How to Select a Dental Assistant College near Jack Alabama
Picking the ideal dental assistant college near Jack AL is an essential initial step toward starting your new career in dentistry. But before you can make your choice, you must assess and compare your school options. There is far more to completing your due diligence than selecting the college with the lowest tuition or enrolling in the college that is nearest to your home. There are other significant factors to take into account also, including the school’s reputation and accreditation. Your initial step is to decide which of the 2 specializations you are most interested in obtaining training for, which may be contingent on the amount of time and money that you have to invest. The most typical dental assistant program usually takes about one year to finish for a diploma or certificate. However dental hygienists usually earn an Associate Degree, which can take anywhere from 2 to 3 years to complete. Obviously with the prolonged training of a dental hygienist comes more cost. We will talk about all of these issues and supplemental questions that you should be asking the dental assistant schools you are assessing later in this article. But first, let’s explore the roles of both dental assistants and hygienists and the training options available.
The Job of Dental Assistants
Dental assistants are an essential component of any Jack AL dental practice and can undertake a multitude of functions. Their main job description is to give assistance to the admin staff and the dentists. In other words, to help keep the practice operating efficiently. A number of dental assistants choose to specialize and earn certification in a particular area, such as periodontics. Even so most assistants perform any task that they are called upon to fulfill, such as:
- Scheduling and verifying appointments
- Readying patients for teeth cleanings and treatments
- Preparing and sterilizing dental instruments
- Using suction equipment to clear patients’ mouths
- Supplying instruments to dentists during procedures
- Preparing X-ray machines and handling X-rays
- Ordering office and dental supplies
Licensing and certification requirements for dental assistants deviate by state, so consult with the Alabama dental board for your state’s policies. Assistants working with X-ray machines most likely will have to be certified and licensed. A large number of dental assistants who are either required or choose to become certified take the Certified Dental Assistant (CDA) examination provided by the Dental Assisting National Board (DANB).
The Duties of a Dental Hygienist
When contrasting the role of a dental assistant to that of a hygienist, the most significant difference is probably that the dental hygienist works more independently. As earlier discussed, the dental assistant works with and in support of the practice and the dentists. Hygienists, while also supporting the Jack AL practice, deal with the patients more on a one-to-one basis. They are usually the initial person a patient encounters when called from the waiting area. They examine every patient’s teeth and gums and present their results to the dentists. They also may perform basic procedures. Depending on state law, a hygienist’s duties can include:
- Removing plaque, tartar and stains
- Administering fluoride treatments
- Applying sealants and polishing teeth
- Teaching patients regarding oral care
- Taking and developing X-rays
- Applying fillings and removing sutures
To qualify for licensing in nearly all states, dental hygienists must graduate from a Commission on Dental Accreditation (CDA) accredited dental hygiene program. They also must pass the National Board Dental Hygiene Exam as well as any state licensing exams. Once they have completed these requirements they are considered fully licensed and may add the “RDH” designation to their names, signifying Registered Dental Hygienist.
Dental Assistant & Hygienist Education Options
Dental assistant courses are provided at Alabama junior colleges along with technical or vocational schools. The most frequent credential attained is the certificate, which usually takes about one year to finish. There are fewer Associate Degree programs available, and they provide a more comprehensive education, incorporating general subjects in addition to the dental assistant courses. Due to the added responsibility in contrast to an assistant, dental hygienists working in Jack AL dental offices are often required to have an Associate Degree in dental hygiene. These programs can require anywhere from 2 to as long as 3 years to finish and must be accredited by the CDA in virtually every state. They are also offered in Alabama community colleges and technical schools. Whether you are pursuing training as a dental assistant or hygienist, there will be a practical aspect to the training also. Many programs also offer internships with local dental practices or dentists.
