Oregon Public Universities


Classification Specifications


Classification Number: 6391


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Salary Range 17 $2741 $2859 $2971 $3103 $3235 $3382 $3540 $3710 $3887 $4072


The DENTAL ASSISTANT, under the supervision of a licensed dentist, provides chairside assistance to dentists, dental hygienists, or dental technicians. The Dental Assistant also schedules appointments, keeps patient records and other clerical tasks.


This is a single classification and not currently part of a series of classes.


The duties listed below are not inclusive but characteristic of the type and level of work associated with this class. Individual positions may perform all or some combination of the duties listed below as well as other related duties.

  1. Dental Assisting. Under the supervision of a dentist, provides chairside dental support to dentists, dental hygienists, or dental technicians. Prepares work station, instruments, and materials, and escorts patient to the work station. Assists, as directed by the dentist, during dental procedures. Prepares amalgams and adhesives and applies topical fluoride. Sterilizes and wraps instruments and cleans work station between patients.

    Exposes and develops radiographs for dental diagnostic purposes. Instructs individuals in oral hygiene techniques and preventative procedures. Removes post-extraction and periodontal dressings, removes sutures, and applies topical anesthetic and desensitizing agents.

  2. Clerical Functions. Schedules and confirms patient appointments and recalls. Prepares daily schedules and pulls patient charts, checking for communicable diseases and advising dentist as necessary. Under dentist's supervision, records examination findings or treatment procedures to patient charts. Processes dental insurance forms, assists with patient billing and account collection, and prepares patient and office production statistics.


The Dental Assistant has daily in-person and telephone contact with patients to provide information and schedule appointments and when working as part of the oral health care team and with dentists, dental hygienists, and dental technicians to assist with treatment of patients or discuss cases.


The Dental Assistant works under the direct, indirect, or general supervision of a dentist. Work is reviewed through direct observation, patient feedback, chart notes, and formal or informal meetings. Work is evaluated for thoroughness and compliance with professional standards such as those of the American Dental Association.


Positions in this class are primarily found in hospitals, clinics, or other health care facilities, including those located in state institutions for the mentally ill and prisons. They require the willingness to work in the environment associated with the position's location and purpose. Some positions require standing for extended periods, moderate to heavy lifting and the willingness to work overtime, on-call, and/or rotating schedules.


One year of chairside dental assisting experience; AND

  • Be able to obtain a Certified Dental Assistant credential from the Dental Assisting National Board; and
  • Be able to obtain a Certification by the Oregon State Board of Dentistry for Radiological Proficiency; and
  • Possess a valid Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) card at the time of appointment.

NOTE Some positions may also require Certification by the Oregon State Board of Dentistry as an Expanded Function Dental Assistant or an Expanded Function Orthodontic Dental Assistant.