How to Choose the Best Dental Assistant Program near Emmonak Alaska
Picking the right dental assistant school near Emmonak AK is an important initial step toward starting your new career in dentistry. But before you can make your choice, you need to evaluate and compare your school options. There is far more to completing your due diligence than choosing the dental assistant college with the lowest tuition or enrolling in the one that is closest to your home. There are other crucial issues to consider also, such as the program’s reputation and accreditation. Your first step is to decide which of the two credentials you are most interested in receiving training for, which may be contingent on the amount of money and time that you have to commit. The most typical dental assistant program usually takes about 12 months to complete for a diploma or certificate. On the other hand dental assistants may also earn an Associate Degree, which can take anywhere from 2 to 3 years to finish. Obviously with the longer training comes more cost. We will cover all of these issues and supplemental questions that you should be asking the dental assistant schools you are evaluating later in this article. But first, let’s review the duties of dental assistants and further discuss the training options offered.
The Duties of a Dental Assistant
Dental assistants are an integral part of any Emmonak AK dental office and can perform a myriad of duties. Their fundamental job description is to provide support to the dentists and the administrative staff. In other words, to help keep the practice running efficiently. Many dental assistants choose to specialize and acquire certification in a specific area, such as pediatrics. However most assistants carry out any duty that they are called upon to complete, such as:
- Setting and verifying appointments
- Prepping patients for teeth cleanings and treatments
- Sterilizing and preparing dental instruments
- Clearing patients’ mouths with suction equipment
- Giving instruments to dentists during procedures
- Readying X-ray machines and processing X-rays
- Purchasing office and dental supplies
Certification and licensing requirements for dental assistants differ by state, so consult with the Alaska dental board for your state’s policies. Assistants dealing with X-ray machines more than likely will need to be certified and licensed. Many dental assistants who are either required or elect to become certified take the Certified Dental Assistant (CDA) examination provided by the Dental Assisting National Board (DANB).
Dental Assistant Training Options
Dental assistant programs are offered at Alaska community colleges along with technical or vocational schools. As previously mentioned, the most common credential acquired is the certificate, which generally takes about a year to complete. There are fewer Associate Degree programs offered, and they furnish a more comprehensive education, including general subjects in addition to the dental assistant classes. 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 Alaska community colleges and technical schools. Regardless of whether you are interested in earning a certificate or a degree as a dental assistant, there will be a clinical component to the training as well. A number of programs also sponsor internships with Emmonak AK dentists or dental practices.
Online Dental Assistant Classes
Selecting an online dental assistant program might be a great alternative for obtaining your education. Just remember that the classes will not be 100% online, since there will be a practical component to your training. But the rest of your classes will be available by means of your desktop computer in the comfort of your Emmonak AK home or elsewhere on your tablet or laptop. For those working while going to school, online dental classes make education a lot more obtainable. Some may even charge lower tuition costs than their on-campus competitors. And additional expenses for items like commuting, books and school supplies may be lessened as well. The clinical training can usually be performed at a community dental office or in an on-campus lab. With both the online and clinical training, everything needed to obtain the appropriate education is provided. If you have the discipline for this method of learning, you might find that attending an online dental hygienist program is the best choice for you.
What to Cover With Dental Assistant Colleges
After you have decided on the dental specialty and kind of credential you would like to earn, you can start the process of comparing Alaska programs and schools. As we covered at the beginning of this article, a number of potential students start by looking at the location and the cost of the colleges. Perhaps they search for some online options as well. Although these are important initial considerations, there are several additional questions that you should ask of the Emmonak AK area schools you are comparing in order to reach an informed decision. To start that process, we have supplied a list of questions to help you with your evaluation and final selection of the best dental assistant school for you.
Is the Dental Assistant Program Accredited? There are a number of valid reasons why you should only enroll in an accredited dental assistant school. If you are going to become licensed or certified, then accreditation is a prerequisite in nearly all states. In order to take the Certified Dental Assistant examination, your dental school 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 Emmonak AK often desire or require that job applicants are graduates of accredited colleges. And finally, if you are applying for a student loan or financial aid, usually they are not provided for non-accredited Alaska programs.
Is The Appropriate Dental Program Available? You can decide to train to become a dental assistant by earning either a Certificate or an Associate Degree. Just confirm that the Emmonak AK school you decide on has the program that’s right for you. However, bear in mind that even if a school has an excellent reputation and accreditation does not mean all of its programs do as well. For example, an accredited college may have a solid accredited dental hygienist program, but may have a weaker or non-accredited dental assistant program. So if you are primarily interested in a dental assistant degree, obviously it would not be the right college for you.
