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Pierce College Dental Hygiene students

Program Information

Degree Awarded

Bachelor of Applied Science in Dental Hygiene (BASDH). We do not offer an associate's degree in dental hygiene.

Length of Program

The Bachelor of Applied Science in Dental Hygiene degree involves eight consecutive quarters starting in summer quarter.

School Hours/Working While in Program

Anticipate a typical schedule of from 7:30 a.m. until 5:30 p.m., Monday through Friday. However, quarterly schedules may vary, with some days being only a few hours in class. The average number of weekly class hours is approximately 25–30. Study time varies per individual student, but averages between 20–30 hours per week, as is standard for professional programs.

Note: Due to COVID-19, our current didactic instruction has been moved to online, synchronous or asynchronous for an undetermined length of time.

Occasional evenings and weekends are necessary for professional and inter-professional activities. Specific hours vary each quarter and mostly occur in the last few quarters of the program.

Due to the intensity of learning in a professional course of study, we recommend that students do not work while enrolled in the program.

Number of Yearly Accepted Students

Twenty (20) students are accepted each year in summer quarter at the Pierce College Fort Steilacoom campus located in Lakewood, WA. We do not have an online or distance campus option for our entry-level BASDH program.

The Bridge BASDH program is fully online and an option only for currently licensed dental hygienists with an associate degree in dental hygiene earned in the State of Washington in the year 1973 or later.

We do not use a wait list. Applicants may apply as many times as they want, but must meet the current year's requirements for application.

Due to the highly competitive nature of the application process, students who have been previously dismissed from the program have demonstrated a failure to progress in the profession of dental hygiene. Therefore, an offer of acceptance into the program may be denied.

Ranking Rubric

Science/Math/English GPA = 40%
Non-science GPA = 15%
HSRT Test = 15%
Writing Sample Test = 15%
Spatial Relations Test = 15%

Average GPA and Test Scores of Accepted Students

  • Science GPA: 3.87/4.00
  • Non-science GPA: 3.91/4.00
  • Health Science Reasoning Test Score: 23.15/30 points
  • Spatial Relation Test Score: 28.55/35 points
  • Writing Sample Test Score: 26.05/30 points
  • Range of number of applicants per year: 70–110

Graduate Degree Preparation

The Bachelor of Applied Science in Dental Hygiene degree prepares you for application to most graduate schools. However, graduate school requirements vary greatly and are dependent on the course of study. Thus, not all universities will transfer the BASDH degree in the same manner. See the ADHA educational site for more information on dental hygiene graduate programs.