Course Title: Produce a dental radiographic image

Part B: Course Detail

Teaching Period: Term1 2015

Course Code: DENT5337C

Course Title: Produce a dental radiographic image

School: 155T Vocational Health and Sciences

Campus: City Campus

Program: C4320 - Certificate IV in Dental Assisting

Course Contact: Ms. Sandra Torbica

Course Contact Phone: +61 3 9341 1408

Course Contact Email:

Name and Contact Details of All Other Relevant Staff

Dental Health Program Manager Mr. Mark Doherty
Office hours: Monday to Friday 8:30 to 5:00 pm.
Telephone: +61 3 9341 1407

Ms. Sandra Torbica
Office hours: Monday to Friday 8:30 to 5:00 pm.
Telephone: +61 3 9341 1408

Nominal Hours: 90

Regardless of the mode of delivery, represent a guide to the relative teaching time and student effort required to successfully achieve a particular competency/module. This may include not only scheduled classes or workplace visits but also the amount of effort required to undertake, evaluate and complete all assessment requirements, including any non-classroom activities.

Pre-requisites and Co-requisites

 HLTIN301C Comply with infection control policies and procedures
 HLTIN302C Process reusable instruments and equipment in health work
 HLTWHS300A Contribute to WHS processes

Course Description

This unit of competency describes the skills and knowledge required to operate dental radiographic equipment and position the client and radiographic film in order to produce a diagnostic image

All procedures are carried out in accordance with work health and safety (WHS) policies and procedures, current infection control guidelines, Australian and New Zealand Standards for maintaining infection control and the policies and procedures of the dental practice or organisation.  All tasks are carried out in accordance with state or territory legislative requirements

This unit applies to dental assisting work

National Codes, Titles, Elements and Performance Criteria

National Element Code & Title:

HLTDA412D Produce a dental radiographic image


1. Position client to obtain radiographic image

Performance Criteria:

1.1 Position the client comfortably
1.2 Reassure the client and explain the procedure in language that is easily understood
1.3 Ask the client to remove items which may interfere with the radiographic examination and offer appropriate explanation
1.4 Ensure client, other members of the dental team and the public are protected from ionising radiations
1.5 Assist the operator in the implementation of safe work practices to minimise radiation risks to workers and to clients
1.6 Select and prepare the correct radiographic film/image receptors and film packet holders for the radiographic examination and make it available to the operator
1.7 Label exposed films accurately and legibly before the client leaves the surgery


2. Position dental radiographic film

Performance Criteria:

2.1 Maintain clean and dry working surfaces
2.2 Clean and maintain processing equipment in good working order
2.3 Maintain processing solutions at the correct strength and temperature
2.4 Record the date of preparation of solutions accurately
2.5 Arrange for servicing of equipment at the intervals specified by the manufacturer and Radiation Health
2.6 File equipment service records in a location within the surgery that can be readily accessed
2.7 Prepare digital program to receive digital image


3. Operate radiographic imaging equipment safely to produce image

Performance Criteria:

3.1 Protect processing facility/equipment against accidental intrusion of light
3.2 Wear personal protective equipment
3.3 Handle radiographic film packages/image receptors carefully so that their quality is maintained
3.4 Carry out processing stages in the correct sequence and for appropriate duration in accordance with manufacturer specifications
3.5 Identify common faults caused by incorrect processing and notify the operator
3.6 Rectify processing faults in accordance with operator's instructions
3.7 Notify the operator of any processing faults which cannot be rectified prior to further radiographs being processed
3.8 Label and date the radiograph mounting accurately and legibly
3.9 Mount and secure radiographs in correct anatomical position for viewing
3.10 File radiographs correctly


4. Process and provide quality assurance for the exposed dental radiographic film

Performance Criteria:

4.1 Store radiographic film, image receptors and chemicals in accordance with manufacturer specifications
4.2 Maintain sufficient stock
4.3 Rotate film stock so that film is used before its expiry date

Learning Outcomes

1.1 Implement and maintain radiation safety measures for the client, operator and others throughout the procedure
1.2 Position the client correctly
1.3 Maintain communication with the client

