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.

Enrollment Point: Summer, Fall

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.

Monday - Friday

8 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.; Clinic Times: 7:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Hours may vary based on specific program requirements. For the most current program information, check with an adviser by calling (425) 235-5840.

Connie Berrysmith, Angela Bay

Entry Requirements

Admission Requirements

  • Minimum age: 18 years old.
  • High School Diploma or GED.
  • Ability to pass a nationwide criminal background check (Crimes against persons list) at time of registration with Castle Branch (use package code Rr67).
  • Students must meet vaccination and program specified health requirements in compliance with the Centers for Disease Control guidelines (vaccination list provided at time of registration).
  • All vaccinations must be complete prior to entering the Pre-Clinical courses (2nd quarter) (NOTE: Hepatitis B series must be started during the first week of the first quarter in order to complete series on time.) A positive titer is required for all students in the program. Proof of series and negative titer is required for non-responders (series will not be required after second attempt for immunity). Immunization timeline table.
  • Students must hold a valid American Heart Association BLS CPR card prior to entering the Pre-Clinical courses (2nd quarter). This course is offered in first quarter and is taught with additional course work required for Certificate of Completion.   
  • Health insurance, both injury and sickness, is required for participation in the program. 
  • Current (within one year) 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 become a Dental Assistant:
    • Ability to lift a minimum of 50 pounds and to reach overhead
    • Ability to stand or walk for long periods

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 3
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 2
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

  • Engage students in the activities that support the knowledge and skills development necessary to perform assisting, laboratory, radiology and expanded functions skills as allowed by the Washington State Dental Practice Act. 
  • Apply knowledge, skills and training in human relations, communications, basic principles of ethics, jurisprudence, preventive dentistry, and nutritional counseling in a dental practice. 
  • 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. 
  • Prepare students to achieve certification by successfully completing the Dental Assistant National Board Exams. 
  • Apply critical thinking skills to problem solve in a team environment, to provide professional patient care. 


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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