Course Info

Certificate III in Dental Assisting

National Course Code: HLT35015


Sink your teeth into a fulfilling career as a dental assistant with the nationally accredited Certificate III in Dental Assisting. Contribute to the success of every area of the dental practice from assisting during dental procedures to cleaning and sterilising equipment, to learning key administration skills.


Through a mix of theory and practical coursework, learn to:

  • Maintain high standards in infection prevention and control
  • Process reusable medical devices and equipment
  • Prepare for and assist with oral healthcare procedures
  • Assist with dental radiography
  • Apply workplace health and safety
  • Provide first aid


Develop the attributes to help you get ahead:

  • People management skills
  • Supportive and empathetic nature
  • Teamwork skills and a collaborative spirit
  • Service oriented focus
  • An interested in health care


Completing this course provides you with:

  • A nationally recognised qualification at Certificate III level
  • A First Aid certificate
  • A strong pathway to continue your study and enhance your career opportunities

Career opportunities:

  • Dental assistant
  • Dental nurse
  • Dental assistant and receptionist


Take your career further and go on to specialist skills with the Certificate IV in Dental Assisting:

  • Radiography
  • Oral Health Promotion
  • General Anaesthesia and Conscious Sedation

Or, choose a non-clinical path with the Diploma of Practice Management.

This course is superseded. You can still enrol in this course, and you will be contacted if you need to transition into the next version when it is available.

Course details

People who are successful in this industry are:

  • A people person
  • Supportive and empathetic
  • Collaborative and a team player
  • Service oriented
  • Interested in health care

Assessments and assignments are a great way to evaluate how much you have learned and to refine your techniques and practices. This course offers a range of assessment methods for you to shine, including:

  • Skills assessments
  • Knowledge assessments
  • Case study assessments
  • Projects

The Certificate III course is an entry level qualification that trains you in the foundational skill you need to be successful in your role.

The Certificate IV course builds on your foundation experience and offers the opportunity to specialise in a particular area.

Depending on your campus location and local partnerships with TAFE NSW, you may have the opportunity to participate in excursions that get behind the scenes in the dental industry.

You will gain a range of industry specific skills related to delivering a safe and high quality dental assistant service.

Hands-on skills will include:

  • Dental assisting skills including assisting with oral health procedures
  • Dental radiography
  • Maintaining high standards of infection prevention
  • Processing reusable medical devices and equipment
  • Administration skills such as processing payments and making bookings along with other front office management skills

You will practice your skills in a simulated dental clinic environment either at a TAFE NSW campus or in a real workplace. You will also work with real clients during your work placement to gain confidence and valuable experience in the industry.

Study at your local TAFE NSW campus or online - and spend time in a simulated dental surgery where you can practice your skills in a setting that reflects a real workplace.

Student facilities, amenities and support services:

  • Counsellors
  • LNN specialists
  • Interpreter services
  • Helpdesk and online learning support
  • Guidance from Library staff
  • Guidance from student support services
  • Opportunities to participate in tutoring time with your teacher outside of the classroom and online lecture environment
  • Additional contact with your teacher via email, Skype calls, phone calls, allocated meeting times
  • Work placement support to help you identify and secure a work placement

The dental health sector has been evolving in line with industry trends, national policy regulations, technology, and health quality and safety practice development.

Key trends currently seen by the industry include international competition, enhanced infection control procedures, expanded integration with other sectors and increased demand for specialist services.

Dental practices are increasing their scope of services to meet demand. This has increased the range of skills needed by todays dental assistants.

Dental practices are increasing their scope of services to meet changing consumer demands. Evolving demands broaden the range of skills needed by todays dental assistants. TAFE NSW partners with industry leaders to develop this course and ensure graduates are equipped to meet the changing requirements of the role.

Dental Assistants play a key role in the delivery of oral and dental health services in the community. Opportunities exist in a range of settings including:

  • Private practices
  • Public health services in hospitals, schools or community based clinics
  • Correctional services
  • Defence forces
  • Some aged care facilities provide oral health services

Dental assistants are also employed by mobile dental clinics that travel to aged care facilities in rural and remote areas to provide treatment.

  • Nationally Recognised Training
  • Traineeship Allowed

This course is superseded

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