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Dental Assisting Technology

General Option



51.0601

(One-Year Certificate)

Dental assistants are specially-trained healthcare workers who provide direct support to dentists.  The Linn State Technical College Dental Assisting Technology (DAT) program will teach students to perform a variety of dental assisting responsibilities including transferring instruments, mixing restorative materials, taking impressions, providing oral health instruction, and performing coronal polishes. Students will learn to expose and process radiographic film and learn to obtain digital dental images.  Students are also introduced to paper and electronic business office forms.  The Dental Assisting Technology program is accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation of the American Dental Association, 211 East Chicago Avenue, Chicago, IL 60611-2678;
312-440-2500; www.ada.org.

The Dental Assisting Technology program is an eleven-month, three semester program.  Students will participate in a minimum of 300 clock hours of clinical study at approved clinical sites.  To be successful, students need effective communication skills and a solid background in science and math.

Upon successful completion of the program, Dental Assisting Technology students will be eligible to take the Dental Assisting National Board (DANB) examination to earn the designation of Certified Dental Assistant (CDA).  Students will also become certified as an Expanded Function Dental Assistant (EFDA) for the state of Missouri.  In addition, each student receives the required training for state certification in nitrous oxide monitoring.

The Linn State Technical College Dental Assisting Technology program is located at the Nichols Career Center facility, 605 Union Street, Jefferson City, MO 65101.

Enrollment in the Dental Assisting Technology program is limited and students are selected for this program on a competitive basis.  Contact the Office of Admissions or www.linnstate.edu/academic/dat/index.php for the specific application requirements, forms, and deadline.

Students who are admitted to the Dental Assisting Technology program should be aware that they will be subject to drug screening.  Criminal background checks will be required prior to clinical placement.  Per Missouri law, persons who have been convicted of or pled guilty to certain felony offenses may be prohibited from holding any direct patient care positions.  This could prevent placement in and completion of clinical externship courses, which are required to complete the Dental Assisting Technology One-Year Certificate program.

To remain enrolled in the Dental Assisting Technology (DAT) program and participate in clinical externships, an academic grade of 75% or better must be maintained in every DAT course and a grade of “C” or better must be maintained in all other required courses. 

Program Mission
The mission of the Dental Assisting Technology program is to provide highly-skilled dental assistants who are clinically proficient members of a dental health team and who provide the best possible care for their patients.

Program Goals
The goals of the program are to provide the opportunity for students to develop:

  • Clinically proficient skills in all aspects of dental assisting procedures.
  • The ability to recognize the theory behind dental assisting procedures.
  • Analytical and problem solving skills to sit for and pass the Dental Assisting National Board examination and be granted the designation of Certified Dental Assistant.
  • A desire to continue his/her education either formally or in the interest of self-fulfillment and enhanced job performance.
  • The work ethic and attitude to maintain certification through the American Dental Association. 
  • Effective communication and interpersonal skills needed to succeed as a Certified Dental Assistant. 

Program Assessments

  • Dental Assistant national Board Exam (DANB)
CORE CURRICULUM

Credit Hours

DAT 100 Infection Control 2
DAT 110 Dental Science and Health 4
DAT 120 Chairside Assisting I 6
DAT 130 Dental Materials I 4
DAT 140 Dental Radiology I 6
DAT 150 Clinical Externship I 1
DAT 160 Chairside Assisting II 3
DAT 165 Chairside Assisting II Lab 3
DAT 170 Dental Materials II 3
DAT 180 Dental Radiology II 1
DAT 190 Dental Office Procedures

2

DAT 195 Clinical Externship II 2
    SUB-TOTAL 37
       
GENERAL EDUCATION REQUIREMENTS  
Must Include: Three credit hours from Area 1. Oral & Written Communication 3
AND      
Three credit hours from Area 5. Technical Literacy 3
    SUB-TOTAL 6
       
GRADUATION REQUIREMENT  
COM 125 Job Search Strategies 1
    SUB-TOTAL 1
       
    PROGRAM TOTAL 44

DAT 100  Infection Control.  Prevention of cross-contamination and asepsis control are vital roles for the dental assistant, therefore infection control protocols are a prerequisite to all chairside assisting procedures.  This course teaches theory and clinical and preclinical skills, which prepare students for their extramural clinical practicum.  2 credit hours.

DAT 110  Dental Science and Health.  This course teaches some of the basic sciences related to the practice of dentistry.  It is important for dental assistants to be knowledgeable in these sciences in order to understand why procedures used in dental practice require specific and detailed protocols in order to be effective.  This course also includes units on nutrition and pharmacology for dentistry.  Prerequisite:  DAT 100 with a grade of 75% or better.  4 credit hours.

DAT 120  Chairside Assisting I.  This course teaches the hands-on daily activities the chairside assistant performs to be an effective member of the dental health team.  Instruction in the manipulation and care of dental instruments and equipment and their relationship to dental operative procedures are emphasized.  The theory, preclinical, and clinical skills prepare students for their extramural clinical practicum.  Lectures include instruction on how to care for patients with special needs, office emergencies, and first aid.  Certification through the American Red Cross or American Heart Association in CPR (2-year) cardiopulmonary resuscitation is a requirement prior to patient contact.  MISSOURI BASIC SKILLS MASTERY EXAM will be given at the end of this course as a review and to prepare students for MISSOURI EXPANDED FUNCTIONS second semester.  Prerequisite:  DAT 100 with a grade of 75% or better.  6 credit hours.

