Dental Hygienist Certificates

If working as a dental hygienist is your goal, you'll probably pursue either an associate's or bachelor's degree in dental hygiene. Read on to learn what programs are available, the curriculum of these programs, licensure requirements, and job outlook and salary statistics. Schools offering Dental Hygiene degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What Dental Hygienist Programs Are Available?

Associate of Science and Bachelor of Science degree programs are available in dental hygiene. Certificate programs can be found, but they're not as widely available. Several schools offer these programs both online and on-campus. Only some online programs require you to participate in clinical work. Other online programs don't require clinical work because they focus on providing a foundation for graduate studies and research work.

Degree Levels Associate of Science, Bachelor of Science, and certificate programs
Curriculum Classes will cover oral health, X-ray machine usage, and assistance with local anesthesia with some clinical work.
Licensure Required in every state; American Dental Association's Joint Commission on National Dental Examinations administers written exam and states give clinical exams
Job Outlook 20%* (for dental hygienists in 2016-2026)

Source:* U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

What Education Can I Expect?

These programs will teach you how to maintain oral health, use hygienist tools, clean teeth, use X-ray machines, provide fluoride treatments, prevent tooth decay and assist with local anesthesia. You'll take courses in dental hygiene procedures, periodontology, oral health, pain management, radiography, oral pathology, oral diseases, pharmacology and dentistry methods. If you take these programs on-campus, you can expect to participate in clinical work.

If you decide to pursue a bachelor's degree, you would need to meet additional general requirements during your first year. Bachelor's degree programs also allow you to take more specialized courses focusing on dental implants, dental hygiene education, research and management.

What Should I Do After I Complete My Program?

Every state requires you to pass a written and clinical exam for licensure. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) states that the written exam is provided by the American Dental Association's Joint Commission on National Dental Examinations and that state agencies are in charge of the clinical exam (www.bls.gov). You might also have to demonstrate your understanding of the law related to dental hygiene.

What Is My Career Outlook?

The BLS expects a 20% increase in dental hygiene positions between 2016 and 2026. This increase is due to hygienists taking on more roles that were previously done by dentists, people prioritizing healthier teeth and people maintaining their teeth into later stages of life. As of May 2018, the BLS estimated that dental hygienists earned a median salary of $74,820.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

  • 1. Degree Options:
The schools in the listing below are not free and may include sponsored content but are popular choices among our users. Tuition and costs will vary across programs and locations. Be sure to always request tuition information before starting a program.

Popular Schools

  • Fortis College

    Fortis College responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Fortis College:

    • Certificates

    Campus-Based Programs Available:

    View All Locations
    • Alabama: Birmingham, Mobile, Montgomery
    • Florida: Birmingham, Mobile, Montgomery, Orange Park, Pensacola, Port St Lucie
    • Georgia: Birmingham, Mobile, Montgomery, Orange Park, Pensacola, Port St Lucie, Smyrna
    • Indiana: Birmingham, Mobile, Montgomery, Orange Park, Pensacola, Port St Lucie, Smyrna, Indianapolis
    • Maryland: Birmingham, Mobile, Montgomery, Orange Park, Pensacola, Port St Lucie, Smyrna, Indianapolis, Towson
    • New Jersey: Birmingham, Mobile, Montgomery, Orange Park, Pensacola, Port St Lucie, Smyrna, Indianapolis, Towson, Lawrence Township, Wayne
    • Ohio: Birmingham, Mobile, Montgomery, Orange Park, Pensacola, Port St Lucie, Smyrna, Indianapolis, Towson, Lawrence Township, Wayne, Centerville, Cuyahoga Falls
    • Pennsylvania: Birmingham, Mobile, Montgomery, Orange Park, Pensacola, Port St Lucie, Smyrna, Indianapolis, Towson, Lawrence Township, Wayne, Centerville, Cuyahoga Falls, Scranton
    • South Carolina: Birmingham, Mobile, Montgomery, Orange Park, Pensacola, Port St Lucie, Smyrna, Indianapolis, Towson, Lawrence Township, Wayne, Centerville, Cuyahoga Falls, Scranton, Columbia
    • Utah: Birmingham, Mobile, Montgomery, Orange Park, Pensacola, Port St Lucie, Smyrna, Indianapolis, Towson, Lawrence Township, Wayne, Centerville, Cuyahoga Falls, Scranton, Columbia, Salt Lake City
    • Virginia: Birmingham, Mobile, Montgomery, Orange Park, Pensacola, Port St Lucie, Smyrna, Indianapolis, Towson, Lawrence Township, Wayne, Centerville, Cuyahoga Falls, Scranton, Columbia, Salt Lake City, Norfolk
  • Southern New Hampshire University

    Southern New Hampshire University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Southern New Hampshire University:

    • Master

    Online Programs Available

  • Penn Foster

    Penn Foster responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Penn Foster:

    • Certificates

    Online Programs Available

  • Herzing University

    Herzing University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Herzing University:

    Online Programs Available

  • University of the Southwest

    University of the Southwest responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at University of the Southwest:

    • Master

    Online Programs Available

  • University of Louisville

    Campus Locations:

    • Kentucky: Louisville
  • Penn Foster High School

    Penn Foster High School responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Penn Foster High School:

    Online Programs Available

  • New York University

    Campus Locations:

    • New York: New York
  • Howard University

    Campus Locations:

    • Columbia (D.C.): Washington
  • University of Iowa

    Campus Locations:

    • Iowa: Iowa City