Dental Hygiene

Program: DNTH
Credential: Ontario College Advanced Diploma
Delivery: Full-time
Work Integrated Learning: 4 Clinical Placements
Length: 6 Semesters
Duration: 3 Years
Effective: Fall 2024
Location: Barrie


Students prepare for the role of oral health professional specializing in health promotion, disease prevention, and therapeutic care. Course content includes dental hygiene theory and practice, oral health and biomedical sciences, and the practical skills required for clinical practice. In addition, students learn the principles of professional responsibility and communication, health promotion, advocacy and evidence-based health care. Students apply theory to practice starting in a preclinical setting, gradually building the competence to apply skills in a client-care environment. Under supervision, students are supported while providing ethical dental hygiene care onsite in the oral health clinic and in the community. Students are prepared to work with clients and communities of diverse backgrounds and ages with varying degrees of oral health in a variety of settings.

Career Opportunities

Graduates of this program are prepared with the knowledge and clinical experience required to become a regulated health professional in Ontario. Employment opportunities are found in a traditional dental office as a member of the oral health care team, or as an independent practitioner and proprietor of one’s own practice. Employment opportunities for the dental hygienist are also found in research, community and public health, administration and industry settings.

Program Learning Outcomes

The graduate has reliably demonstrated the ability to:

  1. Practice in a professional and competent manner within the defined scope of practice and consistent with current regulations and standards of practice.
  2. Evaluate the client’s oral health status using determinants of health and risk analysis to identify needs, justify treatment decisions and provide appropriate referrals to other health care professionals, as required.
  3. Design, implement and evaluate a range of primary, interceptive, therapeutic, preventive, and on-going oral health care services to meet the unique needs of clients.
  4. Analyze oral health issues in need of advocacy identify networks and promote actions that will support change and facilitate access to care.
  5. Identify, select, implement and evaluate quality assurance standards and protocols which contribute to a safe and effective working environment.
  6. Establish and maintain professional and inter-professional relationships which contribute to client-care safety and positive health-care outcomes.
  7. Facilitate the development of specific oral health attitudes, knowledge, skills, and behaviors, in client’s, by selecting and utilizing principles of teaching and learning.
  8. Develop and present a model for a dental hygiene practice that addresses relevant business principles, current legislation and standards of practice.

External Recognition

The program is accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation of Canada. Graduates are eligible to write the National Dental Hygiene Certification Exam, and upon successful completion of the program and exam, register with the College of Dental Hygienists of Ontario which is a legal requirement to practice in the province.

Program Progression

The following reflects the planned progression for full-time offerings of the program.

Fall Intake

  • Sem 1: Fall 2024
  • Sem 2: Winter 2025
  • Sem 3: Summer 2025
  • Sem 4: Winter 2026
  • Sem 5: Summer 2026
  • Sem 6: Fall 2026


A number of articulation agreements have been negotiated with universities and other institutions across Canada, North America and internationally. These agreements are assessed, revised and updated on a regular basis. Please contact the program co-ordinator for specific details if you are interested in pursuing such an option. Additional information can be found on our website at

Admission Requirements

OSSD or equivalent with

  • Grade 12 English (C or U)
  • Grade 12 Math (C or U)
  • Grade 12 Chemistry (C) or Grade 11 or 12 Chemistry (U)
  • Grade 11 or 12 Biology (C or U)

Mature students, non-secondary school applicants (19 years or older), and home school applicants may also be considered for admission. Eligibility may be met by applicants who have taken equivalent courses, upgrading, completed their GED, and equivalency testing. For complete details refer to:

Applicants who have taken courses from a recognized and accredited post-secondary institution and/or have relevant life/learning experience may also be considered for admission; refer to the Credit for Prior Learning website for details:

Selection Process

Applicants will be assessed and ranked based on academic grades. A minimum grade of 75% in each pre-requisite subject is recommended.

Criminal Reference/Vulnerable Sector Check

Placement agencies require an up-to-date clear criminal reference check and vulnerable sector check prior to going out on placement. Students should obtain their criminal reference three months prior to placement; checks conducted earlier may not be considered current. As some jurisdictions require longer lead-time for processing, please check with the program coordinator to ensure you allow for sufficient turn-around time. It is the student's responsibility to provide the completed document prior to placement start.

NOTE: Individuals who have been charged or convicted criminally and not pardoned will be prohibited from proceeding to a clinical or work placement.

Additional Information

It is required that students have Level HCP CPR and Standard First Aid prior to commencing the program (On-line courses are not acceptable). It is the student's responsibility to renew their Level HCP CPR certification annually while in the program. Applicants must have up-to-date immunization records (Clinical Preparedness Permit) in compliance with the Public Hospitals Act. Completion and submission of this record is required during the first week of classes in order to ensure your placement in clinical and field placement facilities.

