Dental Hygienist

Associate Degree

Area of Study: Health Sciences

Program number: 105081


The two-year Dental Hygienist associate degree program at Madison College prepares you to work side by side with dentists.

The dental hygienist inspects the mouth, administers local anesthesia and chemotherapeutic agents, removes stains and deposits from teeth, applies preventive agents, prepares clinical and diagnostic tests, completes dental x-rays and performs many other services related to mouth care. Dental hygienists also counsel patients about preventive measures such as nutrition, oral hygiene, and dental care.

Top Career Training

The Dental Hygienist Program is widely respected by leading dentists throughout Madison, Wisconsin. Students develop top skills from their hands-on experience at our on-campus dental clinic, which serves real patients from the area. Dental hygiene graduates work for many top dental organizations.

Strong Job Opportunities

The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts 38 percent employment growth for dental hygienists by 2020. In addition to dental technician positions, Madison College graduates work as dental hygienist instructors, dental lab technicians, public school hygienists and more.

Dental Hygienist graduates are required to successfully complete comprehensive written and clinical examinations given under the direction of the State of Wisconsin Dentistry Examining Board, the American Dental Association's Joint Commission on National Dental Examinations, and Central Regional Dental Testing Services, Inc.

Please note: Upon admission to the Dental Hygienist program, you will be required to complete a background check and multiple immunization requirements, and provide documentation of current Health Care Provider CPR certification.

Program Details

Wisconsin law requires background checks for persons who provide care for others or have access to people who receive care. This law applies to students in many School of Health Education programs. Please review the Caregiver Background Check information on the School of Health Education Forms and Policies.

Students in the Dental Hygienist program must attend full time. 

Classes are offered Monday through Friday, 7:30 a.m. to 3:20 p.m. 

Dental Hygienist classes are offered at these Madison College campuses:

  • Madison - Truax

Explore financial aid eligibility for this program. 

Some of the courses for this program may be available online.

Dental Hygienist


  • Study with award-winning Madison College faculty and receive personalized attention and real-world training.
  • Get vital hands-on experience, working with patients in our on-campus dental clinic located in Madison College’s state-of-the-art Health Education Center at the Truax campus. 
  • Our graduates have an exceptionally high first-time pass rate on the required Central Regional Dental Testing Service (CRDTS), a state requirement to practice dental hygiene.

To Apply

Students need to complete the petition process to get into core-program classes for this program. Before submitting an application, it’s important to review the Petition Process webpage which also includes estimated wait times for each program.

After Acceptance

Once you have been accepted in a pre-program status, your next step is to complete the Dental Hygienist Petition Requirements.

Fall 2019 and Spring 2020               Fall 2020 and Spring 2021               


Contact Enrollment Services at or (608) 246-6210.


Prospective program students, the information below reflects the basic requirements for students admitted for the 2019-2020 academic year. To learn more about Madison College, visit us.

Current program students (including newly admitted), go directly to your Degree Progress Report (also referred to as an Advising Report or Academic Requirements) to view:

  • Progress toward your specific requirements
  • Alternative (in lieu of) courses to meet specific requirements

If you have questions after reviewing your report, please see Advising Services.


After completing the Dental Hygienist program at Madison Area Technical College, you will be able to:

  • Model dental hygiene professional code of ethics
  • Counsel clients/patients to reduce health risks
  • Provide community oral health services in a variety of settings
  • Manage infection and hazard control
  • Assess data on all aspects of patient/client health using methods consistent with dental hygienist scope of practice and legal principles
  • Formulate a comprehensive dental hygiene care plan in collaboration with the client and other health professionals
  • Provide preventive and therapeutic services that promote oral health according to the needs of the patient/client
  • Evaluate the effectiveness of the implemented client/patient dental hygiene care plan

Graduates of the Dental Hygienist program are able to find employment as the following:

  • Dental Hygienist

With additional education and/or work experience, dental hygiene graduates also may find employment as:

  • Dental Hygiene Instructor
  • Public Health Hygienist
  • Dental Laboratory Technician
  • Dental Sales Representative
  • Member of Dental Examining Board
  • Public School Hygienist
  • Dental Hygiene Administrator in hospital setting


  • Estimated Program Cost
    # of Credits for Completion
    Materials/Supplemental Costs
    Other Costs
    Total Estimated Program Costs:
    (book costs not included)
  • Graduate Summary
    Graduate Report Summary Overview

    2016 2017 2018
    Number of Program Graduates 34 34 36
    Number of Surveys Sent 34 34 36
    Number of Surveys Returned 26 28 25
    Percent of Surveys Returned 76.50% 82.40% 69.40%
    Available for Employment 26 26 23
    Percent Available for Employment 100.00% 92.90% 92.00%
    Not in Labor Market 0 2 2
    Percent Not in Labor Market 0.00% 7.10% 8.00%
    Available for Employment

