Iowa Dental Assistant Requirements

Each state has different requirements for dental assistants. This page includes links to all the information you need to understand the requirements for dental assistants in this state. View the different dental assisting levels, along with the requirements for each. You can also view the allowable duties at each level.

Iowa Requirements

Radiography Requirements

To expose radiographs in Iowa, a dental assistant must hold a current registration certificate and active radiography qualification issued by the Iowa Dental Board (IDB) and a dentist must provide general supervision. To earn dental radiography qualification, one must:

1a. Be a Dental Assistant Trainee or Registered Dental Assistant with an active registration status 


1b. Be a graduate of an accredited dental assisting program 


1c. Be a nurse who holds an active Iowa nursing license and has completed on-the-job training


1d. Be a dental assistant in another state within the previous five years with clinical experience taking dental radiographs.


2. Provide proof of successful completion of education, clinical training and examination in dental radiography within the five years prior to application. (The education and clinical training may be completed on the job as a dental assistant, as part of an accredited dental assisting program, or through DANB.)


3. Provide proof that he or she successfully completed an exam in the area of dental radiography. (The following exams meet this requirement: the board’s examination for dental assistants, which includes sections on infection control/hazardous materials, radiography, and jurisprudence; a board-approved examination in the area of dental radiography; DANB’s RHS exam; an examination in the area of dental radiography administered by accredited dental assisting programs; or a board-approved CE course in the area of dental radiography, which includes a posttest examination at completion.)


4. Apply to the IDB for Qualification in Dental Radiography.

NoteA dental assistant must be at least 18 years of age to perform dental radiography.

Dental Assistant Trainees may also engage in on-the-job training in dental radiography pursuant to 650-22.3(136C,153). Trainees are all individuals who are engaging in on-the-job training to meet the requirements for registration and who are learning the necessary skills under the personal supervision of a licensed dentist.