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College of Dental Hygienists of Ontario
The College of Dental Hygienists of Ontario regulates the practice of dental hygiene in the interest of the overall health and safety of the public of Ontario.

Self-Service-E  FAQ-E
Graduates of Non-Accredited Dental Hygiene Programs (including International Programs)
Graduates of dental hygiene programs that have not been accredited by either the Commission on Dental Accreditation of Canada or by the American Dental Association Commission on Dental Accreditation should review the Registration Guide before completing the application on the Self-Service Portal.  
 
Additional information and clarification can be found under the Frequently Asked Questions.

International applicants can also refer to the Career Map, which provides detailed information on the application process for graduates of international dental hygiene programs.

Completed application packages must be mailed or delivered to the CDHO for processing. 
 
 
Assessment of Course of Study and Language Proficiency
The College of Dental Hygienists of Ontario does not provide informal assessments or advance confirmation of whether a program or applicant might be accepted. Only completed applications are reviewed to ascertain whether the applicant meets the current registration requirements. The application will not be processed if completed improperly or if it does not contain the appropriate supporting documentation.
 
If an applicant is not eligible to sit the National Dental Hygiene Certification Exam but wishes to proceed with an application to the CDHO, the applicant will be referred to the Registration Committee to determine if the applicant’s course of study meets the educational requirements of the CDHO. Please review the Guide to the Assessment of Educational Credentials and Qualifications for more information about the assessment process and requirements. The application package for the assessment process is included with the Guide.
 
Once a completed Application for an Assessment of Educational Credentials and Qualifications is received, including all required supporting documentation, it takes approximately three months for the course of study to be assessed and a decision to be handed down by the Registration Committee.

Please note that all documents submitted in languages other than English or French must include official translations.
 
The CDHO requires an applicant to have reasonable fluency in either English or French. This language proficiency is assessed informally through the applicant's ability to successfully complete the National Dental Hygiene Certification Exam and CDHO's clinical exam. No additional language assessments are required.
 
Refer to the Fees table for the current fee (see Assessment Fee for Applicants from a Non-Accredited Dental Hygiene Program).  
 
 
Applicants Who Graduated in Dentistry
A non-exemptible requirement for registration in Ontario is that an applicant must have graduated from a recognized accredited dental hygiene program or one considered substantially equivalent by the Registration Committee of the CDHO. In Ontario, dental hygiene is considered a separate and distinct health profession from dentistry. Work experience is not considered a substitute for training in an educational supervised setting. Therefore, unless an applicant has successfully completed a program of study in dental hygiene in addition to her/his degree in dentistry, it is unlikely that the applicant's course of study would be considered equivalent to that of an accredited dental hygiene program.
 
The Registration Committee has, over the years, reviewed many courses of study received from applicants who graduated in dentistry from Colleges/Universities in Bangladesh, China, Croatia, Egypt, Hong Kong, India, Iran, Iraq, Mexico, Pakistan, Philippines, Poland, Romania, Syria, United States of America, and Yugoslavia. Although the members of the Committee recognized that there was overlap between the programs, they noted that only rarely does a program of study in dentistry focus on the dental hygiene process of care. Most importantly, the Committee felt that the courses reviewed did not ensure competence in the controlled acts of scaling and root planing relative to the dental hygiene process of care. Therefore, these applicants’ courses of study were not considered equivalent to a recognized accredited dental hygiene program and the applicants were not eligible to participate in the required examinations.
 
These applicants were required to complete an approved dental hygiene program prior to re-applying to the CDHO. Any prior learning assessment or credit would have to be determined by the dental hygiene program to which the applicant applies. The College of Dental Hygienists of Ontario has no control over the number of credits, if any, that an applicant who applies to a dental hygiene program in Ontario receives for prior learning.