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Academics at Union County College

Dental Hygiene

By virtue of an agreement between Union County College and the School of Health-Related Professions (SHRP) of the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey (UMDNJ), an A.A.S. degree in Dental Hygiene is conferred jointly by these two institutions. The general education courses are taught by Union County College and the professional courses are taught by the Department of Allied Dental Education, SHRP-UMDNJ at the Scotch Plains and Newark campuses. All students will be attending both Scotch Plains and Newark campuses. Enrollment is limited and admission to this program is competitive. Completion of this program entitles the student to sit for the National and Northeast Regional Board Examination for Dental Hygiene.
The program is accredited by the American Dental Association’s Commission on Dental Accreditation.
A dental hygienist, under the supervision of a dentist, removes deposits from the teeth, applies agents which make teeth more resistant to decay, instructs groups and individuals in the proper care of teeth and surrounding tissues, charts disease and decay conditions for diagnosis and treatment by the dentist, and performs patient services delegated by the dentist.
The dental hygienist must possess manual dexterity, and good vision, health and oral hygiene habits.
Admission is limited. For admission information, contact the Union County College Admissions or Recruitment Office. Application deadline – April 1 dental classes begin January of each year.
Inextricably related to SHRP’s overall mission, the mission of the SHRP-UMDNJ’s Department of Allied Dental Education is to promote professional standards of excellence and leadership among its students and health professionals while meeting the health care needs of New Jersey residents through patient care, education, research, and service.
The Department’s unique and innovative curriculum reflects the direction of allied dental practice and often presages the evolution of the profession. The Department seeks to develop new and innovative approaches to education while keeping pace with current treatment modalities and research strategies. The students develop a humanistic approach to health care delivery as well as critical thinking, problem-solving, independent decision making, and research skills which characterize the professional.
The Department strives to instill in its students and its members of the allied dental professions, a dedication to lifelong learning, and provides opportunities for continued growth within the health professions. 
The specific objectives of this program are that the graduate must be able to:
  • exhibit competency as clinicians through demonstrated performance on the Northeast Regional Board Dental Hygiene Examination and the National Board Examination and feedback from Employer Surveys;
  • assume responsibility for health promotion and disease prevention for individuals and communities through participation in multiple dental health education projects;
  • perform multiple, advanced level dental auxiliary functions as defined in the New Jersey State Dental Practice Act under the auspices of Dental Specialties II;
  • obtain the RDH license;
  • demonstrate professional development through membership in the Student American Dental Hygienists’ Association and participation in related activities;
  • display professionalism in the delivery of comprehensive dental health care through achievement of satisfactory grades in this section of the evaluation form for Clinical Services I, II, and III;
  • prepare individuals for employment as dental hygienists;
  • determine student satisfaction with educational programming;
  • assess patient satisfaction with treatment service provided by students through data collection from the patient satisfaction survey. 

Search for courses in the online course catalog.