The Associate in Arts degree in Dental Hygiene will transfer directly to four-year universities within the state of Washington. Contact an advisor for more information.
A career as a hygienist offers a wide range of opportunities. Services provided by dental hygienists include patient assessment procedures, exposing and developing radiographs, removing calculus and biofilm from all surfaces of the teeth, managing and treating periodontally involved conditions, placing and applying dental restorative materials, applying preventive materials to the teeth, teaching patients appropriate oral hygiene to maintain oral health, nutrition counseling, taking impressions, performing documentation and office management activities, and developing and implementing community oral health programs.
The Dental Hygiene program is accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation of the American Dental Association, a specialized accrediting body recognized by the Council on Postsecondary Accreditation and the United States Department of Education. Graduates receive an Associate in Applied Science degree and may complete requirements for the Associate in Arts degree, which will transfer directly to four-year universities within the state of Washington. Those completing the program qualify to take national, regional, and state board examinations for licensure and are prepared to enter clinical practice. The program includes all responsibilities allowed by Washington state law.
Clinical experience takes place in Clark College's dental hygiene clinic under the supervision of licensed dentists and dental hygienists. Other clinical or community sites are used for limited educational experiences
The Dental Hygiene program is a seven-quarter clinical program with preliminary requirements that must be taken before program entry. Admission to the program is outlined in two stages: preliminary requirements and final program admission.
To meet preliminary entrance requirements, candidates must:
- Complete the Clark College Application for Admission and Statement of Intent forms. Return to the Clark College Welcome Center with the non-refundable program application fees (amount subject to change). For the current fee amounts, please visit the Dental Hygiene website at www.clark.edu/dentalhygiene.
- Application deadline for Clark College's Dental Hygiene program is January 8th of every year for the upcoming fall quarter. Students MUST have no more than 10 credits left of preliminary coursework to complete by the end of winter quarter to qualify for selection into the following fall class.
- Complete ENGL& 101 with a 2.0 or higher grade.
- Earn a cumulative GPA of 2.75 or higher and an applicable science GPA of 2.25 or higher.
- All science courses must be seven (7) years current upon program entry.
- Send all official college transcripts to the Credential Evaluations Office for complete transcript evaluation, and continue to send updated transcripts quarterly as courses are completed.
- Complete courses listed under Preliminary Required Courses with a 2.0 or above. (Students can have a maximum of 10 credits of preliminary required coursework to complete after winter quarter to be eligible for selection into the following fall's Dental Hygiene class.)
- The most recent educational experience will be used to meet admission criteria.
Disability Statement for Health Occupations
In accordance with the Americans with Disabilities Act and the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, accommodations for students with disabilities will be considered at the student's request. The student may need to provide documentation of disability to the Disability Support Services Office to support his/her accommodation requests. Documentation guidelines and procedures can be found at www.clark.edu/dss. Once the student is qualified by DSS as having a disability, requested accommodations will be considered. Accommodations for the classroom, laboratory, or clinical setting will be evaluated according to reasonableness. Accommodations that compromise patient care, or that fundamentally alter the essential functions of the program or activity, are not considered to be reasonable.
- Communicate effectively and professionally, using verbal, non-verbal, and written language with patients, colleagues, the public, diverse populations, and other healthcare providers.
- Analyze professional behaviors and make appropriate decisions guided by ethical principles and core values.
- Assess, diagnose, plan, implement, and evaluate the provision of optimal, evidence-based, and patient-centered dental hygiene care.
- Successfully complete all initial licensing exams.
- Demonstrate the skills necessary to stay current in the field.