Applicants are advised that the clinical requirements of the program and future employment requires good vision (with or without corrective lenses) and visual perception, the ability to sit for prolonged periods of time, and the manipulation of instruments using repetitive motion, fine motor skills, and good manual dexterity.

Applicants with back/neck/wrist or visual problems should discuss individual concerns with the Program Coordinator.

Applicants must also be comfortable speaking in front of individuals and groups.

Registration with the College of Dental Hygienists of Ontario (CDHO) is mandatory to practice as a dental hygienist in Ontario. Note: A history of criminal offences or charges of professional misconduct in another jurisdiction or another profession may interfere with your ability to become registered in Ontario. Should either situation apply, you are recommended to seek clarification with the CDHO before applying to the dental hygiene program at Georgian College.

Graduation Requirements

30 Program Courses
4 Clinical Placements
2 Communications Courses
3 General Education Courses

Graduation Eligibility

To graduate from this program, the passing weighted average for promotion through each semester, from year to year, and to graduate is 60%. Additionally, a student must attain a minimum of 50% or a letter grade of P (Pass) or S (Satisfactory) in each course in each semester unless otherwise stated on the course outline.

Program Tracking

The following reflects the planned course sequence for full-time offerings of the Fall intake of the program. Where more  than one intake is offered  contact the program co-ordinator for the program tracking.

Plan of Study Grid
Semester 1Hours
Program Courses  
BIOL 1001 Anatomy and Physiology - Introductory Concepts 42
DENT 1013 General and Oral Microbiology 42
DENT 1014 Dental and Orofacial Anatomy 42
DENT 1047 Introduction to the Dental Hygiene Profession 28
DENT 1053 Pre-Clinical Dental Hygiene 1 112
DENT 1054 Oral Histology and Embryology 28
Communications Course  
Select 1 course from the communications list during registration. 42
Semester 2
Program Courses  
BIOL 1002 Anatomy and Physiology: Advanced Concepts 42
DENT 1018 Applied Oral Health Promotion 42
DENT 1055 Pre-Clinical Dental Hygiene 2 112
DENT 1056 Dental Materials 1 28
DENT 1057 Dental Radiography for the Dental Hygienist 70
DENT 1058 Preparation for Dental Hygiene Practice 28
Semester 3
Program Courses  
DENT 1021 Medical and Pharmacological Considerations for Dental Hygiene Care 42
DENT 1022 Periodontics for the Dental Hygienist 42
DENT 2026 Dental Materials 2 28
DENT 2027 Diet and Nutrition for Oral Health 28
HLTH 1000 Health Care in Canada 42
Clinical Placement  
DENT 2025 Clinical Dental Hygiene - Introduction 98
General Education Course  
Select 1 course from the general education list during registration. 42
Semester 4
Program Courses  
DENT 2000 Oral Pathology 42
DENT 2007 Health Promotion and Community Oral Health 42
DENT 2029 Human Pathophysiology for the Dental Hygienist 42
DENT 2030 Introduction to Research Methods for the Dental Hygienist 42
HLTH 2003 Diverse Populations and Health Beliefs 42
Clinical Placement  
DENT 2028 Clinical Dental Hygiene - Intermediate 140
Semester 5
Program Courses  
DENT 2005 Role of the Dental Hygienist in Orthodontics 42
DENT 3005 Evidence-Based Dental Hygiene Practice 42
DENT 3014 Dental Hygiene Practice Management 28
DENT 3015 Periodontics for the Dental Hygienist 2 28
Clinical Placement  
DENT 3013 Clinical Dental Hygiene - Advanced 126
Communications Course  
Select 1 course from the communications list during registration. 42
General Education Course  
Select 1 course from the general education list during registration. 42
Semester 6
Program Courses  
DENT 2001 Professional Practice and Jurisprudence 42
DENT 3017 Business Practice for the Dental Hygienist 42
DENT 3018 Community Dental Hygiene Practice 42
DENT 3019 Consolidation Case Studies 28
DENT 3020 Health Policy and Advocacy 28
Clinical Placement  
DENT 3016 Clinical Dental Hygiene – Consolidation 126
General Education Course  
Select 1 course from the general education list during registration. 42
 Total Hours2030

Graduation Window

Students unable to adhere to the program duration of three years (as stated above) may take a maximum of six years to complete their credential. After this time, students must be re-admitted into the program, and follow the curriculum in place at the time of re-admission. 

Disclaimer: The information in this document is correct at the time of publication. Academic content of programs and courses is revised on an ongoing basis to ensure relevance to changing educational objectives and employment market needs. 

Program outlines may be subject to change in response to emerging situations, in order to facilitate student achievement of the learning outcomes required for graduation. Components such as courses, progression, coop work terms, placements, internships and other requirements may be delivered differently than published.

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