2014-2015 Catalog and Student Handbook 
    May 19, 2024  
2014-2015 Catalog and Student Handbook [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Allied Health - Concentration: Dental Assisting

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Accredited by the Commission on Dental Education of the American Dental Association.

General Education Requirements

Note: All courses must be from the Approved Courses for General Education  courses for each category listed in the General Education section of this catalog.

Program Description

The Dental Assisting program provides the general education core, science, and clinical education courses necessary for career-entry preparation. The program is comprised of an academic phase and a clinical practicum in participating dental offices. Following the successful completion of the program, students are eligible to sit for the national certification examination, and are eligible to apply for Tennessee state registration.

Admission, Retention, and Graduation Requirements

Admission Requirements (General)

A student desiring to pursue the associate of applied science degree in Dental Assisting must:

  1. Apply, meet the general admission requirements and be accepted by Northeast State Community College.
  2. Indicate Allied Health - Concentration: Dental Assisting as the desired major on the Northeast State application form.
  3. See a faculty advisor from the Health-Related Professions area prior to registering for classes and obtain faculty approval to register.
  4. Complete all required learning support courses prior to enrolling in the Dental Assisting program.

Dental Assisting Program Application Requirements

A student who has completed the above referenced requirements and has maintained an overall 2.0 GPA, (excluding remedial and developmental courses), is eligible to apply for the Dental Assisting Program. To apply to the Dental Assisting Program, the student must complete and return to the Dental Assisting Program Director a “Request for Admission to the Dental Assisting Program” form. The student should attach to the form a current transcript of all college courses taken.

Admission to the Dental Assisting Program

  1. A student must appear for a personal interview with the Dental Assisting Advisory Committee whose membership consists of:
    1. Dean of Health-Related Professions.
    2. Program Director of the Dental Assisting Program.
    3. Representatives from the local communities of interest.
    4. Vice President for Academic Affairs (ex officio).
  2. Students will be evaluated on overall GPA, grades earned in required sciences and prior education.
  3. Transfer Students - Individuals who have attended other colleges and desire to transfer into the Northeast State Dental Assisting program will be considered on an individual basis. Transfer requests should be directed to the Dean of Health-Related Professions. Transfer students must meet the same standards and criteria as others desiring to pursue an associate of applied science degree in the Dental Assisting program at Northeast State.


Readmission Policies

A student who has been dismissed or has withdrawn from the Dental Assisting Program may be readmitted. The following apply:

  1. Only one readmission to the Dental Assisting Program is permitted. This readmission must occur within a one year time frame.
  2. A student must apply to the Dental Assisting Program Director for readmission at least one semester before the desired date of return.
  3. A student must request readmission in writing and appear before the Dental Assisting Program Director and Dean of Health-Related Professions.
  4. A student who fails to maintain a cumulative 2.0 GPA may be considered for readmission only after removing all grades of less than a “C” in all required general education courses.
  5. A student repeating a Dental Assisting course must repeat both the theory and clinical components of the course.
  6. A student may be readmitted only if space is available.



To remain in good standing once enrolled to the Dental Assisting Program, the student must:

  1. Adhere to all Northeast State, Dental Assisting program, department, and clinical affiliate policies.
  2. Maintain a 2.0 GPA or better in each Dental Assisting course.
  3. Satisfactorily complete the theory, clinical, and/or skills requirements of each Dental Assisting course. Failure in either segment will result in a grade of “F” for the entire course.
  4. Submit to the Dental Assisting Program Director written evidence, on the appropriate form, of a physical examination within the past six months showing the applicant is in good physical health and possesses no physical disabilities which would impede the applicant’s ability to fulfill the functions and responsibilities of the Dental Assistant. Any limitations in the individual’s ability to perform adequately will require additional documentation.
  5. Exhibit safe clinical behavior; have no documented “critical incidence” in clinical practicum sites.
  6. Demonstrate professional, ethical, and legal conduct.
  7. Purchase professional liability insurance ($1,000,000/$3,000,000).
  8. Maintain CPR certification.
  9. Sign a statement prior to enrollment indicating he/she is drug free and submit to a drug test if requested by the Dean of Health-Related Professions at any time during the program. A positive drug test is grounds for immediate dismissal.
  10. Students must comply with policies of clinical affiliates concerning criminal background checks and must assume associated costs.



Program graduation requirements include the successful completion of the courses listed below with a minimum grade of “C” in each course.


Dental Assisting Program is a selective admission program. Completing the general education requirements does not guarantee admission.

Semester lll-Summer

Total Credit Hours: 66

For Further Information

Paulette Kehm, CDA, MPA
Program Director/Associate Professor
Telephone: 423.354.5501
Fax: 423.245.5930


Connie Marshall, R.T. (R) R.C.I.S.
Dean Health-Related Professions
Associate Professor
Telephone: 423.323.0238
Fax: 423.245.5930


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