Academic Programs

Expanded Function Dental Assistant Certificate

This high-growth field offers the opportunity to work with inspiring colleagues and potentially command a competitive salary in as little as six months. Your professional education will include some of the most relevant and up-to-date training available in the area.

The training involves both lecture and lab work to maximize knowledge and hands-on skills. Better yet, our classes are scheduled for maximum flexibility to accommodate students who are working full- or part-time while studying for a certificate or associate degree.

By earning an Expanded Function Dental Assistant (EFDA) certificate Dental Assistants can return to the field of dentistry with a broader skill set and increased earning potential. They can also opt to continue on to secure their associate degree in dental hygiene or a related field. Your skills would be especially valuable for private dental offices and dental clinics.

At Central Penn, our faculty will help you develop the skills to build enriching relationships with patients and provide preventive dental care that will prevent pain, tooth loss, and other serious dental issues in years to come. Flossing, fluoride, x-rays, and schedule may be all in a day’s work.

Certificate in Expanded Function Dental Assistant

Dental assistants can expand their skill set by earning the Certificate in Expanded Function Dental Assistant (EFDA). An EFDA performs all the duties of the dental assistant, along with placing and carving amalgam and composite restorations, placing sealants, doing coronal polishing, applying fluoride, and placing bases and liners, matrix bands, wedges and rubber dams.

The program takes a blended approach to learning. The first term involves lectures, along with hands-on labs in the Summerdale area on Saturdays. The second term will consist of an externship to expand clinical experiences. When the program is completed, students are eligible to apply for the State Board Licensure exam.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates that the labor market for EFDAs will grow at 18 percent over the next 10 years, far faster than the national average for other fields.

Lectures will all be on-line and labs will be held on-ground.


DEN 200 - Expanded Function Dental Assistant
DEN 205 - Compliance, Ethics and Professional
Responsibility for the Dental Professional
DEN 200L - Expanded Function Dental Assistant Lab
DEN 210 - EFDA Externship

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Careers you can pursue

  • Dental Hygienist
  • Dental Assistant
  • Expanded Function Dental Assisting

You will succeed if you are...

  • Personable
  • Detail-oriented
  • Neat
  • Good at working with your hands
  • Patient
  • Empathetic


88.1% of our graduates were employed in their chosen field or continuing their education within one year of graduation.

* Based on graduates whom we have information during a one-year period from 2022-23. It should be noted that 98.1% of graduates were employed in some capcity or continuing their education.

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