The University of Alberta Dental Hygiene program is the Council-approved program in Alberta, however, the program is quite competitive and there are other options. Under section 5 of the Regulation, the College compares the qualifications and competencies required to graduate from other programs to those required to graduate from the U of A program to determine if the other programs are substantially equivalent to the U of A program. This is done through a program review. The results of a program review apply to cohorts that graduate within the 3 years after the graduation date of the program reviewed.
For example, if the College reviewed a program for a cohort that graduated in May 2019, and found the program to be substantially equivalent, cohorts that graduate between May 2019 and April 2022, would be eligible to apply directly to the College for registration. An application from an individual who graduated from that program after April 2022, would trigger a new program review.
While the College cannot endorse a specific program, we can provide some guidance. Some things to consider when researching schools:
- The school must be either CDAC or CODA accredited.
- Schools can only teach to the scope of practice of the jurisdiction they are in. Scopes of practice vary across jurisdictions and what may be allowed or expected in one may not be in another.
- The outcome of a program review is not guaranteed based on the previous review. The substantial equivalency of a program may change before an individual graduates, depending on when the last review was completed and how long the program is.
- If a school is determined to NOT be substantially equivalent to the U of A program, graduates will be required to successfully complete the CPEDH before registering in Alberta.
- A second option in this case would be to register in another Canadian jurisdiction and then apply for registration in Alberta under the Canada Free Trade Agreement (CFTA).
- There are financial and time considerations related to either option that should be factored into a decision.