COVID-19 Response and Reopening

Dental Assisting


Dental Assisting

Do you want to work in a supportive environment? Do you like performing a variety of tasks? Do you think quickly on your feet? Are you a good communicator? If so, the Dental Assisting One Year Certificate program may be for you.

Core courses will set the foundation for hands-on training by some of the best dentists and instructors in the area. The Dental Assisting program trains students in a broad range of clinical skills including assisting the dentist during procedures, preparing patients for exams, performing radiographic procedures, maintaining medical records, patient scheduling, plus basic secretarial and receptionist skills.

Students are admitted once per year and begin in the fall term. Students move through the program as cohort, providing a close, supportive environment. Our lab is equipped with the most up-to-date equipment.

COVID-19 Vaccine Card/Exception

COVID-19 Vaccince Card/Exception Form


Certification Requirements

 Commission on Dental Accreditation Logo The program in Dental Assisting is accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation. The Commission is a specialized accrediting body recognized by the United States Department of Education. The Commission on Dental Accreditation can be contacted at (312) 440-4653 or at 211 East Chicago Avenue, Chicago, IL 60611-2678. The Commission’s web address is:

This accreditation enables students, upon graduation from the dental assisting program at COCC, to obtain the Expanded Functions Dental Assistant (EFDA) certification. This certification is distinct to Oregon and allows certificants to practice all advanced dental assisting skills allowed by the Oregon Board of Dentistry (OBD). In addition, during the Program, students will be taking three Dental Assisting National Board (DANB) examinations. After successful completion of these exams students become Certified Dental Assistants (CDA). This certification is accepted in thirty-nine states, allowing graduates to be employed in most states.

Program Outcomes

The following six program outcomes were developed as a result of the standards set by CODA:

  1. Apply the principles of dental sciences to ensure quality patient care.
  2. Perform a comprehensive set of dental assisting skills for optimal and safe patient care.
  3. Perform duties within existing ethical and legal parameters of clinical dental practice.
  4. Accurately document the delivery of dental treatment to facilitate continuity of care, and maintain records in compliance with state, federal, and Oregon Board of Dentistry (OBD) laws.
  5. Apply current concepts of infection control and occupational safety.
  6. Demonstrate professional behavior in every aspect of patient care and interpersonal relations.

Program Goals

The primary goals of the Central Oregon Community College's Dental Assisting program are for each student to:

  1. Successfully complete the program
  2. Obtain professional credentials
  3. Find satisfying employment in dentistry

Employment Opportunities for Dental Assistants

Dental Assistants are in high demand. Graduates are hired in private dental practices and corporate dental practices, as well as specialty dental practices such as oral surgery, orthodontics, pediodontics, endodontics, and periodontics.  Dental Assistants earn excellent pay and benefits. Dental Assisting program graduates find employment as a clinical dental assistants, dental office receptionists, dental front office staff, dental office managers, dental insurance staff, dental supply company representatives or dental educators.


To learn more or enroll, please contact:

Dental Assisting Program Director: Lynn Murray | 541-383-7574