Average Annual Dental Assistant Salary in Hawaiʻi


  4303 Diamond Head Road Honolulu, HI 96816

  Dental Assisting Program

  (808) 734-9260


Tuition & Fees : $5,383
Trade Category : Healthcare / Dental Care
Program Type : Trade Program
Location : Hawai'i / O'ahu / Honolulu
Purpose of Program : Leads to Employment
Program Length : CA: 28 credits - 2 semesters; CO: 15 credits - 1 semester

*Covid-19 Updates*

All information sessions will be held on Zoom. Courses will be a combination of online and in-person instruction.
For up-to-date information, please click here for the Campus Status of Kapi‘olani Community College or here for the updates from the University of Hawai‘i Covid-19 page.

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Steps to get a job as a Dental Assistant

The Dental Assisting program (DENT) offered at Kapi‘olani Community College (KCC) leads to employment as a dental assistant. KCC offers two Dental Assisting certificates, the Certificate of Competence (CO) and the Certificate of Achievement (CA).

Certificate of Competence (CO)

All students will begin the program by first pursuing the Certificate of Competence. It is a 15-credit program that is usually completed in one semester, typically the Fall semester. The program is designed to prepare students for entry-level employment.

Certificate of Achievement (CA)

Students can choose to continue in the Dental Assisting program by pursing the Certificate of Achievement. The CA has an additional 13 credits making it a 28-credit program. It is usually completed in the Spring semester. The benefit of pursing the Certificate of Achievement is that students who complete the program are immediately eligible to take the Dental Assisting National Board Examination (DANB) and become Certified Dental Assistants (CDA). This program is also designed to prepare students for entry-level employment as a dental assistant.

The State of Hawai‘i does not currently require dental assistants to be certified, though it is a requirement for 38 states in the U.S.

Admissions Process

The application period for Fall Admission will be December 1- June 30.

There are several steps to the Dental Assisting admissions process and you can begin some of the steps before the next application period begins.

  1. Attend Mandatory Information Session
    • All sessions will be held on Zoom due to Covid-19.

    • For the dates of the information sessions, please go to the Dental Assisting website and click on the DENT Admissions and Advising link or click on Information Session Schedule to go directly to the pdf.

  2. Seek Advising with Health Careers Counselors
    • In-person counseling is currently suspended. Phone or Zoom appointments can be scheduled by calling the Health Careers Counseling Center at (808) 734-9224 or emailing them at hlthsci@hawaii.edu.

  3. Take the ACCUPLACER WriterPlacer Placement Test
    • You must receive a score of 5 or higher or qualification of ENG 100.

  4. Apply to the Dental Assisting Program
    • Previously, all applications had to be submitted in person to the Health Career Counseling Center. But due to Covid-19, applications must now be submitted via UH File Drop.

    • Find the application by going to the Dental Assisting website and clicking on the DENT Application link or by clicking on Dental Assisting Application to go directly to the pdf.


The Dental Assisting program is accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation (CODA). CODA is accredited by the U.S. Department of Education (USDE).

Kapi‘olani Community College is accredited by the Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges (ACCJC) which is a regional accrediting commission. The ACCJC is accredited by both the USDE and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA).


Tuition is based on the total number of credits taken and your resident status. There are three different resident status types with the following tuition and cost per credit hour:

  • Resident Tuition: $5,383 ($131/ credi

  • Non-Resident Tuition: $11,375 ($325/ credit)

  • Non-Resident Pacific Isle Exemptions Tuition: $7,217 ($196.50/ credit)

The following is a breakdown of the tuition and fees associated with the Dental Assisting program. Some of the costs are estimates, such as the cost of textbooks, and can vary based on courses taken. Fees are also subject to change by Kapi‘olani Community College.

The breakdown of tuition and fees of the CO and CA for the Dental Assisting Program

Financial Aid

Financial Aid is not available for the Dental Assisting program. The program is not approved for Title IV funding and does not qualify for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).


Information about scholarships and grants can be found here. Some scholarships and grants are included in a financial aid award, and you will likely be ineligible for those. But you are able to apply for other scholarship opportunities including outside scholarships that are not affiliated with KCC.

Veteran Education & Training Benefits

Kapi‘olani Community College (KCC) is a GI Bill® approved school and has 447 GI Bill® students. KCC takes part in the Yellow Ribbon Program and the Principles of Excellence Program. KCC is an approved education institution under the Veterans Education Assistance Act (GI Bill®), the Veterans Readjustment Act, and the Dependent’s Educational Act.

For more information, visit KCC's Veteran & Military Resource page or the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs Benefits page.

Career Information

Check out these pages for more information about careers that dental assisting can lead to, or for careers that are in a similar field.

Information includes job duties, the steps to gain employment in that career, and the top 5 and bottom 5 states that make the highest and lowest annual salary.

Financial Aid
Veterans Benefits
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