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DMD Program Basics

Competency-Based Educational Program

The four-year DMD program prepares students to provide basic health promotion and disease prevention, diagnose and develop treatment plans, analyze complex medical and dental cases, and achieve competency in all areas defined for general practitioners. The competency-based curriculum also reflects the school’s commitment to supporting the development of professionalism, life-long learning, and synthesis of clinical and biomedical science concepts.

An essential part of the training of students at Pitt Dental Medicine is to learn and practice clinical concepts that involve administering anesthesia, dental hygiene and cleaning as well as other facets of dental examination and care. In order to facilitate this training, part of the educational experience at Pitt Dental Medicine requires students to serve as patients for other students.

Beyond the Classroom

Student learning continues far beyond the classroom. Community service is encouraged through the Student Community Outreach Program and Education (SCOPE) and the University of Pittsburgh WISER Center offers dental students hands-on medical experience in a world-class multidisciplinary simulation-based training facility.

The Simulation Clinic gives students life-like experience with simulated patients in a classroom, clinical learning environment. This preclinical space introduces DMD students to the practice of dentistry in a simulated learning environment providing 80 student workstations, fully equipped with closed circuit video monitors, dental units, operatory lights, computers, and even simulated patients.

Fassinger Learning Resource Center lets students continue learning past the traditional hours and space of the  classroom meetings.

Students are encouraged to participate in any of a number of the school's active student organizations to connect with others sharing and investigating the same interests. Student organizations focus on advancing knowledge and extend the frontiers of a particular segment of oral health. Personal, academic and career counseling are available through the school's Office of Student Affairs for all students. An extensive library system, learning skills center, housing resource center, student health care and recreational and fitness facilities are available through the University.

Research opportunities abound for students in good academic standing to study many different aspects of dental research, including craniofacial genetics, tissue regeneration, informatics, public health and other fields. With an extended history of profound dental research, the University of Pittsburgh School of Dental Medicine also fosters interactions between dental students and researchers in other disciplines. Academic rewards and contributions to the dental profession are just two reasons many students conduct research at the school. Students have opportunities to share their projects and results at national meetings and conferences and provide excellent learning and networking opportunities with colleagues. Student researchers also may compete for awards, scholarships, and other opportunities at the University.

Pitt Dental Medicine Visits & Tours

We are always interested in speaking with students who are serious about their pursuit of a career in dental medicine. At this time, however, we are not able to accommodate requests for individual meetings or School tours.

In place of individual tours, we hope that you will take advantage of our Open House Events, which generally occur in spring before the start of the upcoming application cycle. These events include time for discussion about Pitt Dental Medicine program details; presentations on best practices for building your dental school application; meeting with current faculty, staff and students; and a tour of our dental school.

Contact Pitt Dental Admissions to find out about upcoming Open House Event dates.

The program in dental education is accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation (CODA). The Commission is a specialized accrediting body recognized by the United States Department of Education. The Commission on Dental Accreditation can be contacted at 312-440-4653, or at 211 East Chicago Avenue, Chicago, IL, 60611. The Commission's web address is