History Frequently Asked Questions
As of December, 2001, approximately 378 dental assistants had been licensed in New York State, but it had been estimated that the workforce need for New York State licensed dental assistants is approximately 8,000 (equal or slightly more than the number of Registered Dental Hygienists).
Through the efforts of Sheryl Robinson, RDA, then Instructor of the Registered Dental Assisting Program at Schuyler Chemung Tioga BOCES, (now Greater Southern Tier BOCES) and with the assistance of the Sixth District Dental Assisting Education Committee, an approval was attained for a modular dental assisting education program that is registered and meets the educational requirements for licensure as a New York State Licensed Registered Dental Assistant. The Program is titled "Comprehensive Dental Assisting Modular Program" (CDAMP) and allows for online learning through the internet with employer dentists acting as preceptors.
CDAMP is designed to allow practicing dental assistants in New York State the opportunity to meet the educational requirements for licensure by minimizing the expense and time spent outside their normal working hours and away from their families.
*What are the general requirements to become a New York State licensed "registered dental assistant" (RDA)?
You must be at least 17 years of age, submit an application, fee, and all required documents, meet the educational requirements, and meet the examination requirements. Check out the Office of the Professions Web site at www.op.nysed.gov/cda.htm for more information.
*Do all dental assistants working toward New York State licensure have to take the Dental Assisting National Certification Exam (DANB)?
Passing scores on appropriate examinations administered by the Dental Assisting National Board (DANB), Inc. are required for licensure in New York State. For an examination application, fees and scheduling information for the New York State exam, visit the DANB Web site at http://www.danb.org/ or contact DANB by phone : 1-800-367-3262.
*What is a "Tier"?
A Tier is a level of entry into CDAMP. Where you are entered into the program depends upon your previous formal education, testing, and experience. Your completed "Pre-Application" is used to determine your placement. See the Tier levels described at the "Course Outline" link.
*Where will the courses be given?
After registering for enrollment into a module, paperwork can be downloaded from the CDAMP web site for completion at home over a 5 week period. A final, 50 question multiple choice exam for each module will be given at the GST BOCES Philo Road Campus, by appointment or by your preceptor. The skill portion of the module can be completed in the dental office with your assigned preceptor.
*What is a preceptor?
A preceptor is a dentist who has signed on to instruct, mentor and evaluate your expanded skills in the dental office while you are enrolled in CDAMP. It is also the responsibility of the preceptor to proctor exams, if necessary, and monitor the student's progress in completing his or her coursework in a timely manner. If there are some functions your preceptor does not perform in-office, such as orthodontics, another preceptor will be assigned to you for those skills.
*When will there be class time?
Mrs. Robinson will be available as a mentor and exam proctor at the GST BOCES Campus, Building 8, two nights a week from 4:00 - 7:00. (Tuesdays & Thursdays) There is no established classroom time.
*Do we need a text book for CDAMP?
Yes. The primary text used in this program is "Delmar's Dental Assisting, a Comprehensive Approach", 3rd or 4th Edition, by Phinney and Halstead. This book may be purchased through the Adult Education and Training Division of GST BOCES by calling 607-739-7905.
*How can we learn and practice state approved expanded dental assisting skills/functions in the dental office if we are not yet New York State Registered?
Any dental assistant who is enrolled in a New York State Dental Assisting Program, registered by the New York State Education Department as meeting the requirements for licensure, may as part of their course of study, legally perform registered dental assistant functions in a dental office under the direct supervision of a licensed dentist.
*How long do we have to finish the entire course?
Three years from your enrollment date.
*What does direct supervision mean?
The dentist must be present at the time the skill is performed.
*Who else, besides licensed "state registered dental assistants," may perform those functions?
A licensed dental hygienist or dentist, and a dental assistant who has been issued a Limited Permit to practice. No other persons may do so.
* Are some dental assistants able to perform New York State certified dental assistant functions under a "grandfather clause"?
*How many courses must you take to complete CDAMP for certification?
CDAMP is tailored to the individual student's needs. When you complete the "pre-application form" your experience and formal education will be evaluated for placement into the correct "tier" of the program. The program is divided into eight modules. Modules I through IV are available with a test out option.