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Dental Hygienists (RDH) are credentialed and licensed health professionals who serve integral roles in the delivery of health care, including preventive dental services, nonsurgical periodontal instrumentation, patient/family/community education, nutritional counseling, and tobacco cessation referral.
Graduates of the GRU dental hygiene program enter the profession with the ability to:
- Adhere to the professional Code of Ethics, state and federal laws, and institutional policy in the provision of dental hygiene care and in other endeavors whenever applicable
- Perform self-assessment for life-long learning and professional growth
- Provide accurate documentation of the assessment, diagnosis, planning, implementation, and evaluation phases of the dental hygiene process of care in patient care and community settings for the promotion of health and prevention of disease
- Effectively communicate with individuals and groups from diverse populations in a humane, empathetic, and caring manner while participating in campus, extramural, and community clinical rotations
- Relate the dental hygiene process of care to the research process by using critical thinking and problem solving in the provision of evidence-based practice and accepted standards of care
- Contribute actively to the dental hygiene knowledge base by presenting scientific research
- Advance the dental hygiene profession and establish social networks through service activities and affiliations with professional organizations
- Identify the various roles of dental hygienists and the alternative career options available in settings such as health care institutions, industry, education, and research
Skills and Interests Suited to a Career in Dental Hygiene
Dental hygienists should be caring, enjoy being with others, have good communication skills, have some ability to teach and enjoy working with their hands.
Related fields include nursing, medical technology, radiologic technologies, occupational therapy and dental laboratory technology.
After successfully completing the National and State Board Dental Hygiene examinations, the dental hygienist is licensed to practice under the supervision of a licensed dentist in various settings. Employment opportunities include private dental practice, public health (governmental agencies, health agencies or special institutions), public school programs, industry and dental hygiene education. Dental hygiene offers opportunities for full-time or part-time employment.
Please note that application for a dental hygiene license in many states shall constitute consent for performance of a criminal background check. Applicants for licensure must provide any and all information necessary to run a criminal background check, including but not limited to classifiable sets of fingerprints. If relevant, applicants to the GRU program should consult the dental board in the state that they wish to practice for additional information related to criminal background.
The expected beginning salary range for GRU graduates in clinical practice is $38,000–$45,000 per year.
About the Program
The program is a “2+2,” meaning the student completes the first two years at any accredited college or university of choice, and the last two years on the GRU campus. All students begin the GRU program fall semester of their junior year. The program includes classroom, laboratory and clinical education.
Policies on blood borne and infectious diseases are strictly enforced in the GRU program. These policies are available to applicants for admission and for patients treated in the dental hygiene clinics.
- Completed Online Application for Undergraduate Programs by the deadline of April 1
- A minimum 2.3 overall GPA on a 4.0 scale is required
- Completion of the following prerequisite course requirements: http://www.gru.edu/Admissions/Prerequisites/dh.html
- Two references from individuals who can evaluate academic and/or clinical or employment performance
- An official transcript from each US college and university attended
- Verification of transcripts from foreign colleges and universities by an approved transcript evaluation service. For a list of acceptable evaluation services please visit our website at www.gru.edu/Admissions/instud.htm
- For applicants whose first language is not English, a minimum TOEFL score of 550 paper-based, 213 computer-based, or 79 internet-based for applicants whose first language is not English. TOEFL scores must be less than two years old
- Degree Completion program applicants must have an Associate Degree in Dental Hygiene from a program accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation
In addition to demonstrating personal characteristics appropriate for a health professions career, students must satisfy general and specific technical standards. Visit www.gru.edu/alliedhealth/hygiene/tech standards.htm to review these requirements.
GRU participates in all federal student aid programs as well as state and private programs. GRU helps students fund their education through grants, scholarships, loans, a service commitment program and/or employment.
Commission on Dental Accreditation of the American Dental Association
211 East Chicago Ave.
Chicago, Illinois 60611
How to Apply
This is a transfer program that requires applicants to attend another accredited college or university of their choice to complete the required core curriculum (see Courses to Take the First Two Years). Sophomores can apply for transfer admission to GRU. Accepted applicants will transfer fall semester to begin the junior year. Although the GPA of most applicants will likely be higher, transfer consideration requires at least a 2.3 college GPA.
Applications should be received by April 1, but will be accepted until the class has been filled. Early application is encouraged.
Apply online at www.gru.edu/Admissions, or contact:
Office of Academic Admissions
170 Kelly Building–Administration
Georgia Regents University
Augusta, Georgia 30912
Courses to Take the First Two Years
The courses required to graduate from GRU comprise a core curriculum divided into six categories (A-F). Options for completing these prerequisites for transfer to GRU:
|A. Essential Skills
|9 semester hours
|English Composition I
|English Composition II (literature-based)
|College Algebra, Mathematical Modeling, Trigonometry, Pre-calculus or Calculus
|B. Institutional Options**
|4-5 semester hours
|Introduction to Computers
Health and Wellness
Any approved guided elective from Area F
|C. Humanities and Fine Arts**
|6 semester hours
Speech, Oral Communications
Drama, Art or Music Appreciation
Electives in Humanities and Fine Arts
|D. Science, Mathematics and Technology
|10-11 semester hours
One eight hour laboratory course sequence in Chemistry, Biology, or Physics AND an additional course in Science, Mathematics, or Technology
*At least one four hour laboratory Chemistry course is required in either Area D or F
|E. Social Science**
|12 semester hours
Racial and Ethnic Minority Groups
Lower-division electives in Psychology and Sociology
|F. Courses Appropriate to the Major
|18 semester hours
|Anatomy and Physiology I and II w/labs
|*Chemistry I with lab must be taken in Area D or F
|*Microbiology with lab and Statistics are strongly recommended
|Other approved guided electives:
|Human Growth & Development, other Math/Science courses, Gerontology
** If a student planning to transfer to GRU from another school in the University System of Georgia has completed this area with courses taken there or at another institution from which GRU accepts transfer credit, GRU will accept the area as satisfied. A student planning to transfer from a school not in the University System of Georgia should choose from the list of courses.
Estimated Tuition and Fees
For estimated tuition and fees, please see the Tuition and Fee Information for students who matriculated to GHSU section of this catalog.