Registered Dental Assistant

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Quick Program Facts

  • Number of courses: 10 + Dental Assisting Clinical
  • Exams:
    • Nitrous Oxide Exam
    • Registered Dental Assistant Exam
  • Total hours: 712 
  • Cost: $4,857
    • Eligible for Financial Aid
  • Campus: Fall and spring semesters on Northeast Campus
  • Admission: Requires acceptance into program
    • You will learn about this at the required orientation session.
  • Types of instruction: Classroom and clinical instruction
  • Accreditation: Approved by the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board 

Program Description

Our program prepares you to work as a Registered Dental Assistant.

As a Registered Dental Assistant, you will perform a variety of patient care, office and laboratory duties. You will:

  • Work chairside with dentists as they examine and treat patients
  • Make patients as comfortable as possible in the dental chair
  • Prepare patients for treatment
  • Expose dental radiographs
  • Obtain dental records
  • Pass and retrieve instruments as well as restorative and impression materials to dentists
  • Help with fabrication and cementation of temporary restorations
  • Sterilize and disinfect instruments and equipment
  • Prepare tray setups for dental procedures
  • Instruct patients on post operatic and general oral health care

Extended duties include front office, laboratory and supply/inventory management procedures.

Eligibility Requirements and Prerequisites

  • Attend an orientation session
  • Have high school diploma or GED
  • Pass Test of Adult Basic Education (TABE) at a 9th grade level in reading and math
  • Pass a drug test
  • Have verification of Health Screen and Immunizations
  • Have current CPR for Healthcare Providers certification
  • Pass a criminal background check

Credentials in Detail

Requirement: Pass the Registered Dental Assistant (RDA) State Exam

You become a Registered Dental Assistant (RDA) by completing an RDA course and exam approved by the Texas State Board of Dental Examiners (TSBDE).

After you complete the RDA Course and pass the exam with a score of 70% or better, then you can fill out the application to register with TSBDE.

Registered Dental Assistant (RDA) Course and Exam (PDF will open in a new window)

Requirement: Certification in Nitrous Oxide Monitoring

The TSBDE requires that a dental assistant be certified in the procedure in order to monitor patients under nitrous oxide-oxygen sedation.

To become certified, you must take a course and exam approved by the TSBDE.

After you complete the Nitrous Oxide Course and pass the exam with a score of 70% or better, then you can fill out the application to register for the TSBDE Nitrous Oxide Monitoring Certificate.

Nitrous Oxide Monitoring Course and Exam (PDF will open in a new window)

Courses You Will Take

How to Apply

Register for the Registered Dental Assistant courses.



Northeast Campus Continuing Education Services
Brenna Sanders



Updated November 11, 2014


Tarrant County College District 1500 Houston Street Fort Worth, Texas 76102 • Information Center: 817-515-8223 Hearing / Speech Impaired (TTY)
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