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Admission Test for Dental Hygiene

This new admission test is taken before entering Dental Hygiene school. It is anticipated to launch later in 2021.

The Admission Test for Dental Hygiene (ATDH) will be:

  • a nationally administered standardized admission test for dental hygiene applicants
  • administered to understand the skill levels of applicants seeking admission to dental hygiene programs
  • used to assist with admissions decisions

The ATDH is currently under development and subject matter experts are needed to write test questions. Consider volunteering to serve on a test construction committee. 

Frequently Asked Questions About the Admission Test for Dental Hygiene

 
  • Why is the American Dental Association Developing the ATDH?
  • When will the ATDH be available?
  • Who will oversee the ATDH during development and deployment?
  • What specific tasks have been assigned to the ATDH Steering Committee?

ATDH Background 

2020
In April 2020, the ADA Board of Trustees approved the formation of the ATDH Steering Committee and the committee members were appointed by the ADA President. The committee will oversee the development, launch, and validation of the ATDH and is represented by:

  • One member from the ADA Board of Trustees to serve as chair
  • Two members from the council on Dental Education and Licensure (one who is the CDEL Admission Committee Chair, and one who is a CDEL member appointed to CDEL by ADEA)
  • One member who is a college/university admission officer; and
  • Four members who are active dental hygiene program directors.

The ATDH Steering Committee held its inaugural meeting in October 2020.

2019
In June 2019, the ADA Board of Trustees adopted a resolution approving the development of the ATDH program as recommended by the ADA’s BIC. 

Also in June 2019, DTS conducted a focus group study with dental hygiene program directors at the American Dental Education Association’s (ADEA) Allied Program Director’s Conference.

2018
As a result of requests by dental hygiene program directors, the American Dental Association’s (ADA) Business Innovation Committee (BIC) requested that the Department of Testing Services (DTS) develop a business plan for a dental hygiene admission test.