The School of Dental Medicine curriculum develops the critical thinking and intellectual curiosity necessary for its students to maintain a state of continuous self-improvement. The program is divided into four academic years consisting of biomedical sciences, clinical sciences and behavioral sciences as well as self-directed study time.
Year I introduces the student to biomedical information on the healthy human organism as well as concepts of disease. Basic clinical science information and experiences, required for developing the fundamental knowledge and skills for clinical dentistry, are also presented. Community and Preventive Dentistry courses offer the students their first experience in direct patient care. During the summer between the first and second years, students are required to take the National Board Dental Examination, Part I, which is required for dental licensure. Summer research opportunities are offered to interested students during the summer session.
Year I Schedule
Year II presents the remaining necessary biomedical sciences for students to attain a comprehensive knowledge of both the healthy human organism as well as disease states (both systemic and oral). Also, through information and experiences, the second year enables the student to obtain the skills necessary to begin comprehensive patient care. During the summer between the second and third years, there is a required eight week academic session that includes patient care and didactic clinical courses.
Year II Schedule
Year III continues with didactic clinical sciences instruction, applied courses in biomedical sciences and increasing patient care responsibility. The primary focus of the third year is providing basic comprehensive patient care while continuing to gain knowledge of the interrelationships of prevention, diagnosis and treatment. The summer following year three contains an eight week required patient treatment clinical experience. During the summer between the third and fourth years, students are required to take the National Board Dental Examination, Part II, which is required for dental licensure.
Year III Schedule
Year IV is spent primarily providing comprehensive patient care. Students receive advanced clinical sciences information and review advances in biomedical science which could affect clinical patient care. Externship opportunities are offered to qualified seniors. Near the completion of the fourth year, students take regional dental licensing examinations. Upon the successful completion of all didactic and clinical requirement, a Doctor of Dental Medicine (D.M.D.) degree is awarded.
Year IV Schedule
Note: Courses are labeled to indicate the sponsoring department. Course codes that begin with "DA" are presented by the Department of Applied Dental Medicine; "DR"... Department of Restorative Dentistry; "DG"... Department of Growth, Development and Structure; "DI"... Interdisciplinary, indicating that faculty from different areas collaborate to present related materials in an integrated fashion; "DE"... East St. Louis Dental Clinic, indicating a course at the East St. Louis Dental Clinic.