Dental Assistant Application & Admission | NorthWest Arkansas Community College

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Admission into NWACC's dental assistant program entails a number of requirements and recommendations. Please read all information before submitting an application.

Important Information:

  • View the all the admissions information listed below before applying. 
  • You will need to apply to be an NWACC student before completing the dental assistant application. If you have not applied to be a student yet, please see "How to Applybelow.

  • Application period is open April 1 - August 15. All application materials must be received on the designated deadline date and time. If the deadline falls on a weekend or holiday, then it will be the following business day.

  • The dental assistant program qualifies for Arkansas and Federal student aid, however, it does not qualify for the Academic Challenge Scholarship (Lottery Scholarship) due to program being a technical certificate. Discuss your individual situation with the Financial Aid Office. Apply for Financial Aid as soon as possible for priority processing.

The program administrator and faculty, in cooperation with appropriate institutional personnel, establish admissions procedures which are non-discriminatory, contribute to the quality of the program, and allow a selection of students with the potential to successfully complete the program. 

  • You must have the ability to communicate safely, accurately, and effectively in both written and spoken English.  If English is your second language, you ae encouraged to enroll in English as a Second Language (ESL) to enhance your success.
  • Submission of an application does not guarantee acceptance
  • ACT reading score of 19 or Accuplacer reading comprehension test of 78 is required
  • Graduate from an accredited high school or equivalent with a 2.0 GPA.
  • Have a grade point average of 2.0 for all college work
  • Have official high school and college transcripts
  • Complete application for enrollment in the program
  • Students must provide their own transportation to off-campus clinical sites.

How to Apply

  • Adult Students: If you are not currently enrolled at NWACC, you need to apply for admission to the college in addition to applying to the Dental Assistant program. Apply now to NWACC.
  • High School Students: High school juniors or seniors are eligible to enroll. Concurrent credit may be available through the student's high school. Contact your school counselor for more information on enrolling. Learn more through our High School Programs.
  • Complete your dental assisting application packet

There is an established admissions committee which includes the program administrator and the clinical coordinator. 

Applicants are interviewed on a first to apply, first to interview basis until all roster slots are filled. Applications received after the roster is filled will be placed on a waiting list for potential openings. There are frequent changes during the summer months prior to classes beginning in August.

The following criteria standards are used during the selection process:

  1. Students who have completed the application packet during the application period. If application is completed after the initial roster has filled, the student will be selected pending space availability.
  2. Background check and drug screening is required.

The Dental Assisting Director will inform you of the status of your application by email upon receipt of all required documents.

Upon selection to the program, you will be required to complete the following requirements:

  1. Students will be given instructions on the background check procedure which will include providing vaccination documentation, TB skin testing and drug screening.
  2. Admission to and continuation in the Dental Assisting program requires you to maintain a grade of C (75%) or better in all required Dental Assisting courses.
  3. A selected uniform and adherence to the dress code is required (est. cost $75 - $150).
  4. American Heart Association CPR/Basic Life Support for Health Professionals training will be provided in the program during the first month of classes.


If English is your second language and you are seeking admission into the Health Professions programs, you are required to complete an English as a Second Language (ESL) listening test. 

Students can receive more information and/or schedule to take the ESL listening test through the NWACC testing center by calling 479-619-4354 or visiting the testing center page.

The ESL listening test is designed to assess a student’s ability to understand standard American English. A score of 92 or higher on the COMPASS ESL listening test (taken within the last three years) OR a score of 120 or higher on the Accuplacer ESL listening test is REQUIRED for students seeking entrance
into Health Professions Programs. A minimum score or higher indicates the ability to understand complex discussions, such as academic lectures and factual reports. Students scoring below the minimum will need to retest and successfully pass by July 1st.


Application Period: Opens April 1 - Aug. 15

Dental Applications are open from April 1st up until the Friday before classes start in the fall semester.

Applications are reviewed on a first come, first served basis.

All application materials must be received by August 15th at 3:00 p.m.

Application Opens April 1

NOTE: If you are not a current NWACC student, you will need to apply for admission to the college first and then apply to the Dental Assisting Program.

Note: Students who will be attending clinical rotations while enrolled in a professional program at the Center for Health Professions will be required to have a drug screen performed, either prior to admission, or prior to attending clinical rotations. Students who test positive for drugs (including medical marijuana) will be denied access to the clinical rotations and will consequently be either denied acceptance into the professional program or dismissed from the professional program.