Doctor of Dental Medicine, DMD


PDM Vision To transform global oral health and well-being through exceptional clinical care, innovation, education, and research.
  1. Foster a humanistic environment where each individual in our diverse community is valued, respected and empowered.
  2. Treat our patients with compassion and respect, and provide exceptional evidence-based care.
  3. Honor PDM’s legacy through transformative initiatives to solve the complex problems of today and tomorrow.
  4. Shape the global dental profession by teaching evidence-based knowledge and providing opportunities to pursue individualized development for life-long learning.
  5. Promote interdisciplinary collaborations that accelerate innovation and scientific discovery to address unmet needs in health.
  6. Mentor exceptional leaders in education, research and oral health.


The four-year DMD program and curriculum at Penn Dental Medicine not only reflects a strong commitment to developing knowledge and skills in both oral science and oral health care, but also offers the flexibility for students to tailor their education to their interests. As one of 12 schools within the larger urban campus of the University of Pennsylvania, Penn Dental Medicine is uniquely positioned to provide a depth of opportunities for interdisciplinary study across other professional disciplines. Here, students find an education that builds excellence in dental medicine by encouraging individual interests and strengths to flourish and grow.


First Year

The first year of the curriculum introduces students to the concepts of human biology as they pertain to medicine in general and to dental medicine in particular. The curriculum reflects an emphasis on integration of scientific information by grouping courses into integrative course streams rather than discipline specific courses. This includes studies relating to the principles of oral disease prevention, patient management, and physical examination. A major segment of the curriculum focuses on the structure and function of oral tissues and contiguous structures. During this time, students will also begin an integrated preclinical course in restorative dentistry combining several disciplines (e.g., dental anatomy and occlusion, operative dentistry and dental materials), including extensive use of the School’s Virtual Reality Laboratory. Clinical experiences begin upon entry into the DMD program and increase with each succeeding year. In the first year, students begin clinical rotations in oral medicine, periodontics, health promotion, radiology, and hospital dentistry. Additionally, students will assist upperclassmen on the clinic floor as part of the DRAUT first year course.

First Year Courses
Foundation Sciences I
Foundation Sciences II
Ethics I
Biological Systems I
Advanced Simulation
Biological Systems II
Intro To the Patient
Dental Devel.& Anatomy
Foundation Sciences IIi
Foundation Sciences Iv
Biological Systems IIi
Biological Systems Iv
Behav Sci I-Health Promo
Periodontics I
Dental Auxiliary Utilization II
Clinial Prac II - Dau
Operative Dent. Lecture
Dental Materials

Second Year

The second-year curriculum is applied to understanding the pathology of the oral cavity and the principles of diagnosis and treatment. The curriculum includes fundamental courses in pathology (an integration of general and oral pathology), pharmacology, and principles of medicine. The preclinical restorative dentistry course is a continuation of the program offered in the first year and focuses on prosthetic therapy; it also includes additional rotations in the Virtual Reality Laboratory. Other didactic, laboratory, and clinical experiences are initiated in anesthesia and pain control, community health, endodontics, orthodontics, and periodontics. A course entitled “Introduction to Clinical Dentistry” is offered in the second year; the purpose is to facilitate the transition from the classroom to the clinic by allowing students to observe and practice the provision of services in various clinical departments. Beginning in October, afternoons are set aside for courses in the Selectives Program.

Second Year Courses
Local,Public Hlth,Ethic
Biological Systems V
Biological Systems Vi
Intro To Pharmacology
Neuro,Neuropharm,Beh Mg
Oral & Maxil Complex II
Fixed Prosthodontics Lec
Clinical Practice I
Selectives II
Biological Systems Vii
Local & Public Health II
Behavioral Management
Endodontics Lecture
Endodontics Lab
Oral & Maxil Complex I
Adjunctive Ortho Lec/Lab
Pediatric Dentistry I
Periodontics II Lec/Lab
Complete Rem Dent Pros L
Advanced Restorative Esthetics
Complete Rem Dent Pros B
Intro To Clin Dent II

Third Year

Students begin to function as dental practitioners during their third year. Didactic courses provide a deeper and more sophisticated foundation of knowledge in the clinical disciplines. However, the bulk of the third year is spent providing general patient care in a variety of settings. This includes assignments to Primary Care Units in the general clinic and rotations in various specialty clinics. In addition, students provide patient screenings and education in community-based dental health programs at schools, health fairs, geriatric centers, and homes for disabled persons. Third-year students also participate in the Selectives Program.

Third Year Courses
Endodontics Clinic
Oral Medicine L
Radiology Clinic/Seminar
Orthodontics II
P and I Clinic
Periodontics L
Pediatric Dentistry L/B
Pediatric Dentistry Clin
Oral Surgery L
Oral Surgery Clinic
Periodontics Clinic
Restorative Dentistry L
Comprehensive Care C Fal
Clinical Seminar
Personalized Care I
Selectives III
Differential Diagnosis
Health Promotion II Spring
Community Oral Health
Professional Practitioner Development II
Endodontics II Clinical Spring
Admissions and Emergency II Clinical
Oral Medicine L
Radiology II Clinic Spring
Personalized Care II
Oral Surgery II Clinic Spring
Multidisciplinary Seminar
Preventive and Interceptive Orthodontics II Clinic
Pediatric Dentistry II Clinical
Periodontics Clinic
Comprehensive Care Spring
Restorative Dentistry SP
Clinical Seminars II

Fourth Year

The fourth-year curriculum continues to expand the intellectual and clinical experiences of students, including a two-week hospital externship. Students continue to attend PCU clinical seminars in which they present clinical cases where the integration of knowledge, skills, and values is emphasized. Coursework is designed to augment the basic knowledge in the first three years. By graduation, students will have demonstrated the competence, confidence, and maturity to qualify as safe, beginning independent general dental practitioners.

Fourth Year Courses
Selectives IV
Health Promotion
Community Oral Health
The Endodontic Clinic
Admissions and Emergency
Radiology Clinic
Personalized Care I
Oral Medicine Clinical Rotation
Oral Surgery Clinic
Adjunctive Orthodontics
Pediatric Dentistry Clinic
Periodontics Clinic
Comprehensive Care C
Clinical Seminar
Health Promotion Practicum II
Professional Practitioner III
The Endodontic II Clinic
Admissions and Emergency II
Radiology II Clinic
Personalized Care II
Hospital Assignment
Oral Surgery II Clinic
Adjunctive Orthodontics II Clinic
Pediatric Dentistry II Clinical
Periodontics II C
Comprehensive Care II Clinical
Clinical Seminar II Spring


The Penn Dental Medicine’s Selectives Program enhances the predoctoral curriculum by allowing students to individualize their education to reflect their own professional interests. Selectives are offered from October to June each year, and includes didactic, clinical, community dental health service, and research opportunities. Many Selectives occur in small group seminars or individualized settings that promote close student-faculty interactions.

The degree and major requirements displayed are intended as a guide for students entering in the Fall of 2022 and later. Students should consult with their academic program regarding final certifications and requirements for graduation.