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Dental Hygiene

Our Dental programs provide students with learning opportunities that enable them to obtain licensure as a Registered Dental Hygienist or Registered Dental Assistant, and empowers them to succeed in a changing healthcare environment.

This program is designed to provide the credits necessary for eligibility for Registered Dental Hygiene licensure, Registered Dental Assisting licensure, and transferability for a bachelor's degree in Dental Hygiene or likewise.

GRCC's Dental Programs prepare individuals to take the program’s corresponding licensing exams in the state of Michigan, upon program completion. Graduates who wish to practice either Dental Hygiene or Dental Assisting in other states should review the licensure requirements for each state through their individual state board of dentistry and licensing bureau.

Dental Hygiene Program

The dental hygienist-the preventive specialist-fills a key position on the dental health team. Graduates of the associate degree curriculum may assume a variety of major roles in the prevention of dental disease.

Dental hygiene practice includes:obtaining clients' medical and dental histories, conducting extraoral and intraoral examinations, performing diagnostic procedures, providing complete oral prophylaxis (scaling and polishing teeth) and polishing restorations and placing pit and fissure sealants. The Michigan Dental Law has expanded dental hygiene care to include periodontal treatment.

Graduates will be eligible to take national and regional board examinations to qualify for licensure as Registered Dental Hygienists. Requirements for licensure as an RDH in the State of Michigan are stated in the Michigan Public Health Code, Public Act 368 of 1978. The new applicant for licensure will be asked about felony convictions, misdemeanor convictions resulting in imprisonment, and convictions for possession of controlled substances (including those involving alcohol related to motor vehicle violations). Previous convictions may prevent the applicant from receiving a license.

Dental hygienists work in private and group dental practices, departments of public health, hospitals, schools, clinics, veterans facilities and the armed forces. Job opportunities for trained dental hygienists are expected to be good in the years ahead.

The average time it takes to start the dental hygiene program AFTER making it on the ready/wait list is approximately two years.

Effective as of fall semester 2015

  • Any student not currently on the Dental Hygiene wait list will be required to complete BI 121, BI 122, BI 127, and CHM 210 with a C or better within two attempts. A withdraw equals one attempt. 02/13/15
  • A three-credit humanities course is required for ALL graduates. Any three-credit humanities course will fill the requirement.
  • Students should initially enroll in Code 324 - Associate in Applied Arts and Science: Academic Department: Dental.


The programs in dental assisting and dental hygiene are accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation [and has been granted the accreditation status of "approval without reporting requirements"]. The Commission is a specialized accrediting body recognized by the United States Department of Education. The Commission on Dental Accreditation can be contacted by phone (312) 440-4653, by mail 211 East Chicago Avenue, Chicago, IL 60611 or online.

Catalog Information

Check out our college catalog for pre-program requirements and additional information. 

How does a student find out what courses transfer to four year colleges?

The following links will take you to online equivalency guides provided by the transfer institution. This will allow you to check how your GRCC courses will transfer. The college catalogs will allow you learn more about your transfer school. If your transfer institution does not provide an online transfer equivalency guide, you should contact the Counseling and Career Development for additional information and assistance in transferring.

Four year schools and the transfer equivalency guide


Contact Amelita, for specific vaccination requirements.