professor and students working on dental impressions

Dental Assisting


The Dental Assisting Program is offered as a two-year Associate in Applied Science Degree or as a one-year Certificate Program. There are a total of 36 weeks in the professional phase of the program. Students are considered full-time students for the 3 semesters. Classroom, laboratory and clinic sessions are scheduled five days a week (usually all day) during the 36 weeks; some evening courses may be scheduled.

Included in the curriculum are those expanded dental assisting duty permits, requiring special certification in the state of Oklahoma, which are issued by the Oklahoma Dental Board when education requirements are met. The Dental Assisting Program accepts 12 students each year and is accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation of the American Dental Association. The Commission may be contacted at the following: 211 East Chicago Ave, Chicago, IL 60611-2678 or by calling 312.440.2500.


Rose State College is accredited by the North Central Commission on Colleges. Rose State College awards Associate in Arts and Associate in Science degrees as well as Vocational Certificates.

Specialized accrediting agencies exist to assess and verify educational quality in particular professions of occupations to ensure that individuals will be qualified to enter those disciplines. A specialized accrediting agency recognizes the course of instruction which comprises a unique set of skills and knowledge, develops accreditation standards by which such education programs is evaluated, conducts evaluation of programs, and publishes a list of accredited programs that meet national accreditation standards. Accreditation standards are developed in consultation with those affected by the standards that represent the broad communities of interest.

The Commission on Dental Accreditation is the specialized accrediting agency recognized by the Council on Postsecondary Accreditation and the United State Department of Education to accredit programs which provide basic preparation for licensure or certification in dentistry and the related disciplines. The Dental Hygiene Program has maintained accreditation through the American Dental Association Commission on Dental Accreditation since 1972. The Dental Assisting Program has maintained accreditation through the American Dental Association Commission on Dental Accreditation since 1982. Dental Assisting Program has an accreditation status with no reporting requirements. This status is the highest possible status. Site accreditation visits are scheduled every seven years. The most recent accreditation review was September 2019.

The Commission on Dental Accreditation will review complaints that relate to a program’s compliance with the accreditation Standards. The Commission is interested in the sustained quality and continued improvement of dental and dental-related educational programs but does not intervene on behalf of individuals or act as a court of appeal for individuals in matters of admission, appointment, promotion or dismissal of faculty, staff or students.

A copy of the appropriate accreditation Standards and/or Commission’s policy and procedure for submission of complaints may be obtained by contacting the Commission at the following address:

Commission on Dental Accreditation
211 East Chicago Avenue
Chicago, Illinois 60611-2678
1-800-621-8099, Ext. 4653

Program Goals

  • Provide dental assisting students the knowledge of dental theory to perform clinical techniques;
  • Prepare dental assisting students to perform all expanded duty procedures which are legally delegated to dental assistants in the State of Oklahoma;
  • Prepare dental assisting students to successfully complete the Dental Assisting National Board Examination;
  • Prepare dental assisting students and graduates with knowledge of a dental assistant's role related to employment and as an allied dental team member;
  • Support and encourage the continuation of the learning process through formal education and personal development;
  • Prepare graduates and students to participate in community dental health services.

Infectious/Contagious Disease Transmission

Bloodborne Infectious and Contagious Diseases: By law, when performing healthcare functions, dental assistants and dental hygienists must protect the health and safety of the public. The Allied Dental Programs written policy regarding treatment of individuals with bloodborne infectious diseases is available upon request. This policy is in accordance with the Guidelines on Infected Health Care Workers adopted by the Oklahoma State Department of Health, Occupational Safety and Health Administration Guidelines, and Oklahoma Board of Dentistry Rules and Regulations Chapter 35.
Dental and allied dental healthcare workers provide services in the oral cavity and come in contact with blood and saliva.  Although diseases may be encountered, research indicates that risks are negligible when optimal infection control procedures are practiced. The Allied Dental Programs adhere to current OSHA Guidelines for infection control, based on input from the Center for Disease Control.  Procedures undergo periodic review and are updated to meet the most current guidelines. All patients are treated following “standard/universal precautions."

Program Faculty

Esmeralda Ornelas
Esmeralda Ornelas
Director, Dental Hygiene/Dental Assisting Health Sciences Division
(405) 736-0263
Kristen Pope
Kristen Pope
Professor, Dental Hygiene/Dental Assisting Health Sciences Division
(405) 736-0297
Rachel Stroble
Rachel Stroble
Professor, Dental Hygiene/Dental Assisting Health Sciences Division
(405) 733-7583
Nancy  Thompson
Nancy Thompson
Professor, Dental Hygiene/Dental Assisting Health Sciences Division