Career Training Programs
Dental Office Assistant
Blackstone’s Dental Office Assistant Career Training Program teaches you how to run a dental office. You will gain hands‐on practice in coordinating patient schedules and completing critical office work. Graduates of Blackstone’s Dental Office Assistant program are eligible to seek certification through the Dental Assisting National Board (DANB) after working full‐time for two years or part‐time for four years as a dental office assistant and obtaining certification in cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR).
- Prerequisite: High School or General Equivalency Diploma
- Study Method: E-books with online study guides and exams
- Program Length: Completion time ranges from 4-12 months, with students given the option of up to 18 months if needed. Students must satisfy all academic and financial obligations to graduate from their program.
After completing the Dental Office Assistant Career Training Program, students will be able to:
- To define and explain different learning styles and learning strategies.
- To identify the parts of a computer and explain how technology is used in the office.
- To identify the parts of speech, the parts of sentences, and sentence type.
- To demonstrate correct English usage by choosing the correct part of speech in a sentence.
- To evaluate written communications to identify problems and suggest solutions.
- To describe the duties of a dental office assistant.
- To identify the correct way to schedule appointments, interact with patients over the telephone, interact with patients in the reception area, order supplies, file documents and records, and manage accounts receivable and payable in the dental office.
- To identify and define dental nomenclature and related terminology.
- To chart the oral cavity.
Why Become an Administrative Dental Assistant?
According to the Occupational Outlook Handbook produced by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, administrative dental assistant career prospects should be excellent. Employment growth will account for the majority of job openings along with the need to replace dental assistants who transfer to other occupations, retire, or leave the labor force for other reasons.
In choosing to work in an administrative dental assistant career, your job will encompass all of the business aspects related to running a dental practice. Some of the duties of the dental office assistant may include scheduling and confirming appointments, greeting patients, managing patient files, sending bills, receiving payments, and ordering office supplies and dental materials. With on-the-job training, those in an administrative dental assistant career may also assist in chairside duties such as preparing patients for treatment, obtaining dental records, sterilizing instruments, and preparing trays of instruments for dental procedures.
Administrative Dental Assistant Career Opportunities
While the majority of those in an administrative dental assistant career work in dental offices, including solo and group practices, others will find employment in managed care facilities and specialty practices working for periodontists, orthodontists, or oral surgeons. With additional education and training, employees in an administrative dental assistant career can move into positions such as office managers, dental-assisting instructors, or dental product sales representatives. Some dental assistants seek certification through the Dental Assisting National Board (DANB). Graduates of Blackstone’s Dental Office Assistant program are eligible for this exam after working full-time for two years or part-time for four years as a dental assistant and obtaining certification in cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR).
Factors such as growth of the population and advancements in dental services causing people to keep their natural teeth longer will contribute to growth of the administrative dental assistant career. Younger dentists, who will be more likely to utilize assistants in their practices, will replace retiring dentists, which will also create more job opportunities. For many in an administrative dental assistant career, this entry level position provides experience and training which often leads to more highly skilled and higher paying jobs.
Service-oriented positions in the medical field continue to provide about half of the employment opportunities in the United States. People of all ages and men as well as women can train to become a medical office assistant. Rapid growth in the number of group practices, clinics, and other healthcare facilities will result in an increasing need of educated medical office assistants. In fact, employment for the medical office assistant profession is expected grow much faster than the average – 31 percent or more – for all occupations through the year 2020.
What You Can Earn in an Administrative Dental Assistant Career
As with many careers, the earning potential of those in an administrative dental assistant career varies depending on factors such as experience, skills, and geographic location. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, dental office assistants earned up to $47,090 in 2010. Median salaries measured at $33,470 for the same year. Benefits vary and depend on whether the dental office assistant is part-time or full-time.
Our accredited online Dental Office Assistant Career Training Program prepares you for an entry-level position as a Dental Office Assistant in a dental office, clinic, or hospital.
View Curriculum Details
Unit I: Blackstone’s Skills for Success
Covers learning styles; instrinsic versus extrinsic motivation; self-efficacy and self-determination; visual, auditory, and kinesthetic learners; and field dependence versus field independence.
Covers study skills, including choosing a place to study; scheduling time, goal setting; monitoring your study sessions; and avoiding procrastination.
