CompGeo Salary Survey Benchmark Job Summary and Competencies

Dental Assistants

The Benchmark Job Description below represents the specific Position Characteristics of the job used in the Salary Survey. Benchmark Job Descriptions should be inspected carefully to review the degree of matching between an organizations' Job and the Salary Survey Benchmark. Matching internal Jobs to Salary Survey Benchmark Jobs should not be done on Job Title alone. A thorough comparison of Salary Survey Benchmark to Internal Job Descriptions is recommended. A good overlap should exist on any comparisons used on critical Job Dimensions and Competencies.
 
CompGeo Occupation Group: Health Care
Job Family: Dental
Benchmark Title: Dental Assistants
 
Summary Job Description Tasks
Assist dentist, set up equipment, prepare patient for treatment, and keep records. Prepare patient, sterilize and disinfect instruments, set up instrument trays, prepare materials, and assist dentist during dental procedures.
 
Expose dental diagnostic x-rays.
 
Record treatment information in patient records.
 
Take and record medical and dental histories and vital signs of patients.
 
Provide postoperative instructions prescribed by dentist.
 
Assist dentist in management of medical and dental emergencies.
 
Pour, trim, and polish study casts.
 
Instruct patients in oral hygiene and plaque control programs.
 
Make preliminary impressions for study casts and occlusal registrations for mounting study casts.
 
Clean and polish removable appliances.
 
Clean teeth, using dental instruments.
 
Apply protective coating of fluoride to teeth.
 
Fabricate temporary restorations and custom impressions from preliminary impressions.
 
Schedule appointments, prepare bills and receive payment for dental services, complete insurance forms, and maintain records, manually or using computer.
 
Order and monitor dental supplies and equipment inventory.
 
Fabricate and fit orthodontic appliances and materials for patients, such as retainers, wires, and bands.
 
 
CompGeo Occupation Group: Health Care
Job Family: Dental
Benchmark Title: Dental Assistants
 
Important Knowledge Competencies Competency Description
Medicine and Dentistry Knowledge of the information and techniques needed to diagnose and treat human injuries, diseases, and deformities. This includes symptoms, treatment alternatives, drug properties and interactions, and preventive health-care measures.
 
Customer and Personal Service Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
 
English Language Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
 
Education and Training Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.
 
 
CompGeo Occupation Group: Health Care
Job Family: Dental
Benchmark Title: Dental Assistants
 
Important Skill Competencies Competency Description
Speaking Talking to others to convey information effectively.
 
Reading Comprehension Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
 
Active Listening Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
 
Service Orientation Actively looking for ways to help people.
 
Critical Thinking Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
 
Monitoring Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
 
Social Perceptiveness Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.
 
Coordination Adjusting actions in relation to others' actions.
 
Writing Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.
 
Operation Monitoring Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly.
 
Quality Control Analysis Conducting tests and inspections of products, services, or processes to evaluate quality or performance.
 
Time Management Managing one's own time and the time of others.
 
Instructing Teaching others how to do something.
 
Complex Problem Solving Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.
 
Judgment and Decision Making Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.
 
 
CompGeo Occupation Group: Health Care
Job Family: Dental
Benchmark Title: Dental Assistants
 
Important Ability Competencies Competency Description
Oral Comprehension The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
 
Oral Expression The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
 
Speech Recognition The ability to identify and understand the speech of another person.
 
Near Vision The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).
 
Arm-Hand Steadiness The ability to keep your hand and arm steady while moving your arm or while holding your arm and hand in one position.
 
Speech Clarity The ability to speak clearly so others can understand you.
 
Written Comprehension The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
 
Finger Dexterity The ability to make precisely coordinated movements of the fingers of one or both hands to grasp, manipulate, or assemble very small objects.
 
Written Expression The ability to communicate information and ideas in writing so others will understand.
 
Problem Sensitivity The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem.
 
Deductive Reasoning The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.
 
Inductive Reasoning The ability to combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events).
 
Information Ordering The ability to arrange things or actions in a certain order or pattern according to a specific rule or set of rules (e.g., patterns of numbers, letters, words, pictures, mathematical operations).
 
