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General Chairside

Course Description Prerequisites Typical Course Sequence Becoming a CDA Certificant
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Course Description

The General Chairside course is designed to prepare you to take Dental Assisting National Board's (DANB's  [DANB Disclaimer]) exam on general chairside procedures.  The general chairside exam is one of three exams required to become a Certified Dental Assistant (CDA  [DANB Disclaimer]) certificant in NJ. 
Picture of chairside instruments
All of the information necessary to pass the DANB  [DANB Disclaimer]exam will be covered in this course.  Students will be introduced to the dental materials and procedures in a classroom setting where they will also be demonstrated by the instructor. Some of the subjects that will be covered and discussed in this course include oral pathology, pharmacology, medical emergencies, anesthetics, charting, four-handed techniques, chairside procedures, and dental materials.

Additionally, all students will receive a thorough course manual describing the content of the course that can be used for reviewing and studying the material.  Course manuals are provided in class.  No additional textbook purchase is required.  The course itself runs for a total of ten 2 hour class sessions.

Prerequisites

CPR courses are offered as part of our continuing dental education courses.  These courses are offered in affiliation with the American Heart Association (an approved provider).  Click below for more information about taking a CPR course.
Dental Assistant Services does not require that you obtain 3500 hours of work experience prior to taking this course, nor do you need to have a valid CPR certificate prior to taking this course.  Students may take this course while they are working towards their work experience requirement and/or obtaining a CPR certificate.

In short... you may take the general chairside course at any time, however until you meet the two prerequisites indicated above to meet the DANB  [DANB Disclaimer]requirements, you will not be able to take the actual General Chairside Exam.

Additionally, while it is not a formal requirement, we highly recommended that you first take Introductory Dental Assisting if you do not have prior experience and familiarity with these eight items. Most students will also have already taken the Dental Radiology and Infection Control courses. Again, this is a recommendation and not a requirement.

Typical Course Sequence

This chart displays the usual order that students will take our courses and the order in which they obtain their credentials.  For a more detailed overview, please click here.

Credential/License: Courses:
Exams:
N/A 1. Introductory Dental Assisting None
Dental X-Ray License (LDRT)
2. Dental Radiology
Radiation Health & Safety (RHS  [DANB Disclaimer])
Certified Dental Assistant (CDA) Certificate  [DANB Disclaimer]
3. Review of Radiation Health & Safety*
4. Infection Control
5. General Chairside
Radiation Health & Safety (RHS  [DANB Disclaimer])
Infection Control
General Chairside
Registered Dental Assistant (RDA)
6. Expanded Functions
Expanded Functions

*If you obtained your dental x-ray license in NJ you will most likely not have to take the Review of Radiation Health & Safety course in order to obtain a CDA  [DANB Disclaimer]certificate.

Becoming a CDA Certificant

In order to become a CDA  [DANB Disclaimer]certificant you will need to meet the following requirements:
  1. You must show documentation of having earned a high school diploma in the United States or its equivalent.
  2. Once you feel ready you can complete an application to take either the full CDA  [DANB Disclaimer]exam in one four-hour session or you may take each of the three component exams separately.  The three component exams (or the three parts of the full exam) are:
    1. Radiation Health & Safety
    2. Infection Control
    3. General Chairside
  3. You must have and show documentation of 3500 hours of experience (in no less than two and no more than a four year period at some point in your career.) working as a dental assistant and a valid CPR certificate before you can sit for and take the General Chairside Exam.
  4. When your application has been successfully processed, a DANB  [DANB Disclaimer]letter entitled "Test Admission Notice" will be mailed to you.  At this point you can schedule your exam.
  5. After successfully passing either the full CDA  [DANB Disclaimer]exam or the three separate component exams you will receive an official score report in the mail.  When you have met all of the requirements, you will automatically be mailed a CDA certificate.  If you choose to take the exams separately you must complete all three within a five year period.  You do not need to apply separately for your actual CDA certificate after passing the full exam or the three component exams.
The process of obtaining a CDA  [DANB Disclaimer]certificate can be confusing as there are several components, several options, and multiple applications.  At Dental Assistant Services we try to simplify the process as much as possible.  We've been through the process several times and are here to offer you the benefit of our experience.  We will not simply teach you the course content and send you on your way.  We understand the process and how confusing it can be, and will actually take the time to walk you through that process.




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