The Dental Hygiene program is a sequence of courses that prepares students for positions in the dental profession. Learning opportunities develop academic, technical, and professional knowledge and skills required to perform dental hygiene services. Registered dental hygienists work in a variety of professional settings. The public is most familiar with dental hygienists in the private dental office. In this capacity, they perform numerous services in the promotion and prevention of oral diseases. These include oral prophylaxis; examining the head, neck, and oral areas for signs of disease; patient education; taking or developing radiographs; and applying fluoride or sealants. In this setting, registered dental hygienists play a vital role in protecting the oral health of the American public. Program graduates receive a Dental Hygiene Associate of Applied Science degree.
The program in Dental Hygiene at Atlanta Technical College is accredited by the Commission on Dental accreditation. The Commission is a specialized accrediting body recognized by 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, IL 60611. The Commission’s address is: ada.org.
Program Admission Requirements
The Dental Hygiene program utilizes a competitive admission process to select students. Program faculty and the Admissions staff designed the process to ensure maximum opportunity for student success in the program and on the Association of Dental Hygienists certification examination. The program admits students once per year during summer semester for fall semester.
Applicants must submit all required documentation to the Admissions office by the requested due date to receive consideration in the selection process. Applicants must be in good academic standing at the time of selection to receive consideration as candidates for admission. Applicants not selected for the program may reapply during subsequent admission intake periods. Applicants must complete the application process for each attempt at program entry.
Applicants must meet the below criteria to be considered for admission to the Dental Hygiene program:
- Must be 18 years of age.
- Completed and signed application for admission and nonrefundable fee to the college admission office.
- Completed a Dental Hygiene Program application for admission to the Program Coordinator.
- Official high school or GED transcript and/or official college transcripts from all college attended in the past to the Admission Office (see General Admission Requirements.)
- Valid placement test scores comparable to the Associate Degree level detailed inside program application.
- Must be identified as program ready for the Dental Hygiene Program. The Dental Hygiene Program is competitive. All students who are not accepted into the program must reapply.
- Must take and pass placement test scores for program admission.
- After successful completion of the Healthcare Science program curriculum and to meet all eligibility requirements for the Dental Hygiene Program but not limited to, the student must achieve a minimum grade of B.
- In the following courses: ENGL1101, SPCH 1101, PSYC 1101, SOCI 1101, MATH 1111 or MATH1101, HUMN 1101 or ENGL 2130, COMP 1000, BIOL 2113, BIOL 2113 L, BIOL 2114, BIOL 2114 L, BIOL 2117, BIOL 2117 L, CHEM 1211 or CHEM 1151, CHEM 1211 L or CHEM 1151 L.
- Math and science courses have a (5) year expiration. All other pre-requisite courses should be met within (10) years of time.
- Requirements for transferring courses from another approved institution must be discussed and approved with registrar office of enrollment services. The Dental Hygiene Department will not confirm transferable courses.
- Dental Hygiene curriculum occupational courses will not be considered for transfer credit.
- After successful completion of the program curriculum and to meet eligibility for the Dental Hygiene Program, the student must achieve a minimum, overall cumulative CGPA of 3.0.
- Program applications are available through department only from Jan –May 1st of each year. All applicants are reviewed after application period. Admission into the program is not guaranteed. Program accepted individuals will begin in Fall semester of current applicant year.
- If a student changes his/her declared major from Dental Hygiene to a different diploma or degree program, and then back to Dental Hygiene, the latest program application date will be used when determining placement.
- Prior to the beginning of the Dental Hygiene Program, the applicant must have a current CPR card, a physical examination which includes immunization records, current TB skin test or chest-ray within five (5) years prior to program acceptance, and be medically cleared to participate in both classroom and clinical settings.
- Must have an initial current clearance criminal background/drug screen check from the designated program background check company to meet clinical requirements. Criminal background/drug screen check will be required at various intervals through the program as designated by the program faculty.
* Note: Additional Requirements for the competitive admission process:
- Attend a mandatory pre-admission orientation session once selected (failure to attend or to make alternate arrangements to obtain necessary information will result in the forfeiture of admission to the program).
- Volunteering in dental practice is highly recommended to ensure educational interest.
- The program requires a full-time commitment from the student as classes are scheduled daily from 8:00am-5:30pm.
- If the above criteria are not met, an applicant’s file cannot be processed for selection into the Dental Hygiene program.
The ATC Dental clinic is open to students and public for dental services. Hours of operation will vary depending on semester and student availability. Click here for more information
Frequently Asked Atlanta Technical College Dental Hygiene Program Questions and Answers
Q: What are the pre-requisite classes required before I apply to the dental hygiene program?
A: All the courses are listed on ATC website atlantatech.edu. Select academics program tab. Select dental hygiene. All general pre-requisite education courses are listed in areas I, II, III, IV, and the addition of COMP 1000.