Online Dental Assistant Schools
Selecting an online dental assistant school can be a good option for obtaining your training. Just keep in mind that the classes will not be completely online, since there will be a clinical component to your training. But the remainder of your classes will be accessible by means of your desktop computer in the comfort of your Jack AL home or anywhere else on your laptop or tablet. For those continuing to work while attending school, online dental programs make education far more accessible. Some may even offer lower tuition rates than their on-campus counterparts. And added expenses such as for books, school supplies and commuting may be lessened as well. The clinical training can often be performed at a community dental office or in an on-campus lab. With both the online and clinical training, everything required to get the proper education is furnished. If you have the discipline for this style of education, you may find that attending an dental hygienist online program is the ideal choice for you.
Subjects to Cover With Dental Assistant Schools
When you have decided on the dental specialty and kind of credential you want to obtain, you can begin the procedure of comparing Alabama schools and programs. As we covered at the beginning of this article, a number of potential students begin by checking out the location and the cost of the schools. Maybe they search for some online options as well. Although these may be significant initial factors to consider, there are several additional questions that you need to address to the Jack AL area colleges you are reviewing in order to arrive at an informed decision. To start that process, we have provided a list of questions to help you with your due diligence and final selection of the ideal dental hygienist program for you.
Is the Dental Assistant Program Accredited? There are a number of valid reasons why you should only choose an accredited dental assistant college. If you are planning to become licensed or certified, then accreditation is a prerequisite in virtually all states. In order to take the Certified Dental Assistant exam, your dental program must be accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation (CDA). Accreditation also helps guarantee that the education you get is comprehensive and of the highest quality. Employers in Jack AL often prefer or require that new hires are graduates of accredited colleges. And finally, if you are applying for financial aid or a student loan, often they are not obtainable for non-accredited Alabama schools.
Is The Correct Dental Program Available? You can opt to train to become a dental assistant or a dental hygienist, just make sure that the Alabama school you decide on has the program that you want. For the assistant program, the choices are to earn either a certificate or an Associate Degree. In order to have a career as a hygienist, most Jack AL dental practices require an Associate Degree in dental hygiene. More advanced degrees, although not common, are available. However, keep in mind that even if a college has an exceptional reputation and accreditation does not mean each one of its programs do as well. For example, an accredited college may have a strong accredited dental hygienist program, but might have a weaker or non-accredited assistant program. So if you are primarily interested in a dental assistant degree, obviously it would not be the right college for you.
Is Enough Practical Training Provided? Practical or clinical training is an essential component of every dental training program. This holds true for the online school options as well. A number of dental schools have associations with local dental practices and clinics that furnish practical training for their students. It’s not only important that the program you select offers enough clinical hours but also provides them in the kind of practice that you ultimately want to work in. As an example, if you are interested in a career in pediatric dentistry, make sure that the Jack AL area school you select offers clinical rotation in an area dental practice that focuses on dental services for children.
Are Internships Available? Find out if the dental schools you are looking at sponsor internship programs. Internships are probably the best means to get hands-on, clinical experience in a professional Jack AL dental practice. They help students to transition from the theoretical to the practical. They can also help students form working relationships in the professional dental community. And they look good on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Help Offered? Many students that have graduated from dental assistant programs need help obtaining their first job. Ask if the schools you are reviewing have job assistance programs, and what their job placement rates are. Schools with higher job placement rates are likely to have good reputations within the Jack AL dental community as well as extensive networks of contacts where they can refer their students for internships or employment.
Are Classrooms Small? Check with the Jack AL area schools you are evaluating how large typically their classrooms are. The smaller classes generally provide a more intimate atmosphere for learning where students have increased access to the teachers. Conversely, large classes can be impersonal and offer little one-on-one instruction. If feasible, ask if you can monitor a couple of classes at the school that you are leaning toward so that you can experience first hand the level of interaction between students and instructors before enrolling.
What is the Total Expense of the Program? Dental assistant colleges can differ in cost depending on the duration of the program and the amount of practical training provided. Other factors, such as the reputations of the schools and if they are public or private also have an impact. But along with the tuition there are other significant expenses which can add up. They can include expenses for such things as textbooks and commuting as well as school materials, equipment and supplies. So when comparing the cost of schools, don’t forget to add all of the costs related to your education. The majority of colleges have financial aid offices, so make sure to ask what is offered as far as loans, grants and scholarships in Jack AL.