    2016 2017 2018
    Graduates Employed 25 25 23
    Percent of Graduates Employed 96.20% 96.20% 100.00%
    Employed in Related Occupation 24 22 21
    Percent Employed in Related Occupation 96.00% 88.00% 91.30%
    Employed in Unrelated Occupation 1 3 2
    Percent Employed in Unrelated Occupation 4.00% 12.00% 8.70%
    Employed - No Response 0 0 0
    Percent Employed - No Response 0.00% 0.00% 0.00%
    Seeking Employment 1 1 0
    Percent Seeking Employment 3.80% 3.80% 0.00%
    Reaction To Training at Madison College

    2016 2017 2018
    Student satisfaction Mean (Out of 4) 3.5 3.5 3.3
    Number of Satisfaction Responses 26 28 25
    Very Satisfied 14 17 11
    Percent Very Satisfied 53.80% 60.70% 44.00%
    Satisfied 12 10 12
    Percent Satisfied 46.20% 35.70% 48.00%
    Unsatisfied 0 0 1
    Percent Unsatisfied 0.00% 0.00% 4.00%
    Very Unsatisfied 0 1 1
    Percent Very Unsatisfied 0.00% 3.60% 4.00%
    Primary Reason for Attending Madison College

    2016 2017 2018
    Number of Primary Reason Responses 26 28 25
    Preparation for Getting a Job 17 17 16
    Percent Preparation for Getting a Job 65.40% 60.70% 64.00%
    Career Change 8 8 7
    Percent Career Change 30.80% 28.60% 28.00%
    Improvement of Existing Skills 0 0 0
    Percent Improvement of Existing Skills 0.00% 0.00% 0.00%
    Preparation for Further Education 1 2 0
    Percent Preparation for Further Education 3.80% 7.10% 0.00%
    Personal Interest 0 1 1
    Percent Personal Interest 0.00% 3.60% 4.00%
    Other 0 0 1
    Percent Other 0.00% 0.00% 4.00%
    When Employment was Obtained

    2016 2017 2018
    Number of When Employment Obtained Responses 25 25 22
    Before Enrollment 1 1 1
    Percent Before Enrollment 4.00% 4.00% 4.50%
    While Attending the College 4 4 3
    Percent While Attending the College 16.00% 16.00% 13.60%
    After Training at the College 20 20 18
    Percent After Training at the College 80.00% 80.00% 81.80%
    Location of Employment (related and unrelated)

    2016 2017 2018
    Number of Employment Location Responses 25 25 23
    In College District 13 17 16
    Percent In College District 52.00% 68.00% 69.60%
    In Wisconsin, Not in District 10 7 6
    Percent of In Wisconsin 40.00% 28.00% 26.10%
    Outside of Wisconsin 0 0 1
    Percent Outside Wisconsin 0.00% 0.00% 4.30%
    Employer Location Unknown 2 1 0
    Percent Location Unknown 8.00% 4.00% 0.00%
    Salary Trend
    Salary Trend 2016 2017 2018
    Full Time Employment (Related Job) Full Time Salary Count 15 11 14
    Average Monthly Wage $4,495 $4,511 $4,851
    Average Hourly Wage $26.13 $26.23 $28.21
    Average Work Hours per Week 37.2 37.3 38.1
    Part Time Employment (Related Job) Part Time Salary Count 7 10 5
    Average Hourly Wage $26.78 $28.10 $31.20
    Average Work Hours per Week 27.6 26.8 30.2
  • Graduate Employers
    Total Positions Open for academic year: 2018
    Wisconsin TechConnectTM Jobs* Madison Non-Madison
    Number of Full Time Positions Open 32 228
    Number of Part Time Positions Open 31 202
    Total Jobs 63 430
    Graduate Employers for academic year: 2018
    Employer(s) Job Title City** State*** Positions
    Alan Holter DVM Hygienist Dodgeville
    Aspen Dental Dental Hygienist Dickson TN
    Associated Dentists Dental Hygienist
    DeForest Dental Services Dental Hygienist DeForest
    Dental Express Staffing Dental Hygienist Wilton
    Dental Health Associates Dental Hygienist
    Dental Health Associates Dental Hygienist Fitchburg
    Door Creek Dental Dental Hygienist
    Dr Robert Wyler Dental Hygienist Waukesha
    Eby Family Dental Registered Dental Hygienist Fort Atkinson
    First Choice Dental Dental Hygienist Middleton
    Jackson Family Dentistry Dental Hygienist Jackson
    Madison No Fear Dentistry Dental Hygienist
    Madison No Fear Dentistry Registered Dental Hygienist
    Midwest Dental Dental Hygienist Janesville
    Midwest Dental Registered Dental Hygienist
    Today's Dentistry Dental Hygienist West Bend
    Warren Family Dental/Affordable Dental Care Dental Hygienist
    Williams & Pearce Family Dental Dental Hygienist Richland Center

    * - Wisconsin TechConnectTM jobs are posted through a statewide consortium operated and funded by all 16 of the technical colleges in Wisconsin.

    ** - Only cities outside of Madison will display.

    *** - Only states outside of Wisconsin will display.

    **** - If you have a position to post, please contact Career and Employment Services at


Related Programs

MATC's Dental Hygienist program is accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation (CODA)