We designed this plan to provide an extensive study of the theory and practice of dental hygiene. It is the only Bachelor of Science in Dental Hygiene Program (BSDH) in Arizona. Oral health is an important part of total health and there is increased demand for dental hygiene services in public and private health settings. The program provides many opportunities for students to develop expertise in oral health education and clinical care for underserved populations in northern Arizona.
This plan is nationally recognized by the American Dental Association.
This program is accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation (CODA).More Information
Professional dental hygienists with good people skills can make patients feel more comfortable and confident that they're getting the best care. If you like working closely with others and are interested in science, then a career in dental hygiene may be for you.
The Bachelor of Science Degree in Dental Hygiene is a four-year program that includes two years of prerequisite course work and two years of professional education. Practice in our 18-chair dental hygiene clinic and five-chair radiographic facility. Our program is fully accredited by the American Dental Association. You will graduate fully prepared to take regional and national board examinations.
Note: If you want to major in Dental Hygiene, you must apply and be accepted to the Department of Dental Hygiene's program in addition to being admitted to the university.
To receive a bachelor's degree at Northern Arizona University, you must complete at least 120 units of credit that minimally includes a major, the liberal studies requirements, and university requirements as listed below.
In addition to University Requirements:
Please note that you may be able to use some courses to meet more than one requirement. Contact your advisor for details.
|Minimum Units for Completion||123|
|Highest Mathematics Required||MAT 114|
|Additional Admission Requirements||Required|
|Additional Fees/Program Fees||Required|
|University Honors Program||Optional|
|Some online/blended coursework||Required|
|AZ Transfer Students complete AGEC-A||Recommended|
|Progression Plan Link||View Progression Plan|
The Northern Arizona University Dental Hygiene Department offers the only Bachelor’s Degree in Dental Hygiene in the State of Arizona. With a national reputation for educating dental hygiene professionals since its inception in 1973, the program offers a high-quality education. Students complete two years of prerequisite didactic instruction in preparatory areas such as human anatomy and physiology, chemistry, microbiology, nutrition, human behavior and statistics and then apply to the program. Once students enter the program, a strong emphasis is placed on gaining extensive clinical experience. Regular clinic rotations require students to provide dental hygiene care at the NAU Dental Hygiene Clinic, the Hopi Health Care Facility, the Yavapai Apache Dental Clinic, Flagstaff Medical Center, and at North Country Healthcare. Faculty connect these field experiences to coursework, so students actively apply their knowledge of Oral Pathology, Oral Medicine, Pharmacology and Periodontics to their work with patients in the clinic. In addition to regular clinical rotations, students must complete a minimum two-week summer externship in a dental public health facility serving American Indian, military, or underserved populations throughout Arizona, in selected sites outside Arizona, or Internationally. Graduates are prepared to practice in diverse settings with special emphasis on rural communities and other underserved populations through a curriculum centered in public health. Their capstone project requires the origination of a public health project that requires exhaustive assessment and planning. Projects are then implemented and outcomes are evaluated in a final written report. This public health emphasis specifically prepares graduates to write grant proposals and serve in public health administrative roles. The future of dentistry is moving towards the development of a dental therapist; a new Masters prepared dental midlevel provider. Students graduating from NAU’s Bachelor of Science in Dental Hygiene are optimally poised to enter advanced dental therapy programs, work in independent practice, and/or work in affiliated practice.
Student Learning Outcomes
Outcomes align with Standards from the American Dental Association’s Commission on Dental Accreditation
Preprofessional Requirements (51 units)
To be eligible to enter the major you must complete the following 51 units:
Take the following 72 units:
Dental Science courses
Additional coursework is required, if, after you have met the previously described requirements, you have not yet completed a total of 123 units of credit.
Be aware that some courses may have prerequisites that you must also take. For prerequisite information click on the course or see your advisor.