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Why This Matters


    According to O*NET, 75% of dental assistant roles require a post-secondary certificate or associate degree. Completing an online certificate in dental assistance makes you more appealing to employers.


    Improved understanding of the link between dental and overall health is increasing demand for dental services. Job opportunities for dental assistants are expected to grow faster than the average across all occupations, equating to roughly 23,400 new jobs by 2028.


    The median annual salary for dental assistants is $41,180, and the top 10% could earn more than $58,390 per year. Completing an online certification program may increase your earning potential.

Our Research

Our list focuses on online programs that award a professional certificate in dental assisting or dental office administrative assisting. Many programs are online-only, while some courses also include a medical externship where you can practice your skills under supervision.

Many of the listed courses are accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation (CODA). CODA ensures the quality of dental education programs and drives continuous improvement. Other programs carry regional or national accreditation from independent bodies that verify their quality. Regionally accredited courses allow you to transfer credits more readily and are more commonly recognized.

  • 52 hours to write this article
  • 26 universities and colleges we assessed
  • 41 education programs we compared

The Top 50 Online Certificate in Dental Assistance Programs

Best Online Certificate in Dental Assistance Programs Badge
Intelligent Pick
Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis
Best in the Northeast
Monroe Community College
Best for Exam Prep
Hudson Valley Community College
Most Affordable
Penn Foster College
Best Start Dates
Rutgers University
Best in the Midwest
Sinclair Community College
Best Technical School
Lake Area Technical College
Best in the South
Ashworth College
Best Large Public University
University of Georgia
Best Externship
University of Houston-Downtown
North Carolina A&T State University
Best Concentration Options
Saint Louis Community College
Best for Articulation
Texarkana College

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What You Should Know About This Program

Most of the courses on our list are online certification programs in dental assistance, where you’ll learn how to perform and assist with dental procedures and provide administrative support. Alternatively, you can choose to study for a dental administrative assistant qualification.

Students looking for an online certificate in dental assistance program should select a course accredited by CODA or another national or regional accrediting body. The advantage of accredited courses is stricter quality control and wider recognition by employers.

The job outlook for qualified dental assistants is strong, with a projected job increase of 7% by 2028. This rapid growth reflects the growing understanding of the importance of good dental health for overall well-being.

Some states require dental assistants to complete an accredited training course and take a test before entering the workforce. Whatever the rules in your state, achieving certification can make you a more attractive job candidate.

What’s Next?

Here are some questions to ask when researching online certificate in dental assistance programs:

  • How long does it take to complete this online program? Most online dental assisting programs take around a year to complete. However, this timeframe can vary depending on whether you study part-time or full-time. Some programs allow you to study for a further year to earn an Associate of Science degree.
  • Am I eligible for this program? Entry requirements for the courses on this list vary, and many providers require proof of a high school diploma or GED. Some also have an entrance test to check that you have the study skills necessary to cope with independent online learning.

When you’re shortlisting courses, make sure that you know when the application deadlines are and have all the necessary documents ready to submit. You can determine the requirements for each course by checking the institution’s website or emailing the admissions department.

You should also make sure that you have the means to finance your course. Take care to meet any financial aid application deadlines and research alternative funding sources such as employer benefits.

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