Dental Assistant Registration

Department of Inspection, Appeals, and Licensing


Registration to practice as a dental assistant in Iowa, including performing any tasks under the supervision of a licensed dentist that involves intraoral services on patients or extraoral duties including infection control or use of hazardous materials, or dental radiography.

Code Citation Iowa Code 153.38 and 153.39

Who Applies All dental assistants working in Iowa.

When To Apply Prior to working as a dental assistant in Iowa.

Initial Requirements There is no board requirement for national certification as a dental assistant. However, registration in Iowa is required. Registration requires education/training and an examination in infection control and jurisprudence. Education can be taken through formal program, or on-the-job. Accepted exams are the Dental Assisting National Board (DANB), Infection Control (ICE), or Certified Dental Assistant (CDA) or the state exams. To take x-rays, applicants must obtain a separate radiology qualification.

Duration Registration expires August 31 of every odd-numbered year.

Processing Time Two to four weeks.

Fee Structure Registration application: $40; Registration application and radiography qualification (combined): $60; Renewal of registration: $75 (every two years); Radiography qualification: $40; Fees for state exam are paid directly to testing centers. Additional fee to renew radiology qualification: $40 (every two years at time of registration renewal).

Renewal Requirements Twenty hours of continuing education every two years are required, including one hour in infection control and one hour in Iowa jurisprudence. Proof of current CPR certification must also be shown for renewal; and up to three continuing education hours can be claimed for CPR certification. Online-only CPR certification is not acceptable. Dependent adult/child abuse reporting training is also required every three years if completed after July 1, 2019 for those who actively practice in Iowa. Dental assistants qualified in dental radiography must also complete two hours of continuing education in radiography.

Exam Exams in infection control and jurisprudence are required. Exams are available at area community college testing sites. Dental Assisting National Board (DANB) exams are also accepted along with the state jurisprudence exam. Contact the board for information about the exams.

Additional Information None.

Services Provided

Service Category

  • Service SubCategory
Contact Information
Christel Braness
400 SW 8th St
Suite D
Des Moines, IA 50309