Online Master of Science in Geriatric Dentistry
This three-year, 30.5-unit online program is designed for practicing dentists who wish to greatly improve their skills in addressing the unique dental needs of older adult patients within the context of their medical and physical conditions. Students must be able to commit 10 to 20 hours per week to the program, which includes streaming video lectures, online quizzes, weekly video conferences regarding patient cases, and the preparation and presentation of a research article on a geriatric dentistry topic. Students must also visit the USC campus four times during the course of the program, including for one week at the start of the program and for two weeks following each academic year.
Heavy emphasis is placed on learning about the medical conditions that affect older patients and the role it plays in the assessment and treatment of patients. There are foundational courses in Immunology, Internal Medicine, Pharmacology, and Research Methods. Clinical courses include: Neurogenic Orofacial Pains, Soft-tissue Disease, Bony Pathology, Radiology and Advanced Imaging, Systems Physiology, Motor Disorders, and Sleep Apnea. Specialized courses include Epidemiology, Nutrition and Aging, Gerontology topics, Systemic Conditions in Older Patients and Geriatric Dentistry Issues. The program is accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges.
How to Apply
The Ostrow School of Dentistry of USC uses the American Dental Education Association’s Postdoctoral Application Support Service’s (PASS) centralized application for its specialty certificate programs.
In addition to the PASS, all Geriatric Dentistry Program applicants must submit the following supplemental materials to the Ostrow School of Dentistry’s Office of Admissions:
- A passport-style photo of yourself, measuring 2 inches x 2 inches.
- A non-refundable processing fee of $85 ($145 for international applicants). We will accept a personal check, cashier/bank check, or money order made payable to USC. Please indicate the program you are applying for on the check: “GERIATRIC DENTISTRY”.
Mail your supplementary packet, all in one envelope, to:
Ostrow School of Dentistry of USC
Office of Admissions
925 West 34th St, Room #201
Los Angeles, CA 90074-2145
To request other information regarding the program, contact:
Distance Learning Office
Ostrow School of Dentistry of USC
925 W. 34th St., DEN 127
Los Angeles, CA 90089-0641
Tel: (213) 821-5831
All dentists, regardless of their country of origin, are encouraged to apply. Qualified applicants who fit the program’s criteria will be invited to interview with the faculty; applicants who live an extended distance from Southern California may interview via Skype.
Cost of Attendance
This program does not provide a stipend. These charges are estimated at this point, and will be set in April of each year. All these fees are estimated costs until paid.
|Direct Costs||Year 1||Year 2||Year 3|
|Student Health Center Fee||$253||$253||$253|
|Total Direct Costs||$22,420||$15,792||$7,690|
|Allowances for Indirect Costs|
|Room and Board
(2 weeks in summer)
|Estimated Cost of Attendance||$24,920||$18,292||$10,190|
*Student health insurance fee to be determined. Fee can be waived with proof of health insurance that meets USC’s requirements by filing a waiver with the Student Health Center. Please check deadlines and documentation necessary to waive the Student Health Insurance.
U.S. Department of Education Disclosure
|Dept of Labor Standard Occupational Classification Code:||29-1023|
|Dept of Labor Standard Occupational Profile:||http://www.onetonline.org/link/summary/29-1029.00|
|On-Time Completion Rate:||100%|
|Tuition and Fees:||2013-2014: $22,420
|Job Placement Rate:||Not Available|
|Median Loan Debt|
Please note that all matriculating students must comply with the university’s health requirements.
Main Learning Objectives
These three learning objectives constitute what a graduate of the MS degree in Geriatric Dentistry is expected to achieve to be eligible for the degree.
Objective #1 – Geriatric Dentistry/Gerontology Learning Outcomes: Our graduates will be able to identify, interpret and summarize the aging process and its associated epidemiologic, sociologic, psychosocial factors and the impact of these conditions on oral health, various oral disease findings and subsequent therapies.
Objective #2 – Common Medical Conditions & Medications in Geriatric Patients Learning Outcomes: Our graduates will be able to understand and recognize common medical conditions including their etiology and appropriately design a plan of action for their older adult patients who present with these conditions in a systematic fashion to achieve evidence-based treatment.
Objective #3 – Cross-Cutting Diagnostic/Pharmacologic based Learning Outcomes: Our graduates will be able to acquire, interpret and summarize all physical, psychological and historical data from their patients in a systematic fashion that considers signs, symptoms, diagnosis, monitoring and disease progression and analyze medication usage and its impact to achieve an evidence-based differential diagnosis.
|Course Number||Course Title||Units|
|ADNT 701||Research Methodologies in Dentistry||2|
|GDEN 710||Knowledge Assessment for GDEN Students||1|
|GDEN 711 a,b,c,d,e||Case Portfolio Preparation for GDEN Students||2.5|
|GDEN 712 a,b,c,d||Capstone Research Project for GDEN Students||2|
|GDEN 713||Common Systemic Conditions in Older Patients||2|
|GDEN 714||Topics in Gerontology||2|
|GDEN 715||Geriatric Dentistry Issues||2|
|OFPM 702 ab||Soft Tissue Disease for Dental Residents||3|
|OFPM 704||Bony Pathology, Radiology and Advanced Imaging for Dental Residents||1|
|OFPM 705||Neurogenic Based Oral and Facial Pains for Dental Residents||2|
|OFPM 707||Pharmacology Series for Dental Residents||2|
|OFPM 710a||Knowledge Assessment for OFPOM Residents||1|
|OFPM 722||Internal Medicine and Systemic Disease for Dental Residents||2|
|OFPM 723||Systems Physiology, Motor Disorders and Sleep Apnea for Dental Residents||2|
|OFPM 725||Epidemiology, Nutrition and Aging for Dental Residents||2|
|OFPM 726||Immunology and Immunosuppression for Dental Residents||2|
The planned three-year curriculum begins in the first year (Summer-Fall -Spring) with a series of eight courses (two are multipart courses). Seven of these courses focus on clinical issues including bony pathology and radiology, soft tissue pathology (2 parts), sleep and motor disorders, pharmacology for dental residents, and topics in gerontology and internal medicine. These courses provide the student with the core information about the over 300 diseases, disorders and dysfunctions which exist in the oral and maxillofacial region. The eighth course is the case presentation/portfolio preparation course (2 parts). This course involves the students in a weekly video conference where they will be given one case a week to analyze, write a diagnosis and treatment plan and present at our weekly video rounds. Some of these cases will become part of the final set of portfolio cases on which the resident will provide an in-depth analysis.
