The Dental Hygiene Program is two calendar years in length with a limited enrollment. Students accepted into the Dental Hygiene Program attend classes in biological and dental science, as well as specialized courses in dental hygiene. This knowledge is then applied in the dental hygiene clinic where the student performs dental hygiene services. All clinical education is supervised by the clinical dentist and the faculty.
The El Paso Community College program in dental hygiene 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 by the United States Department of Education. Upon completion of the graduation requirements, the student receives an Associate of Applied Science Degree. The graduate is then eligible to take the National Board and State and Regional Board Examinations for licensure as a Registered Dental Hygienist. The National and Regional Board Examinations will serve as verification of workforce competencies gained though this program.
Students must complete special admissions requirements prior to enrollment in specialized courses. Deadlines for application are January 1 for programs starting in Summer or Fall Semesters; September 1 for programs started in Spring Semesters. Before enrolling in the first clinical course, students must provide proof of CPR certification at the professional level (American Heart Association Professional Level or American Red Cross Basic Life Support Level.) Current CPR certification must be maintained throughout enrollment in clinical courses within the program. Students enrolled in clinical education courses must provide evidence of a current physical examination, tuberculin test, and specified immunizations. Additional information on this requirement is provided at the program orientation. Students are responsible for their own transportation to off-campus clinical learning sites. Special uniforms are required for clinical courses. Uniforms must be in accordance with provided guidelines for the program. Students must purchase them at their own expense. Specialized equipment and/or laboratory supplies must be obtained for selected courses within this program. Students must purchase them at their own expense. In order to complete the requirements for progression and graduation, students enrolled in this program must have a grade of “C” or better in all specialized courses. The term “specialized courses” refers to all courses carrying the prefix of the program in which the student is majoring or the prefix of another health-related discipline. Following completion of the Tech Prep Associate of Applied Science degree, a multi-disciplinary enhanced skills certificate in Border Health issues is available. This program prepares graduates to work as a member of a multi-disciplinary team to meet the unique health care needs of the U.S./ Mexico border community. Articulated credit from many area high schools is available for graduates with high school health occupations courses.
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