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The program's approach to learning is student-centered and individualized. The faculty strives to develop creative, thinking professionals who are capable of assessing their own performance and directing their own professional growth. Students have the opportunity to share experiences, knowledge and skills; work cooperatively with colleagues; and explore a variety of resources to help them reach their full potential as health care providers.

Graduates report renewed enthusiasm for dental hygiene and increased opportunities and satisfaction in both traditional and nontraditional employment settings. Many graduates pursue advanced education after completion of the program.

The Curriculum

The curriculum is completed in either a One-Year or Two-Year track with most courses offered during day time hours using a hybrid or blend of synchronous and asynchronous class activities. The total degree requirement is 120 semester credits. Students may apply a maximum of 90 semester hours of approved transfer credits (toward the 120 total) in dental hygiene and general education courses. All 90 transfer credits must be completed before enrolling in the Degree Completion Program.  Length of time to complete the program is one year or two years depending on the track students are admitted to and the program always begins in the fall semester.

The last 30 credits consist of 18 hours taken in the Division of Dental Hygiene and 12 hours of  upper level electives which must be approved by the Degree Completion Program Director and which must be taken at a University of Maryland campus. Some elective credits may be available via distance education online.

Students update and expand their knowledge and skills in dental hygiene practice, communication, management, research, educational and community/institutional health. In cooperation with faculty advisors, they may design and implement one or more independent projects within the School of Dentistry or at affiliated community sites. Degree completion students may select teaching, research, management, clinical practice or other practicums to meet their learning goals. Through these courses and projects, students gain expertise and confidence in areas of career interest.

Degree Completion Curriculum

Transfer Credits General Requirements

Semester Credits

English Composition

General Psychology


General Sociology






Humanities and Social Sciences
(At least three credits from each category)




Science Requirements

One lower division course in each of the following (credit hours may vary for each course):         

  • Chemistry (General, Organic or Biochemistry)            
  • Anatomy/Physiology  
  • Microbiology             
  • Nutrition  


Dental Hygiene courses

variable credit hours


variable credit hours

Maximum Total Transfer Credits


Upper Division Dental Hygiene Requirements at UMB

Degree Completion Practicums I & II


Dynamics of Health Care


Educational Program Development


Health Care Management


Innovative Dental Hygiene Practice


Principles of Scientific Evidence


Upper Division Electives*




*Offered at UM, off-campus, inter-institutional enrollment

To learn more about the Degree Completion Program, students should contact Ms. Sheryl Syme.

Sheryl L. Syme, RDH, MS
Director, Degree Completion Program

Academic Common Market

The Academic Common Market (ACM) is a program consisting of sixteen Southern states that participate in a higher education consortium.  ACM affords students an opportunity to enroll in certain out-of-state bachelor’s and graduate degree programs that are not offered within the student’s home state’s public college or university, at reduced tuition rates. The following states are partners in the ACM consortium: Alabama, Arkansas, Delaware, Florida (graduate programs only), Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Mississippi, North Carolina (graduate programs with restrictions) Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas (graduate programs only), Virginia, and West Virginia. Therefore, if you have not earned a previous bachelor’s degree, reside in one of these states and a bachelor’s degree in dental hygiene is not offered in your home state, and if you wish to come to the University of Maryland, Baltimore to obtain your Bachelor of Science Degree in Dental Hygiene, you may want to explore your eligibility for a ACM tuition waiver with your home state’s higher education commission. The Delaware ACM, see link above, has been successfully utilized by eligible Degree Completion students residing in Delaware.

DCTAG Program for Washington, DC Residents

The DC Tuition Assistance Grant (DCTAG) is a grant that allows you to attend any public institution in the nation as if you're a resident of the school's state. You pay the low in-state tuition and the grant pays the difference between in-state and out-of-state tuition up to $10,000 a year. With a maximum of 5 award years that can amount to a lifetime of $50,000, this grant makes affordable college tuition a reality.  This program has been successfully utlized by eligible Degree Completion students residing in Washington, DC

Admissions Information
Bachelor of Science Degree Completion

The Committee on Dental Hygiene Recruitment and Admissions reserves the right to modify the prerequisites when additional courses are necessary to improve an applicant's preparation for entering the dental hygiene program. Admission and curriculum requirements are subject to change without prior notice. Students who complete the transfer curriculum are not guaranteed admission.  All 90 transfer credits must be completed before enrolling in the Degree Completion Program.  There are a limited number of 1 Year and 2 Year track class positions.  Students will be considered for the 1 or 2 year track program based on availability of spots and student selection of the track of interest on the application.

The University of Maryland, and all of its branches and divisions, subscribes to a policy of equal educational opportunities for all people of all ages, races, creeds and ethnic origins. The Committee on Dental Hygiene Recruitment and Admissions carefully reviews all applications in a confidential process.

Bachelor of Science Degree Completion Program

ProgramApplication DeadlineApplication FeeSelection Process

Bachelor of Science Degree Completion

May 1



Applications for the Degree Completion Program are reviewed by the Committee on Dental Hygiene Recruitment and Admissions.  The admissions decision will be based upon  completeness of application, performance in previous academic programs, the corresponding quality of those programs, Dental Hygiene GPA, science and non-science GPA, overall GPA, overall academic record (including repeats, failures, withdrawals, etc.), interest in enhanced dental hygiene education, written and verbal communication skills, prior dental hygiene work experience, professional demeanor, professional involvement, the ability to interact with others, interest in and knowledge of the dental hygiene profession, quality of written pre-interview short answer responses and service to the community. Once a completed application is received by the Office of Admissions and Career Advancement and if deemed appropriate by the Committee on Dental Hygiene Recruitment and Admissions, applicants may be invited for an interview before May 1.

Admission Requirements

  • Graduate of a dental hygiene program accredited by the U.S. ADA Commissions on Dental Accreditation.
  • Dental Hygiene licensure in at least one state.
  • Minimum GPA of 3.0.