Dental Hygiene Program

DH student and faculty with patient

Contact us

Phone: (804) 828-9096

The Dental Hygiene Program in the Department of General Practice offers courses leading to a Bachelor of Science in Dental Hygiene. The Dental Hygiene Program, which began in 1969, 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 preclinical and clinical experiences. Upon successful completion of the program, graduates are eligible for national, regional and state board licensing examinations.


The Dental Hygiene Program at Virginia Commonwealth University is accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation. The commission is a specialized accrediting body recognized by the United States Department of Education. The Commission on Dental Accreditation can be contacted at (312) 440-4653 or at 211 East Chicago Avenue, Chicago, IL 60611-2678. The commission’s web address is:

The VCU Dental Hygiene Program Advantage

Attending the only dental hygiene program located within a dental school in the Commonwealth of Virginia, dental hygiene students at the Virginia Commonwealth University School of Dentistry have a unique opportunity to work in integrated clinical settings alongside DDS students as well as with faculty members from dental hygiene, dentistry and specialty areas -- gaining invaluable experiences as they learn the practice of dental hygiene while treating a highly diverse patient population. Academic excellence and clinical expertise are further supported by rotations through specialty areas (orthodontics, periodontics, oral surgery, and pediatric dentistry) and community-based and private-practice clinics at collaborative service-learning sites throughout Virginia. On these rotations students encounter real-world clinical experiences that will complement the experiences obtained at the School of Dentistry. Attendance is mandatory for all external rotation assignments and students are responsible for their own transportation to sites. 

Employment resources

Employment of dental hygienists, according to the U.S. Department of Labor, is projected to grow 19 percent from 2014 to 2024, much faster than the average for all occupations. Ongoing research linking oral health to general health will continue to spur demand for preventive dental services, which are provided by dental hygienists.

Follow these links to learn more about professional opportunities for dental hygienists.

Open house dates

The VCU Dental Hygiene Program holds information sessions for all of those interested. We will be going over the basics of the program, as well as going over admissions requirements and the application process. We will navigate through the website from beginning to end, highlighting the information that pertains to preparing for entry into our dental hygiene program. This is also a great opportunity to ask specific questions you may have. Access to the clinical areas is limited to patients, faculty, students, and staff in accordance with OSHA guidelines.

Helpful Links:

Stay tuned for Dental Hygiene Open House dates.