AAS — Dental Assisting

This 60-credit Associate of Applied Science (AAS) degree prepares graduates to become a dental assistant working under the direction of a dentist in general dentistry, dental specialties, orthodontics and oral/maxillofacial surgery. Advanced coursework includes anatomy and physiology, microbiology and college courses in writing, general psychology, intro to public speaking and general education electives.


The demand for dental care continues to grow. Dentists will need to employ more dental hygienists and dental assistants than ever before to meet the increased demand for dental care. There are more than 200,000 active dental assistants in the United States. The majority of dental assistants are employed by general dentists, although career opportunities are also available with dental specialists, orthodontists and oral/maxillofacial surgeons. In addition to private practice, dental assistants may seek employment with public health/government clinics, military dental services, dental schools, allied dental education programs, the retail/wholesale dental industry and insurance and consulting companies. There is a great deal of stability and employment security for individuals interested in becoming dental assistants.

Find Career Information
Learn what occupations may be of interest to someone who has completed this program. Find information about wages and employment outlook.

Next Steps

Certain dental science courses offered in the curriculum will transfer to both Dental Assisting and Dental Hygiene majors if you wish to continue your dental education. Graduates are eligible to write the Dental Assisting National Board Certification Exam and the Minnesota State Dental Assisting Licensure Exam. Upon successful completion of the exams, graduates are certified and licensed dental assistants.

College Readiness

A student may be required to enroll in college readiness courses in reading, writing and math. A student’s scores on the Accuplacer assessment will determine enrollment in college readiness courses. The purpose of college readiness courses is to prepare students for the demands of a college-level curriculum. Credits may vary.

Degree Requirements

Course # Course Name Credit
Total Credits: 60
Required Courses
HPER 1410 First Aid / CPR 1.00
DENT 1010 Infection Control 1.00
DENT 1100 Biomaterials 3.00
DENT 1106 Biodental Science 2.00
DENT 1112 Dental Anatomy 3.00
DENT 1112 Dental Anatomy 3.00
DENT 1114 Dental Radiology 4.00
DENT 1122 Dental Ethics & Jurisprudence 1.00
DENT 1124 Clinical Assisting I 4.00
DENT 1126 Clinical Assisting II 4.00
DENT 1130 Dental Prac Management 1.00
DENT 1132 Credentialing Exam Preparation 1.00
DENT 1134 Clinical Affiliation 7.00
DENT 1136 Advanced Functions 7.00
DENT 1500 Dental Health 3.00
Select one from options listed
BIOL 2252 Anatomy & Physiology I 3.00 or
BIOL 2221 Microbiology 3.00
Required Courses
ENGL 1111 College Writing I 3.00
PSYC 1105 General Psychology 3.00
SPCH 1110 Intro to Public Speaking 3.00
General Education Electives 6


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