Category Flexibility The ability to generate or use different sets of rules for combining or grouping things in different ways.
 
Selective Attention The ability to concentrate on a task over a period of time without being distracted.
 
Control Precision The ability to quickly and repeatedly adjust the controls of a machine or a vehicle to exact positions.
 
Manual Dexterity The ability to quickly move your hand, your hand together with your arm, or your two hands to grasp, manipulate, or assemble objects.
 
 
CompGeo Occupation Group: Health Care
Job Family: Dental
Benchmark Title: Dental Assistants
 
Tools/Technology Example Product Category
Email software Electronic mail software
 
Henry Schein Dentrix software Medical software
 
Intuit Quicken software Accounting software
 
Kodak Dental Systems Kodak SOFTDENT Practice management software PMS Medical software
 
Microsoft Excel Spreadsheet software
 
Microsoft Office software Office suite software
 
Patterson Dental Supply Patterson EagleSoft Medical software
 
The Systems Workplace TDOCS Medical software
 
Web browser software Internet browser software
 
Word processing software Word processing software
 
Air abrasion units Dental laboratory air abrasion units
 
Air compressors Air compressors
 
Air/water syringes Teeth cleaning devices or accessories
 
Amalgam carriers Amalgam carriers
 
Amalgamators Dental amalgamators
 
Apex locators Dental depth gauges
 
Articulators Dental articulators or accessories
 
Aspirating syringes Dental syringes or needles or syringes with needles
 
Autoclaves Steam autoclaves or sterilizers
 
Band seating pliers Orthodontic pliers
 
Bench lathes Dental laboratory lathes or accessories
 
Bite blocks Dental bite blocks or wings or tabs
 
Bitewing film holders Dental radiology film
 
Burs Dental burs
 
Caries detection aids Dental lasers
 
Cartridge syringes Dental syringes or needles or syringes with needles
 
Chemiclaves Chemical or gas sterilizers
 
Collar scissors Dental scissors
 
Computerized pressure/vacuum casting systems Dental laboratory vacuum units or supplies
 
Contouring orthodontic pliers Orthodontic pliers
 
Cotton forceps Dental forceps
 
Crown scissors Dental scissors
 
Dental chairs Dental examination chairs or related parts or accessories
 
Dental crimping pliers Orthodontic pliers
 
Dental cutting instruments Dental cutting or separating discs
 
Dental explorers Dental probes
 
Dental furniture units Combination furniture sets for dental procedures
 
Dental handpieces Dental hand pieces or accessories
 
Dental laser systems Dental lasers
 
Dental pliers Orthodontic pliers
 
Dental retainers Dental retainers
 
Dental spatulas Dental spatulas
 
Dental tweezers Dental tweezers
 
Dental wedges Dental wedges or sets
 
Dental x ray film processors Dental film processors
 
Dental x ray machines Dental x ray units
 
Denture model presses Dental laboratory casting machines or its parts or accessories
 
Denture, acrylic and porcelain polishing kits Dental finishing or polishing kits
 
Double-ended probes Dental probes
 
Electric endodontic handpieces Dental hand pieces or accessories
 
Electric general dentistry handpieces Dental hand pieces or accessories
 
Electric surgical handpieces Dental hand pieces or accessories
 
Electronic blood pressure devices Electronic blood pressure units
 
Electronic calculus detectors Dental hygiene instruments
 
Electrosurgery units Electrosurgical or electrocautery equipment or accessories or related products
 
Evacuator systems Dental saliva ejectors or oral suction devices or supplies
 
Extracting forceps Dental forceps
 
Filling instruments Dental filler contouring instruments
 
Gingival retraction cords Dental operatory retraction cords
 
Gracey curettes Periodontal curettes
 
Headgear Orthodontic appliance clasps
 
Hemostatic forceps Dental forceps
 
High-intensity lights Cosmetic dentistry curing lights or accessories
 
High-speed handpieces Dental hand pieces or accessories
 
High-velocity evacuators Dental saliva ejectors or oral suction devices or supplies
 