Covers learning strategies, including SQ3R; note-taking skills; memory tricks; references; and how to take multiple choice tests.
Unit II: Introduction to Computers, Keyboarding and Office Technology
Covers how computers are used in the office today, the different types of computers, and the parts of a computer system.
Covers basic keyboarding skills using Blackstone’s Online Typing Tutor.
Covers the Internet, the World Wide Web (WWW), URLs, the different types of Internet connections, search engines, email, and other uses for the Internet.
Covers other types of office technology, including office telephones and the different types of telephone calls; fax machines; photocopiers; multipurpose machines; transcribers; digital cameras; and wireless communication.
Unit III: Dental Office Management 1
Discusses the traits of an administrative dental assistant, the members of the dental healthcare team and their roles, the rules and function of HIPAA, and the American Dental Association’s code of ethics.
Introduces the different areas of a dental office; the structures of the face, oral cavity, and tissues of the teeth; the different tooth numbering systems; dental charting symbols; basic dental procedures; chairside dental assisting duties; and OSHA regulations.
Covers the communication process and how the dental healthcare team sends nonverbal clues, types of interpersonal communication, removing barriers to effective communication, and professional telephone manners.
Explains the elements of letter writing style, the parts of a business letter, and when HIPAA Privacy and Security Rules apply to written communications.
Discusses the humanistic theory and how it applies to patient relations, presenting a positive image to clients, problem-solving techniques, and providing outstanding customer service.
Explores the purpose of a dental practice procedural manual and staff meetings, the channels of organizational communication and overcoming barriers, and the types of organizational conflict and resolution styles.
Unit IV: Dental Office Management 2
Covers the functions of clinical records, the key elements of record keeping, methods used to collect information for clinical records, the components of a clinical record, the function of risk management, and situations that lead to patient dissatisfaction.
Describes filing methods for various types of files, as well as preparing a new patient’s clinical record or a business document for filing.
Explores the mechanics of scheduling, how to matrix an appointment book, and the steps for making an appointment. Also discusses the use of appointment cards and call lists.
Explains the recall system, including the benefits to the patient, the elements of an effective recall system, and different classifications of recalls as well as the barriers to each recall system.
Unit V: English Usage and Written Communication
Covers the parts of speech, including nouns, verbs, pronouns, adjectives, adverbs, prepositions, conjunctions, and interjections.
Covers the parts of a sentence, including the subject, predicate, direct and indirect objects, subject complements, phrases, and clauses.
Covers pronoun/antecedent agreement and pronoun usage; explains how pronouns are used in sentences; covers subject/verb agreement.
Covers sentence types and sentence punctuation.
Covers fundamentals of written communication including using active versus passive voice, writing unified and coherent paragraphs, and writing topic sentences for paragraphs. Discusses common types of business communication including business letters and memorandums.
Unit VI: Time & Stress Management
Discusses determining personal values through assessment activities and making decisions based on personal values.
Covers creating new habits and patterns of behavior.
Explores setting realistic goals and objectives to achieve desirable outcomes.
Discusses prioritizing activities, projects and to-do items.
Covers effective planning and scheduling.
Explores how to analyze and deal with interruptions.
Introduces the use of daily TimeLogs.
Covers tips and tools to use in personal and work settings that assist with time management.
Explores how self-esteem influences productivity.
Provides tips for controlling stress at home and in the workplace.
Unit VII: Dental Office Management 3
Covers the various types of insurance coverage, the purpose of insurance coding, the types of insurance information needed to determine coverage, the different methods of filing insurance claims, and how to complete a dental claim form for manual submission.
Discusses inventory management, including the role of an inventory manager, the elements of a good inventory management system, when to use catalog ordering and supply house services, and the various sections of a Material Safety Data Sheet.
Provides an overview of financial arrangement and collection procedures, including the elements of a financial policy, the different types of financial plans, the levels of the collection process, proper telephone collection calls and collection letters, and interpreting aging reports.
Explains accounts receivable, including the role of the administrative dental assistant in the management of patient financial transactions, the use of a pegboard system, the steps in posting transactions, the importance of audit reports, and implementing an audit trail.
Covers accounts payable, including a system to organize accounts payable, methods of check writing, steps for reconciling a checking account, and the information needed for a payroll record.
