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Program Admission Procedures




Cerritos College Dental Assisting Program, Admission Requirements

Application & Admission Procedures

III. Application & Admission Procedures (to be completed in order as listed)

  1. Applicants must email ( the following items:
  2. Completed Dental Assisting Application signed by the applicant and returned by May 17th, 2022. Email the electronically signed application or the scanned application and the REQUIRED supporting documentation to DA-Apps@cerritos.eduDownload the Dental Assisting Application
  3. High school (or equivalent) and college transcripts of all work completed. Unofficial transcripts can be submitted scanned and submitted with the application. Official transcripts must be submitted prior to the completion of the first semester of the program.
  4. Cerritos College English assessment test scores or indication by counselor that English clearance has been met through equivalent courses or activities, should be scanned and submitted.
  5. Applicants completing admission requirements during the spring session must email a final grade to before May 30. Please include the name used on your application.
  6. Verification of dental employment work experience (if applicable).
  7. Selection Criteria: The Program Director and Faculty, in cooperation with appropriate institutional personnel, establish admissions procedures which are non-discriminatory, contribute to the quality of the program and allow selection of student with potential for successfully completing the program. The following point system criteria will be utilized as our program selection process:
    1) High School Grade Point Average
    2) College Grade Point Average
    3) Completion of Higher Education College Degree
    4) Provide proof English clearance has been met through placement, assessment and/or course completion.
    5) Related work/volunteer experience (office or education) documented on organizations letterhead
    6) Email completed Dental Assisting Application with all required documents, received by May 17
  8. Notification of admission to the program will be done by email before June 30.
  9. Class of 2021 admitted students and alternates will be required to attend a mandatory orientation meeting in July 7th, 2021 @ 11 am. During the orientation, information will be given regarding textbooks, uniforms, registration procedures, and other relevant matters.
  10. Class of 2022 admitted students and alternates will be required to attend a mandatory orientation meeting in July 7th, 2022 @ 11 am.

    Program Health Considerations
  11. Physical exam and immunizations records must be completed after acceptance into the program and returned prior to the first day of class (there may be costs incurred, which will be the responsibility of the student).
  12. A valid Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) certification must be obtained after acceptance into the program and submitted prior to the first of class. It must be obtained through the American Heart Association – Health Care Provider Training (required). Card must be valid throughout the program.
  13. Applicant must present evidence of physical fitness and ability to perform tasks required of a dental assistant. Employment in this field requires good vision, hearing, and the ability to communicate verbally, non-verbally, and through written word. Students must have the ability to comprehend, analyze, and evaluate patients’ charts in order to provide appropriate treatment. Students must be able to record in the patients’ charts and have manual dexterity to use small instruments to provide patient care. See Essential Functions on Web site for further details.
  14. The essential requirements of a dental assistant are used in consideration of admission, retention and graduation from the Cerritos College program. Graduates are expected to be fully qualified to enter the profession as an Assistant. It is the responsibility of the student with disabilities to contact Student Accessibility Services (SAS) (formerly DSPS) and provide verification of the disability and resulting limitations. Students are responsible to make advance request for those accommodations that he or she feels are reasonable and needed to execute the essential requirements described above.
  15. Pregnancy Advisory: all clinical affiliates require immunizations. All students must be immunized to participate in clinical education. Pregnancy may affect immunization and or other program requirements. If you are pregnant or planning on pregnancy while enrolled, please consult with the Program Director. A statement from the student health care provider will be required noting the student may proceed through the program “without limitations.”
  16. Latex Advisory: the use of latex/latex-based products may exist in the health care universal precautions and in environments such as but not limited to the classroom, labs, and clinical sites. Individuals with latex allergies should seek expert advice from their health care provider so that they may receive information to make an informed decision regarding their exposure to latex in the health care field.
  17. Immunization Advisory: Immunization is required in order to participate in clinical education. Individuals with allergies to required immunizations should seek expert advice from their healthcare provider so they may receive information to make an informed decision regarding their exposure to infectious diseases in the healthcare field. A statement from the student’s healthcare provider noting that the student may proceed through the program with no limitations will be required of all students declaring an immunization allergy.
  18. Program Infection Control Guidelines - Applicants are advised of the following Infection Control Guidelines as outlined by the Center for Disease Control (CDC): The prevention of cross contamination and transmission of infection to all persons, including: patients, Dental Health Care Professionals (DHCP), faculty, students, and non-clinical staff is the professional responsibility of all dental personnel. The Cerritos College Dental Assisting program has adopted policies and procedures that represent a comprehensive and practical infection control program, based upon federal guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. A fundamental principle of an effective infection control program is to exercise care, precautions and effective control techniques that can keep infectious microbes within manageable limits of the body’s normal resistance to disease. Individuals at high risk of infectious diseases (HBV, HCV and HIV) among DHCP are those who perform tasks that might involve contact with blood, blood-contaminated body substances, other body fluids, or sharps, should be vaccinated. Vaccination can protect both DHCP and patients from infectious diseases and whenever possible should be completed when DHCP are in training and before they have contact with blood. Compliance with these policies and procedures are an ethical obligation and responsibility of all participants in the delivery of care at Cerritos College. Guidelines for Infection Control in Dental Health Care Setting – 2003, 12/19/03 52(RR17); 1-61.

