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Academic Year: 2020-2021

Dental Assistant Technical DiplomaProgram Code 315081

As a dental assistant, you work with dentists as they examine and treat patients. You may carry out a variety of laboratory, clinical, and office duties such as patient scheduling and bookkeeping functions. While dental assistants typically work in general or specialty dental offices, you may also choose to work for insurance companies, dental lab studios, or dental supply companies. You may also find employment with federal agencies such as the Veterans Administration, US Public Health Services, the Armed Forces, or a state, county, or city health facility. Students are given the opportunity to obtain National Board Certification prior to graduation. The Dental Assistant program is accredited by the American Dental Association Commission on Dental Accreditation.

Average Starting Salary

$29,118.00FT Median Annual Wage

Graduate Employment

With 83% Employed in Field


Offered at the Green Bay campus. For information: (920) 498-5444. Toll-free: (888) 385-6982.

This program is fully eligible for financial aid.

Suggested Skills for Success

• Students are expected to have entry-level computer and keyboarding skills. It is recommended that students complete basic computer skills coursework if deficient in this area.

Requirements for Program Entry

• Completed application.
• High school transcript or equivalent. (For a list of equivalents, go to www.nwtc.edu/gettingstarted.)
• To be admitted to this program, learners must achieve a prior cumulative high school or college grade point average of 2.6 or higher OR a satisfactory academic skills assessment score. College grade point average must be based on 15 credits or more. To learn more about starting this program, please contact an academic advisor at (920) 498-5444 or (888) 385-6982.
• Attend mandatory program orientation and welcome week.
• Complete caregiver background check. A fee is charged for this service. Additional information will be provided upon acceptance into the program.

