This is the preliminary (or launch) version of the 2024-2025 VCU Bulletin. Courses that expose students to cutting-edge content and transformative learning may be added and notification of additional program approvals may be received prior to finalization. General education program content is also subject to change. The final edition and full PDF version will include these updates and will be available in August prior to the beginning of the fall semester.

The Bachelor of Science in Dental Hygiene requires two years of liberal arts study, with a minimum of 60 semester hours, followed by two years of study focusing on basic and dental sciences, dental hygiene science and theory, community health and pre-clinical and clinical experiences. Upon successful completion of the program, graduates are eligible for national, regional and state board licensing examinations. Classes enter once each year in the fall semester.

Student learning outcomes

Upon completing this program, students will know and know how to do the following:

  • Demonstrate commitment to the legal and ethical practice of dental hygiene, demonstrating integrity, honesty and confidentiality with colleagues, patients and the community
  • Demonstrate competence in interpersonal and communication skills and in the evaluation, synthesis and application of information and technology as resources in contemporary dental hygiene practice
  • Systematically collect, accurately record and analyze data on the general, oral and psychosocial health status of a variety of patients using methods consistent with medico-ethico-legal principles
  • Use critical-thinking and decision-making skills to reach conclusions about the patient’s dental hygiene treatment needs based on an analysis of all available assessment data and evidence from current scientific literature
  • Collaborate with the patient, guardian and/or other health care professionals to formulate an individualized comprehensive dental hygiene care plan based on assessment findings and the dental hygiene diagnosis
  • Provide and implement specialized care that includes educational, preventive and therapeutic services designed to minimize risk and optimize oral health as well as assist the patient in achieving and maintaining oral health goals
  • Evaluate the outcomes of dental hygiene care, which occur throughout the process of care, and modify as necessary
  • Initiate and assume responsibility for health promotion and disease prevention activities for diverse populations in a variety of settings