Dental School

All prerequisite courses and units listed below must be completed by June of the year of you intend to enroll. However, we highly recommend that applicants complete prerequisite courses prior to filing their application or taking the Dental Admission Test.

Course Prerequisites:

1 year of General Biology with lab
1 year of General Chemistry with lab
1 year of Organic Chemistry with lab
1 year of General Physics with lab
1 semester of Biochemistry
1 year of English

Additional suggested preparation courses/skills include:

Anatomy, Physiology, Microbiology, Immunology/Genetics, Histology/Microanatomy, Public Speaking, Art, Sculpture, and Business. Computer skills are highly

First Year Classes

Biostatistics in Oral Health Sciences

This course provides an introduction to biostatistical measurements that are required for problem solving in the comprehensive care of patients. Students will apply formal statistical techniques to selected problems from relevant scientific literature and determine a course of action based on analysis and interpretation of available statistical information.

Physiological and Anatomical Concepts

This course presents physiological and anatomical concepts related to the cardiovascular, respiratory, and endocrine systems, and examines the relationships between structure and function. Clinical case studies will be used to illustrate the spectrum of homeostasis and disease.

Microbiological & Immunological Concepts

This course introduces the fundamentals of bacteriology and virology and the elements of the immune response to common pathogens. Clinical case studies will be used to illustrate infectious processes in oral and systemic diseases, with emphasis on infections of the oral cavity. The principles of infection control will be introduced.

Cellular & Molecular Concepts

This course introduces the concepts of molecular and cellular biology as they apply to normal and dysregulated cell function. Clinical case studies will be used to examine the molecular basis of cell structure, biosynthesis, receptors and cell signaling, cell cycle regulation, and malignancy.

Pharmacological & Pathological Concepts

This course introduces the principles of pharmacology and pathology. Clinical case studies will be used to illustrate the fundamentals of pharmacology, pharmacokinetics, drug effects, and therapeutics. Major pathological mechanisms underlying injury and disease, including neoplasia, will be discussed.

Epidemiology for Oral Health

This course introduces the fundamentals of epidemiology and epidemiological methods used in evaluation of health in populations, outcomes assessment, and clinical decision making. Research study design, concepts of reliability and validity, and association of risk factors and disease will be discussed. Students will critically review and analyze selected primary literature.

Special Senses & Oral Health

This course presents the fundamental anatomy, physiology, embryology and cell biology of the special senses, and discusses the mechanisms underlying special sense and pain reception. Particular reference will be made to the roles of taste and smell in oral health, and the impact of oral disease on the special senses.

Oral Cancer: Prevention, Cause & Cure

This course introduces the fundamentals of common tumors of the head and neck. Clinical case studies will be used to illustrate the etiology, pathology, diagnosis, treatment and treatment complications of head and neck neoplasia. The principles of oral cancer screening and prevention will be discussed.

HIV / AIDS & Oral Disease

This course presents the fundamentals of retrovirology and the disease states resulting from infection with the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). Clinical case studies will be used to illustrate the pathogenesis and presentations of immune deficiency and opportunistic infection, with particular emphasis on the impact of HIV/AIDS on oral health.

Head & Neck Anatomy

This course includes lecture content and clinical case studies, with corresponding laboratory sessions, that illustrate the bones, muscles, nerves and vasculature of the head and neck, with special emphasis on the embryology and structure-function relationship of each of these structures.

Oral Pathogens & Oral Immunology

This course presents clinical case studies to illustrate the common bacterial viral, fungal and parasitic infections of the oral cavity, oral manifestations of systemic infection, and mucosal immunity. The microbiology and immunology of dental caries, periodontal and periapical diseases, and salivary gland infections will be discussed.

Introduction to Infection Control

This course introduces the principles of safe work practices and universal precautions in dentistry, the use of disinfectants and sterilants, and the safe handling of biohazardous materials. The crossinfection potential of important human pathogens will be discussed. Students will perform and document a surveillance study of infection control in a clinical setting.

Introduction to Clinical Instruments/Four-Handed Dentistry

This course will introduce the categories and applications of instruments and accessories used in dental practice. In the clinical simulation area, dental procedure skills will be acquired, including positioning and four handed instrument transfer. Simulation models and student partners will be subjects for oral examination, periodontal evaluation and topical fluoride administration.

Principles of Periodontology

This course uses clinical case studies to introduce the principles of diagnosis and classification of periodontal diseases, with emphasis on the disease etiology and identification of risk factors, including systemic disease. The prevention and non-surgical therapy of periodontal diseases, including the use of local anesthesia, will be discussed.

Treatment Planning & Outcomes I

This course provides an introduction to treatment planning and the use of treatment outcomes to guide evidence based revision of treatment plans. Students will evaluate the periodontal status of patients by performing diagnostic workups of recall patients, and present patient data, rationale for the treatment plan, and outcome of care.