Unit VIII: Dental Office Management 4
Discusses business office equipment, including the features of a telephone system and designing an ergonomic workstation.
Presents dental practice management software and its application, the computer tasks performed by the administrative dental assistant, and the importance of a computer system backup routine.
Covers employment opportunities for administrative dental assistants, developing an employment strategy, producing high-quality resumés and cover letters, and career portfolios.
Unit IX: Professional Development and Medicolegal Ethics
Discusses how to maintain a professional appearance through attire and good grooming habits, as well as attitude and self-esteem; covers verbal and nonverbal communication, proper introductions, and business etiquette.
Discusses medicolegal ethics in healthcare; covers the code of ethics; discusses aspects pertaining to the healthcare record including the purpose of ownership, how to correct mistakes, and the importance of timeliness.
Guides allied health students through the HIPAA guidelines, discussing the Privacy and Security Rules, Protected Health Information, access control, de-identified information, and work area security.
Unit X: Critical Thinking Skills
Provides an introduction to the critical thinking process, explores the importance of critical thinking skills and characteristics of critical thinkers, and describes a method to use for critical decision making.
Covers schema, inference, and judgment and how these apply to critical thought.
Discusses metacognition, the process of thinking about thinking, and how it builds critical thinking skills.
Explains how consequences, assumptions, stereotypes, connotation and impulsive thinking affect critical thought, as well as how to identify strong conclusions to critical issues.
Provides analyses of persuasive strategies that help develop arguments, including ethos, pathos and logos.
Explores how to interpret and use three main critical theories—Marxist, Feminist and Deconstruction.
Covers deductive reasoning, establishing premises and validity in critical thought, and interpreting and creating syllogisms.
Defines emotional intelligence and explains its role in the critical thought process.
Unit XI: Dental Office Practice 1
Covers Monday’s duties as an administrative dental assistant in a virtual office environment.
Covers Tuesday’s duties as an administrative dental assistant in a virtual office environment.
Unit XII: Dental Office Practice 2
Covers Wednesday’s duties as an administrative dental assistant in a virtual office environment.
Covers Thursday’s duties as an administrative dental assistant in a virtual office environment.
Unit XIII: Dental Office Practice 3
Covers Friday’s duties as an administrative dental assistant in a virtual office environment.
Provides Critical Thinking Questions pertaining to the tasks of a dental office assistant.
Unit XIV: Creating an Effective Workplace Environment
Discusses the various types of knowledge, types of goals used in the workplace, different means of providing feedback, incentives common to the workplace, and the different roles exhibited in the workplace.
Explains techniques that promote effective nonverbal communication, listening and speaking. Explains proper technological communication techniques.
Explores the concept of culture, the importance of cultural diversity in the workplace, and overcoming barriers caused by diversity.
Covers attributes of successful teamwork, the role of the team leader, and overcoming barriers to effective teamwork.
Unit XV: Management Practices & Principles
Covers the role of the supervisor as a manager and a leader.
Explores effective communication.
Discusses how to create a positive work climate.
Covers building teams and managing conflict.
Discusses delegating to employees.
Covers developing job expectations.
Introduces employee recruitment.
Covers selecting employees.
Introduces orienting and training employees.
Discusses employee performance evaluation.
Discusses disciplining employees.
Unit XVI: How to Find a Job in Healthcare
Covers job-search correspondence, including resumes and cover letters.
Discusses job-search techniques such as networking and using online employment search engines.
Discusses job interviews; explains how to dress for an interview, what to bring to an interview, what to expect during an interview; discusses common questions asked during an interview and how to follow up after an interview.
This programs practical lessons present basic knowledge of medical and dental terminology and the skills needed to perform office procedures, including:
- Managing routine tasks in the front office
- Scheduling and receiving patients
- Organizing and managing dental records
- Completing dental claim forms
- Handling billing and collection procedures
- Transcribing Medical documents
Complete our Dental Office Assistant Career Training Program online – anytime, anywhere. Blackstone will provide you with the following tools for success:
- Comprehensive textbook and study guide materials
- 24/7 access to Blackstone’s Online Student Center
- Dedicated academic and customer support
- Additional online content and resources via Blackstone’s social media
*All Materials included in tuition price.*
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