IV. Expenses

See Cerritos College Catalog for complete list of Cerritos College enrollment fees and out-of-state resident fees.

Students may expect to pay approximately $2,500 for dental assisting project fees, uniforms, and books.

Students are responsible for their own living accommodations, including uniform laundry and transportation to extended campuses.

Physical exam and immunization expenses are the student's responsibility.

Upon successful completion of program requirements, the student is eligible to take the State Board Registered Dental Assisting exam and the National Certified Dental Assisting exam (approximately $850 - which is the responsibility of the student).

The student will be eligible to receive and wear the Dental Assisting pin which is given at a graduation ceremony upon successful completion of the program.

V. Attendance, Scholarship, Promotion

Attendance: Due to the nature of the Dental Assisting program all students are expected to observe the attendance requirements set by the Dental Assisting department at Cerritos College (see student handbook).

Scholarship and Promotion: Students are required to maintain a "C" or higher letter grade in each course, in order to progress in the program.

VI. Guidelines for Withdrawal, Dismissal, and Reinstatement

I. Withdrawal

  1. Withdrawal ("W") may be initiated by either the student or the instructor. Dates for withdrawal without a grade are indicated in the Cerritos College Schedule of Classes.
  2. When a student is failing clinically, he/she will be encouraged to withdraw from the course. If the clinical failure is related to unsafe clinical practice, and the student does not withdraw when advised to do so, the instructor shall drop the student from the course. A student who has withdrawn or been dropped from a course may not attend after the withdrawal date.

II. Dismissal (Failure) - Criteria for dismissal from a course or the program may include:

  1. Final grade below a "C" in any required dental assisting course.
  2. Failure to meet attendance requirements.
  3. Behavior not consistent with Dental Assisting Code of Ethics and the department's "Code of Ethics and Responsibilities"
  4. Failure to comply with established Cerritos College or Dental Assisting department regulations and policies.
  5. Failure to meet stated objectives in the coursework.
  6. Placing self or others in physical and/or emotional jeopardy.
  7. In critical cases, such as unsafe clinical performance, dismissal may occur without prior warning or probation. This action requires the concurrence of the Dental Assisting Program Director, Instructional Dean of Health Occupations and/or Vice President of Academic Affairs.

III. Reinstatement:

  1. Students applying for readmission to the Dental Assisting Program after withdrawal or dismissal must write a letter requesting readmission, addressed to the Director of the Dental Assisting Program.
  2. The following information must be included in the letter:
    Circumstances surrounding the withdrawal or dismissal.
    Activities pursued in the interim that demonstrate improvement in the problem areas.
    Reason for requesting readmission.
    School term for which readmission is requested.
  3. Student seeking readmission after one withdrawal/dismissal from the Cerritos College Dental Assisting Program/course will be reinstated, contingent upon lab space availability, in the priority order of date and time that the readmission request is received in the Dental Assisting Department.
  4. Readmission request letters will be accepted only after letters from the Program Director have been mailed acknowledging student withdrawal or dismissal. These letters are mailed after the end of the school term in which the withdrawal occurred and are mailed at the same time to all students who did not successfully complete the term. All students requesting readmission will have equal opportunity to apply for space available.
  5. No student shall be reinstated after two withdrawals/dismissals from the Cerritos College Dental Assisting Program/course. A student who has acquired two withdrawals/dismissals shall have exceeded the repeat policy of the program and shall have no further chance of re-entry.
  6. A student who withdraws from the program for personal reasons (e.g. pregnancy, illness, family crisis, financial difficulties, etc.) will be given additional consideration through faculty review, upon the student's request describing such reasons.

VII. Graduation

Graduation Requirements:

  1. Completion of all Dental Assisting course work with a grade of "C" or higher.
  2. Cerritos College English assessment test scores or indication by counselor that English clearance has been met through equivalent courses or activities.

VIII. Disclaimer

The program has made every reasonable effort to determine that everything stated in the information sheet is accurate. Matters contained herein, are subject to change without notice by the administration of the department for reasons related to student enrollment, level of financial support or for any reason, at the discretion of the Program. The Program further reserves the right to add, amend or repeal any of the rules, regulations, policies and procedures, consistent with applicable law.

The State of California requires individuals applying to take the RDA Exam have and supply their Social Security number; complete a Non-Live Scan Fingerprint record; and if the applicant has been convicted or plead guilty to any crime in the USA, its territories, military court or foreign country which includes a plea of no contest or any conviction that has been set aside or deferred pursuant to sections 1000 or 1203.4 of the Penal Code, including infractions, misdemeanors, and felonies must provide detailed information regarding the conviction to complete the processing of the application and the state will determine if the individual does qualify to take the RDA exam.

Dental Assisting requirements for the Certificate of Achievement


  1. Completion of all Dental Assisting course work with a grade of "C" or higher.
  2. Cerritos College English assessment test scores or indication by counselor that English clearance has been met through equivalent courses or activities.


(May be taken prior to or following Certificate of Achievement)

Meet all the requirements as listed for the Certificate of Achievement in Dental Assisting. For an A.A. Degree, a student must also take electives and General Education to achieve a minimum of 60 units. Recommended electives for students interested in Dental Hygiene Program: CHEM 100, MICR 200, A&P 200 and A&P 201 or A&P 150 and A&P 151, and HO 152.

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