Pasadena City College, Home of the PCC Lancers

Dental Assisting

Dental assisting 1 year program

Dental assistant reviewing x-rays

Dental Assisting working

Dental Assisting Program/Careers

Dental Assistants are an important member of the dental health team. Dental Assistants greatly increase the efficiency of the dentist in delivery of quality oral health care. You must be a team-oriented individual who enjoys working with people. This career is for you if you have good hand/eye coordination, like working on a schedule and seek satisfaction in helping others. Specific tasks may be performed such as: assisting with and providing direct patient care including helping the patient feel comfortable before, during, and after treatment, taking and developing dental radiographs (x-rays), sterilizing instruments, taking impressions, and performing office management tasks. Dental Assistants also communicate with other health care professionals, dental suppliers, business contacts, and insurers. Employment positions are available in dental offices, hospitals, clinics, dental schools and professional sales. Dental Assisting offers variety, flexibility, excellent working conditions, and personal satisfaction. According to the latest Bureau of Labor Statistics (, 'Employment is expected to increase much faster than average; job prospects are expected to be excellent.'

Current Salaries in the Los Angeles Area are $ 16.00 per hour

Requirements for the Certificate of Achievement in Dental Assisting

(Please confirm with the current College Catalog for updates and revisions)

DA 100

DA 123A*

DA 135

DA 200A

DA 108

DA 123B

DA 140

DA 00B

DA 110

DA 124

DA 150*

DA 111

DA 127*

DA 160

* Student is required to provide their own transportation to internship sites


Students who successfully complete the Dental Assisting Program will receive the following Occupational Certificates: 1. Infection Control and Dental Practice Act 2. Oral Radiology Course 3. Coronal Polish (part of the RDA program certificate) 4. Pit and Fissure Sealant (part of the RDA program certificate) 5. Ultrasonic Scaling for Orthodontic Cement Removal 7. Eligibility to apply for the State RDA exam and National Certification (CDA) exam 8. Orthodontic Assistant Permit (pending completion of OAP curriculum).

Goal statement

  1. Prepare dental assisting students to function effectively using critical thinking and technical skills related to chairside assisting, front office and laboratory procedures under the direction and supervision of a licensed professional.
  2. Provide an atmosphere where students are stimulated to develop their academic and clinical skills which prepare them for employment and lifelong learning within a changing technical society.
  3. Instill knowledge, professionalism, ethics and sense of responsibilities required for employment as integral members of the dental health team.
  4. Prepare dental assisting students for the National certification examination and state written and practical examinations.
  5. Provide the dental assisting student and faculty with opportunities for individual and professional growth and development within our program fostering empathy and concern for patients due to their commitment to excellences.
  6. Provide diversity in the curriculum by allowing students to complete the program and advance their educational goals through multiple pathways.


Program brochure and application

Applications are available during the period of January 14th – April 19th.

Acrobat PDF LogoDental Assisting Program Brochure

Acrobat PDF Logo Dental Assisting Program Application

Catalog description of programs and courses

Testimonial: Read what a recent graduate says:

"You guys deserve to know the hard work you put in to the program pays off for the students. I have been working as a full-time RDA in a cosmetic practice. They were really impressed with the amount of information I learned in our program and I was fully prepared when starting this job even though I have not worked in a practice since graduation. They definitely noticed a difference in my background knowledge compared to other assistants that they have had from trade schools. I just wanted to let you know so you can inform the students not to be worried when looking or starting a job as an RDA because our program fully prepares you for work!"  - Nina