The Dental Assisting program focuses on patient-centered care in support of improving oral health as a key to personal health and well-being. As vital members of the dental health team, dental assistants work in private dental clinics, specialists' offices and community health centres. Skills and content covered include clinic operations, chair-side procedures, intra-oral procedures, patient education and interpersonal skills.
The program is divided into two 15-week semesters and one eight-week semester. Students are required to attend classes on the University of Saskatchewan (U of S) campus for this program. Classroom learning is integrated into a dental clinic setting. The clinical components include patient education, radiographs, selective rubber cup polishing, and fluoride application.
This program includes one unpaid four-week practicum in the third semester at a dental office which may be outside of Saskatoon. Students in this program require access to a personal computer and the Internet to facilitate completion of required online courses.
Graduates work under a supervising professional in private clinics, specialists' offices and community health centres as a registered dental assistant.
- Graduates of the Dental Assisting program have a 98% employment rate
Students with higher secondary or post-secondary marks usually experience greater success in SAIT programs.
Basic computer skills are advantageous to dental assistants. Students who experience success in this program have effective communication skills in English. Health care practitioners are detail oriented in the care they provide and enjoy working in a team environment.
Credentials and accreditation
After successfully completing this program, graduates will receive a SAIT Dental Assisting certificate. Graduates must write the National Dental Assisting Examining Board examination to be registered in Saskatchewan. Graduates are licensed by the Saskatchewan Dental Assistants Association as Registered Dental Assistants once they have passed the National Dental Assisting Examining Board examination.
The Dental Assisting program delivered by SAIT is accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation of Canada.
Once completed, this SAIT credential may be eligible for transfer credit at another post-secondary institution. Visit Transfer Options to learn more about the transfer agreements currently available to SAIT graduates and incoming students.
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Admission and Selection
Applications are accepted until the program start date.
- Fall 2018 start date: Sep. 4, 2018
- Applications open date: July 1, 2018
Completion of the following courses or equivalents with an overall average of at least 60%:
- Math 30-1 or Math 30-2 or Pure Math 30 or Applied Math 30,
- English Language Arts 30-1 or English Language Arts 30-2,
- Biology 30,
- Chemistry 30.
- All applicants to SAIT must demonstrate English Language Proficiency prior to admission, including students educated in Canada.
SAIT evaluates international documents for admissions. After you've applied, consider our international document assessment service if your education is from outside of Canada.
Competitive Entry: Six Step Process
Step 1: Read the program information to see the qualities needed for student success.
Step 2: Ensure that you meet all of the admission requirements listed above.
Step 3: Review the selection information to understand the process and deadlines
- Applications and proof of the admission requirements (transcripts and/or anticipated final grades) along with all supporting documents must be submitted to be included in selection.
- Selection will begin on Aug. 1, 2018 and will be completed on a continuous basis until the program is full.
- In the selection process, qualified applicants will be academically ranked based on admission requirements. Applicants will be offered admission or placed on the waitlist in order of academic ranking.
Step 5: Log in to mySAIT.ca to check your admission status. If eligible, your status will indicate that you're "In Selection."
Failure to meet anticipated final grades will result in offers being rescinded.
Communication during selection
Email is the primary source of communication during the selection process. Ensure your personal email account is managed appropriately to receive our emails, files and communications. We recommend you add email@example.com and the sait.ca domain to your safe senders list or you risk missing critical email messages.
Student information and dental health examination required by the first day of class.
The School of Health and Public Safety has many practica partners located within Saskatchewan, Alberta, and across Canada. Practicum placements in Saskatoon are limited and students may be required to relocate outside of Saskatoon for practicum.
Successful candidates will be informed of the allocation of their practicum placement by the program. There is no guarantee that students will be placed at their desired practicum location. Special considerations of personal circumstances will not be given in regards to assigning practicum placements. Students will be responsible for fees associated with practicum such as relocation and travel costs. In compliance with the practica agreements with our clinical partners, successful candidates will be requested to provide proof of the following requirements:
Current Heart and Stroke Foundation Basic Life Support (BLS) certification must be valid from October until the end of June for the academic year of study. Training is mandatory and students will be certified in mid-September. Students who are not able to attend the scheduled course are required to complete this training on your own prior to September 30. Please note that only Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada Basic Life Support certification will be accepted.
