View All Programs

Ontario College Certificate | 3 semesters | Barrydowne

Get the skills to launch a career as a Dental Assistant in just one year. In Cambrian's program, you won't just be learning, you'll be doing – and lots of it! You'll start by practicing your skills on mannequins and your classmates in the College's dental clinic. Once you've gained some practical experience, you'll treat real patients in the clinic before completing a placement in a dental office.

You will have an opportunity to use your new knowledge and gain valuable practical experience in our clinic and in community settings. Practical experiences offer the opportunity to work with dental hygienists, dentists, and other health care professionals in a multi-disciplinary environment. Clinics and some classroom experiences may include evening scheduling.

Program Highlights

  • 1 year – 3 semesters
  • Blended and online courses
  • 70 hours of clinical placement
  • Community rotation in long term care facility
  • Public Health rotation
  • Specialty office rotation 
  • Graduates are eligible to write the National Dental Assisting Examining Board (NDAEB) examination to become certified as an Intra-oral Dental Assistant with the Ontario Dental Assistants Association (ODAA)
  • Continuous hands-on experience through work in the College's dental clinic where you'll provide services to clients such as:
    • Dental examinations
    • Whitening
    • Oral hygiene instruction
    • X-rays
    • Fluoride treatments
    • Pit and fissure sealants
    • Athletic mouth guards


Students must complete the in-office practicum as outlined in the program's third semester. Students must be prepared to cover the costs incurred in their 2 weeks clinical placement whether in town or out of town.

4D Learning Opportunities

Walk for a Smile – Each year, Dental Assisting and Dental Hygiene students raise money and collect dental health products to help support free access to oral health services.

Vietnam adventure – In March 2012, students and professors from the Dental Assisting and Dental Hygiene programs trekked through remote mountain villages in Sapa, Vietnam, to bring oral health education and supplies to children and families. The group visited homes, schools, and an orphanage, handing out thousands of toothbrushes, teaching children how to use them through hands-on demonstrations and songs. The group was recognized by the Canadian Dental Hygienists Association (CDHA) for their outstanding efforts in oral health promotion.


Cambrian's Dental Assisting program is accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation of Canada (CDAC).


For initial licensure/certification, graduates of Cambrian College's Dental Assisting program are eligible to become a candidate for the National Dental Assisting Examining Board (NDAEB) examination. Successful completion of the examination is necessary to be certified as an Intra-oral Dental Assistant with the Ontario Dental Assistants Association (ODAA). It is the responsibility of the graduate to pursue candidacy and certification as well as to cover any associated costs.

Capped Enrollment

Quick Links

How to Apply

Health Sciences, Nursing, and Emergency Services

Admission Requirements

For graduates of the new curriculum (OSS): Ontario Secondary School Diploma (30 credits) or equivalent or mature student status, including:

  • Any grade 12 English (C)or (U)
  • Any grade 11 (U) or (C) or grade 12 biology (U)
  • Any grade 11 (U) or grade 12 chemistry (C) or (U)

Please note: A minimum of 60% is required in each prerequisite course.


  • Computer competency in relevant software

Note: The Pre-Health Sciences Pathway to Advanced Diplomas and Degrees (PHPG) program is the designated preferred preparatory program for admission to Cambrian College's limited enrolment Health Sciences programs. Limited enrolment programs are identified with the detailed program descriptions.

Additional Requirements

  • Criminal record check (Vulnerable Sector Screening) as required for placements

Please note: A criminal record is a serious impediment for the completion of program requirements. Many employers and placement agencies insist on a clear record.

The following are required prior to the start of classes:

  • Current Basic Cardiac Life Support (Level C with AED or Health Care Provider) and First Aid Training

  • Immunizations: Hepatitis B, Polio, Tetanus, Diphtheria, Measles, Mumps, Rubella, Varicella, Flu vaccination (when distributed mid- to late fall)

  • Appropriate TB test

  • Proof of WHMIS training

  • Eye examination is strongly recommended


Program Delivery


This program will be delivered in the following terms:

Fall Semester

  1. SEMESTER 1 Fall 2020
  2. SEMESTER 2 Winter 2021
  3. SEMESTER 3 Spring 2021

For specific term start/end dates and other key dates/deadlines, please see the Academic Schedule on our website.

Program of Study

Plan of Study Grid
Semester 1Credits
BIO 1170 Anatomy & Physiology 2
DEN 1105 Intro to the Dental Assisting Prof. 3
DEN 1120 Microbiology/Embryology 2
DEN 1165 Oral Facial Anatomy 3
DEN 1217 Clinical Practice I 5
DEN 1260 Health Promotion 3
ENG 1215 College Writing II 3
DEN 1175 Dental Radiography 4
Semester 2
BIO 1016 Pharmacology 2
DEN 1001 Level 1 Theory and Practice 5
DEN 1002 Clinical Practice II 2
DEN 1042 Clinical Experience I 4
DEN 1043 Technology in Dental Office Mg 2
DEN 1045 Orientation to Dental Assisting Profession 3
DEN 1223 Dental Office Management 2
DEN 1266 Lab Practice and Dental Materials 3
Semester 3
DEN 1419 Clinical Experience II 6
 Total Credits54


Tuition and Ancillary Fees

Please see our fees page for the breakdown of tuition and mandatory ancillary fees by program and semester for both domestic and international students.

Books & Supplies

The cost of books and supplies for Year 1 is approximately $3,000. This is the best information available at the time of publishing to the website and is subject to change.

Graduate Options

Employment Opportunities

Graduates are prepared for employment opportunities in:

  • Private dental offices
  • Clinics
  • Hospitals
  • Educational institutions
  • Public health units
  • Dental products manufacturers
  • Canadian Forces

College/University Degree Opportunities

Graduates from this program may continue their studies at college/university and may receive credit for their prior College education.

Refer to College/University Agreements for further information.

Please note: Cambrian College strives to ensure the accuracy of the information on this website. Please note that the academic curriculum is continually reviewed and revised to ensure that Cambrian's programs and courses remain relevant. The College reserves the right to cancel or make changes to any course or program, fee, procedure, or campus location at any time.

Back to Top