Dental Assistant

Dental assistants are an integral part of a dentist’s office, helping both dentists and their patients with procedures and administrative tasks. This program prepares students to become Certified Dental Assistants (CDA). Instruction includes training in first aid, dental sciences, radiology, dental materials clinical procedures, infection control, lab procedures, preventive dentistry, business administration, and basic skills in communications, human relations and psychology. Students will practice their skills in the RTC Dental Clinic and during externships.

Program Map: Guide to program costs, careers, and classes.

Enrollment Point: Summer, Fall

Dental Assistant

Certificate of Completion
5 Quarters
80 Credits
Associate of Applied Science
5 Quarters
90 Credits
AAS - Transfer
5+ Quarters
95 Credits
Bachelor of Applied Science

All program lengths are estimates and are not guarantees. For the most current program information, check with an adviser by calling (425) 235-5840.

Median Salary
Projected Growth
Annual Job Openings

These amounts are based on median entry level wages, they are estimates and are not guarantees. For more information, visit


At Renton Technical College, tuition is affordable and competitive.

Financial Aid

Federal aid is available for most students to help pay for school. Fill out your FAFSA now to get started.


The RTC Foundation offers scholarships to help pay the costs of attending school.

All costs are estimates and are not guarantees. For the most current program information, check with an adviser by calling (425) 235-5840.

Please see the online class schedule for day & time information.

Connie Berrysmith

Entry Requirements

If you are interested in the dental assistant program or wish to attend one of our information sessions, please send an email to or call 425-235-2297 and leave us your contact information. We look forward to hearing from you.

Information Sessions via Zoom:

Click on the date below to attend the Information Session.

If you are interested in the dental assistant program, please email Advising at and program assistant Tatiana Lightfoot at to secure your space and obtain program information.

Admission Requirements

To be admitted to the Dental Assistant Program, a prospective student must meet the following requirements:

  • Minimum age: 18 years at time of enrollment
  • High School Diploma/GED (or equivalent) at time of enrollment (Running Start high school students may apply)
  • Directed Self Placement (DSP): COMP 100 or ENGL& 101
  • English Fluency (verbal and written)

Upon invitation and acceptance to the Dental Assistant Program, students must provide confirmation of an account established with and pass a nationwide criminal background check (Crimes Against Persons list).

  • Castlebranch website
  • Package code: RR67
  • Cost: $106 (do not create an account prior to invitation and registration to the program)

Screening and Tracking Requirements

After invitation to the program, students must meet vaccination and program specific health requirements in compliance with the Center for Disease Control Healthcare Provider immunization guidelines, including the submission of original lab results, x-ray reports and immunization records, which must be dated and signed by their healthcare provider.

Immunization Timeline Table

*Vaccinations must be current while on externships

  • Annual Tuberculosis skin test
  • Annual seasonal Influenza vaccine
  • Tetanus, Diphtheria, and Pertussis (Tdap) vaccine within last 10 years
  • Hepatitis B vaccine (series of three vaccines and immunity titer)
  • Measles, Mumps and Rubella vaccine (two vaccines or proof of immunity titer)
  • Varicella vaccine (two vaccines or proof of immunity titer)
  • Annual background-check through
  • Personal health insurance upon entry and for the duration of the program
  • Current (within one year) physical evaluation by a physician or nurse practitioner to ensure student and patient safety. The evaluation should address the following areas in respect to the student's ability to perform the laboratory skills and clinical responsibilities related to becoming a Dental Assistant:
    • Ability to lift a minimum of 50 pounds and to reach overhead
    • Ability to stand or walk for long periods

Bridge to Health and Human Services

Are you new to health care? Please consider taking our Bridge to Health and Human Services class to help you set up for success! You will get an introduction to subjects taught in health care programs, learn about different medical careers, learn about background check and immunization requirements, as well as information about how to pay for the program and the steps to register. Check out the flyer here. Email or talk to an entry advisor to register!

