Dental Hygiene


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  • Program Overview

    Two courses of study exist in the Dental Hygiene program:

    • An entry-level two-year upper division program which prepares graduates to become registered (licensed) dental hygienists. During the first year at the Medical Center, students study basic and dental sciences and dental hygiene theory and techniques. In the next year, emphasis is on clinical experience and application of dental hygiene procedures. The program is accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation, a specialized accrediting body recognized by the Council on Post-secondary Accreditation and the U.S. Department of Education.

               For more information regarding our online program for Registered Dental  Hygienist, please click the bolded link below. 

    • An advanced standing program (2+U Online) designed to allow licensed dental hygienists earn a baccalaureate degree in dental hygiene from the University of Mississippi Medical Center via an online learning environment. For more information, click here.

    Program goals

    The Dental Hygiene program goals, which are congruent with the University of Mississippi Medical Center (UMMC) and the School of Health Related Professions' (SHRP) goals, are to:

    • Strive for professional and educational excellence.
    • Provide trained and competent dental hygienists for Mississippi.
    • Instill a desire to maintain competence through life-long learning.
    • Provide high quality preventive and educational services to the surrounding community.

    Competency statements

    A graduate of the University of Mississippi Medical Center Baccalaureate Dental Hygiene Program will have attained the following competencies:

    • Legal
      • Understand, respect and function within all local, state and federal laws, rules and regulations.
    • Ethical
      • Understand, practice and promote the American Dental Hygienists Association's (ADHA) professional code of ethics in all dental hygiene endeavors. 
    • Dental hygiene process of care patient needs analysis (assessment)
      • Systematically collect, record and analyze data on the general, oral and psychosocial health status of a variety of patients using methods consistent with medical, legal and ethical principles and practices.
    • Care plan (treatment plan)
      • Employ critical decision making skills to formulate a comprehensive dental hygiene care plan based on all available assessment data and collaboration with the patient and other health care professionals to meet the patient's dental hygiene needs.
    • Patient care (implementation, evaluation and documentation)
      • Provide each patient with personal dental hygiene care based on assessment, dental hygiene diagnosis, planning, implementation and evaluation to achieve and maintain oral health and wellness. Document care by accurately recording all collected data, treatment planned and provided and other information and recommendations pertinent to patient care and treatment.
    • Professional growth
      • Promote quality patient care by providing each graduate with the foundation for continuing professional growth, learning and practice founded on evidence-based research and evolving standards of care. Enhance the standing of the profession by preparing the graduate for participation in professional and service organizations.
    • Community health
      • Plan and participate in community oral health activities to promote health and disease prevention of diverse groups.
    • Career opportunity
      • Identify and evaluate dental hygiene careers within alternative health care, industry, education, government and research settings.

    For more information

    For more information on the entry-level Dental Hygiene program, contact:

    • Beckie Barry, Department Chair
              Phone: (601) 984-6310
              E-mail: bbarry@umc.edu
    • Amy Sullivan, Admissions Committee Chair 
              Phone: (601) 984-6320
              E-mail: asullivan@umc.edu

    For more information on the 2+U Advanced Standing (Online) program, contact:

    • Elizabeth Carr 
              Phone: (601) 984-6310
              E-mail: ecarr@umc.edu