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Title Dental Assisting AAS 
Department Dental Assistant 

Program Course Requirements

Fall Semester (20 credits)
DENT 1106 Dental Orientation and Anatomy, 3 cr
DENT 1116 Dental Clinic I, 8 cr
DENT 1118 Dental Radiology I, 3 cr
DENT 1120 Preventive Dentistry, 2 cr
DENT 1124 Biomaterials, 3 cr
EMTS 1130 AHA Healthcare Provider CPR, 1 cr

Spring Semester (18 credits)
DENT 1114 Pathology, Pharmacology, and Law, 3 cr
DENT 1123* Dental Clinic II, 9 cr
DENT 1129* Dental Radiology II, 2 cr
DENT 1132* Dental Specialties, 2 cr
DENT 1133* Principles of Practice Management and Communication, 2 cr

Summer Session (7 credits)
DENT 1150* Dental Internship (336 Hours), 7 cr

Second Year - Fall Semester (15 credits)
ENGL 1422 Practical Writing, 3 cr OR ENGL 1410 Composition I or ENGL 1421* Honors Composition I, 4 cr.

Select 12 additional credits from Goals 2-10. For students planning to pursue Dental Hygiene, we suggest you choose courses that will meet prerequisite requirements for Dental Hygiene. See an advisor for assistance choosing courses for your targeted program/college. Typical Dental Hygiene course prerequisites may include:
BIOL 2457* Microbiology
BIOL 2467* Anatomy and Physiology I
BIOL 2468* Anatomy and Physiology II
COMM 1420 Interpersonal Communication
PSYC 2421 General Psychology
SOCL 1401 Intro to Sociology
Minnesota Transfer Curriculum courses, 12 cr

*Denotes Prerequisites

Click here to download the Dental Assisting A.A.S. Degree Program Planning Form (PDF)

Career Description: The career of dental assisting is an exciting, challenging, rewarding, and very in-demand career, where no two days will be alike as you help make dental experiences enjoyable for your patients! Dental assistants are critical members of the dental team, responsible for assisting the dentist, dental therapist, or hygienist with many chairside duties, performing many duties independently according to the State Dental Practice Act, in addition to working in the business end of dentistry. This career is also a great building block if you want to further your education as a Restorative Functions Dental Assistant, dental hygienist, office manager, dental therapist, dental sales representative, dental educator, or dentist.

Program Information: The 15-month Dental Assisting AAS Program at CLC was the first program established in the state, back in 1967! This hands-on, fast-paced program is designed to educate students in chairside skills and expanded functions delegated by the Minnesota State Board of Dentistry. Students will learn ways to treat and prevent dental disease, as well as teach patients preventive dental care. Fall and spring semesters are on-campus, followed by a nine-week summer session where 2 internships are completed in dental practices of your choice. This education prepares students to take national and state written licensing examinations, which are required for certification and licensure as dental assistants in the state of Minnesota.

Program Outcomes:
Graduates will be able to:

  • Perform chair side procedures in a clinical setting;
  • Apply infection control, biohazards and treatment area practices;
  • Perform dental office procedures;
  • Perform radiographic and radiation safety procedures;
  • Communicate professionally with patients, peers, and members of the dental health team; and
  • Model professionalism through continuing education and membership in the American Dental Assistants Association.

Special Program Requirements:

In addition to the program requirements, students must meet the following conditions in order to graduate:

  1. College Cumulative GPA Requirement: cumulative grade point average (GPA) of credits attempted and completed at CLC must be at least 2.0;
  2. College Technical Core GPA Requirement: cumulative GPA of credits attempted and completed towards the technical core of the diploma or degree must be at least 2.0;
  3. Residency Requirement: students must complete 25% of their credits at Central Lakes College.
  4. 8 hours of dental clinical observation must be completed by October 1st.
  5. Students who apply for the Dental Assisting Program who meet requirements for Admission will be accepted into the Dental Assisting Diploma for their first year with the option of pursuing their Associates in Applied Science (AAS) their second year.

Accreditation: The CLC Dental Assisting program has been accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation (CODA) since 1967. The most recent reauthorization visit was conducted in Fall of 2019.


HS GPA 2.6 or higher within the past 10 years OR
Meets "Writing Introductory College Level" or higher. This allows students into Practical Writing.

To meet "Writing Introductory College Level" one must have one of the following:

  • Accuplacer NG Reading score: 236 or higher
  • MCA Reading 1047 or higher
  • HS GPA of 2.5 AND MCA Reading 1042