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Dental Assisting

Two Pathways to a Dental Assisting Career

Announcements

2022-2023 Dental Assisting Application is Open for classes starting Fall 2022—Apply Now!

Submit the Online Application for the Dental Assisting Program by following these steps:
  1. Complete online Application for Admission to Foothill College
  2. Complete the online Dental Assisting application (see instructions) in Myportal. TO START, do you have a Student ID (CWID)?  To access the online Dental Assisting Application form in your student portal under the Allied Health app, you need your 8-digit Student CWID (Campuswide ID) to log in to MyPortal.
    1. If you HAVE applied for admission to Foothill (even if you have never taken classes), you already have a CWID number.
    2. If you have NEVER applied for admission to Foothill College,  you will need to FIRST complete the FOOTHILL COLLEGE ADMISSION APPLICATION before starting the Dental Assisting application process.
  3. Upon applying, all qualified students will be contacted for an orientation and notified of their acceptance.
  4. Application Sample.

Dental Assisting Instruction During COVID-19

Due to the continued issues around COVID-19 that has resulted in limited campus presence for faculty/staff/students and the need for primarily online modality of instruction, a combination of online and hybrid instruction will be held for the current academic year. See schedule of classes.

Dental Assisting Program Info Sessions

FOR DENTISTS/EMPLOYERS

For most current information, view Employer Info Session Zoom recording.

Important Session Overview

Only General Practice apprenticeships are offered at this time.

During the information session,  we discussed the difference between the two pathways. The necessary forms to sign up for the apprenticeship pathway will be sent.

Please note: Signing up for the apprenticeship pathway and submitting the forms does not bind the office to taking a dental assisting apprentice.  The apprentice will be responsible for interviewing and the office can choose to hire or not hire an apprentice after the interview.

Attendance (or viewing the Zoom recording) to one of this information sessions is required to participate as an apprenticeship office.  

FOR STUDENTS

For most current informationview Student Info Session Zoom recording.


male and female dental students

Part-Time Student & Employment Pathway


View Side-by-Side Comparison between Two Pathways

Program Details

PROGRAM FULL-TIME STUDENT PATHWAY with full-time course load PART-TIME STUDENT & EMPLOYMENT PATHWAY with paid dental office work experience
PROGRAM LENGTH

9 Months

15 Month

UNITS

57 quarter units (Certificate)

90 quarter units (A.S. Degree)

23 quarter units (Certificate)

START DATE

Starts either on 3rd or 4th week of September each year

Starts either on 3rd or 4th week of September each year

NUMBER OF STUDENTS ADMITTED

24

24

PREREQUISITES

High school diploma or equivalent

DA 200L

REQUIREMENTS UPON ADMISSION

Statement of acceptance

Background check

Drug testing

Physical exam including current vaccinations

CPR/BLS from American Heart Association

Purchase uniform 

Purchase dental assisting kit

Costs paid by student

Statement of acceptance

Background check

Drug testing

Physical exam including current vaccinations

CPR/BLS from American Heart Association

Purchase uniform 

Purchase dental assisting kit

Costs paid by Grant funded by California Dental Association 

TUITION

$31.OO per quarter unit

Free Enrollment Fee

OTHER COSTS ASSOCIATED WITH THE PROGRAM

Basic fees: appx. $60.00/quarter

Parking permit:  $30.00/quarter

Books:  $450.00 total

Books:  $450.00 total

Parking permit:  $30.00/quarter

(costs paid by Grant)

CLASS SCHEDULE

Lectures, labs, clinic sessions held M/Tu/W/Th/F

Synchronous, asynchronous, virtual, face-to-face

8/9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

View Class Schedule

Download PDF version for FT program sample schedule

Lectures, labs, clinic sessions held F/Sat

Synchronous, asynchronous, virtual, face-to-face

Friday/Sat classes

9:00 a.m. to 12:00 noon and 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.

View Class Schedule

Download PDF version for PT program sample schedule

INTERNSHIPS

Unpaid internship

300 hours 

Employed by dental office 

Paid on the job training ​starting at minimum wage

2000 hours

INTERNSHIP DATES

Tu/Thu for January to June 

M/Tu/W/Th for 15 months

DEGREES & CERTIFICATES

A.S. DEGREE

Certificate of Achievement

Infection Control Certification

Dental Practice Act Certification

Radiology License

Coronal Polishing Certification

Pit & Fissure Sealant Certification

Certificate from California Department of Apprenticeship Standards

Certificate of Achievement

Infection Control Certification

Dental Practice Act Certification

Radiology License

Coronal Polishing Certification

Pit & Fissure Sealant Certification

Course Schedule

TERM FULL-TIME STUDENT PATHWAY PART-TIME STUDENT & EMPLOYMENT PATHWAY
FALL

D A 50 Orientation to Dental Assisting (1 unit)

D A 51A Introduction to Chairside Dental Assisting (10.5 units)

D A 53A Introduction to Radiography I (3 units)

D A 58 Specialty Practice Procedures (1 unit)

D A 62A Dental Sciences I (2 units)

D A 71 Infection Control & Hazardous Waste Management (1.5 units)

