Dental Assisting

Program Description

As a dental assistant, you interact with patients and assist dentists to provide quality dental health which is sure to put a smile on anyone's face. Our program provides you opportunities to develop specialized skills in dental health education, chair-side assisting, various laboratory procedures, coronal polishing, radiation exposure and processing, business office procedures, and more than 300 hours of clinical experience.

Your hands-on classroom includes laboratory, pre-clinical and clinical instruction covering dental assisting skills and related theory. To prepare yourself for our curriculum, we recommend you take courses in biology, anatomy, health, nutrition, computer skills, and Dental Terminology.

Dental assistants are classified as licensed professionals in the state of Nebraska. With your license, you will be able to continue your education and training in advanced dental assisting courses.

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Awards Offered: A.A.S. Degree / Diploma
Locations: Lincoln
Formats: In-Person
Start: Fall / Spring
Schedule: Full-Time
Estimated Total Cost
$7,420 Associate of Applied Science
$5,858 Diploma

START HERE: Please follow the steps on the Getting Started Checklist: Diploma (PDF) to complete the program application process. (All students must start with the diploma program first.)

START HERE: Please follow the steps on the Getting Started Checklist: AAS (PDF) (Diploma in Dental Assisting degree required) to complete the program application process. (Students must be a graduate of the diploma program.)

Additional links/resources:

You’re a Good Fit

Dental assistants greatly increase the efficiency of the dentist in the delivery of quality oral health care and are valuable members of the dental care team. Your skills are both interpersonal and technical which are among the most comprehensive in the dental office. You will be a successful dental assistant if you:

  • are detail oriented and able to work on a team
  • make patients feel comfortable before, during and after dental treatment
  • are able to communicate effectively (both verbal and written)
  • anticipate a patient’s needs, making quick decisions without supervision
  • communicate and teach appropriate oral hygiene strategies to maintain oral health
  • document and communicate changes in the patient’s condition with other health care providers
  • have the ability to multitask
  • are a person of character with honesty and integrity


You picked the right time to become a dental assistant. Population growth, greater retention of natural teeth by middle-aged and older people, and an increased focus on preventative dental care for younger generations fuels the demand for dental services. Recent SCC graduates report an average annual starting salary of $40,456. Career options include:

  • Certified Dental Assistant
  • Dental Assistant
  • Dental Claims Processor
  • Licensed Dental Assistant
  • Office Manager
  • Orthodontic Assistant


The Dental Assisting program at SCC is accredited by:

211 E. Chicago Ave.
Chicago, IL 60611

This program has been granted the accreditation status of “approval without reporting requirements.” The commission is a specialized accrediting body recognized by the United States Department of Education.

Program Outcomes (PDF)

Southeast Community College is a State Authorization Reciprocity Agreement Institution (NC-SARA) institution. As such, SCC is unable to offer online or distance courses to students in the following areas at this time: American Samoa, Guam and the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands.

State Licensure or Certification Requirements

This program’s curriculum has been approved through a National accreditor, the American Dental Association Commission on Dental Accreditation. This program is acceptable in all states, however, other states may have additional requirements.

States offering programs similar to SCC’s are: AL, AK, AR, AZ, CA, CO, CT, FL, GA, HI, ID, IL, IN, IA, KS, KY, ME, MD, MA, MI, MN, MS, MO, MT, NE, NV, NH, NJ, NM, NY, NC, ND, OH,OK, OR, PA, PR, RI, SC, SD, TN, TX, UT, VT, VA, WA, WI.

For more information about the post-graduation achievements of SCC Graduates as well as average starting salaries, refer to the annual Graduate Report (PDF).

For information about the methodologies used to gather the post-graduation student achievement data contained in the annual Graduate Report, refer to the Institutional Research page or contact