What Will You Become?
Iowa Western Community College

Dental Assistant

Dental Assistant

Just the Facts

Program Start Term: Fall Only
Program Length: 2 Semesters, 1 Summer
Award: Diploma
Commission on Dental Accreditation (CODA)

Number of Majors: 16
Average Class Size: 18
Program Capacity: 18
Part-Time or Full-Time: Full-Time Only
Program Courses Offered: Day
Program Locations: Council Bluffs Campus

About the Program

How many students report that they actually had fun taking a course? Well, that’s what Iowa Western alumni say about the Dental Assistant program of study. You’ll gain clinical experience at a dental school and in area offices en route to earning a diploma and becoming eligible for the Dental Assistant National Board exam and, in turn, become a Certified Dental Assistant.

Iowa Western’s experienced faculty use intimate class settings, one-on-one interaction, and computer programs similar to actual dental offices. Graduates are working in private dental offices, group dental practices, specialty dental offices, dental colleges, dental product sales, insurance claims departments, and public health institutions and clinics.

The program in dental assisting is accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation (CODA), a specializaed accrediting body recognized by the Council on Postsecondary Accreditation and the United States Department of Education. The Commission on Dental Accreditation can be contacted at (312) 440-4653 or at 211 East Chicago Avenue, Chicago 60611.

Career Information

The Dental Assistant program is designed to place students into the workforce upon completion of the ten-month diploma. Dental Assistants aid dentists by performing support duties for the treatment of patients during dental procedures. Duties range from aiding and educating patients to preparing and sterilizing dental instruments and performing administrative work. Most dental assistants work in private dental offices, although job opportunities for dental assistants also exist in dental schools, private and government hospitals, state and local public health departments, and in clinics. The employment opportunities for dental assistants are expected to increase by 29.2% through the year 2016.

Salary: Omaha-Council Bluffs MSA
Average: $30,647 or $14.65/hour

Entry Level: $12.44/hour
Experienced: $15.75/hour

* Salary information from www.ihaveaplaniowa.org as reported by the US Dept of Labor www.bls.gov.


* The U.S. Department of Education requires colleges to disclose a variety of information for any financial aid eligible program that “prepares students for gainful employment in a recognized occupation”. The information provided here describes the graduation rates, the median debt of students who completed the program, and other important information regarding gainful employment for the most recent academic year (as of July 1).