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Dental Hygiene Outcomes and Standards

Program Outcomes

  • Broad-based general education, prepares students to contribute to their profession, community and society by communicating effectively, thinking critically and conceptually, acting ethically and valuing diversity.
  • Requisite skills with a strong knowledge base, hands on experience and the mindset required for success in the dynamic field of dental hygiene.
  • Thorough foundation in the diversified fields of dental hygiene i.e., clinician, educator/health promoter, consumer advocate, administrator/manager, change agent and researcher.
  • Emphasis on importance of life-long learning in the ever-changing profession of dental hygiene.

Program Standards

In order to be admitted to or continue in either Dental Hygiene (BSDH) program, a student must have skills and abilities essential to perform as a dental hygienist. Reasonable accommodations will be made on an individual basis; however, the candidate must be able to perform in an independent manner.

Standard Examples of Activities
Critical Thinking: Critical thinking ability sufficient for clinical judgment. Identify cause-effect relationships in clinical situations, develop treatment plans.
Communication: Communication abilities sufficient for effective interaction with patients and other members of the health care team in verbal and written form. Able to obtain information, explain treatment procedures, initiate health education training, describe patient situations, perceive non-verbal communications.
Mobility: Physical abilities (including standing, walking, bending, range of motion of extremities) to move from room to room and maneuver in small spaces. Able to administer cardiopulmonary resuscitation, move around inpatient treatment area.
Motor: Gross and fine motor function sufficient to provide safe and effective dental hygiene care. Able to use dental instruments, manipulate various dental materials.
Hearing: Auditory ability sufficient to monitor and assess health needs. Able to listen to breath and heart sounds. Able to hear equipment monitors, such as x-ray equipment and autoclave timers.
Visual: Visual ability sufficient to provide safe and effective dental hygiene care. Able to observe patients and use instruments in the oral cavity. Adequate close vision to see small lesions and deposits on teeth.
Tactile: Tactile ability sufficient for physical assessment and scaling skills. Able to perform palpation of a pulse, extraoral and intraoral structures, and feel calculus deposits.

Program Goals

  1. Accreditation - Maintain full program accreditation from the American Dental Association Commission on Dental Accreditation necessary to comprehensively prepare competent individuals in the discipline.
  2. Resources - Increase financial resources for all programs through departmental or school grant opportunities as well as through increasing extramural resources. Secure adequate number of faculty to meet ADA accreditation guidelines.
  3. Distance Learning - Expand distance-learning opportunities within the BSDH program.
  4. Experiential Learning - Expand experiential learning experiences in the community and the state.
  5. Graduate Education - Participate with other College of Health units to provide graduate education for BSDH program graduates.