D A 200L Guide for Success:  A Dental Assisting Prerequisite Class

DA 65 Dental Assisting Apprenticeship Clinical Skills I 

D A 71 Infection Control & Hazardous Waste Management (1.5 units)

WINTER

D A 51B Intermediate Clinical Dental Assisting (3 units)

D A 53B Dental Radiography II (2 units)

D A 56 Dental Health Education (1 unit)

D A 57 Office Emergency Procedures (2 units)

D A 60A Dental Office Business Practices I (2 units)

D A 62B Dental Sciences II (2 units)

D A 73 Dental Assisting Supervised Clinic (5.5 units)

D A 100 Law & Ethics for the Dental Assistant (1 unit)

DA 66 Dental Assisting Apprenticeship Clinical Skills II 

D A 67 Radiation Health and Safety for Apprenticeship

D A 57 Office Emergency Procedures (2 units)

SPRING

D A 51C Advanced Dental Assisting Skills (3.5 units)

D A 53C Dental Radiography III (1 unit)

D A 60B Dental Office Business Practices II (3 units)

D A 62C Dental Sciences III (2 units) 
D A 63 Special Patient Populations (1 unit)

D A 74 Dental Assisting Clinical Practice (5.5 units)

D A 85 RDA Review (2 units)

D A 88 Pit & Fissure Sealants (1.5 units)

D A 56 Dental Health Education (1 unit)

D A 51C Advanced Dental Assisting Skills (3.5 units)

SUMMER Coursework completed

D A 100 Law & Ethics for the Dental Assistant (1 unit)

D A 88 Pit & Fissure Sealants (1.5 units)

FALL Coursework completed

D A 85 RDA Review (2 units)

Timeline for Completion 

9-MONTH FULL-TIME STUDENT PATHWAY 15-MONTH PART-TIME STUDENT & EMPLOYMENT PATHWAY

Complete these requirements before admission

  • Statement of acceptance
  • Background check
  • Drug testing
  • CPR/BLS from American Heart Association
  • Purchase uniform
  • Purchase dental assisting kit

Complete these requirements before admission

  • Statement of acceptance
  • Background check
  • Drug testing
  • CPR/BLS from American Heart Association
  • Purchase uniform
  • Purchase dental assisting kit

Fall Quarter 19 units

Fall Quarter 6 units

  • Register for and complete prerequisite DA 200L (1 unit) first six weeks
  • Interview and secure internship office

Winter Quarter 18.5 units

Winter Quarter 7 units

Spring Quarter 19.5 units

Spring Quarter 4.5 units

Graduation

Apply to take RDA written licensing exam

Summer Session 3.5 units

 

Fall Quarter 2.0 units

 

Graduation

Apply to take RDA written licensing exam

A Demand for Dental Assistants

large group of graduates

2019 Dental Assisting graduation ceremony.

The demand for qualified dental assistants is high—to work with dentists, dental hygienists and dental technicians, to deliver dental care in a caring and skilled manner. Plus, the technology field of dentistry is always changing. Digital dental x-rays can be seen on a computer monitor within seconds of the exposure. Titanium implants can be used to replace missing teeth, which are stronger and more stable than dentures or removable partials.

What You'll Learn

Whichever pathway you choose, the Foothill College Dental Assisting Program offers a balance of academic, laboratory and clinical courses to prepare our students to work in this rapidly changing field. You'll learn extended functions of coronal polishing and pit and fissure sealants as well as earn an x-ray certificate.

Students who complete the entire program in a satisfactory manner will

  • Be awarded a Career Certificate in Dental Assisting
  • Qualify for the California State Registered Dental Assisting Examination.

Dental Assisting Opportunities

Dental assistants can work for a general dentist or in any of the other dental specialties, including oral surgery, orthodontics, periodontics, endodontics, children's dentistry, and prosthodontics.

Other job opportunities for qualified Dental Assistants

  • Public health educators
  • Private industry consultants or sales representatives
  • Dental assisting instructors
  • Dental office managers
  • Consultants for dental insurance companies

 

 

Dental Assisting Quick View

Program: Dental Assisting
Degree/Cert: AS/Yes
Length: 9 months and 15 months

FT/PT: Full-time and Part-time
Number Accepted: 24 for each pathway

Program Application Deadline: There are currently openings in both pathways.  Contact program director for questions at miyasakicara@fhda.edu or (650) 949-7351. 

Approx. Cost of Program: $3,500
National Lic./Cert.: Yes
State Lic.Cert.: Yes
Estimated Annual Salary: $40,000-$60,000

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Questions?
We're Here to Help!

Cara Miyasaki, RDHEF, MS , Department Chair

650.949.7351


miyasakicara@foothill.edu


DENTAL ASSISTING PROGRAM CONTACTS
Office: Building 5200, Room 5211 
Cara Miyasaki, RDHEF, MS, Director
miyasakicara@foothill.edu
Nancy Cheung, MPA, Division Dean
cheungnancy@fhda.edu
To meet with the dean, contact the Health Sciences and Horiculture Division

 



Download 2017 CTE Licensure Pass & Placement Rates



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