Are the Classes Accessible? Before enrolling in a dental school, you need to make sure that the assistant program furnishes classes that fit your schedule. This is especially true if you will be working while acquiring your education and need to go to classes near your Jack AL home in the evenings or on weekends. And even if you choose an online college, you will still be required to schedule your clinical training classes. Also, while addressing your concerns, ask what the make-up policy is if you should need to miss any classes because of illness, work or family responsibilities.
Why Did You Want to Become a Dental Assistant?When preparing to interview for a Dental Assistant job, it's a good idea to reflect on questions you could be asked. One of the things that recruiters frequently ask Dental Assisting prospects is "What compelled you to pick Assisting as a career?". What the interviewer is trying to discover is not merely the private reasons you may have for becoming a Dental Assistant, but also what qualities and abilities you possess that make you exceptional at what you do. You will likely be asked questions relating exclusively to Assisting, as well as a certain number of general interview questions, so you should ready several ideas about how you want to address them. Since there are several factors that go into choosing a career, you can address this primary question in a number of ways. When formulating an answer, try to include the reasons the profession appeals to you as well as the talents you possess that make you an outstanding Dental Assistant and the best candidate for the job. Don't make an effort to memorize a response, but write down some ideas and talking points that pertain to your personal experiences and strengths. Reading through sample responses can help you to prepare your own thoughts, and give you ideas of what to include to enthuse the recruiter.
Select the Best Dental Assistant College near Jack AL
Enrolling in the right dental assistant course is imperative if you intend to take the CDA examination or, if required in your state, become licensed. As you now know, there are numerous alternatives offered to receive your education and it takes a relatively short amount of time to become a dental assistant. You can receive your formal training through dental programs at community colleges, technical institutes, trade schools and vocational schools. Graduates of these schools normally obtain a Certificate. Dental Assistants normally require roughly 1 year of study prior to entering the job market. When obtaining a certificate or degree you can elect to attend classes online or on-campus. Whichever mode of training or credential you decide to pursue, by addressing the questions presented in this article you will be better prepared to make the appropriate selection. And by doing so, you will be ready to start your journey toward becoming a dental assistant in Jack AL.
Tell Me About Jack Alabama
Albert Anderson "Jumbo" Jacks (born c. 1935) is a retired American professor and college football coach. He played as a quarterback at Penn State University from 1956 to 1958. Jacks spent 19 years as the head football coach at Clarion State College from 1963 to 1981. He very briefly held the same position at Williams College. Jacks is the winningest Clarion football coach by winning percentage. He was also an associate professor of health and physical education at Clarion from 1963 to 1996.
Jacks attended Peabody High School in Pittsburgh. He went to college at Pennsylvania State University, where he played on the football team as a quarterback from 1956 to 1958 under head coach Rip Engle. He received Bachelor of Science and Master of Science degrees in health and education from Penn State.
Clarion State College (now Clarion University of Pennsylvania) hired Jacks as its head coach for the 1964 season. He led the team to a 10–0 record in 1966 and won the Pennsylvania state championship. Jacks later credited that season with increasing the program's credibility in recruiting circles. While coaching at Clarion, Jacks took courses at Penn State, the University of Michigan, and Slippery Rock University of Pennsylvania.
In January 1971, Jacks accepted the head coaching job at Williams College, but held the position for only five days. He later said, "There was a whole different atmosphere, they didn't approach football the way we did [at Clarion] ... There have been other jobs I looked into, but none were better than I had here." Jack returned to Clarion for the following season. Sports Illustrated stated Jacks "face[d] his biggest rebuilding task in 18 years as coach" in 1980, but that season, he led the team to the Pennsylvania Conference championship. For the performance, the Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC) named it the Team of the Year.
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