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Students provide dental exams to patients.

Dental Assisting

Open for Fall 2019

Length: 10 Months
Credential: Certificate
Available: Full Time Classroom

Program Highlights

Learn to educate dental patients and assist dentists and hygienists in chair-side procedures by becoming a dental assistant for private dental clinics, specialists’ offices or health centres.  

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Tuition and Fees Per Year*

Year 1: $7,025
Year 1 (International): $23,226

*Tuition, fees, books and supply costs are subject to change

Requirements

You will be offered admission to this program if you meet the admission requirements and qualify through competitive entry. Competitive entry is based on academic ranking. 

When can you apply?

  • Applications are accepted until the program start date.
  • Applications for fall 2019 open Oct. 3, 2018.
TermProgram start
Fall 2019 Sept. 3, 2019 

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This 10-month certificate program prepares dental assistants in the skills of clinic operations, chair-side procedures, intra-oral procedures, patient education and interpersonal skills to enable them to become effective members of the dental health team.

Program Details

Program Description

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 SAIT 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 Calgary. Students in this program require access to a personal computer and the Internet to facilitate completion of required online courses.

Your Career

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 95% employment rate

Student Success

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 Alberta. Graduates are licensed by the College of Alberta Dental Assistants as Registered Dental Assistants once they have passed the National Dental Assisting Examining Board examination.

Accreditation

The Dental Assisting program delivered by SAIT is accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation of Canada.

Transfer Options

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.

Have questions? Write to us at transfer.options@sait.ca.

Admission Requirements

Admission and Selection

  • Applications are accepted until the program start date.
  • Fall 2018 start: applications open Oct. 18, 2017.
  • Fall 2019 start: applications open Oct. 3, 2018.

Admission Requirements

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 accepts high school course equivalents for admission. If you don't meet the requirements, consider Academic Upgrading.

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 Dec. 1 and will done 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 4: Apply to Dental Assisting and submit your transcripts.

Step 5: Log in to mySAIT.ca to check your admission status. If eligible, your status will indicate that you're "In Selection."

Step 6: Continue to monitor changes to your application status through mySAIT.ca.

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 hps.info@sait.ca and the sait.ca domain to your safe senders list or you risk missing critical email messages. 

Additional Requirements

Student information and dental health examination required by the first day of class.

Practicum Requirements

The School of Health and Public Safety has many practica partners located within Alberta and across Canada. Practicum placements in Calgary are limited and students may be required to relocate outside of Calgary 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 entrance requirements, 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 Health Care Provider Level (C) CPR must be valid from October until the end of June for the academic year of study. SAIT offers the above CPR courseon a continuous basis (CPRS 001 BLS Provider [Level C] CPR). Please note that only Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada CPR certification will be accepted.

  • Updated Immunization Records: Most 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 practica sites require that students obtain a Police Information Check including Vulnerable Sector Check, prior to going on practicum. 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 Police Information Check including Vulnerable Sector Check record to the School of Health and Public Safety main office by orientation day. Please review the security clearance process document for specific details. Be aware that 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 SAIT Accessibility Services 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.

Courses

Program Outline

View additional Dental Assisting program information including course-specific descriptions and requisites.

Semester 1

Course CodeCourse NameCredit
DENT-201 Clinical Foundations 1.5
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

Semester 2

Course CodeCourse NameCredit
DENT-227 Dental Specialties I 1.5
DENT-252 Prosthodontics I 3.0
DENT-262 Preventive Procedures II 1.5
DENT-263 Practice Management 3.0
DENT-276 Restorative Procedures II 1.5
NUTR-230 Nutrition 1.5
XRAY-250 Dental Radiography II 1.5
Semester 2 Total 13.5

 

Semester 3

Course CodeCourse NameCredit
DENT-278 Prosthodontics II 1.5
DENT-294 Dental Specialties II 1.5
DENT-297 Preventive Procedures 3.0
PRAC-278 DA Practicum 3.0
Semester 3 Total 9.0
Program Total 40.5

Progression

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.

Costs

Domestic Tuition and Fees*

YearTuition feesSAIT feesSAITSA fees2018/19 total
1 $6,052 $450 $523 $7,025

International Tuition and Fees*

YearTuition feesSAIT feesSAITSA fees2018/19 total
1 $22,253 $450 $523 $23,226

SAIT Fees

Campus Athletic and Recreation Fee: $160
Universal Transit Pass (UPass): $290

SAIT Students' Association Fees

Health Plan: $110**
Dental Plan: $125**
SAIT Students' Association (SAITSA): $288

Books and Supplies*

  • CPRS 001 BLS Provider (Level C) CPR course. Annual update required (CPRS 002 BLS Renewal [Level C] CPR). All CPR courses must be from the Heart and Stroke Foundation.Call SAIT Life Support Training at 403.210.4009 for further information.
  • Students are responsible for any additional expenses related to their practicum including relocation costs.
  • There is a fee associated with obtaining a police information check (including Vulnerable Sector Check), payable to the Police or the Royal Canadian Mounted Police.
  • National Dental Assisting Examining Board exam fee is approximately $450.
  • College of Alberta Dental Assistants annual dues are approximately $300.
  • 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 are required to have access to a personal computer, printer and Internet. 
  • Students must have their immunizations reviewed by the SAIT Health Clinic. There is a $50 charge to review vaccine history. Any vaccines to be administered will result in additional charges.


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 SAITSA website for information on opting out.

Contact Information

School of Health and Public Safety
403.284.8500
hps.info@sait.ca

Inspiring Stories

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.

Stacey Chaisson
Dental Assisting | 2015

“When they go out to work, they’ve had experience. The feedback we get from industry speaks highly of our SAIT graduates,” she says.

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