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Program Overview

The University of New Mexico School of Medicine is pleased to offer a Bachelor of Science Degree Completion Program in Dental Hygiene online, as a continuation of a certificate or associate degree in dental hygiene. The program offers an opportunity to expand basic dental hygiene knowledge and skills into areas such as education, management, research, public health or advanced training. The curriculum is designed to allow continuing students to complete the program on a full or part-time basis. The courses are offered in an 8-week format.  

UNM degree completion students partake in a wide range of activities that may benefit future career endeavors, including graduate study. Generally, dental hygienists work in a dental clinics and perform many critical services that detect, prevent and treat diseases of the mouth. UNM's program provides dental hygienists an opportunity to master additional skills that will enhance their experience, knowledge-base and improve career opportunities.  Graduates will attain a complex skill set to work in multiple settings and industries including:

  • Medical Clinics
  • Hospitals
  • Education
  • Small Business
  • Corporations
  • Insurance Industry
  • Public Health
  • Research
  • Speaking and Writing

NOTE:  This program is a post-licensure program, meaning it is available only to students who already hold a valid dental hygiene license. The University of New Mexico cannot confirm whether this program leads to licensure or advanced certification in your home state. Prior to applying for admission, contact your state dental board to assure that, upon completion of the program, you are qualified to obtain a license or other form of certification. If you need assistance contacting the licensing agency in your state, contact UNM Online at (866) 869-6040.

Learning Goals

The mission of the University of New Mexico School of Medicine's Division of Dental Hygiene in Albuquerque educates future dental hygienists on improving health by providing academic and clinical training. Students will finish the program as highly qualified dental hygiene professionals who provide the highest quality oral health care services to the community, advance the art and science of dental hygiene via research and other scholarly activities and sponsor services that validate the programs of the university.

Program Goals

  • Expand career opportunities for registered dental hygienists
  • Refine the professional skills sets of the dental hygienists
  • Prepare dental hygienists for graduate studies

For more detailed information, see Goals of the BS in Dental Hygiene Program.

Program Details

The Bachelor of Science in Dental Hygiene (B.S.D.H.) degree completion program expands the basic skills and knowledge acquired in an Associate of Science in Dental Hygiene degree program.  This program is available to selected students who have received an Associate Degree or a Certificate in Dental Hygiene from a school accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation and a regional accreditation agency.

This program requires successful completion of 12 credit hours of core 400-level upper-division courses and 12 to 24 credit hours of electives.

Dental Hygiene Required Courses

Course NumberCourse NameCredit Hours
DEHY 400Current Issues in Dental Hygiene3
DEHY 410Dental Hygiene Research Methodology3
DEHY 440*Extramural Experience3 X 2

*DEHY 440 must be taken twice

Dental Hygiene Elective Courses

Course NumberCourse NameCredit Hours
DEHY 407*Problems3 - 9
DEHY 422Dental Public Heath I                       3

*DEHY 407 may be taken up to three times to fulfill degree requirements

Additional credit hours are elected to meet the interests of the individual student and to fulfill graduation requirements. UNM offers many exciting educational avenues to explore and students have the opportunity to design a curriculum according to personal career interests.

NOTE: The University of New Mexico cannot confirm whether this program leads to licensure or advanced certification in your home state. Prior to applying for admission, contact your state dental board to assure that, upon completion of the program, you are qualified to obtain a license or other form of certification if desired. If you need assistance contacting the licensing agency in your state, contact UNM Online at (866) 869-6040.

Degree Requirements

Degree Information

To graduate with a Bachelor of Science in Dental Hygiene degree from UNM, a student must complete a minimum of 128 credit hours. Thirty of these hours must be completed at UNM. UNM requires approximately 37 hours distributed between seven areas to complete the University Core Curriculum. Current dental hygienists will transfer in many of these requirements,  An academic advisor will be happy to review your academic history to determine which courses you may need to complete at UNM.  The university also requires completion of a 3 credit hour U.S. and Global Diversity and Inclusion requirement. Students may transfer course work from other accredited institutions to fulfill these requirements.   

For additional degree and program requirements for the BS Degree Completion in Dental Hygiene, please refer to the UNM Catalog.

Admission Requirements

  • Completion of a certificate or associate degree program in dental hygiene that has been accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation and a regional accreditation agency, or a letter of approval from the director of a CODA and regionally accredited New Mexico community college program, if simultaneously enrolled in one of these programs.
  • A satisfactory grade point average of at least 2.5 on a 4.0 scale
  • Application to the University of New Mexico
  • Application to the Degree Completion Program [PDF]
  • Official sealed transcripts of all prior college courses undertaken submitted to both UNM and the Division of Dental Hygiene
  • A $100 application fee made payable to the Division of Dental Hygiene
  • A copy of national board score
  • A copy of a current American Dental Hygienist license
  • Interview with the Director
  • Passport photograph attached to application

Application Deadlines

  • Fall 1st 8-week Term:  July 31
  • Fall 2nd 8-week Term:  September 30
  • Spring 1st 8-week Term: November 30
  • Spring 2nd 8-week Term:  January 31
  • Summer 8-week Term:  April 30

 Managed Online Program

At a Glance

Major Requirements: 24-36 Credit Hours
Next Start Date: Aug 19, 2019
100% Online
Cost Per Credit Hour: Based upon Fall 2019 tuition rates (TBD by UNM Board of Regents)
Course Cycle: 8-weeks

Tuition: Special tuition and fees apply

Contact

Department of Dental Medicine - Dental Hygiene Program Website
(505) 272-4513
RDiemer@salud.unm.edu

*To qualify for admission to the major, students must complete additional core and college requirements (see Degree Requirements tab for more information)