Dental Anatomy / Imaging & Diagnostic Sciences I

This course presents the fundamentals of dental anatomy, morphology and classification of both primary and permanent dentition, and the concepts of ideal dental occlusion and malocclusion. Students will carve a full set of anatomically correct teeth in both self-paced and instructional laboratory settings. The principles of radiography will be introduced.

Patient Care I - Lifespan Care

This course introduces the principles of comprehensive lifetime dental care, with emphasis on evaluation of individual patient needs. Care and treatment planning for special needs patients, including children, pregnant women, the elderly, and the medically compromised will be considered in depth.

Patient Care II - Applied Lifespan Care

This course provides patient care experience appropriate to the first year. Students will manage patient records and consent, and document treatment and outcomes. The principles and practice of radiology will be presented. The fundamentals of tooth preparation, types of restorative materials, and Class 1 and 2 placement and carving of restorations will be introduced.

Imaging & Diagnostic Studies II

This course provides hands-on practice in radiological and other imaging techniques used in oral health care practice. The concepts of radiologic hazards will be introduced. Students will record and interpret radiographic and other imaging data, and use them in the formulation of diagnoses and treatment planning.

Applied Periodontology Seminar

In this course, students will evaluate recall patients with periodontal disease for treatment outcome, chart the periodontal findings, and perform prophylactic techniques as appropriate. Use of local anesthesia, the cavitron, and root planing will be introduced. Students will present patients for discussion in a seminar setting.

Treatment Planning & Outcomes II

In this course, students will perform treatment planning and outcomes assessment on patients with more complex disease processes, including emergency and urgent care needs. Students will present patients for discussion in a seminar setting.

Principles of Dental Materials I

This course introduces the classes, structures, physical, mechanical and biologic characteristics of various dental materials that are used for primary and secondary prevention. Students will perform clinical application of these materials on the dental simulator and/or the student partner, and will prepare impressions, models, casts and dies.

Health Care Administration I

This course introduces the principles of health care administration and its relationship to oral health. The roles of planning, financial management, human resources management and personnel regulations in health care administration will be discussed. Emphasis will be placed on the concept of quality of care, quality assurance, and methods of quality assessment.

Health Care Financing and Public Health

This course will introduce the public health systems and health care financing, with emphasis on oral health care delivery to populations, illustrated by literature searches and analyses on topics such as fluoridation. Health care policy and reform, oral health care delivery systems and access to care will be discussed.

Introduction to Practice Planning and Patients

This course provides an overview of dental practice, the practice team, and the patient/client. The categories of general and specialty practices and the principles of practice management will be discussed. Fundamental Spanish for care providers will be introduced. Students will rotate as vertical team members in external clinical sites.

Specialty Practices I

This course introduces students to the different specialty practices, the roles and integration of members of the practice team, and the course of the patient through the clinical care process. During the external rotation, students will observe oral examinations of patients and all interactions between patients and members of the specialty teams.

Practice Management Technology I - Patient Record

This course introduces the different components of the dental patient record and their relevance and importance to dental practice. Emphasis will be placed on the present and past systemic and oral health history, dental charting, dental imaging and its interpretation. Patient privacy and confidentiality issues will be discussed.

Healthcare Practice & Its Challenges

This course examines aspects of the dentist-patient relationship. Patient compliance issues, the therapeutic relationship, patient education and behavior modification and other interventions, self-regulatory and interpersonal skills of the care provider will be discussed. Acquired skills will be practiced with student partners and volunteer patients in an external setting.

Hands On Rotations

This course introduces the students to the principles and practice of dental health education. This is an external rotation in a public health care setting, in which students will be trained in patient health promotion and disease prevention. Students will devise and implement a dental education program on selected topics.

Practice Planning and Patients

Students participate in the comprehensive health care of patients as vertical team members of an external dental practice, at a level commensurate with their experience and under supervision. This includes patient interview, oral examination, charting, and non-invasive procedures. Further instruction in basic Spanish will be offered if necessary.

Health Care Practice: Risk, Consent and Outcomes

This course introduces the principles of patient risk and the consent procedure. Emphasis will be placed on the communication of information and risk-benefit assessments, the ethical and legal issues involved in obtaining patient consent, and confidentiality and privacy issues. Landmark cases in human research will be discussed.

Practice Management Technology II

In this course, students will use, evaluate and compare commercially available software developed for creation and maintenance of electronic patient records and other practice management needs.

Integration Seminar I

This course is comprised of a series of seminars designed to illustrate the relationship between the biosciences in the context of oral health care. Students will both present and otherwise actively participate in the seminars. Student leaders in this course will be those participating in the bioscience stream of the curriculum. The course will be presented during the first eight weeks of the semester.

Integration Seminar II

This course is comprised of a series of seminars designed to illustrate, at a greater level of complexity, the relationship between biosciences and clinical sciences in the context of oral health care. Students will both present and otherwise actively participate in the seminars. Student leaders in this course will be those participating in the clinical professional stream of the curriculum. The course will be presented during the second eight weeks of the semester.

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Last Updated: 05/21/2014