What will I learn?

The required dental assisting program classes are taught during the day; however, the general education courses required for the certificate or degree may be taken in the evening or at an alternate location.

The 10-month program is scheduled to begin each fall term in August and the dental assisting courses will be completed by the middle of May. The two terms include classroom instruction as well as clinical experience in the DVC dental clinic, local dental schools and various dental offices. In addition to the dental assisting classes the program requires nine units of general education that must be completed prior to graduating from the program and applying to take the state license and national examinations.

To earn an associate in science degree with a major in dental assisting, students must complete each course used to meet a major requirement with a “C” grade or higher and complete all general education requirements. Certain courses may satisfy both major and other general education requirements; however, the units are only counted once.

Students completing the program will be able to...

A. act as a member of the dental health team and apply professional, ethical and legal principles while functioning in the role of the Registered Dental Assistant (RDA).

B. assume responsibility for prevention of disease transmission utilizing universal precautions in the work environment to protect those entrusted to their care. C. show competence in skills as described in the current California Dental Practice Act. Said professional should perform with a balance of professionalism and sensitivity characteristic of genuine compassionate care.

D. exhibit knowledge necessary for successful completion of the California Registered Dental Assistant’s Examination and the National Certified Dental Assistant’s Examination.

E. apply critical thinking and self-assessment skills to enhance learning, research, patient car, professional growth, and continued competency.

F. integrate and apply health literacy and culturally competent communication skills to oral health care services, academic endeavours, community projects, and professional activities.

Possible career opportunities

The Diablo Valley College dental assisting program prepares students to work as an essential member of the dental team. Employment opportunities for the graduates include: chair side assistant, front office administrator, x-ray technician for dental radiation laboratories, agent for dental insurance companies, or laboratory technician for dental laboratories. The DVC dental assisting program is approved by the Dental Board of California and accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation of the American Dental Association. Upon graduation, students are eligible to take state and national board examinations to become a licensed Registered Dental Assistant in California (RDA) and a Certified Dental Assistant (CDA).

Which department am I in?

Diablo Valley College

Study options

Full Time (10 months)

Tuition fees
US$7,728.00 per year
Tuition and fees based on 12 units

*Price shown is for indicative purposes, please check with institution

Application deadline

Expected July 2021

Start date

25 January 2021


Diablo Valley College

Pleasant Hill Campus,

321 Golf Club Road,



94523, United States

Entry requirements

For international students

A student is eligible for admission if he or she has graduated from a regionally accredited high school, or is 18 years of age or older and is no longer in high school, or has passed the State of California Certificate of Proficiency Test (CHSPE) or the General Educational Development Test (GED).

English proficiency

  • Internet based TOEFL (IBT) - 61
  • Paper based TOEFL (PBT)- 500
  • IELTS - Academic test - 5.5
  • ITEP - 3.5
  • IEC (International Education Center) - Completion of Adv. B level certificate
  • ELS Centers - Completion of EAP Level 109 certificate
Note from client: this is just for Fall 2020, but at least students will know they can still apply (in fact even a bit later probably).

About this uni

Academic programs lead to university transfers where students can earn a bachelor’s degree at a top U.S. university.

  • Three community colleges and an intensive English program
  • San Francisco Bay Area location
  • Tuition is approximately USD 20,000 for two years (60 units)
  • Top international student transfer college to UC Berkeley