dental student at the dental clinic

Certificate in Dental Assisting

The dental assistant takes on significant responsibility as a member of the dental health care team.  Assistants greatly increase the efficiency of the dentist in the delivery of quality oral health care and are valuable members of the dental team.  Dental assistants must possess strong communication skills and enjoy working with their hands.

A career as a dental assistant offers many challenges.  In addition to assisting the dentist during a variety of procedures, other specific tasks dental assistants may perform include providing instructions for oral care following treatment, performing office management tasks, exposing and processing dental radiographs (x-rays), sterilizing instruments, decontaminating equipment, and taking impressions of patients’ teeth.

Bachelor of Science in Dental Hygiene

The Bachelor of Science in dental hygiene requires a total of 120 credit hours, including 59 hours of prerequisite liberal arts courses with a grade point average of at least a 2.5 and 61 credit hours of professional courses. The prerequisites may not be taken on a pass/fail option and each must show a letter grade of C or better.  Remedial courses cannot be used to fulfill prerequisite requirements.  Once accepted into the dental hygiene program, the student will enroll in courses designed to provide educational and clinical training necessary for the practice of dental hygiene.  Candidates for admission to the program must be high school graduates with a concentration in the sciences or GED equivalent.  High school courses in biology and chemistry are necessary for success in the program.

To get started, the student should:

1)    Apply to the IU Northwest Admissions Office

2)    Complete the Math/English Placement Exam

3)    Following the completion of the Exam, meet with a Dental Education Advisor

Once the student completes their 59 credit hour prerequisite coursework:

1)    Apply to the IU Northwest Dental Hygiene Program

2)    Application deadline is February 1st of the year the student wishes to begin the program

3)    Attend the mandatory Dental Hygiene Applicant Open House (end of February)

Students are notified of acceptance into the program by May 1st.  Admission to the program is competitive and class size is limited.

Prospective Transfer Students:

1)    Apply to IU Northwest Admissions Office

2)    Submit official transcript(s)

3)    Complete Math/English Placement tests (if necessary)

4)    Meet with a Dental Education Advisor

5)    If all necessary prerequisite coursework have been completed, then apply to the IU Northwest Dental Hygiene Program 

Bachelor of Science in Dental Hygiene - Completion Degree

1)    Apply to IU Northwest Admissions Office (if not former IU student)

2)    Submit official transcript(s) (if not former IU student)

3)    Complete Math/English Placement tests (if necessary)

4)    Meet with a Dental Education Advisor

5)    If all necessary prerequisite coursework have been completed, then apply to the IU Northwest Dental Hygiene Completion Program

6)    All transfer students must complete a minimum of 30 IU credit hours as a residency requirement

7)    Verify state licensure, CPR certification, and updated vaccinations