Updated immunization records: practicum sites require students to demonstrate updated immunization status prior to attending practicum. The receiving practicum site has the right to refuse students who cannot prove they have met all the required immunizations.
Security clearance: According to the Protection for Persons in Care Act, our program requires that students obtain a Criminal Record Check including Vulnerable Sector Screening, at the time of admission. Any criminal code offence for which a pardon has not been received may be a deterrent to a student's entry into practicum, and therefore will result in an uncompleted program or non-graduating status. Successful candidates will be asked to provide a clear Criminal Record Check including Vulnerable Sector Screening record to the Office of Student Services in Room 308 of the Dental Clinic Building by orientation day. Please review the security clearance process document for specific details. Be aware that the record must be dated no earlier than 90 days prior to your program orientation day (typically orientation day is held the week prior to the first day of class).
Health and Wellness status: Due to the demanding nature of the work in the health care field and Occupational Health and Safety requirements, the health care field has a strong focus on health and wellness. Students with a medical condition or disability that may impact them in a practicum setting are strongly advised to discuss concerns with the program academic chair and/or Access and Equity Services (AES) at the University of Saskatchewan as soon as possible upon acceptance into the program. Please review the attached document for guidance on entering an allied health program with a medical condition or disability.
More details on the practica requirements per program are outlined on a pre-orientation website for successful candidates.
Dental Assisting Pre-Orientation
Upon acceptance into Dental Assisting, you will be required to review and complete, where applicable, steps identified in the pre-orientation for this program.
|Course Code||Course Name||Credit|
|DENT-202||Preventive Procedures I||3.0|
|DENT-206||Restorative Procedures I||3.0|
|DENT-207||Dental Emergencies & Records||3.0|
|DENT-237||Oral Anatomy & Histology||3.0|
|INFC-215||Infection Prevention & Control||1.5|
|XRAY-200||Dental Radiography I||3.0|
|Semester 1 Total||18.0|
|Course Code||Course Name||Credit|
|DENT-227||Dental Specialties I||1.5|
|DENT-262||Preventive Procedures II||1.5|
|DENT-276||Restorative Procedures II||1.5|
|XRAY-250||Dental Radiography II||1.5|
|Semester 2 Total||13.5|
|Course Code||Course Name||Credit|
|DENT-294||Dental Specialties II||1.5|
|Semester 3 Total||9.0|
Students must attain a PGPA and/or a CGPA of 2.0 or better in each semester and pass the necessary prerequisite courses to progress through the program. To qualify for graduation, students must pass all courses, attain a CGPA of 2.0 or better and complete course requirements within the prescribed timelines.
Domestic Tuition and Fees*
|Year||Tuition fees||U of S fees||2018/19 total|
Additional fees will be collected by U of S on top of tuition fees.
|Student fee||Fall 2018||Winter 2019||Spring 2019||Summer 2019|
|Student Wellness and Services||$45.00||$45.00||$22.50||$22.50|
Books and Supplies*
- Students are responsible for any additional expenses related to their practicum including relocation costs.
- There is a fee associated with obtaining a Criminal Record Check with Vulnerable Sector Screening, payable to the Police or the Royal Canadian Mounted Police.
- National Dental Assisting Examining Board exam fee is approximately $450.
- Saskatchewan Dental Assistants Association annual dues are approximately $250.
- Books, supplies and uniform are approximately $1,500.
- Personal Protective Equipment (Rx safety glasses, face shields) may range from $100 - $750 depending on individual requirements.
- Students must have a personal computer and access to the Internet. Most classes are taught at the University of Saskatchewan, but some require online access. All courses require additional self‐study.
Find out about tuition and financial aid.
* Tuition, fees, books and supply costs are subject to change.
** For students with existing health and/or dental plans, please refer to the University of Saskatchewan website for information on opting out.
SAIT students have the opportunity to work on actual patients to hone their skills and put the classroom theory into practice. Stacy says SAIT follows industry standards so graduates are prepared for the real world – something employers appreciate.
“When they go out to work, they’ve had experience. The feedback we get from industry speaks highly of our SAIT graduates,” she says.