DAT 130  Dental Materials I.  This course teaches students the properties and manipulation of materials used in the process of delivering dental care to patients.  Students will learn to apply critical thinking in the selection and preparation of dental materials as well as the proper clinical techniques required in working with these substances. Lab skills are taught and evaluated to clinical proficiency.  Skills that cannot be taught to clinical proficiency will be taught and evaluated to preclinical or lab proficiency.  Prerequisite:  DAT 100 with a grade of 75% or better.  4 credit hours.

DAT 140  Dental Radiology I.  This course teaches the theory and techniques used for exposing, developing, mounting, and evaluating dental radiographs.  Emphasis is placed on interpretation of radiographic findings to determine if a radiograph is of diagnostic value.  Knowledge of infection control and radiation safety for both the patient and dental assistant is of utmost concern when exposing radiographs; therefore, students will learn to use infection control and radiation safety protocols.  Students will be required to expose and evaluate radiographic surveys on training manikins and place films and position the tube head on classmates (without making exposures) during radiology labs.  Students will expose and evaluate radiographs on a variety of patients during clinicals under the direct supervision of a dentist.  Prerequisite:  DAT 100 with a grade of 75% or better.  6 credit hours.

DAT 150  Clinical Externship I.  This course consists of approximately sixteen hours of clinical practicum per week (from November through December) in participating dental facilities.  In conjunction with Clinical Externship II, students rotate through three general dental practices and two specialty practices for a minimum of 300 clinic hours.  This course includes one hour per week of clinical seminar, an in-class discussion of dental practices.  Prerequisite:  DAT 100 with a grade of 75% or better.  1 credit hour.

DAT 160  Chairside Assisting II.  This course introduces the various dental specialties including Orthodontics, Pediatric Dentistry, Endodontics, Oral Surgery, Periodontics, Prosthodontics, and Direct Restorative methods.  Instruction includes, but is not limited to, how to place and finish Class I, Class V and Class VI Composite and Amalgam restorations.  Sizing and cementing Stainless Steel crowns and palliative care for minor dental emergencies will also be covered.  Missouri Expanded Function Certification Courses plus Assisting in Monitoring of Nitrous Oxide Conscious Sedation are taught throughout this course.  Prerequisites:  DAT 110, DAT 120, DAT 130, DAT 140, and DAT 150 with a grade of 75% or better.  Concurrent:  DAT 165.  3 credit hours.

DAT 165  Chairside Assisting II Lab.  Missouri Expanded Function Certification Courses plus Assisting in Monitoring of Nitrous Oxide Conscious Sedation are taught throughout this course as mandated by the Missouri Dental Board.  Lab skills are taught and evaluated to clinical proficiency. Skills that cannot be taught to clinical proficiency will be taught and evaluated to preclinical or lab proficiency.  Prerequisites:  DAT 110, DAT 120, DAT 130, DAT 140, and DAT 150 with a grade of 75% or better.  Concurrent:  DAT 160.  3 credit hours.

DAT 170  Dental Materials II.  This course teaches dental assisting students the properties and manipulation of the more specialized materials utilized in dental specialties in the process of providing dental care to patients.  Students will learn to apply critical thinking in the selection and preparation of these dental materials as well as the proper clinical techniques required in working with these substances.  Lab skills are taught and evaluated to preclinical, clinical, and/or lab proficiency.  Prerequisites:  DAT 110, DAT 120, DAT 130, DAT 140, and DAT 150 with a grade of 75% or better.  3 credit hours.

DAT 180  Dental Radiology II.  This course emphasizes digital imaging, interpretation of radiographic findings, and correction of exposure and image handling/processing errors to attain diagnostically-acceptable images.  In addition, students will demonstrate proficiency in identification of radiographic landmarks through written examinations.  Knowledge of infection control and radiation safety for both the patient and dental assistant is of utmost concern when exposing radiographs; therefore, students will build on infection control and safety protocols learned in Dental Radiology I.  Students will be required to expose radiographic images on a variety of patients during their clinical externship.  Prerequisites:  DAT 110, DAT 120, DAT 130, DAT 140, and DAT 150 with a grade of 75% or better.  1 credit hour.

DAT 190  Dental Office Procedures.  This course teaches the general management of the front office.  Scheduling appointments, maintaining daily journals, and collections of accounts are vital parts of a successful dental practice.  Interactive Dentrix and Eagle Soft programs for appointment control, insurance charting, and patient file records are utilized.  The psychology of working with patients and team members plays an important role in office management; therefore, it is a vital role for the dental assistant.  Prerequisites:  DAT 110, DAT 120, DAT 130, DAT 140, and DAT 150 with a grade of 75% or better.  2 credit hours.

DAT 195  Clinical Externship II.  This course consists of approximately sixteen hours of clinical practicum per week (from January through April) in participating dental facilities.  Building on skills obtained during Clinical Externship I, students continue to rotate through three general dental practices and two specialty practices for a minimum of 300 clinic hours. This course includes one hour per week of clinical seminar, an in-class discussion of dental practices.  In addition, students complete Expanded Function Dental Assisting (EFDA) certifications as they progress through this semester.  Students may perform EFDA duties at assigned clinical sites only after they have received the appropriate certifications.  Prerequisites:  DAT 110, DAT 120, DAT 130, DAT 140, and DAT 150 with a grade of 75% or better.  2 credit hours.






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