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About the Dental Assisting Program

Application Deadline

Traditional Track Option – June 15
Hybrid Track Option – October 31

The OTC Dental Assisting curriculum provides a foundation in the health sciences along with training in the technology necessary to perform the tasks delegated to dental assistants by the State Dental Practice Act.  Clinical training experiences include working with dentists and their teams in private practices, community centers and at the OTC Dental Hygiene Clinic on the OTC Springfield campus.

Job Outlook

Students who successfully complete the program are eligible for Expanded Function Permits through the Missouri Dental Board.  Graduates are also eligible to sit for the Dental Assisting National Board Examination (DANB) to become a Certified Dental Assistant (CDA).  According to Bureau of Labor Statistics, dental assistants will experience a much faster growth than the average job outlook.

The OTC Dental Assisting program is the only accredited dental assisting program in southwest Missouri that is accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation (CODA), a specialized accrediting body recognized by the United States Department of Education. The OTC Dental Assisting program maintains high standards required by CODA and is a highly respected program in the community.

OTC Dental Assisting Program

The OTC Dental Assisting program prepares the student to become a valuable member of the dental health team.  The dental assistant may serve a dental practice or health center as a:

  • Chairside Assistant
  • Oral Surgery Assistant
  • Office Manager/Business assistant
  • Laboratory Assistant
  • Orthodontic Assistant

The OTC Dental Assisting program also prepares students to have the ability to comprehend, apply and evaluate clinical information, obtain technical proficiency in all skills necessary to fulfill the role as a dental assistant and display professional behavior consistent with employer expectations.  Some of the career opportunities will include, but not limited to:

  • Private Dental Practices in General Dentistry, Group Practices and Specialty offices
  • Dental Office Receptionist/Manager, Health Departments, Veteran’s Administration and Dental Sales
  • Manufacturer’s Representative, Dental Insurance Claims and Dental Assistant

Goals of the OTC dental programs are threefold:

  1. The student will comprehend, analyze and evaluate concepts established by evidence-based clinical theory utilized by dental health care professionals.
  2. The student will demonstrate the ability to apply technical proficiency in skills necessary to fulfill their role as a dental health care professional.
  3. The student will exhibit professionalism in areas of personal growth through continuing education, community service, employer expectations and as members of their professional organizations.


Traditional track option – consists of classes scheduled during the daytime hours and require students to attend all classes in a “seated” format on the Springfield campus.

Hybrid track option – consists of classes primarily delivered in an online format but also requires some face-to-face laboratory and clinic time on Springfield campus and/or surrounding dental offices.

Whichever option is selected, all applicants are required to attend a dental program informational session at least once per academic year in order to learn what is required prior to and during the application process. Dental Programs Informational Sessions are offered frequently and no appointment is necessary.

Questions that cannot be answered via the provided links should be emailed to or contact the Allied Health office in Lincoln Hall, room 210, on the OTC Springfield campus at 417-447-8803, 447-8804, or 447-8954.

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