Which Dental Hygiene Schools Are in Southern California?

Find out which schools in southern California offer dental hygiene programs. Learn about admissions requirements and get tuition rates for dental hygiene degrees in the region. Schools offering Dental Hygiene degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

Check out four schools in the Southern California area with undergraduate education in dental hygiene. Three colleges offer associate degree programs and one has a bachelor's degree.

What You Need to Know

Community colleges most commonly offer dental hygiene programs at the associate degree level, although bachelor's programs at universities do exist. An associate program in the field typically takes two years and helps you meet the educational requirement to take the California state exam to become a licensed dental hygienist. In some cases, you need to complete prerequisite science, social science and communications courses to be admitted. In an associate degree program, you can expect to learn how to perform dental assessments, take x-rays and clean teeth. You'll also get to practice these skills at a local facility during the clinical component of your program. A bachelor's degree program has similar coursework, but it can lead to more career options, such as public health educator or clinician. Read on to explore some associate and bachelor's degree programs in dental hygiene in southern California.

Dental Hygiene Associate's Degree Programs in Southern California

Cerritos College

Located in a small city southeast of Los Angeles, this college's accredited program will prepare you for employment in a variety of settings, including private dental offices, governmental health departments, hospitals, schools, private industries, correctional facilities or health maintenance organizations. You'll be responsible for your own transportation to your clinical courses, which would be held in facilities 5-30 miles from the college. Most classes meet during the day, but be aware that some extend into the evening.

  • Program: Associate in Arts in Dental Hygiene
  • Program Length: 2 years, including 1 summer
  • Tuition and Fees: $1,346 per year for in-state; $7,926 per year for out-of-state (2015-2016)
  • Prerequisites: Required courses include anatomy and physiology, chemistry, microbiology and nutrition ('C' or better is required in each course)
  • Admission Requirements: Application for admission to program, transcript evaluation and clearance in math, reading and English; current cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) certification, including automated external defibrillator (AED)
  • School Type: 2-year, public; 21,774 undergraduate students

Pasadena City College

This school is situated in a mid-sized city northeast of Los Angeles. In order to progress in this accredited program, you'll be required to earn at least a 75% in each of the dental hygiene courses. Upon completion of the program, you'll be eligible to take your national and state licensing examinations.

  • Program: Associate in Science in Dental Hygiene
  • Program Length: 2 years
  • Tuition and Fees: $1,152 per year for in-state; $6,180 per year for out-of-state (2015-2016)
  • Admission Requirements: Application to program, official transcripts, health clearance, current CPR certification and malpractice insurance
  • School Type: 2-year, public; 26,611 undergraduate students

Southwestern College

Situated in a large suburban area near San Diego, this school's accredited program will teach you to perform oral health assessments and to devise strategies for providing dental health education. You'll also learn how to take x-rays, remove deposits from teeth and apply fluorides. In this program, you'll provide services to the public in the Dental Hygiene Clinic under the supervision of a licensed dentist or registered dental hygienist.

  • Program: Associate in Science in Dental Hygiene
  • Program Length: 2 years, including 1 summer
  • Tuition and Fees: $1,336 per year for in-state; $5,452 per year for out-of-state (2015-2016)
  • Prerequisites: Courses include biology, chemistry, nutrition, communications, psychology, sociology and English (overall GPA 2.70 or higher required)
  • Admission Requirements: Program application, transcript evaluation, demonstration of proficiency in math and reading, current CPR certification with AED and various health screenings
  • School Type: 2-year, public; 19,000 undergraduate students

Dental Hygiene Bachelor Degree Programs in Southern California

University of Southern California

This accredited program emphasizes disease prevention and health promotion. In your hands-on learning, you'll work with dentists, treat patients, complete preventive procedures and evaluate outcomes. As a graduate of this program, you might work as a clinician, researcher, educator or public health professional.

  • Program: Bachelor of Science in Dental Hygiene
  • Program Length: 5 trimesters
  • Tuition and Fees: $50,277 per year (2015-2016)
  • Prerequisites: Courses include anatomy, biology, chemistry, English composition, psychology, sociology, speech, nutrition, physiology and microbiology
  • Admission Requirements: Program application, fee, official transcripts, small photo, health documentation and interview
  • School Type: 4-year, private, non-profit; 42,453 total; 18,739 undergraduate students

Of the four previewed schools, Pasadena City College, Cerritos College, and Southwestern College all feature associate's degrees in dental hygiene, while the University of Southern California provides a bachelor's degree.

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:

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