Dental Assistant Schools and Careers in California CA

How to become a Dental Assistant in California

It is a great time to pursue a career as a dental assistant in California given the strong jobs growth in the sector. The Bureau for Labor Statistics has predicted that the number of dental assisting jobs in the USA will grow by a massive 19% between 2016 and 2026.

In order to become a dental assistant in the USA most states will require you to graduate from an accredited program and to pass additional state level or national certification exams. Find out more about becoming a Dental Assistant in California below.


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Listed below are some of the top dental assisting and related programs nearest to you in California.

Get started today in a few easy steps. Simply click on the green ‘Get Admissions Info’ button for each school to receive more information on course curriculum, admissions requirements, tuition, financial assistance etc.

Top Dental Assistant Schools in California

StateSchoolAreaAccrediting BodyWebsite 
CaliforniaCollege of AlamedaAlamedaCODA
CaliforniaOrange Coast CollegeCosta MesaCODA
CaliforniaCypress CollegeCypressCODAhttp://www.cypresscollege.edu
CaliforniaCollege of the RedwoodsEurekaCODA
CaliforniaCitrus CollegeGlendoraCODAhttp://citruscollege.edu; citruscollege.edu/academics/programs/dental/Pages/default.aspx
CaliforniaCollege of MarinKentfieldCODA
CaliforniaHacienda La Puente Adult EducationLa PuenteCODA
CaliforniaFoothill CollegeLos Altos HillsCODAhttp://www.foothill.edu
CaliforniaMoreno Valley CollegeMoreno ValleyCODAhttp://www.mvc.edu/academicprograms/dh/index.cfm
CaliforniaCerritos CollegeNorwalkCODAhttp://www.cerritos.edu/dental-hygiene/
CaliforniaPasadena City CollegePasadenaCODAhttp://www.pasadena.edu/divisions/health-sciences/dental-hygiene/
CaliforniaDiablo Valley CollegePleasant HillCODAhttp://www.dvc.edu/academics/bhsd/hygiene/
CaliforniaChaffey CollegeRancho CucamongaCODA
CaliforniaSacramento City CollegeSacramentoCODAhttp://www.scc.losrios.edu/dental/
CaliforniaSan Diego Mesa CollegeSan DiegoCODA
CaliforniaCity College of San FranciscoSan FranciscoCODA
CaliforniaSan Jose City CollegeSan JoseCODAhttp://www.sjcc.edu/academics/departments/dental-assisting
CaliforniaPalomar Community CollegeSan MarcosCODA
CaliforniaCollege of San MateoSan MateoCODA
CaliforniaSanta Rosa Junior CollegeSanta RosaCODAhttp://dentalprograms.santarosa.edu

Listed above are some of the top CODA accredited programs in California. For more entry level and post secondary Dental Assisting options you can also view all DANB accredited programs.

Click on the ‘Request Information’ link for each school and enter your details to receive information on their dentistry programs and admissions data.

You can also view results for schools offering Dental Assisting programs in California and surrounding states on the map below.

Still haven’t found what you are looking for? You might also be interested in exploring dental hygiene programs in California.

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California Dental Assistant License Requirements

Once you have graduated from an accredited program it is required by California law that you obtain a license to work as a dental assistant there. The Dental Board of California governs the licensing of dental assistants in California. You can contact the Board directly using the contact details below:

Phone: (916) 263-2300
Website: http://www.dbc.ca.gov/

Dental Assistant Salary in California

StateCalifornia
Average Salary$39,930
Hourly Wage$19.20
Top 10% of Earners$57,990
Bottom 10% of Earners$26,280
#'s Employed50,100

The average Dental Assistant salary in California is $39,930 –  over 6% above the national average.

This  represents an hourly wage of $19.20.

There are currently 50,100 persons employed as dental assistants in the state.

The table below provides a breakdown of salaries and employment of dental assistants across the main towns, cities and non metro areas in California;

AreaSalaryHourly Wage# Employed
Vallejo-Fairfield, CA$46,880$22.54580
Napa, CA$48,260$23.20170
Salinas, CA$43,240$20.79530
Santa Rosa, CA$47,650$22.91670
Oxnard-Thousand Oaks-Ventura, CA$42,150$20.261,040
San Francisco-Redwood City-South San Francisco, CA$51,250$24.642,080
San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA$49,250$23.683,410
San Luis Obispo-Paso Robles-Arroyo Grande, CA$38,420$18.47400
Yuba City, CA$39,550$19.01160
Santa Maria-Santa Barbara, CA$41,170$19.79690
Madera, CA$41,470$19.94140
San Rafael, CA Metropolitan Division$42,640$20.50520
Santa Cruz-Watsonville, CA$42,990$20.67390
Sacramento--Roseville--Arden-Arcade, CA$40,710$19.573,060
Chico, CA$39,570$19.03250
San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA$46,620$22.426,780
San Diego-Carlsbad, CA$39,030$18.764,070
Redding, CA$37,050$17.81310
Hanford-Corcoran, CA$42,500$20.43150
Oakland-Hayward-Berkeley, CA Metropolitan Division$44,810$21.544,170
Stockton-Lodi, CA$37,160$17.87970
Bakersfield, CA$40,860$19.64900
Anaheim-Santa Ana-Irvine, CA Metropolitan Division$37,020$17.805,460
Merced, CA$36,500$17.55220
Los Angeles-Long Beach-Anaheim, CA$36,910$17.7517,010
Visalia-Porterville, CA$35,110$16.88390
El Centro, CA$38,090$18.31150
Los Angeles-Long Beach-Glendale, CA Metropolitan Division$36,860$17.7211,540
Modesto, CA$36,050$17.33620
Riverside-San Bernardino-Ontario, CA$34,550$16.614,830
Fresno, CA$33,760$16.231,270

*Updated May 2018 to allow for the most recent BLS data released in March 2018.

Related Healthcare Career Comparisons in California

The table below provides a comparison between income and employment for dental assistants with related healthcare careers in California;

CareerNumber EmployedHourly WageSalary
Dental Assistants49,210$18.62$38,730
Physician Assistants10,010$51.83$107,810
Respiratory Therapists14,690$38.16$79,370
Dental Hygienists20,560$45.18$93,970
Diagnostic Medical Sonographers5,060$46.10$95,880
Emergency Medical Technicians and Paramedics16,720$17.99$37,410
Pharmacy Technicians33,010$19.31$40,170
Surgical Technologists9,300$28.55$59,380
Veterinary Technologists and Technicians9,270$18.56$38,600
Home Health Aides31,730$13.26$27,580
Nursing Assistants98,040$14.96$31,110
Occupational Therapy Assistants1,920$30.55$63,550
Physical Therapist Assistants4,920$30.11$62,630
Massage Therapists14,330$20.83$43,330
Medical Assistants82,830$17.04$35,440
Medical Transcriptionists3,990$21.15$44,000
Phlebotomists12,780$18.73$38,960