2.1 Select the appropriate technical variables on the dental radiographic unit according to manufacturer specifications, procedure and client requirements
2.2 Select the appropriate radiographic technique according to the tooth under investigation and the anatomy of the oral cavity
2.3 Select and position correctly the appropriate film for the client’s requirements
2.4 Select and use film locating devices to position the film correctly when appropriate
2.5 Select accessories when appropriate according to manufacturer specifications

3.1 Operate equipment according to manufacturer specifications and legislative requirements for the safe use of radiation in dentistry
3.2 Ensure the client does not move and remains visible throughout the procedure
3.3 Remove the exposed dental radiographic film package carefully from the mouth
3.4 Label the exposed radiographic film package correctly prior to processing

4.1 Process the radiographic film correctly
4.2 Assess visual qualities of the processed film
4.3 Identify and correct processing errors
4.4 Identify and correct errors in technique
4.5 Mount and store radiographic images correctly

Details of Learning Activities

A combination of learning activities will support student’s learning in this unit, such as

  • Facilitator led classroom based lecture and or workshop using PowerPoint Presentations
  • Demonstration and classroom discussion
  • Facilitator led practical clinical demonstration
  • Group discussions
  • Participation in group activities based on simulated workplace exercises
  • Online learning resources accessed via myRMIT Studies (BlackBoard)
  • including online tests or quizzes
  • Practical clinical practice, peer evaluation/feedback session
  • Written classroom tasks
  • Self managed research to support completion of written tasks

Teaching Schedule

As per Certificate IV in Dental Assisting timetable, located on myRMIT Studies (BlackBoard).

Learning Resources

Prescribed Texts

Iannucci, J,M; Howerton, LJ (2011) Dental Radiography: Principles and Techniques; 4th edition, Saunders Elsevier, USA

Code of Practice and Safety Guide for Radiation Protection in Dentistry (2005) 

Radiation Legislation : Radiation Act (2005) and Radiation Regulations(2007)

Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS) for all chemicals, medicaments and materials used in dental practice (Obtained from Dental Supply companies or via web search)

Australian Dental Association Inc (2012) ADA Guidelines for Infection Control,2nd edition
Document available at:  

National Health and Medical Research Council (2010) Australian Guidelines for the Prevention and Control of Infection in Healthcare  

Laskaris, G (2006) Pocket Atlas of Oral Disease; 2nd edition, Theime ,Stuttgart & New York


Other Resources

Australian Standards AS/NZS 4815 (2006), Document available at

• Australian Dental Association Vic Branch (2005) Systematic Operating Procedures A manual for infection control and operational safety for the dental practice.

• Bird, D., Robinson, D. (2014) Torres and Ehrlich Modern Dental Assisting, 11th Ed. W.B.Saunders Company, Sydney.

• Frommer, H; Stabulas-Savage, J; Radiology for the Dental Professional, 9th edition, Elsevier/Mosby (Plus: the study guide for this textbook.)

• Whaites, E: (2007) Essentials of Dental Radiography and Radiology 4th edition. Churchill Livingstone Elsevier

• Zwemer, T.J. (2013) 3rd Ed. Mosby’s Dental Dictionary, Mosby Inc., Sydney  

Overview of Assessment

Assessment will include demonstration of underpinning knowledge, and skills; assessment activities may include oral presentation, written work, written tests, simulated practical assessment, portfolio of simulated films with critique sheets, logbook and third party report, patient films with critique sheets and a workplace assessment. 

Assessment Tasks

To achieve a grade of CA (Competency achieved) for the unit HLTDA412D Produce a dental radiographic image,
you are required to attend classes and assessments and obtain a pass result for all the following theoretical and
practical assessments that are used to measure elements, performance criteria, essential knowledge and essential
skills as outlined in the health training package.

Formative tasks support learning and preparation for summative assessments and are highly recommended to
be completed by all students. Feedback from the lead teachers is provided to assist progression in learning and
assessment preparation.

The assessments for HLTDA412D are:

Written Test.
The written test is a combination of multiple choice questions and true and false questions. A final mark of 70% is required for a pass in HLTDA412D Produce a dental radiographic image.

Simulated practical assessment.
This is a simulated assessment in the Level 3 Sim Lab involving all 3 technique- Bisecting, Paralleling and Bitewing.

Log Book
The student submits the completed the LogBook of dental radiographs completed in their workplace.

Workplace Assessment .
This is a Workplace Assessment in the student’s workplace involving all 3 technique- Bisecting, Paralleling and Bitewing.

