Dental Hygiene (A.A.S.)

Mission Statement

The philosophy of this department is to provide an educational program of physical, social and dental sciences as prerequisites for competence in dental hygiene skills. In addition, the program provides exposure to those procedures, which in the opinion of the faculty, are needed to fulfill the expanding needs of the public and the dental profession. Completion of this two-year academic program satisfies eligibility requirements for licensure.

A graduate of this education program will be skilled in the profession and practice of dental hygiene, exhibit appropriate scientific knowledge, accept personal and professional responsibility and be concerned about the health and welfare of all those encountered.

The curriculum supports the Departmental Philosophy through course material which is divided between theory and technique using modern laboratories and clinical facilities.

The student of dental hygiene is exposed very early to the use of dental hygiene instruments and equipment. The curriculum includes instruction in the current dental hygiene functions as permitted by the New York State Practice Act. State mandated courses in Child Abuse and Bloodborne Pathogen courses are included within the curriculum.

The dental hygiene clinic, dental anatomy/preventive dentistry laboratory and the radiographic facilities are equipped with modern professional equipment and are utilized to provide individualized instruction.

The inclusion of courses in the area of general studies such as English, Psychology and Sociology and the additional courses of Dental Materials, Community Dental Services and Nutrition result in a well-rounded, educated individual.

Students are assigned to various community dental health programs where they have the opportunity to investigate and evaluate selected dental health care delivery systems.

Department Goals

  1. To provide a high quality educational program in dental hygiene leading to an A.A.S. degree.
  2. The dental hygiene graduate must be competent in applying the American Dental Hygienists' Association professional code of ethics, and will practice with professional integrity in accordance with the state dental practice act.  Specifically, the dental hygiene graduate must uphold ethical and legal behaviors with all patients, colleagues, and other professionals.
  3. To provide all students with the opportunity to interact with and participate in professional dental hygiene associations.
  4. The dental hygiene graduate must be able to use critical decision-making skills to formulate a patient's oral health needs based upon analysis of patient assessment findings.
  5. The dental hygiene graduate must be able to acquire and synthesize information in a critical, scientific and effective manner.
  6. The dental hygiene graduate must be able to systematically collect, analyze and record comprehensive patient assessment data on general and personal oral health status of a variety of new and repeat patients.
  7. The dental hygiene graduate must be able to formulate a comprehensive dental hygiene care plan that is patient centered and based on scientific evidence.
  8. The dental hygiene graduate must be able to consistently provide preventive and therapeutic dental hygiene services designed to promote and maintain oral health.
  9. The dental hygiene graduate must be able to provide educational services using effective interpersonal  communication skills and educational strategies to achieve oral health goals.
  10. The dental hygiene graduate must be able to evaluate effectiveness of planned preventive, therapeutic, oral self-care   and modify as necessary.
  11. The dental hygiene graduate must be able to initiate and assume responsibility for health promotion and disease prevention activities for diverse populations.