to take up roles such as registered dental assistants, oral surgery assistants, certified dental assistants, certified orthodontic assistants, front office administrators, office managers, lab technicians, and insurance billers.

  • Location: Alameda, CA
  • Accreditation: American Dental Association (ADA) Commission on Dental Accreditation (CODA); Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges (ACCJC) of the Western Association of Schools and Colleges
  • Expected Time to Completion: 1-2 years
  • Estimated Tuition: $46 per unit (residents); $290 per unit (non-residents)

San Antonio College (Alamo Colleges District)

Dedicated to meeting the needs of traditional and nontraditional students, SAC's dental assisting program prepares graduates for various responsibilities within dental care. In addition to supporting the dentist during treatment and dental procedures, assistants are trained to gather patients' medical histories and general health data, teach about oral hygiene and health, take impressions and radiographs, perform office communications and management tasks, and help patients feel comfortable throughout their dental experience.

Application to the program is competitive and entails a three-phase process, including completion of prerequisite math, English, and reading courses. Other admission requirements include attending a mandatory orientation, meeting with an advisor, and submitting proof of 20 hours of general dentistry observation.

Students can either earn a 33-credit level I certificate in dental assisting or a 60-credit associate of applied science degree in dental assisting. Sample some of the courses in the curriculum: dental materials; dental radiology; dental assisting applications; chairside assisting; dental laboratory procedures; preventive dentistry; dental radiology in the clinic; and dental office management.

  • Location: San Antonio, TX
  • Accreditation: American Dental Association (ADA) Commission on Dental Accreditation (CODA); Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC)
  • Expected Time to Completion: AAS (five semesters); certificate (three semesters)
  • Estimated Tuition: $109 per credit (in-district); $225 per credit (out-of-district); $476 per credit (non-residents)

State University of New York (SUNY) at Buffalo

SUNY Buffalo offers an on-campus certificate program for aspiring dental assistants that can be completed in less than a year. The curriculum includes coursework in the dental sciences and materials, radiology, computer fundamentals, preclinical and chairside seminars and labs, and preventive dentistry.

All students participate in a 300-hour clinical internship at a private dental office, a community health center, or the SUNY-Buffalo School of Dental Medicine.

Applicants must complete the following prerequisite courses: infection control, HIPPA and corporate compliance, and CPR healthcare (provider level). Other prerequisites include an introduction to healthcare, professional development and an introduction to effective communication, and a dental assisting laboratory course.

  • Location: Buffalo, NY
  • Accreditation: American Dental Association (ADA) Commission on Dental Accreditation (CODA); Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE)
  • Expected Time to Completion: Nine months
  • Estimated Tuition: $7,070 per year (residents); $24,990 per year (non-residents)

Indiana University

The 30-credit dental assisting undergraduate certificate program at Indiana University is offered in a traditional on-campus format. This full-time, two-semester program requires completing 14 required courses, including approximately 1,000 hours of labs, clinical experiences, and lectures. Students must complete a minimum of 300 clinical hours to earn this certificate.

Coursework includes the study of traditional topics in dentistry such as dental materials, radiology, and clinical science, in addition to a focused study of oral pathology, physiology and anatomy, preventive dentistry and nutrition, dental therapeutics, and medical emergencies.

Graduates are prepared for careers as certified dental assistants, dental office administrators, or dental sales representatives. This program is also offered onsite at the Indiana University-Purdue University or Indiana University Fort Wayne campuses.

In addition to a completed application and high school transcripts, applicants are required to submit an essay. Please note that this program meets licensure requirements in all states except Alabama, Michigan, and Minnesota.