Is Plenty of Clinical Training Included? Clinical or practical training is a vital portion of any dental training program. This applies for the online college options as well. Many dental colleges have partnerships with area dental practices and clinics that provide clinical training for their students. It’s not only imperative that the school you enroll in provides adequate clinical hours but also provides them in the kind of practice that you ultimately want to work in. As an example, if you have an interest in a career in pediatric dentistry, verify that the Emmonak AK area program you choose offers clinical rotation in a local dental office that specializes in dental services for children.
Is There an Internship Program? Find out if the dental schools you are evaluating sponsor internship programs. Internships are probably the most effective method to receive hands-on, clinical experience in a real Emmonak AK dental practice. They help students to transition from the theoretical to the practical. They can also help students create professional relationships in the local dentistry community. And they look good on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Assistance Provided? Many students that have graduated from dental assistant colleges need help obtaining their first job. Find out if the schools you are reviewing have job placement programs, and what their job placement rates are. Schools with high job placement rates are likely to have good reputations within the Emmonak AK dental community as well as extensive networks of contacts where they can place their students for employment or internships.
Are the Classes Small? Check with the Emmonak AK area programs you are evaluating how big typically their classes are. The smaller classes usually offer a more personal environment for learning where students have increased access to the teachers. Conversely, larger classes can be impersonal and provide little individualized instruction. If feasible, find out if you can monitor a couple of classes at the school that you are most interested in so that you can experience first hand the level of interaction between students and instructors before enrolling.
What is the Overall Cost of the Program? Dental assistant training can differ in cost based on the duration of the program and the amount of clinical training provided. Other factors, such as the reputations of the colleges and whether they are public or private also have an impact. But besides the tuition there are other significant costs which can add up. They can include costs for such things as commuting and textbooks as well as school equipment, materials and supplies. So when examining the cost of schools, don’t forget to add all of the costs associated with your education. The majority of colleges have financial aid departments, so make sure to check out what is offered as far as loans, grants and scholarships in Emmonak AK.
Are the Classes Accessible? Before enrolling in a dental college, you must make sure that the assistant program offers classes that fit your schedule. This is particularly true if you continue working while receiving your education and must attend classes near your Emmonak AK home in the evenings or on weekends. And even if you choose an online school, you will still need to schedule your clinical training classes. Also, while making your inquiries, ask what the make-up protocol is if you should have to miss any classes due to work, illness or family issues.
Considering a Dental Assistant Program near Emmonak AK?
If you are considering a dental assistant school in the Emmonak Alaska area, following is some interesting history and background information about your future campus location that you may find useful.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 8.6 square miles (22 km2), of which, 7.5 square miles (19 km2) of it is land and 1.1 square miles (2.8 km2) of it (13.08%) is water.
Emmonak first appeared on the 1970 U.S. Census as an incorporated city (having incorporated in 1964), although was erroneously called "Emanguk." It was the successor community to Kwiguk, which was located a mile and a half south, most of whose residents removed to the new village of Emmonak in 1964 after flooding damaged the old village, including their cannery.
As of the census of 2000, there were 767 people, 189 households, and 150 families residing in the city. The population density was 102.2 people per square mile (39.4/km²). There were 218 housing units at an average density of 29.0 per square mile (11.2/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 5.61% White, 0.26% Black or African American, 91.26% Native American, 0.13% Asian, and 2.74% from two or more races. 1.04% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.
Dentist Assistant Programs Emmonak Alaska
Choosing the right dental assistant program is essential if you intend to take the CDA examination or, if required in your state, become licensed. You originally came to this website due to an interest in Dentist Assistant Programs and wanting info on Dental Assistant Online Training. But as you now know, there are numerous options offered to obtain your training and it takes a fairly short amount of time to become a dental assistant. You can obtain your formal training through dental programs at community colleges, vocational schools, technical institutes and trade schools. Graduates of these schools usually receive a Certificate. Dental Assistants typically require about 1 year of study before they enter the job market. When obtaining a certificate or degree you can choose to go to classes on-campus or online. Whichever credential or mode of training you decide to pursue, by addressing the questions provided in this article you will be in a better position to make the right choice. And as a result, you will be ready to start your journey toward becoming a dental assistant in Emmonak AK.
Other Alaska Dentistry Locations