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US Dental Hygiene Students and Graduates

Students and Graduates of American Accredited Schools

A reciprocal agreement permits programs accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation of the American Dental Association to be recognized by the Commission on Dental Accreditation of Canada. Graduates of these recognized education programs are eligible to write the National Dental Hygiene Certification Examination™ (NDHCE™). A student in a dental hygiene program that is accredited by the American Dental Association Commission on Dental Accreditation (ADA/CODA), may apply to write the NDHCE™ upon confirmation by the dental hygiene program director or designate, that the student, at the application deadline date, is within four months of completion of the dental hygiene program.

Graduates of an accredited US program/school must have their educational institution send i) an original copy of their diploma in dental hygiene AND ii) official transcript of their grades directly to the FDHRC™. Both documents must be submitted before the application deadline and no originals will be returned.

​Upon successful completion of the NDHCE™, candidates are then eligible to register with the provincial/territorial regulatory authority in the province where they plan to work.

Graduates of Non-Accredited American Schools


Those who have graduated from a non-accredited dental hygiene program in the United States should first contact the regulatory body in the Canadian province where they plan to work to confirm all requirements for licensure. Then, they should apply to the FDHRC™ for an equivalency assessment.

This may take up to one year to complete, and requires submission of a comprehensive portfolio of documents, some of which may require formal translation and notarization. A graduate of a non-accredited American program who is successful in their application for equivalency is then eligible to write the National Dental Hygiene Certification Examination™ (NDHCE™). Upon successful completion of the NDHCE™, the next step is to complete all requirements for licensure/registration as directed by the regulatory college in the province where they intend to practice. Most provincial regulators also require candidates in this category to successfully complete the Canadian Performance Examination in Dental Hygiene™ (CPEDH™).



Territory Acknowledgement

The FDHRC™ office stands on the ancestral and unceded territory of the Anishinaabe Algonquin Nation. The Algonquin peoples have had a special, reciprocal relationship with this territory since time immemorial, and this relationship continues today. The FDHRC™ recognizes without qualification the inherent lands and territory rights of the Algonquin peoples as articulated in Section 35 of the Constitution Act of Canada 1982, as well as the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples which is enshrined in various legislation in what is now commonly called Canada. 

See the FDHRC’s™ full territory acknowledgement here.