The student must show competency across all elements for the three dental radiographic units for the simulated and workplace assessment.

Direct credit transfer and RPL:
Direct credit transfer is available to students who have already completed the same or similar courses.
Recognition of prior learning is available to students who have relevant prior skills or experience.
Please refer to;ID=8u7jborsx9dy (unresolved)

Work submitted for assessment:
Assessments that require work to be submitted must be handed in by the due date designated
by the unit teacher. Details of the due date for each assessment item are included in the unit Assessment
overview. Students are expected to prepare all assignments and other written work in a professional manner.
More information on general academic study and writing skills can be found on the “Learning Lab” . All work submitted for assessment must be submitted electronically
unless directed by the unit teacher.

Harvard style is used for all referencing and for bibliography. Care must be taken to reference all work correctly
and to avoid plagiarism. Be sure not to plagiarise unintentionally. Students must keep a copy of all submitted
assessments including electronic copies.

Failure to complete any of the above listed tasks/assessments will result in an NYC (Not yet competent) or
DNS (Did not submit) for the unit HLTDA412D Produce a dental radiographic image. A NYC or DNS result will be
entered in the student record. This will result in non-completion of this unit of competency and re-enrolment will
be required incurring fees and a return to class work and completion of any relevant assessments at the time of the re-enrolment.

Assessment Matrix

Other Information

This unit of competency is delivered against current industry standards. It is recommended that all students are familiar with
the current ADA Infection Control Guidelines Document 2012 or the most current version of this document.

Students are required to support the learning outcomes for Unit HLTDA412D Produce a dental radiographic image with work
based experience and further self-managed research to support positive outcomes in this Unit.

To undertake a practical clinical assessment (simulation or workplace), students MUST present for the assessment process as follows:

• In appropriate clinical attire(no jeans or tracksuit pants, no bare midriff, no singlet tops).
• Fully covered in leather(not suede) clinical footwear.Hair to be contained by tying back or in appropriate hair cover.
• No artificial fingernails to be worn. No nail varnish to be worn. The wearing of henna is acceptable. Short, clean fingernails
• No jewellery to be worn on the hands or wrists. Wedding rings or jewellery that cannot be removed for cultural
reasons must be taped with an appropriate waterproof tape.
• All cuts/ skin abrasions on the hands or wrists must be covered with a waterproof dressing

A student that is non-compliant with any of the above requirements will not be permitted to undertake clinical
evaluation or assessment at the scheduled time.

RMIT University requires that you present only YOUR work for assessment. Plagiarism is a form of cheating.
It is the presentation of the work or idea of another person without appropriate referencing,
as though it is your own. Plagiarism is NOT acceptable. Penalties can include charges of academic misconduct,
cancellation of results and exclusion from your course.
Please note: It is also a disciplinary offence to allow your work to be plagiarised by another student. When signing the
coversheet (electronic or paper based), you are declaring that the work is not plagiarised.

Special consideration
Please note: Students may apply for Special Consideration as per the information via the RMIT website;ID=b1wqvnwk8aui (unresolved)  if they believe complete assessment for this unit by the
submission date has been affected by factors beyond their control. Special consideration must be lodged prior
to or within 48 hours of the scheduled assessment time or assessment submission date.
The application for Special Consideration is NOT granted automatically on application.

Special consideration online application - RMIT University:

RMIT assessment policies - RMIT University:  

Failure to complete any of the above listed tasks/assessments will result in NYC - Not Yet Competent result for unit
HLTDA412D Produce a dental radiographic image. This will result in non-completion of the unit
requiring re-enrolment incurring fees, return to class work and completion of any relevant assessments at the time of
the re-enrolment. This may also result in non-completion of the Certificate III in Dental Assisting Program

The assessment result is final and a second opportunity for re-assessment will be NOT be provided unless the student has applied
for and been granted Special Consideration as per RMIT Assessment Policy;ID=od0oagg9uc111 (unresolved)  

Assessment Appeal Process
The Appeals Against Assessment policy and procedure applies to all coursework programs in all careers. The appeal process is
staged and students are required to follow each stage in order to ensure their full entitlement to
appeal, this is available on;ID=nwjxaifdrgle (unresolved)

Course Overview: Access Course Overview