Dental Assisting

Dental Assisting

Get the Skills to Begin a Career as a Dental Assistant in as few as 10 Months

Porter and Chester Institute's Dental Assisting program in Connecticut and Massachusetts covers the administrative and chairside clinical functions of dental assistants. You can learn about topics such as oral anatomy, oral hygiene, oral diseases, dental radiography, charting and record keeping, infection control, nutrition, and chairside dental procedures. Instructors place emphasis on day-to-day clinical skills along with safety and practice management.

Program Details

  • Program offered at: Bridgeport CT, Hamden CT, New London CT, Rocky Hill CT, Waterbury CT, and Brockton MA, Chicopee MA, Worcester MA
  • Program length: 10 months
  • Credits: 58
  • Graduates earn a diploma

How/When to Apply

We start new sessions on a regular basis.
Next Start Date: January 10, 2022

At Porter and Chester Institute, we're making it easier than ever for you to enroll using our automated application portal. Upload your documents and start the financial aid process without the hassle of drawn-out application processes. And our admissions staff is still available to help you every step of the way. Taking control of your career just got easier!

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Delivery of Instruction

On Campus Labs

  • Campus Lab Hours Day Program: 9am - 3pm
  • 2-3 Lab sessions per week, based on course needs
  • Campus Lab Hours Evening Program: 5pm - 9pm
  • 2-3 Lab sessions per week, based on course needs

Online Learning

  • Students will need approximately 30 hours per week for instruction, activities, labs, reading assignments, and homework
  • All materials are accessible in an asynchronous format 24 hours a day/7 days a week
  • First week includes acclimation to the systems and laptop

Course Listings

Term 1
Dental Orientation 1501
Dental Assisting Overview 1502
Dental Radiology 1503
Chairside Procedures 1504
Dental Sciences 1505
Term 2
Career Development 1506
Dental Specialties 1507
Dental Emergencies 1508
The Administrative Assistant 1509
Laboratory Procedures 1510
Term 3
Externship 2001


Tuition Cost: $17,000
Additional Fees: $2,560

Financial aid is available to those who qualify.

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Why PCI?

If you really like helping others and want to be part of a dental team, here's why you should get your Dental Assisting training at Porter and Chester Institute:

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Blended Learning Opportunities:
In an effort to create a more flexible learning environment, the program is offered in a Hybrid format, with lecture online and hands-on labs on campus. This “blended learning” delivery method allows you to learn information online, at your convenience, and then put those corresponding skills into practice on-campus in the lab. Students choose Days or Evenings for their lab schedule.

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Hands-on Training:
The Dental Assisting labs feature the same equipment and technology you find in dental office and clinics. You learn how to assist dentists in a dental operatory, take radiographs, mix dental materials, exercise proper infection control and sterilization, use model trimmers, take vital signs, and provide patient education. As part of the in-class training, you also work with Dentrix dental software. The lab environment uses mannequin heads to foster a real-life environment.

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Dental Assisting Externships:
The final term of the Dental Assisting program is an externship course where you complete 335 hours of an unpaid externship. Apply what you learn in the program to a dental office, clinic, or other facility settings.

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Prepare for Dental Assisting Certification Exams
The Dental Assisting program prepares you for certification exams from the Dental Assisting National Board (DANB.) You will have the background to take these optional exams any time after completing the corresponding coursework. Your tuition costs cover the cost of these exams.

You can apply these two exams toward the Certified Dental Assisting (CDA) exam. To earn your CDA, you will also need to pass the General Chairside Assisting exam. Please note that you will not be eligible to take this exam until you can document 3,500 hours of work in the field.

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Job Outlook:
Dental assistants play pivotal roles in dental offices and other settings. As such, there is often demand for skilled and trained professionals. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, there were more than 350,000 dental assistant jobs in 2019. This number is expected to grow by 7% through 2029, a rate that is faster than average.