Impression trays Dental impression trays
 
Instrument sharpening devices Dental instrument sharpening accessories
 
Intraoral detailing pliers Orthodontic pliers
 
Intraoral x ray equipment Dental x ray units
 
Lead aprons Medical radiological shielding aprons or masks or drapes
 
Light curing units Cosmetic dentistry curing lights or accessories
 
Manual blood pressure cuffs Mercury blood pressure units
 
Matrix bands Bands for dental matrix
 
Model trimmers Dental laboratory model trimmers or accessories
 
Molar clamps Dental dam supplies
 
Needle holders Dental syringe accessory kits
 
Needles Dental syringes or needles or syringes with needles
 
Offset utility pliers Orthodontic pliers
 
Orthodontic band pushers Orthodontic setter bands
 
Orthodontic band slitters Orthodontic setter bands
 
Orthodontic brackets Orthodontic brackets
 
Orthodontic pliers Orthodontic pliers
 
Orthodontic separators Dental tooth separators
 
Oxygen tanks Medical gas cylinders or related devices
 
Panoramic x ray equipment Dental x ray units
 
Personal computers Personal computers
 
Posterior matrices Dental matrices or sets
 
Power vacuum mixers Dental laboratory vacuum units or supplies
 
Prophylaxis angles Dental finishing or polishing discs
 
Protective shielding equipment Medical radiological shielding aprons or masks or drapes
 
Pulp testers Dental pulp or vitality testers
 
Radiation dosimeters Medical radiation dosimeters
 
Root elevators Dental elevators
 
Rotary handpieces Dental hand pieces or accessories
 
Rubber dam clamp forceps Dental dam supplies
 
Rubber dam punches Dental dam supplies
 
Rubber dams Dental dam supplies
 
Saliva ejectors Dental saliva ejectors or oral suction devices or supplies
 
Scalers Dental scalers or accessories
 
Single-ended periodontal probes Dental probes
 
Slow-speed dental handpieces Dental hand pieces or accessories
 
Splinter forceps Dental forceps
 
Steam cleaning equipment Steam autoclaves or sterilizers
 
Steam sterilizers Steam autoclaves or sterilizers
 
Sterilizers Steam autoclaves or sterilizers
 
Straight utility pliers Orthodontic pliers
 
Thermal disinfectors Dry heat or hot air sterilizers
 
Thyroid collars Medical radiological shielding aprons or masks or drapes
 
Tongue forceps Dental forceps
 
Torqueing pliers Orthodontic pliers
 
Ultrasonic sterilization units Ultrasonic cleaning equipment
 
Universal curettes Periodontal curettes
 
Vacuum formers Dental formers
 
X ray machine cones Dental x ray apparatus parts or kits or accessories
 
 
CompGeo Occupation Group: Health Care
Job Family: Dental
Benchmark Title: Dental Assistants
 
Prerequisite Qualification Category Education and Experience Level
Required Level of Education Post-Secondary Certificate - awarded for training completed after high school (for example, in Personnel Services, Engineering-related Technologies, Vocational Home Economics, Construction Trades, Mechanics and Repairers, Precision Production Trades)
 
On-Site or In-Plant Training None
 
On-the-Job Training Over 1 month, up to and including 3 months
 
 
CompGeo Occupation Group: Health Care
Job Family: Dental
Benchmark Title: Dental Assistants
 
Alternate Job Title(s)
Certified Dental Assistant (CDA)
Certified Registered Dental Assistant
Dental Aide
Dental Assistant
Dental Nurse
Dental Office Manager
Dentist Attendant
Expanded Dental Assistant
Expanded Duties Dental Assistant (EDDA)
Expanded Duty Dental Assistant
Expanded Functions Dental Assistant (EFDA)
Hygiene Assistant
Oral And Maxiofacial Surgical Assistant
Oral Surgery Assistant
Orthodontic Assistant
Orthodontist Assistant
Registered Dental Assistant (RDA)
Surgical Dental Assistant
 
CompGeo Occupation Group: Health Care
Job Family: Dental
Benchmark Title: Dental Assistants
 
 
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