Students following the study plan below will complete the Dental Assistant technical diploma in the number of semesters shown.
Start dates for the first semester are June and September.
10-890-101 COLLEGE 101 ...Students will utilize digital tools and resources to assess, explore, practice, apply, and evaluate both employability and learning skills. By establishing NWTC cultural values as hallmarks of success in academic, career, and personal settings the course encourages reflective, personalized development of a growth mindset and emphasizes the importance of making wise choices. To maximize the return on investment, students should take this course in their first semester as it identifies key expectations (hidden rules) of higher learning and professional employment.
10-508-101 DENTAL HEALTH SAFETY...prepares dental auxiliary students to respond proactively to dental emergencies, control infection, prevent disease, adhere to OSHA Standards, and safely manage hazardous materials. Students also take patient vital signs and collect patient medical/dental histories. CPR certification is a prerequisite; students will be required to show proof of certification before beginning the course. (Prerequisite: Accepted into the Dental Hygiene or Dental Assistant Programs)
31-508-304 DENTAL & GENERAL ANATOMY...prepares dental assistant students to apply fundamentals of general and dental anatomy to informed decision-making and to professional communication with colleagues and patients. (Corequisites: 10-508-101, Dental Health Safety; 31-508-307, Dental Asst Professionalism)
31-508-307 DENTAL ASSISTANT PROFESSIONALISM...prepares dental assistant students for professional success in a dental practice or another dental health care environment. Students develop professional appearance and image. More importantly, they learn to work within ethical guidelines and legal frameworks. In preparation for entering the work force, dental assistants customize or develop their portfolios and lay out an ongoing professional development plan. (Corequisites: 10-508-101, Dental Health Safety; 31-508-304, Dental & General Anatomy)
10-801-196 ORAL/INTERPERSONAL COMMUNICATION ...the communication process, perception and self-concept, language, listening, nonverbal communication, interpersonal relationships, communication in groups and public communication; prepare and deliver an oral presentation. (Prerequisite: Next Gen Rdg score greater/equal to 250 AND Writing score greater/equal to 237; OR ACT Rdg score greater/equal to 16 AND English score greater/equal to 16; OR preparatory course-contact an academic advisor at 920-498-5444)
10-508-103 DENTAL RADIOGRAPHY APPLICATIONS...prepares dental auxiliary students to operate x-ray units and expose bitewing, periapical, extra oral, and occlusal radiographs. Emphasis is placed on protection against x-ray hazards. Students also process, mount, and evaluate radiographs for diagnostic value. In this course students demonstrate competency on a manikin. In addition, students expose bitewing radiographs on a peer, role-play patient. (Prerequisite: 10-508-101, Dent Health Safety; Corequisite: 10-508-102, Oral Anat & Hist OR 31-508-304, Dental & General Anat)
10-508-113 DENTAL MATERIALS...prepares dental auxiliary students to handle and prepare dental materials such as liners, bases, cements, amalgam, resin restorative materials, gypsum products, and impression materials. They also learn to take alginate impressions on manikins and clean removable appliances. (Prerequisites: 10-508-101, Dental Health Safety; 31-508-304, Dental & General Anatomy OR 10-508-102, Oral Anatomy, Embry, Histology)
10-508-120 DENTAL OFFICE MANAGEMENT...prepares dental auxiliary students to manage telephones, appointments, recall systems, and inventory. Students also develop the skills need to process accounts receivable and payable, collections, and third party reimbursements. (Prerequisite: 10-508-101, Dental Health Safety)
31-508-302 DENTAL CHAIRSIDE...prepares dental assistant students to chart oral cavity structures, dental pathology, and restorations and to assist a dentist with basic dental procedures including examinations, pain control, amalgam restoration, and cosmetic restoration. Students will also develop the ability to educate patients about preventive dentistry, brushing and flossing techniques, and dental procedures, using lay terminology. Throughout the course, students will apply decoding strategies to the correct use and interpretation of dental terminology. (Prerequisites: 10-508-101, Dental Health Safety; 31-508-304, Dental & General Anatomy; Corequisite: 10-508-113, Dental Materials; all other second semester classes)
31-508-306 DENTAL ASSISTANT CLINICAL...students apply skills developed in Dental and General Anatomy, Dental Health Safety, Dental Chairside, Dental Materials, Dental Radiography, and Professionalism in a clinical setting with patients. Emphasizes integration of core abilities and basic occupational skills. (Prerequisites: 10-508-101, Dental Health Safety; 31-508-304, Dental & General Anatomy; 31-508-307, Dental Assistant Professionalism; Corequisites: 31-508-302, Dental Chairside; 10-508-113, Dental Materials; 10-508-103 ,Dental Radiography Applications)
31-508-308 DENTAL CHAIRSIDE - ADVANCED...prepares dental assistant students to adapt chairside skills to assisting with dental specialties as they are performed in general practice. Focuses on pediatric dentistry, orthodontics, oral maxillofacial surgery, endodontics, periodontic, and prosthodontics. Students will also develop the ability to assist with sealants, perform coronal polishing, and apply topical fluoride and topical anesthetics. (Prerequisites: 31-508-302, Dental Chairside; 31-508-306, Dental Assistant Clinical; all other 2nd semester classes; Corequisite: 31-508-309, Dental Lab Procedures; all other 3rd semester classes)
31-508-309 DENTAL LABORATORY PROCEDURES...prepares Dental Assistant students to produce alginate impressions and fabricate diagnostic models, oral appliances, temporary restorations, and custom trays. Students also polish oral appliances. (Prerequisites: 31-508-304, Dental & Gen Anatomy; 10-508-113, Dental Materials; all other 2nd semester classes; Corequisite: 31-508-308, Dental Chairside-Advanced; all other 3rd semester classes)
31-508-310 DENTAL RADIOGRAPHY - ADVANCED...builds on principles and skills developed in Dental Radiography. Dental assisting students expose full mouth series, extra-oral and specialized radiographs on adult and child patients. Emphasis is placed on protection against x-ray hazards. Students will also acquire and evaluate radiographic images for diagnostic value. In addition, they will use radiographs to explain dental health and treatment plans to patients. (Prerequisite: 10-508-103, Dental Radiography Applications; all other 2nd semester classes; Corequisite: 31-508-311, Dental Assistant Clinical Advanced; all other 3rd semester classes)
31-508-311 DENTAL ASSISTANT CLINICAL - ADV ...Dental assisting students apply skills developed in Dental Chairside - Advanced, Dental Lab Procedures, Dental Radiography - Advanced, and Dental Office Procedures in a clinical setting with patients. Emphasizes integration of core abilities and basic and advanced occupational skills. (Prerequisite: 31-508-306, Dent Asst Clinical; All other 2nd semester classes; Corequisites: 31-508-308, Dental Chairside Advanced; 31-508-309, Dental Lab Procedures; 31-508-310, Dental Radiography Advanced; 10-508-120, Dental Office Management)
Curriculum Note
. Students must earn a "C" or higher in all 31-508-XXX and 10-508-XXX courses. A student who withdraws or receives a grade lower than a ā€œCā€ in a program course may apply for re-entry into the program. Consideration for re-entry will be at the discretion of the re-entry team.
. The following courses will transfer into the Dental Hygiene Associate Degree program: 10-508-101, Dental Health Safety; 10-508-103, Dental Radiography Application; 10-508-113, Dental Materials; 10-508-120, Dental Office Management
. The credit for 10-890-101, College 101 is an Institutional Requirement for graduation.
Consequently, it is not part of the program credit requirements.

Course Descriptions