With few orthodontic technician degree or certificate programs to choose from, orthodontic techs often get degrees in dental assisting and transfer the skills to an orthodontist's office. Therefore, when seeking out a dental assistant program, students can look for objectives on the school's website that promote transferable skills, including chair-side procedures for orthodontics or dentistry, infectious materials control, office management assistance and X-ray handling.
10 Schools with Dental Assisting Programs
The following list includes a number of public schools that offer dental assisting programs.
|College/University||Location||Institution Type||Degrees Offered||Undergraduate Tuition (2015-2016)*|
|University of Alaska, Anchorage - College of Health||Anchorage, AK||4-year, Public||Certificate, Associate's||In-state $5,545; Out-of-state $17,177|
|Calhoun Community College||Tanner, AL||2-year, Public||Certificate, Associate's||In-state $4,320; Out-of-state $7,770|
|Pima Community College||Tucson, AZ||2-year, Public||Certificate, Associate's||In-state $1,974; Out-of-state $8,610|
|San Diego Mesa College||San Diego, CA||2-year, Public||Certificate, Associate's||In-state $1,142; Out-of-state $4,670|
|Front Range Community College||Westminster, CO||2-year, Public||Certificate||In-state $3,527; Out-of-state $13,244|
|Broward College||Fort Lauderdale, FL||4-year, Primarily associates, Public||Diploma, Associate's||In-state $2,753; Out-of-state $8,875|
|Cerritos College||Norwalk, CA||2-year, Public||Certificate||In-state $1,346; Out-of-state $7,926|
|Indiana University Purdue University||Indianapolis, IN||4-year, Public||Certificate||In-state $9,056; Out-of-state $29,774|
|Rutgers University||New Brunswick, NJ||4-year, Public||Certificate||In-state $14,131; Out-of-state $29,521|
|Monroe Community College||Rochester, NY||2-year, Public||Certificate||In-state $4,554; Out-of-state $8,354|
Sources: *National Center for Education Statistics (NCES); School websites
School Selection Criteria
Consider these points when choosing a school:
- A program that is accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation of the American Dental Association will ensure career readiness for program graduates.
- Programs that have on-campus dental clinics allow for practical experience, although internships off-campus are often helpful as well.
- Some certificate programs can be applied to completion of an associate's degree, which may be important to students who eventually wish to continue their education.
- Some schools offer their dental assistant program through distance learning, allowing students who live far from campus to consider studying without relocating.
A number of 2- and 4-year public colleges and universities offer dental assisting programs. Program costs vary, and online courses may be an option at some institutions.