May 27, 2024  
USC Catalogue 2022-2023 
USC Catalogue 2022-2023 [ARCHIVED CATALOGUE]

Advanced Programs in Dental Education

Return to: Herman Ostrow School of Dentistry of USC  

The Herman Ostrow School of Dentistry offers advanced dental education programs in general dentistry, endodontics, general practice residency, operative and adhesive dentistry, orofacial pain, oral and maxillofacial surgery, pediatric dentistry, periodontology and prosthodontics, all leading to a certificate. The Herman Ostrow School of Dentistry in conjunction with the Graduate School also offers a program in craniofacial biology. In conjunction with the Keck School of Medicine, the Herman Ostrow School of Dentistry offers a combined program leading to an MD degree and certificates in oral and maxillofacial surgery and orofacial pain. The Herman Ostrow School of Dentistry also offers an online master’s degree in orofacial pain and oral medicine, geriatric dentistry and community oral health, as well as online certificate programs in geriatric dentistry, community oral health, orofacial pain, and oral pathology and radiology. In addition to clinical seminars and clinical experience, students take basic science courses with advanced students from other departments.

The certificate curriculum consists of a core of basic science subjects plus clinical seminars and clinical experience. Elective subjects may also be selected by the student with the approval of the program director.

The estimated lengths of programs are as follows:

  • Biomaterials and Digital Dentistry, 24 months
  • Biomedical Implants and Tissue Engineering, 24 months
  • Community Oral Health (online certificate), 12 months
  • MS in Community Oral Health (online), 37 months
  • Endodontics, 24 months
  • General Practice Residency, 12 months
  • Geriatric Dentistry (online certificate), 12 months 
  • MS in Geriatric Dentistry (online), 37 months
  • Operative and Adhesive Dentistry, 26 months
  • Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, 48 months
  • Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery/MD, 72 months
  • Oral Pathology and Radiology Certificate (online), 12 months
  • Orofacial Pain, (on-site certificate), 24 months
  • Orofacial Pain (online certificate), 12 months
  • MS in Orofacial Pain and Oral Medicine (online), 37 months
  • Orthodontics, 34 months
  • Pediatric Dentistry, 24 months
  • Periodontology, 36 months
  • Prosthodontics, 36 months

Most programs will begin in June (date to be determined).

Admission Requirements

Applicants must hold the Doctor of Dental Surgery or Doctor of Medical Dentistry degree (or equivalent degree if educated oversees) and must present the appropriate degrees, approved transcripts and affidavits as prescribed by the Office of Dental Admissions and Student Affairs.

Admission Procedures

Prospective students for online masters and online certificate programs must apply through the USC Graduate Admission Office Centralized Application Services (CAS) at

Prospective students for traditional (not online) programs must apply through the Postdoctoral Application Support Service (PASS) at The ADEA PASS application requires the submission of an essay, one or more Professional Evaluations, an Institution Evaluation from the dental school dean, and official dental school transcripts. The application cannot be processed until all required documents are submitted.

Information about this examination can be found at The last acceptable test date is in September of the year preceding desired admission.

The following material is also required to complete the application: (1) payment of an $85 processing fee (graduates of foreign dental schools or students requiring a visa must submit a $145 processing fee) directly to the Herman Ostrow School of Dentistry Office of Admissions and Student Affairs; (2) applicants for General Dentistry, General Practice Residency, Orthodontic, Pediatric Dentistry and Oral Surgery programs must submit applicant agreement forms to the Postdoctoral Dental Matching Program. Information and forms can be obtained online at; (3) board scores Part I and Part II are required for all programs with the exception of the Operative and Adhesive Dentistry certificate; must submit National Board of Medical Examiners (NBME) Comprehensive Basic Science Examination (CBSE) score. International students are required to take the GRE for the two-year certificate program. These requirements may be waived at the discretion of the program director; (4) a biographical statement; (5) applicants may be asked to be available for an interview. If one is necessary, applicants will be contacted by the director of the individual advanced program; (6) applicants will be required to pay a non-refundable $1,500 tuition deposit upon notification of acceptance. (7) As a precondition to enrollment, accepted students must undergo a background screening conducted by Certiphi Screening, Inc. to help ensure patient safety and compliance with state laws and regulations and all students must provide evidence of sound health and meet the school’s health requirements.

Timetable for Applications

Applications for admission must be received as follows:

  • Biomaterials and Digital Dentistry, July 15
  • Biomedical Implants and Tissue Engineering, July 15
  • Community Oral Health (online certificate)
  • Community Oral Health (online Master of Science)
  • Endodontics, Aug. 15
  • General Practice Residency, Nov. 1
  • Geriatric Dentistry (online certificate)
  • Geriatric Dentistry (online Master of Science)
  • Operative and Adhesive Dentistry, Dec. 1
  • Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, Oct. 1
  • Oral Pathology and Radiology (online certificate)
  • Orofacial Pain (on-site certificate), Nov. 1
  • Orofacial Pain (online certificate)
  • Orofacial Pain and Oral Medicine (online Master of Science)
  • Orthodontics, Oct. 1
  • Pediatric Dentistry, Oct. 1
  • Periodontology, Sept. 1
  • Prosthodontics, Nov. 1

Completed applications and related information are reviewed first by the faculty of the department of interest. In selecting applicants for admission the faculty considers academic records and personal qualifications. Final approval for admission rests with the advanced education coordinating committee. Responsibility for advising the student after admission rests with the department chair.


A departmental orientation session is usually held the first week of classes, beginning in late June. Incoming students are acquainted with the Herman Ostrow School of Dentistry, its policies, procedures, faculty and facilities.

Student Issue — Advanced Programs

Dental units in the school’s clinics are equipped with Midwest Company type tubing and couplers for low and high speed air hand pieces. Advanced students must provide their own adapters to fit the school’s couplers unless the students’ present hand pieces are already so modified. 

Students accepted into an advanced program should consult their program directors about needed equipment.


Dual Degree

University Certificate

Graduate Certificate