  • Location: Indianapolis, IN
  • Accreditation: American Dental Association (ADA) Commission on Dental Accreditation (CODA); Higher Learning Commission (HLC)
  • Expected Time to Completion: 32 weeks; minimum of two semesters
  • Estimated Tuition: $4,397.39 per semester (residents); $15,238.45 per semester (non-residents)

Online Dental Assisting Programs

University of Houston, Downtown

UHD offers a 100-hour dental assistant program on-campus and online. The program offers CPR certification and upon completion, students are prepared for the state of Texas and national dental assisting exams. Successful students are also able to participate in an optional 40-hour clinical externship. Applicants with a high school or GED are eligible for admission.

As part of the program, students will delve into topics such as coding of radiology services; dental administration; dental cements and impression materials; dental radiology; the foundation of clinical dentistry; patient information and assessment; oral health and preventions of dental disease; and dental anatomy and physiology.

  • Location: Houston, TX
  • Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC)
  • Expected Time to Completion: Contact program representative for sample schedules
  • Estimated Tuition: $1,199 total (not including externship)

Rutgers University

The online, self-paced administrative dental assistant program at Rutgers prepares graduates with the skills needed to manage the business aspects of dental practices. In addition to studying dental terminology and anatomy, the curriculum focuses on medical records management, patient scheduling, procedural and diagnostic coding, billing and insurance, accounts receivable, and reimbursements.

Administrative dental assistants perform duties in conjunction with both patients and dentists, hence, other aspects of the program include building communication skills and relevant proficiency in technology. Using the DENTRIX G4 instructional software allows students to apply their learning to authentic, sample practice activities.

Some of the topics students will delve into include orientation to the dental profession; interpersonal and communication skills; records management; scheduling and recall systems; dental insurance processing; financial management; office equipment and inventory; and employment strategies.

  • Location: New Brunswick, NJ
  • Accreditation: American Dental Association (ADA) Commission on Dental Accreditation (CODA); Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE)
  • Expected Time to Completion: Six months
  • Estimated Tuition: $2,285 total

Ozarks Technical Community College (Hybrid)

The goals of the dental assisting program at OTC focus on evidence-based clinical theory, technical proficiency, and professional development and service. Students are prepared for various roles within the dental health team such as chairside, oral surgery, laboratory, and orthodontic assistant. They may also serve as dental office business assistants or managers.

Participants can choose either the 36-credit dental assisting certificate or the 61-credit dental assisting AAS degree. The curriculum includes courses such as chairside assisting; infection prevention; operative dentistry; dental science and health; dental materials; dental radiology; and medical terminology.

Graduates will be ready to take up roles such as dental assistants, dental laboratory technicians, dental office managers, dentist educators, and dental supply representatives.

Participants have the option of choosing the traditional track, delivered on campus in a classroom setting, or the hybrid track, offering primarily online classes with some onsite laboratory and clinical work on-campus or in local dental facilities. Applicants of both tracks are required to attend a dental program’s informational session once a year.

  • Location: Springfield, MO
  • Accreditation: American Dental Association (ADA) Commission on Dental Accreditation (CODA); Higher Learning Commission (HLC)
  • Expected Time to Completion: Two to three years
  • Estimated Tuition: $149 per credit (in-district); $205 per credit (out-of-district); $259 per credit (out-of-state)

Hudson Valley Community College

Hudson Valley Community College’s Dental Hygiene Department offers an online dental assisting certificate preparing students who are new to this profession for performing several tasks in dental offices, such as sterilizing instruments, performing office duties, and preparing materials for dental procedures.

This online certificate consists of 27 credits, including courses such as dental assisting radiology; dental anatomy and embryology; dental materials for dental assistants; dental office procedures; and oral hygiene education and nutrition, among others.

The program also includes 225 hours of hands-on clinical experience through a formal clinical internship.

  • Location: Troy, New York
  • Accreditation: Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE)
  • Expected Time to Completion: Two terms
  • Estimated Tuition: $211 per credit (residents); $422 per credit (non-residents)

Penn Foster

Penn Foster’s online dental assistant career diploma can be completed in as few as four months. Preparing graduates for the National Entry Level Dental Assistant (NELDA) exam offered by the Dental Assisting National Board (DANB), this program provides them with foundational skills in dental medications, dental procedures, and more.

