Orthodontic Assistant Permit

The Orthodontic Assistant Permit (OAP)

The FADE Institute is pleased to offer a board-approved program of study for the Orthodontic Assistant Permit.  This program of study includes didactic, lab, simulated-lab and clinical requirements in preparation for the State Board written examination to obtain a special permit to legally perform advanced orthodontic duties.  Our program is open to the entire dental community and continues to garner exceptional results on the written state board examination amongst institutional providers.

Effective January 1, 2018, the FADE Institute will only offer the OAP course to unlicensed dental assistants who have first completed the following:

  • at least one full year of employment as a dental assistant
  • completion of our board-approved courses in infection control and dental assisting jurisprudence (DPA)
  • completion of our two-day, 16-hour pre-permit course for entry-level education and assessment prior to enrolling in the 55-hour OAP program (see below for more details)

Offices with unlicensed DAs seeking this permit are encouraged to contact the Institute to learn more regarding this new requirement.


If you are a Registered Dental Assistant, the OAP is a 55 hour program over two weekends and includes approximately 24 hours of clinical competency and skills development in your dental office. Our program offers RDAs an affordable opportunity to complete the education and qualify for a permit to perform procedures such as:

  • preparing teeth for orthodontic bonding materials
  • select, preposition and cure orthodontic brackets
  • remove orthodontic brackets and attachments
  • size, fit and cement orthodontic bands
  • remove excess orthodontic cement from teeth using an ultrasonic scaler

All materials and instrumentation for the program will be provided to each enrolled student for use during instruction and lab procedures.  Clinical requirements for hours and clinical procedures to be performed on patients shall be completed in the dental office during the weeks following completion of all lecture and lab assignments.

A comprehensive study guide for the State Board written examination will be made available to all students.  Students will be required to submit all clinical competency paperwork, evidence of completion of clinical requirements, within four (4) weeks of completion of lecture and lab content.  Documentation for extramural clinical performances and all related protocols and criteria will be discussed on day one of the class. Upon completion of the course, faculty will review the OAP state board examination application with students prior to their submission.

Pre-requisites for the OAP Program

For licensed RDAs (55-hour program):

  • current BLS card (American Heart Association or American Red Cross)
  • current, active license as a Registered Dental Assistant, preferably with Pit & Fissure Sealant Certification (not required) – participants will be required to input RDA license number during the proceedings.

For unlicensed assistants (84-hour program):

  • current BLS card (American Heart Association or American Red Cross)
  • completion of our 8-hour infection control certification and our DPA certification in dental assisting jurisprudence
  • completion of one year work experience as a dental assistant
  • completion of our 16-hour entry-level Orthodontics for the DA pre-requisite course

To register for the OA Permit for the RDA course, please visit our “Courses” tab on the Homepage and click on Courses – El Dorado Hills.