Year 1 Courses:
Summer: Systems Physiology, Motor Disorders, Sleep Apnea For Dental Residents (OFPM-723)
Summer: Bony Pathology, Radiology, Advanced Imaging For Dental Residents (OFPM-704)
Summer: Soft Tissue Disease for Dental Residents (OFPM-702a)
Fall: Pharmacology Series for Dental Residents (OFPM-707)
Fall: Topics in Gerontology (GDEN-714)
Fall: Soft Tissue Disease for Dental Residents (OFPM-702b)
Fall: Case Portfolio Preparation Course for GDEN Students (GDEN-711a)
Spring: Neurogenic Based Oral & Facial Pains for Dental Residents (OFPM-705)
Spring: Internal Medicine and Systematic Disease for Dental Residents (OFPM-722)
Spring: Case Portfolio Preparation Course for GDEN Students (GDEN-711b)
The second year begins with the summer trimester. In this trimester we hold our first knowledge assessment course where the student will be in attendance at USC for 2 weeks for extensive (formative) assessment of their accumulated knowledge to date. In the Fall and Spring semesters, there are six courses (one is a multipart course that continues from the first year). The second year we will focus on the basic science (with 2 basic science courses covering immunology, and research methodology), and the common systemic conditions seen in geriatric patients. The course “Epidemiology, nutrition and aging for dental residents” covers topics that include the psychology of aging, assessment tools, dementia, depression and suicide, elder abuse, geropharmacology and polypharmacy. The other two courses provided in year 02 include the ongoing course called case presentation/portfolio preparation course (a continuation from year 1) and the beginning of the capstone project. As described above, the case presentation/portfolio course involves the students in a weekly video conference where they will be given one case a week to analyze, write a diagnosis and treatment plan and present at our weekly video rounds. During this year the student will meet with the course director one-on-one, periodically to present his/her progress towards the final goal of writing up 18 of the cases using an in-depth analytical approach and adding each of these enhanced cases into the personalized e-portfolio. The first part of the capstone project course is scheduled for the spring trimester following the research methodology course (in the fall). In this course the student meets (via skype) with the research advisor and presents his/her work in progress towards the final goal of a project presentation and its defense at the end of the 3rd year.
Summer: Knowledge Assessment for OFPOM Residents (OFPM-710a)
Fall: Epidemiology, Nutrition And Aging For Dental Residents (OFPM-725)
Fall: Immunology And Immunosuppression For Dental Residents (OFPM-726)
Fall: Case Portfolio Preparation Course for GDEN Students (GDEN-711c)
Fall: Research Methodologies In Dentistry (ADNT-701)
Spring: Common Systemic Conditions in Older Patients (GDEN-713)
Spring: Case Portfolio Preparation Course for GDEN Students (GDEN-711d)
Spring: Capstone Project for GDEN Students (GDEN-712a)
The third year begins in the summer trimester with our second knowledge assessment course where the student will be in attendance at USC for 2 weeks for extensive (formative) assessment of their accumulated knowledge to date. Specifically, we will examine which of the learning objectives they have mastered at this point in the program.
In the third year of our planned 3-year curriculum, there are three courses (two are ongoing multi-part courses). One of these courses has a clinical focus covering many specific geriatric dentistry issues such as typical soft tissue findings, CAMBRA protocol for the elderly, root caries, xerostomia, and other common disorders of geriatric patients). This course furthers the student’s understanding of the complex issues that real patients bring into the clinic, above and beyond their specific disease. The maxim here is that “understanding how a disease impacts a patient’s life is as important as knowing its specific diagnosis and pathobiology.” In year 3 we have deliberately reduced the course load and the video conference activities of the student so that attention can be concentrated on finishing the e-portfolio case write-ups and the capstone project write-up. The second and third trimesters of the capstone project course are scheduled for year three and like the first trimester of this course (previously described), the student will meet (via skype) with the assigned faculty research advisor and present his/her work in progress towards the final goal of a project presentation and defense at the end of the 3rd year. The third year ends with the students visiting USC to present and defend his/her final set of portfolio cases and the capstone project to a panel of our faculty. This faculty examination is designed to offer the student an opportunity to demonstrate mastery of the learning objectives.
Summer: Knowledge Assessment for GDEN Students (GDEN-710)
Fall: Geriatric Dentistry Issues (GDEN-715)
Fall: Capstone Project for GDEN Students (GDEN-712b)
Spring: Capstone Project for GDEN Students (GDEN-712c)
Summer: Capstone Project for GDEN Students (GDEN-712d)
Summer: Case Portfolio Preparation Course for GDEN Students (GDEN-711e)