If becoming a dental assistant in Alabama is a career that interests you, we are the resource for you! Below we cover all the details for you from school selection to graduation.

What a dental assistant does in Alabama?

Dental assistants in Alabama work under the supervision of a dentist, and are given the task of carrying out a number of support duties that help keep the office operating smoothly. Although some managers might require even further responsibilities, the following link shows the main role of most dental assistants.

The steps to becoming a dental assistant in Alabama

The four-part procedure for becoming a dental assistant in Alabama is displayed below.

Step 1 – Complete your high school diploma or GED

Regardless of the job you decide to pursue, receiving a high school diploma should be considered the first step. Working in the healthcare field is no different. And even in the cases where it is possible to find a position without your high school diploma, the positions normally don’t offer much in the way of salary or chances for advancement.

Where dental assistant training programs are concerned, you may also discover early on that most authorized training programs require applicants to provide proof of a high school diploma or G.E.D. before beginning classes. For that reason, whatever your ultimate professional goals, be sure that you take this first step.

Step 2: Find a program accredited by CODA and register for classes

Finding a Commission on Dental Accreditation (CODA)-accredited program is the next step if you’ve chosen to become certified. The CODA is a nationally-respected body that coordinates dental assistant coursework across the country. Due to the fact that only students who finish a training course in AL approved by the CODA are immediately able to take either of the national certification exams, it’s crucial that you attend a training course in AL that is recognized by this body.

Alabama Dental Assisting Schools that are Approved by CODA

Dental Assisting – Coastal Alabama Community College
Alabama
Coastal Alabama Community College
1900 Highway 31 South
Bay Minette
36507
251-580-2110
Program Director: Ms. Michele L. Barrow
Discipline Code: DA
Accreditation Status: Approval without Reporting Requirements
Last Accreditation Visit: 2013
Next Accreditation Visit: 2020

Dental Assisting – Lawson State Community College-Bessemer Campus
Alabama
Lawson State Community College-Bessemer Campus
1100 9th Ave. SW
Bessemer
35022
205-929-3440
Program Director: Dr. Teresa Ray-Connell
Discipline Code: DA
Accreditation Status: Approval without Reporting Requirements
Last Accreditation Visit: 2015
Next Accreditation Visit: 2022

Dental Assisting – Calhoun Community College
Alabama
Calhoun Community College
P.O. Box 2216
Highway 31N
Decatur
35609-2216
256-306-2812
Program Director: Ms. Karen S. Chockley
Discipline Code: DA
Accreditation Status: Approval without Reporting Requirements
Last Accreditation Visit: 2014
Next Accreditation Visit: 2021

Dental Assisting – Wallace State Community College
Alabama
Wallace State Community College
801 Main Street NW
P.O. Box 2000
Hanceville
35077-2000
256-352-8380
www.wallacestate.edu/programs/health-division/dental-hygiene
Program Director: Ms. Barbara Ebert
Discipline Code: DA
Accreditation Status: Approval without Reporting Requirements
Last Accreditation Visit: 2016
Next Accreditation Visit: 2023

Dental Assisting – H. Councill Trenholm State Community College
Alabama
H. Councill Trenholm State Community College
1225 Air Base Boulevard
Montgomery
36108
334-420-4427
Trenholmstate.edu
Program Director: Ms. Kimberly White
Discipline Code: DA
Accreditation Status: Approval without Reporting Requirements
Last Accreditation Visit: 2011
Next Accreditation Visit: 2018

Step 3: Satisfy all required internship hours and finish the program

Graduating from the approved program you chose in the previous step is going to be your next objective. The academic and hands-on parts of the traditional course may be finished in twelve months or less.

A lot of training courses dedicate the classroom portion of their syllabus to the material that will probably be included in the national certification exams. The externship, however, will present you with the chance to put the things you learn into practice in a live, professional environment.

Step 4: Pass one of the main national certification exams

There are two highly-popular dental assistant certification examinations – the NELDA and CDA. Eligibility to take these exams calls for you to initially complete a CODA-accredited program. College students who pass either exam receive the nationally-recognized title of Certified Dental Assistant (CDA).

Each of these examinations are described in greater detail here.

How much does a dental assistant make in Alabama?

The following table showing data about dental assistants in Alabama comes from bls.gov.

LocationPay TypeLowMedianHigh
United StatesHourly$12.24$17.76$25.00
Yearly$25,460 $36,940 $52,000
AlabamaHourly$10.64$15.21$21.64
Yearly$22,120 $31,630 $45,010
Southeast Alabama BOSHourly$11.01$17.97$23.43
Yearly$22,900 $37,380 $48,740
Decatur, AL MSAHourly$13.25$16.92$22.65
Yearly$27,550 $35,190 $47,110
Birmingham-Hoover, AL MSAHourly$12.24$16.29$24.05
Yearly$25,470 $33,880 $50,020
Gadsden, AL MSAHourly$10.39$15.95$23.20
Yearly$21,620 $33,180 $48,250