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The Rio Salado College Clinical Dental Assisting Program is no longer accepting new applicants and will be discontinued effective Summer, 2019. For more information about the closure, visit the Clinical Dental Assisting Homepage.

Clinical Dental Assisting with In-Person Learning Experience

Earn a Dental Assisting Certificate!

The Certificate of Completion (CCL) in Clinical Dental Assisting program is designed to provide an opportunity for students to practice advanced expanded functions in clinical dental assisting. The distance education format and frequent enrollment opportunities allow for flexibility in program completion. The program is a blend of academic and clinical coursework that requires attention to detail and motivation to complete tasks on a timeline. Courses must be taken in specific chronological order with clinical experience completed in partnership with a practicing dentist who is a member of the state Dental Association.

The Dental Assisting program is accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation of the American Dental Association (211 E. Chicago Avenue, Chicago, IL 60611-2678; 312-440-2500). Graduates of the program are eligible to take the Dental Assisting National Board DANB® (444. N. Michigan Ave., Ste. 900, Chicago, IL 60611; 312-642-3368) exams.  CERTIFIED DENTAL ASSISTANT™, CDA®, and DANB® are trademarks for the Dental Assisting National Board, Inc. (DANB).  This program is not reviewed or endorsed by DANB.

CIPS Code: 51.0601

State Requirements

Graduates are eligible for board examination and licensure in all fifty states. Please verify the licensure and certification requirements for the respective state board's website for the most up-to-date information. It is the student's responsibility to verify individual state requirements for licensure.

Check Your State Requirement

Admission Criteria

  • A high school diploma or GED equivalency is required.

  • Ability to fully participate in classroom, laboratory, and clinical setting program activities.

  • Complete and submit required MCCCD Non-Academic Allied Health Program Policy documents.

  • Submit current Arizona Department of Public Safety (DPS) Level One fingerprint card AND a supplemental background check.

  • Completion of Program Prerequisites with a "C" or better.

  • Formal application and acceptance into the Clinical Dental Assisting Program.

Applicants who are accepted and enroll in the Clinical Dental Assisting program will be exposed to blood-borne and infectious diseases. The program strictly adheres to established policies and procedures regarding infection control as recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, American Dental Association, The Organization for Safety and Asepsis Procedures, and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration.

Certificate of Completion in Clinical Dental Assisting


Program Prerequisites 7.5-8
First Year Composition Shared Unique Number Number  ENG1101 (3) OR
First-Year Composition for ESL (3)
Introductory Biology for Allied Health (4) OR
Introduction to Human Anatomy and Physiology (4)
HCC130AD Communication and Teamwork in Healthcare Organizations 0.5
EMT/HCC/RES109 CPR for Health Care Provider (0.5) OR
Proof of CPR certification
0 - 0.5 
Required Courses 26.5
Course # Course Title Credits
DAE240* Dental Radiographic Imaging 3
DAE285* Clinical Dental Assisting Seminar 2
DAE290* Internship for Clinical Dental Assistants 4
DAE112* Dental Assisting I 7
DAE156* Dental Assisting II 7
DAE212* Dental Assisting III 2
DAE256* Dental Assisting IV 1.5
Click any of the above course #'s for detailed information and register for it today! **


  • The total amount of credits required for this certificate is 34-34.5.
  • Students must earn a grade of "C" or better for all courses within the program
  • * indicates course has prerequisites and/or corequisites
  • xxx indicates any module.


  1. Analyze the role of dental team members in the delivery of dental care. (DAE290, DAE112, DAE156)
  2. Relate the regulation of dental assistants pursuant to state laws and regulations. (DAE240, DAE112, DAE156)
  3. Describe the roles of professional and safety organizations associated with dentistry. (DAE240, DAE112, DAE156)
  4. Use effective interpersonal communication skills. (DAE240, DAE290, DAE112, DAE156)
  5. Demonstrate effective patient management skills. (DAE240, DAE290, DAE112, DAE156, DAE256)
  6. Perform skills within the business practice management systems of a dental practice. (DAE290, DAE112, DAE156)
  7. Complete dental charts. (DAE240, DAE290, DAE112, DAE156)
  8. Perform intra and extra oral preliminary dental examinations. (DAE240, DAE290, DAE112, DAE156, DAE256)
  9. Perform accepted infection control and safety procedures in compliance with the Bloodborne Pathogens Standards and Hazard Communication Standard. (DAE240, DAE290, DAE112, DAE156)
  10. Identify and describe anatomical structures and stages of development. (DAE240, DAE112, DAE156)
  11. Identify and describe histological structures of oral tissues, diseases and developmental anomalies associated with dentistry. (DAE240, DAE112, DAE156, DAE256)
  12. Explain the processes of inflammatory, regeneration and repair of tissues. (DAE240, DAE112, DAE156, DAE256)
  13. Obtain vital signs and medical/dental history information. (DAE240, DAE290, DAE112, DAE156)
  14. Demonstrate the ability to assist with medical emergencies in a dental office. (DAE240, DAE112, DAE156)
  15. Explain uses, effects and components of pharmaceutical agents used in dentistry. (DAE240, DAE112, DAE156, DAE256)
  16. Manipulate, maintain, and explain physical properties of dental materials. (DAE240, DAE290, DAE112, DAE156)
  17. Practice taking preliminary impressions, study casts, and occlusal registrations for the purpose of study and working model fabrication. (DAE240, DAE290, DAE112, DAE156)
  18. Operate and maintain dental equipment. (DAE240, DAE290, DAE112, DAE156)
  19. Demonstrate knowledge of radiation health and safety measures. (DAE240, DAE112, DAE156, DAE256)
  20. Demonstrate knowledge of exposing, processing, and mounting radiographs. (DAE240, DAE290, DAE156)
  21. Produce diagnostically acceptable radiographs using radiation health and safety measures for patients and operators. (DAE240, DAE290)
  22. Prepare dental instrument systems for general procedures. (DAE240, DAE290, DAE112, DAE156)
  23. Perform clinical chairside dental assisting functions in the delivery of general procedures. (DAE240, DAE290, DAE112, DAE156)
  24. Demonstrate providing patients with oral hygiene instructions and nutritional counseling. (DAE112, DAE156)
  25. Identify and describe clinical chairside expanded dental assisting functions. (DAE285, DAE290, DAE156)
  26. Perform clinical chairside expanded dental assisting functions. (DAE285, DAE290, DAE156)
  27. Identify and describe specialty dental procedures. (DAE290, DAE212)
  28. Prepare dental instrument systems for specialty procedures. (DAE290, DAE212)
  29. Perform clinical chairside dental assisting functions in the delivery of specialty dental procedures. (DAE290, DAE212)
  30. Analyze procedures and outcomes associated with specialty dental procedures. (DAE290, DAE212)