Best Dental Assistant Schools in New Jersey – 2020

Dental assistants in New Jersey operate under a broad scope of practice mandate. So long as they work under the direct supervision of a licensed dentist, they can perform many clinical tasks. They can take oral impressions, they can remove excess cement from crowns, and they can provide prophylactic and preventative measures such as the application of sealants and fluorides. For responsibilities such as taking dental X-rays that fall under the aegis of “expanded functions,” however, dental assistants in the Garden State will need to seek additional certifications. Dental assisting promises a comfortable salary and the opportunity to help others. To help you get started on this health care career track, we’ve ranked the best dental assistant schools in New Jersey.

What Courses will I be Taking During my Dental Assistant Training?


All dental assistant programs in NJ have academic, laboratory and clinical components. The specific nature of that mix, though, will vary according to whether you’re pursuing a diploma or an associate degree.

Diploma programs focus on preparing you to hit the ground running. Your coursework will concentrate on the specific skills you’ll be using in your field. You’ll take classes in biodental science, dental pharmacology and dental materials. You’ll be taught chair-side assisting skills in your clinical labs, and you’ll go on to hone those skills through clinical rotations.

Associate degree programs will teach you these skills as well in your second year, but your first year is likely to be devoted to acquiring a theoretical knowledge base. Courses are likely to include biology, physiology and oral anatomy.

Dental Assistant Program Length & Cost in New Jersey


Two types of training programs are available to aspiring dental assistants in the Garden State: certificate/diploma programs and associate degree programs. The former takes anywhere between 6 and 15 months to complete and will cost you between $2,670 (if you attend a community college) and $31,170 (if you attend a technical college.) A two-year associate degree will set you back anywhere from $7,800 (at a community college) to $47,720 (at a tech college.)

Type of Program Length Cost
Certificate / Diploma6 – 15 Months$2,670 - $31,170
Associate Degree2 Years$7,800 - $47,720


View Information about the 8 Best Dental Assistant Programs in New Jersey for 2020

View Ranking Methodology

1. Camden County College, Blackwood

Certificate:
Associate Degree:

2. Fortis Institute, Wayne & Lawrenceville


3. Ocean County Vocational Technical School, Toms River


4. Brookdale Community College, Lincroft


5. Harris School of Business, Voorhees


6. American Institute, Clifton, Somerset, & Toms River


7. Central Career Institute LLC, South Plainfield


8. Cape May County Technical Institute, Cape May Court House



Dental Assistant Career Outlook in New Jersey - 2020


How Many Dental Assistants are Currently Employed in NJ?


11,010


Where are Dental Assistants Currently Working in New Jersey?


Since dental assistants in New Jersey are required to work under the direct supervision of a licensed dentist, more than 10,000 of them are employed in dental practices. The remaining 440 dental hygienists in the Garden State work either for the government or in medical doctors’ offices.

For dental assistants who work in dentists’ offices, responsibilities are likely to vary according to the type of practice they’re employed by. In a solo practice, dental assistants may be generalists, doing everything from chair-side assisting to administrative office tasks. In a group practice that employs several dental assistants, each assistant may develop a specialty. One assistant may be the go-to for teaching patients the right ways to perform oral hygiene routines at home, for example, while another may be the person patients turn to with their insurance questions.

IndustryNumber of Dental Assistants
Offices of Dentists10,019
Government220
Offices of Physicians220


What is the Average Salary of a Dental Assistant in New Jersey?


The average dental assistant salary in New Jersey is $43,110. There’s quite a bit of competition for experienced dental assistants, particularly among dental practices that are close to New York City, so benefit packages are likely to be good for assistants who work 36 or more hours a week.

Type Salary
Hourly$20.73
Monthly$3,590
Annual$43,110
(Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics)


Salary Based on Years of Experience


Years of Experience Hourly Monthly Annual
Less than 1 year (Starting)$13.97 $2,420 $29,060
1-4 years$16.59 $2,880 $34,520
5-9 years$20.17 $3,500 $41,950
10-19 years$24.68 $4,280 $51,340
20 years or more$29.21 $5,060 $60,760
(Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics)


Dental Assistant Average Salary Comparison: New Jersey vs. National


Dental assistants in the Garden State earn significantly higher salaries that dental assistants working in other parts of the U.S. This probably reflects the fact cities like Newark and Jersey City are essentially suburban outposts of New York City where having great teeth and a winning smile are professional assets.

New Jersey National Difference
Number %
$43,110 $39,770 $3,3408.40%
(Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics)



The demand for dental assistants in the Garden State is only expected to grow 12.5 percent in the next six years. This probably indicates that the market for dental assistants is pretty well saturated and that New Jersey has relatively few areas that are underserved so far as dentistry goes. Though pockets of poverty do exist, on the whole, New Jersey is an affluent state: Its $74,000 median income is the third highest in the nation. New Jersey residents can afford to spend money on health care services like dentistry that may not be reimbursed through medical insurance coverage.

Employment Employment Growth, 2016-26
2016 2026 Number Percent
10,96012,3301,37012.50%
(Source: careeronestop)


Annual Job Openings


New Replacement Annual Job Openings (New + Replacement)
13710,2401,400
(Source: careeronestop)


Metro Wise Employment & Salary Data


The largest number of dental assistants is employed in Trenton, which is New Jersey’s capital. More than one-quarter of Trenton’s residents live in poverty, so it’s not surprising that dental assistant salaries are markedly lower here than they are in other parts of the state. The demand for their services outside the professional corridor is probably low.

Atlantic City hasn’t recovered from the crash and burn of its casino industry. Only 240 dental assistants work in the Atlantic City-Hammonton metropolitan area, although they do earn a relatively high $46,170 annually on average.

Metro Employment Average Salary
Hourly Monthly Annual

Trenton

720$18.46$3,200$38,390

Atlantic City-Hammonton

240$22.20$3,850$46,170

Ocean City

70$21.41$3,710$44,540

Vineland-Bridgeton

N/A$21.41$3,710$44,520
(Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics)


Useful Dental Assistant Organizations & Associations in New Jersey


New Jersey Dental Assistants Association

The New Jersey Dental Assistants Association offers networking opportunities and sponsors lectures on subjects of professional interest.