Consisting of 10 courses, this program explores topics such as dental terminology, anatomy, and charting; introduction to dental assistant; preventive dentistry and ethics; dental medications and materials; infection control and dental emergencies; professional opportunities and management software; and dental specialties.

  • Location: Scranton, PA
  • Accreditation: Distance Education Accrediting Commission (DEAC)
  • Expected Time to Completion: Fast track (four months); average time (seven months)
  • Estimated Tuition: $799 total

Dental Assisting Certification & Licensure

Several certifications are available for dental assistants. Certification can bolster applicants' candidacy for positions within the dental field as well as salaries.

Schools often state which certification exams students are prepared to take upon program completion. Some online programs only prepare students for the Dental Assisting National Board examination's radiation and infection control portions. Be sure that the program you select offers a curriculum in alignment with your professional goals, as some focus more on administrative aspects of dental assisting and others more on patient care.

For example, the Certified Dental Assistant (CDA) exam includes three components: general chairside assisting, radiation health and safety, and infection control. Dental assistants with this certification must renew annually and fulfill continuing education requirements. CDA is a national recognition.

The Dental Assisting National Board (DANB) also provides details on the different certification options and has documented state recognition of dental assistant titles. Here are a few examples:

California offers the Registered Dental Assistant (RDA) certification for graduates of board-approved dental assisting educational programs. This exam entails a hands-on practical exam, and two computerized, written exams (a state general knowledge exam and a state law and ethics exam).

Texas also offers RDA certification through the Texas State Board of Dental Examiners (TSBDE). This certification is required in Texas dental facilities to perform x-rays.

A Qualified Dental Assistant is recognized in some states as an assistant that has been trained either "on the job" through a dental assisting program (accredited or unaccredited), or through employment and training by a licensed dentist, but has not taken a certifying exam at the state or national level. Such professionals are not approved to do some assisting work, such as x-rays, but may be eligible to take a certifying exam after two years of professional experience in the role.

Dental Assisting Professors to Know

Twyla Rader

Twyla Rader is a clinical assistant professor in the department of biomedical sciences and comprehensive care at Indiana University’s School of Dentistry. Before her appointment at Indiana University, Twyla Rader was a liaison to the Indiana Dental Hygiene Association Board. She teaches or has taught courses such as chemistry and nutrition; radiology; medical and dental emergencies; dental healthcare research; educational methodology in health sciences; instructional media and technology in health science education; radiology clinic.

In March 2021, she received the Trustees' Teaching Award by Indiana University, an award that honors individuals who have a positive impact on learning through the direct teaching of students. Rader has the Indiana Dental Hygiene License and the Indiana Local Anesthesia License. She completed her master’s of education in learning and technology from Western Governors University and her associate’s and bachelor’s degrees from Indiana University School of Dentistry.

Janet Sell

Dr. Janet Sell teaches both dental assisting and hygiene courses and serves as the program director in dental assisting. She holds numerous advanced degrees, including BS and MS degrees in communications and a doctorate in higher education administration. She is a certified dental assistant, has professional experience in private practices, and has served as a curriculum consultant for the Commission on Dental Accreditation (CODA) for the past 10 years. Notably, Professor Sell was recognized for her achievements with the Excellence in Education award in 2013.

Cheryl B

Cheryl Startzell is an assistant professor of medical assisting and dental assisting at San Antonio College. She served as the program coordinator for the medical assisting program for eight years and currently teaches in both the dental and medical assisting programs.

Through a high-impact project grant, Professor Startzell is a consultant for the mountain plains FASD (Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders) Practice and Implementation Center. She is also a former chair (2012-14) and vice-chair (2010-12) of the medical assisting education review board, and a current co-chair of the core curriculum task force of the American Association of Medical Assistants. Ms. Startzell holds degrees in health services management (MA), biology (BS), and medical assisting (AAS).