UPDATE: All healthcare students who have clinical rotations, externships and internships must follow the vaccination requirements of the healthcare institution where they will be working-i.e., must be fully vaccinated or have an exemption prior to their clinical rotation, externship or internship experience. Read the latest COVID-19 Allied Health Policy.

Course Information

Course # Course Title Credits
COL 101 College Success 2
DENT 100 First Aid, CPR & Vital Signs 2
DENT 101 Dental Profession 3
DENT 102 Pre-Clinical Assisting I 5
DENT 103 Clinical Assisting I 4
DENT 104 Dental Materials I 2
DENT 105 Expanded Functions 2
DENT 112 Pre-Clinical Assisting II 3
DENT 113 Clinical Assisting II & Practicum 7
DENT 114 Dental Materials II. 3
DENT 133 Infection Control & Microbiology 5
DENT 134 Specialties 3
DENT 137 Laboratory Procedures 2
DENT 138 Business Administration 2
DENT 141 Dental Sciences I 3
DENT 145 Dental Sciences II 3
DENT 151 Preventive Dentistry & Nutrition 2
DENT 153 Radiology I 3
DENT 154 Radiology II 2
DENT 155 Radiology III 2
DENT 171 Interpersonal Communications 2
DENT 191 Job Seeking Skills 1
DENT 192 Internship I 2
DENT 193 Internship II 7
AMATH 161G Mathematics 3
COMP 100 Applied Composition or  
ENGL& 101 English Composition (required for AAS-T students) 5
  Total 80

General Education Course Requirements for AAS Degree
Students choose two 5 credit courses which can be taken during the final quarter.

Course # Course Title Credits
AMATH 175 Applied Mathematics for Business & Industry or  
NUTR& 101 Human Nutrition or  
BIOL& 241 Human Anatomy & Physiology I or  
BIOL& 160 General Biology 5
PSYC& 100 General Psychology 5
  Total 10

General Education Course Requirements for AAS-T Degree
Students need an additional 15 credits.

Course # Course Title Credits
Two of following:    
BIOL& 160 General Biology or 5
BIOL& 241 Human Anatomy & Physiology I or 5
NUTR& 101 Human Nutrition or 5
SOC& 101 Introduction to Sociology 5
One of following:    
MATH& 107 Math in Society or 5
MATH& 146 Introduction to Statistics 5
  Total 15

Program Outcomes

  • Apply the knowledge and skills necessary to safely perform chairside assisting, including clinical, laboratory, radiology and expanded functions procedures as allowed by the Washington State Dental Practice Act.
  • Demonstrate clear communication by following written and verbal directives and delivering clear, accurate instructions and/or critical patient education.
  • Demonstrate accountability of practice with adherence to ethical and legal standards of the dental profession.
  • Demonstrate skills and attitudes that contribute to safe working conditions in the dental office, including environmental issues and all aspects of infection control as they relate to dentistry. 
  • Achieve certification by successfully completing the Dental Assistant National Board Exams.


CODA (Commission on Dental Accreditation)

Third-Party Comments

This announcement is for soliciting third-party comments from students and patients that pertain to the standards of policies and procedures used in the Commission’s accreditation process.  Third-party comments are to be published at least 90 days prior to the site visit in April, 2019.  Any comments are due in the Commission’s office no later than 60 days prior to the site visit.  Comments must pertain only to the standards for the particular program or policies and procedures used in the Commission’s accreditation process.  Comments will be screened by the Commission staff for relevancy.  For comments not relevant to these issues, the individual will be notified that the comment is not related to accreditation, and, where appropriate, referred to the appropriate agency.  For those individuals who are interested in submitting comments, requests can be made to the Commission office for receiving standards and/or the Commission’s Evaluation Policies and Procedures.

A copy of the appropriate accreditation standards and/or the Commission’s policy on third-party comments may be obtained by contacting the Commission at the address below, or by calling 1.800.621.8099, extension 4653.

Third-Party Comments may be sent to:

Commission on Dental Accreditation
Division of the American Dental Association
211 East Chicago Avenue
Chicago, IL  60611-2678

Site Visit Dates:  April 24 & 25, 2019


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