The Learning Center at Today's Dentistry

Mission Statement

The Learning Center at Today’s Dentistry mission is to promote the educational and professional advancement of dental assistants and the dental assisting profession. Providing dental assistants with the most recent advances in technology, materials, techniques, and equipment in order to be prepared when employed within the dental community.

Dr. James Burneson DDS

Teresa Dean and Dr. James Burneson

Name and Address of Parent Company:
Today’s Dentistry – 1530 Siskiyou Blvd.  Ashland, OR 97520 

Teresa (Terri) Dean – 35 plus years of dental experience with 13 years as an instructor for the dental assisting program at Rogue Community College.
Dr. James Burneson: Dentist for 10 years

The Learning Centers at Today’s Dentistry Dental Assisting program is a 14-week program intended to help students acquire their dental radiography certificate and prepare them to apply for the Oregon Basic Dental Assisting exam as well as the Oregon Expanded

School Calendar, Class Schedules, and Program Starting date 

Program runs 14-week blocks starting March 1, 2024

The following holidays will be observed, and classes will not be held. Memorial day, 4th of July, Labor Day, Thanksgiving, and Christmas. Holidays are not counted as part of the contracted time schedule.

The total hours of each program vary and are dependent upon the curriculum.  Business hours are from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. Tuesday through Friday. Classes are scheduled for Friday’s only from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. with lunch from 1 p.m. to 2 p.m.. Lecture and labs will combine throughout the 14 weeks. 

Upcoming Course Dates:

March 1, 2024 – May 31, 2024
Future dates determined by enrollment


The Learning Center at Today’s Dentistry features an up to date facility with a reception area, lecture area with up-to-date video equipment, and lab facilities. Training equipment includes x-ray equipment for digital imaging, sterilization area for practicing instrument processing and sterilization, multiple operatories for implementing and practicing dental assisting skills, and a designated area for students to study. The school has a break room for students with a microwave, refrigerator, sink, table, and chairs. Several lavatories are available for male and female students. Parking is available in a well-lit parking lot. The facility is located in close proximity to public transit. This is an ADA accessible facility. The maximum class size is 10 and the student/teacher ratio is 10 to 1. 

Entrance/Admission Requirements

  • Students must possess a High School Diploma or a General Education Development (GED) Diploma or working towards one concurrently.
  • Students must complete an application to include: prior work and health history, English language proficiency, arrest records, and evaluations of any applicable physiological factors such as vision acuity, lifting and weight-bearing capabilities, and manual dexterity will be required in order to benefit from the teachings of this program and in future employment opportunities, do 3 hours of observation in a dental office of their choice, write a 1 page essay on their experience during observation, as well as why they want to be a Dental Assistant, possess a CPR certification.
  • Students will be interviewed by the school board of directors.
  • Two forms of government issued ID will be required, ie: DMV issued ID, social security card, birth certificate, passport, green card, etc. 
  • The Learning Center at Today’s Dentistry encourages diversity and accepts applications from all minorities.
  • The Learning Center does not discriminate on the basis of race, creed, color, national origin, sex, veteran or military status, sexual orientation, or the presence of any sensory, mental, physical disability or the use of a trained guide dog or service animal by a person with a disability.
  • The Learning Center acknowledges that information pertaining to an applicant’s disability is voluntary and confidential and will be made on an individual basis. If this information is presented, Today’s Dentistry Learning Center will reasonably attempt to provide an accommodation to overcome the effects of the limitation of the qualified applicant.  All inquiries about accommodations should be made to the admissions administrator upon registration of the program. To be qualified, an individual with a disability must meet the basic skill, education, training and other eligibility requirements of the relevant job or vocational program and must be able to perform the essential functions of the relevant job or vocational program, either with or without reasonable accommodation; the employment and academic standards are the same for all individuals enrolled. 
  • The Learning Center at Today’s Dentistry program director will send you a letter stating acceptance or denial into the dental assisting program.


Oregon Radiology Health and Safety course: 20 hours of lecture and 15 hours of practical instruction. Learning outcomes – Have basic understanding of dental radiography, understand health risks of radiation exposure, radiation safety for the patient and employee, and the ability to identify landmarks and restorations on images. 

Introduction to Dental Assisting and Infection Control exam preparation: 30 hours of lecture, 30 hours practical instruction. Learning outcome – proficient in dental assisting skills, knowledge of head and neck anatomy, dental instrumentation, sterilization techniques, instrument processing, dental procedures, HIPPA and OSHA regulations.

Expanded Functions Dental Assisting:  20 hours lecture, 15 hours practical instruction. Learning outcomes – Ability to coronal polish, take dental impressions, place matrix bands, place rubber dam, polish amalgam and composite restorations, fabricate and place temporary crowns, place temporary fillings, and cement removal. 

Dress Code

Students are required to wear scrubs to all lecture and lab classes. Hair must be worn up and out of the eyes. Small earrings that do not dangle are acceptable to wear. Due to wearing gloves during lab classes, large rings with prongs should be removed for lab classes.  Fingernails should be short and nail polish should be light colored. Any facial piercings need to be removed or covered up, and any visible tattoos need to be covered. 

Educational Credential 

This is a certificate program. Upon completion of the program, you will have taken the Oregon Dental Radiation Health and Safety exam through DANB, applied for the Oregon Basic Dental assisting exam and well as applied for the Expanded Functions Dental Assistant exam. Clinicals for Radiology and Expanded Functions will be done in a dental office.  

The school maintains transcripts for a minimum of 25 years. 

Tuition and Additional Costs 

Total cost of training including tuition, fees, deposits, and other charges necessary to complete the program. 

Tuition: $4,700

Registration fee:  $50

Textbooks and workbooks included in tuition. 

Supplies and materials included in tuition 

Licensing/testing fees: Radiation Health and Safety exam: $270 – included in tuition, Oregon Basic exam $275 – included in tuition, Expanded Functions exam $250 – included in tuition. 

Clinicals for Radiology and Expanded Functions are responsibility of the student.  

Total cost to the student including tuition and registration fee is $4,750. 

Financial Aid Assistance

 The Learning Center at Today’s Dentistry does not currently provide financial assistance for this program.

Registration Information

For questions or to request an application, please contact us at: