Accelerated A.A.S./A.S. Dental Hygiene

Accelerated  A.A.S./A.S. to M.S. 

This accelerated bridge program from an entry-level dental hygiene program to a Master of Science with an emphasis in Dental Hygiene is for registered dental hygienists who have already graduated from an accredited entry-level dental hygiene program and are licensed as Registered Dental Hygienists. This program is offered 100% online. Twelve credits in this program are dual credits meaning they count for both undergraduate and graduate course work creating an accelerated path to the MS in dental hygiene. Students must be in good academic standing with the Department of Dental Hygiene and Idaho State University and have demonstrated successful completion of upper division courses in the BS Degree Completion dental hygiene program while maintaining a 3.0 GPA. Please contact the Graduate Program Director regarding acceptance into the Graduate School and the Master of Science Dental Hygiene program. Students who are accepted into the BS Degree Completion program can choose to continue their degree progression to the accelerated MS program. Once the students have completed the 5 dual credit courses (12 credits that count towards both the BS degree completion and the MS in dental hygiene degree) they will be eligible to graduate with their Bachelor of Science in Dental Hygiene and continue on to complete the Master of Science in Dental Hygiene. 

Graduates of the MSDH program at ISU are prepared to work as educators, leaders, and administrators in academia, public health, corporate settings, alternative work settings, and in research development.

Once accepted into an accelerated degree program, it is strongly recommended for students to stay in close communication with their advisor regarding pursuit of acceptance into the Graduate School and the master's degree program at Idaho State University. Acceptance into an accelerated program during the bachelor's degree program is the first step in the admissions process. A separate application to the Graduate School is necessary for all accelerated programs. For more information regarding application and admission to the Graduate School at Idaho State University, please see the Graduate Admissions section of the graduate catalog ( 

Program Admissions Requirements

Admissions for the program is “open enrollment” students can apply at any time. Applicants must have a minimum Cumulative Grade Point Average (GPA) of 3.0. Dental hygiene program information regarding current admission criteria and procedures can be obtained from the Dental Hygiene website at, or directly from the department. Admission to Idaho State University and the AAS/AS to MS Accelerated Pathway is a separate procedure and must be completed prior to submitting an application to the MS in dental hygiene graduate program. The graduate application must be completed prior to starting the dual credit courses listed at the 5000-6000 level. A 3.0 cumulative GPA is required for admissions to the MS in dental hygiene program. 

Academic Standards

To enroll in upper division courses with a dental hygiene prefix (DENT), students must be accepted for admission to the dental hygiene AAS/AS to MS accelerated program. To be eligible for graduation and progression in the dental hygiene master’s program, the student must maintain a 3.0 GPA in all course work. Course work for which the student receives a grade below 3.0 will not be accepted as fulfilling requirements for the Master of Science in Dental Hygiene program.

General Education

The listing below includes program requirements that also fulfill General Education requirements.
Objective 1 - ENGL 1101; ENGL 11026
Objective 2 - COMM 11013
Objective 3 - MATH 11533
Objective 46
Objective 5 - CHEM 11017
Objective 6 - PSYC 1101, SOC 11016
Students must fulfill Objective 7 or Objective 83
Objective 7
Objective 8 - INFO 1101 (Recommended) *
Objective 93
Total Credits37

Elective course INFO 1101 is highly recommended as an elective for those individuals without computer skills and it may be chosen to satisfy General Education Objective 8.

 Major Requirements

ENGL 3307Professional and Technical Writing3
DENT 4401Research Methods2
DENT 4408Ethical and Legal Principles2
DENT 4424Principles of Interprofessional Practice Management3
Accelerated Dental Hygiene Graduate Dual Credit Courses
DENT 5596Graduate Seminar I1
DENT 6605Program Development and Evaluation3
DENT 6610Special Care Populations3
DENT 6623Leadership & Health Policy3
Elective Course at the 5000/6000 level 2
Total Credits22


DENT 4400Experiential Learning Equivalency for BS Degree Completion and Accelerated MSDH Program1-16
DHS 4401Mindfulness in Health Science2
DHS 4402Survey of Aging Issues3
DHS 4403Interprofessional Systems in Geriatric Management3
DHS 4405Effects of Mindfulness Practice1
DHS 4427Evidence Based Complementary and Integrative Health3
DENT 4481Independent Studies in Dental Hygiene1-3

 BS Diploma Awarded and Continue on to MS Degree

 Degree Totals

Program Admission Requirements (Required General Education credits removed)80-90(Varies)
General Education37
Major Requirements (12 credits count for both undergraduate and graduate courses - dual credit)22
Upper Division Electives14
MS Courses 37 (12 dual credits 25 remaining MS Credits)
Total Credits145

Program admission totals vary depending on the associate degree earned.


Students who earn a qualifying associate degree will qualify for a general education waiver upon matriculation to ISU