Q: Do I have to complete all pre-requisite classes before I apply for the dental hygiene program?
A: Yes. The general education curriculum should be completed prior to making an application to the dental hygiene program with a 3.0 GPA. The program admission is a competitive process. The evaluation of the student’s GPA is included in the process.
Q: Am I allowed to take any dental hygiene occupational courses (as listed on website) prior to entry into the program?
A: Comp 1000 Intro to Computers should be taken prior to program entry. All DHYG courses strictly available to current accepted dental hygiene program students.
Q: Is there certain grade requirements in pre-requisite courses?
A: Yes, all dental hygiene pre-requisite courses are required to have a “B” 80% and/or higher grade earned. If a grade less than “B” 80 % was earned, the course must be retaken prior to program entry.
Q: How do I register for my general education pre-requisite classes?
A: ATC college campus will hold registration times for new and current students. To add, drop, or change a class schedule is managed from banner web. Each ATC student should receive a 900 number. This number is used during registration and course activities.
For new students, your password or pin is usually your birthday until it is reset. For returning students, banner web may ask for an alternate pin code. This code is given and generated each and every semester. Yes, the code changes each semester. To retrieve your alternate pin, see your advisor in the dental hygiene department or email email@example.com. Include your name, telephone number, and request.
Q: How long is the dental hygiene program?
A: The dental hygiene program is 84 credit hours. The dental hygiene program will be (5) semesters in length. This length does not include pre-requisite courses.
Q: What degree will be earned upon graduating ATC dental hygiene program?
A: Associates degree will be earned.
Q: I am a transfer student. Will the ATC accept my other college courses?
A: The admissions and registrar’s office is responsible for determining which transferring credits correspond with TCSG (Technical College System of Georgia) policies. The dental hygiene program will not determine. Requirements for transferring courses from another approved institution includes ensuring MATH 1111, BIOL 2113, BIOL (Lab)2113,BIOL 2114, BIOL (Lab)2114,BIOL 2117, BIOL (Lab)2117, are less than five years old.
Q: Does the program offer evening courses? Or program courses online?
A: The dental hygiene program is a daytime program only. The program requires a full-time commitment from the student as classes are scheduled daily from 8:30am-5:30pm.
Q: Is there GPA criteria?
A: After successful completion of the Healthcare Science program curriculum and to meet eligibility for the Dental Hygiene Program, the student must achieve a minimum, overall cumulative CGPA of 3.0.
Q: When does the program provide applications and time of acceptance?
A: Before retrieving a DH program application packet, a student must be identified as program ready by dental hygiene faculty. The Dental Hygiene Program is competitive. The program offers application in February. The program admits students once per year during summer semester for fall semester. Applicants must submit all required documentation to the Admissions office by the requested due date to receive consideration in the selection process. Applicants must be in good academic standing at the time of selection to receive consideration as candidates for admission. Applicants not selected for the program may reapply during subsequent admission intake periods. Applicants must complete the application process for each attempt at program entry.
Q: Once I apply to the DH program, am I guaranteed acceptance?
A: Admission into the program is not guaranteed. Applicants will participate in a competitive admission process.
Q: Are there any other requirements?
A: All detail program requirements will be discussed in our information sessions. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org for current dates.
Blood and Airborne Pathogens: Students enrolled in Category I and II programs at Atlanta Technical College will be performing tasks in which there is a normal occurrence for exposure to blood, other potentially infectious body materials, and airborne pathogens. These tasks will be performed in the classroom, laboratory, and clinical activities for each occupational training program/course. Students will be required to present documentation of Hepatitis B and Tuberculosis immunizations as a result of potential occupational exposure. Students should contact their program directors for more information. Policies and procedures regarding blood and airborne pathogens may be reviewed at tcsg.org.
At a Glance
Provides the student with a thorough knowledge of external and internal morphological characteristics of human primary and secondary dentition. Also introduces the student to various tooth identification systems, classifications of occlusion and dental anomalies. Topics include: oral cavity anatomy, dental terminology, external and internal tooth anatomy, tooth nomenclature and numbering systems, individual tooth and root morphology, occlusion and dental anomalies.
Focuses on anatomy of the head and neck. Emphasis is placed on those structures directly affected by the practice of dentistry. Topics include: terminology; anatomic landmarks; osteology of the skull; temporomandibular joint; muscles of mastication; muscles of facial expression; nervous system; blood supply of the head and neck; lymphatic system and immunology; endocrine and exocrine glands of the head and neck; nasal and paranasal sinuses; facial spaces and the spread of dental infections; and anatomy concerning local anesthesia.
Focuses on the nature, qualities, composition and manipulation of materials used in dentistry. The primary goal of this course is to enhance the student\\\'s ability to make clinical judgments regarding the use and care of dental materials based on how these materials react in the oral environment. Topics include: dental materials standards, dental materials properties, impression materials, gypsum products, mouth guards and whitening systems, dental bases, liners and cements, temporary restorations, classifications for restorative dentistry, direct restorative materials, and indirect restorative materials, polishing procedures for dental restorations, removable dental prostheses, sealants, and implants.
Provides fundamental skills to be utilized in the delivery of optimum patient care by the dental hygienist. Topics include: patient assessment, instrumentation, charting, occlusion, caries, emergencies, ethics and professionalism, asepsis, and patient and clinician positioning.
Provides fundamental skills to be utilized in the delivery of optimum patient care by the dental hygienist. Topics include: asepsis, ethics and professionalism, emergencies, patient assessment, patient and clinician positioning, instrumentation, charting, occlusion and caries.
Emphasizes the application of radiology principles in the study of the teeth and their surrounding structures. Topics include: radiation physics principles; radiation biology; radiation safety; radiographic quality assurance; imaging theory; radiographic interpretation; radiographic need; legal issues of dental radiography; and digital radiography techniques and principles.
Emphasizes the application of radiology principles in the study of the teeth and their surrounding structures. Topics include: radiation safety, radiographic quality assurance, imaging theory, radiographic interpretation, radiographic need, and digital radiography principles and techniques.
Continues the development of knowledge in patient care. Topics include: prevention, instrumentation, patient management, dental appliances, and treatment planning.
Continues the development of knowledge in patient care. Topics include: prevention, instrumentation, patient management, dental appliances, treatment planning, and applied techniques.
Introduces principles of basic pharmacology as they pertain to the practice of dentistry and dental hygiene. Emphasizes actions and reactions of medications commonly used in the dental office or taken by dental patients. Topics include: pharmaceutical referencing; legal and ethical considerations; drug effects; contraindications; drug related emergencies; dental related anesthesia; and pain control.
Continues the development of student knowledge in treating patients and preventing oral disease. Topics include: instrument sharpening; patient assessment; antimicrobial use; pulp vitality testing; treatment of hypersensitivity; whitening; implant care; tobacco cessation; pit and fissure sealants, scaling, debridement and root planing; ultrasonics and air polishing and dietary analysis.
Continues the development of student knowledge in treating patients and preventing oral disease. Topics include: instrument sharpening; patient assessment; antimicrobial use; pulp vitality testing; treatment of hypersensitivity; whitening; implant care; tobacco cessation; pit and fissure sealants; scaling, debridement and root planing; ultrasonics and air polishing; dietary analysis, and applied techniques.
Introduces pathology as a specialty of dentistry and includes the etiology, pathogenesis and recognition of various pathological conditions. Emphasis is placed on oral and paraoral pathology and systemic conditions affecting the head and neck. Topics include: terminology and biopsy procedures; inflammation, repair, and regeneration; soft tissue and dental anomalies; pathogenesis of caries and pulpal pathology; cysts and tumors of the head and neck; systemic conditions that affect the oral structures; infectious diseases; diseases of the salivary glands; diseases of bone; blood dyscrasias; vesiculo-erosive and autoimmune diseases; and genetic diseases and syndromes of the head and neck.
Provides students with a broad understanding of the healthcare system and an objective view of the significant social, political, psychological and economic forces directing the system. Prepares students to promote oral health and prevent oral disease in a community, by meeting specific dental health needs of community groups. Topics include: epidemiology; community dental care assessment; community dental care provision; preventive counselling for groups; group oral health education; terminology; dental care systems; biostatistics; and concepts of dental research.
Continues the development of student knowledge necessary for treatment and prevention of oral diseases. Topics include: treatment of patients with special needs.
Continues the development of student skills necessary for treatment and prevention of oral disease. Topics include: special needs patients and applied techniques.
Continues the development of student knowledge in treating patients and preventing oral disease. Topics include: instrument sharpening; patient assessment; antimicrobial use; pulp vitality testing; treatment of hypersensitivity; whitening; implant care; tobacco cessation; pit and fissure sealants, scaling, debridement and root planning; ultrasonics and air polishing and dietary analysis.
Focuses on the dental hygiene field and presents the fundamental concepts and principles necessary for successful participation in the dental profession. Topics include: employability skills; State of Georgia Dental Practice Act; office management; expanded duties; legal aspects; ethics; dental hygiene practice settings; and dentistry and dental hygiene regulation.
Continues the development of student skills necessary for treatment and prevention of oral disease. Topics include: applied techniques and time management.
Provides fundamental information on periodontal anatomy, pathogenesis of the periodontal diseases, and an introduction to modern rational periodontal therapy, including preventive, non-surgical, and surgical methods. Topics include: tissues of the periodontium; periodontal pathology; periodontal diseases; assessment and treatment planning; periodontal disease therapy; and periodontal emergencies.