College of Dental Medicine
Completion of our four-year pre-doctoral program in dental medicine leads to a doctor of dental medicine degree (DMD). At this time, we do not offer any programs in advanced dental education.
The 4-year DMD curriculum represents a philosophy that dentists are primary care clinicians capable of caring for underserved and/or vulnerable populations. The integrated curriculum is layered to enable continuous reinforcement of clinical and non-clinical skills throughout the program as described below by year.
Year 1 (D1)
The first year of the DMD curriculum (D1) is focused on foundational knowledge and coursework that integrates the biomedical and clinical sciences.
- Students will participate in didactic instruction in the biomedical sciences; dental clinical sciences; simulation instruction; principles of epidemiology and public health, and evidence-based dentistry.
- Students will participate in service-learning experiences by providing oral health education and outreach to communities with limited access to dental care, including school children, elderly, and special needs populations.
- Students will be introduced to the principles of research as the foundation of evidence for clinical decision-making and will present a topic to their peers. They will also have an opportunity to apply for a summer research program.
- Early clinical experiences will begin at the end of the D1 year with students providing preventive services such as adult and pediatric prophylaxis, sealants, and fluoride treatments to patients in the Oral Health Center.
Year 2 (D2)
During the D2 year, the foundational knowledge, applied public health, and clinical
integration themes continue to build.
- Students will continue instruction in the biomedical/clinical systems (systems physiology/pathophysiology/pharmacology). Dental clinical sciences (endodontics, full denture prosthodontics, local anesthesia, nitrous oxide, and medical history/charting/treatment planning with simulated patient cases) will begin.
- During the fall semester, D2 students take courses in oral pathology/oral medicine/TMD, oral surgery, fixed prosthodontics, pediatric dentistry, and health policy and management.
- D2 students will build on their clinical care foundations by starting to screen patients for comprehensive care in the OHC, as well as assist in the clinic on rotations in Urgent Care.
- During the spring semester, D2 students take courses in orthodontics, removable prosthodontics, professional development, social and behavioral health, applied dental public health, and applied medical sciences.
- In preparation for transition to the patient care clinic, students are introduced to oral implantology and learn advanced concepts in periodontics, endodontics, restorative dentistry, dental materials, and diagnosis/treatment planning.
- Students begin their clinical patient care experiences in the clinic one-half day per week this semester. Students will be introduced to their group practices where they continue to treat patients restoratively in the OHC.
Year 3 (D3)
The D3 year focuses on the acquisition of clinical patient care skills, clinical integration, and fundamentals of service learning. D3 marks the transition from foundational biomedical and clinical knowledge to the application of this knowledge in the clinical environment.
- Students will spend the majority of their week providing patient care in their Group Practices in the KCU Oral Health Center.
- Students will participate in a lecture series one day per week that includes advanced oral pathology, TMD, radiology, clinical pharmacology, critical thinking in patient care, practice management.
- Students will participate in elective seminars on advanced concepts in endodontics, esthetics, oral pathology, periodontics, oral and maxillofacial surgery, pediatric dentistry or prosthodontics.
- Students will participate in inter-professional opportunities for training and experiences with students from other KCU Colleges.
- Additionally, students will have an opportunity to participate in service-based patient care during rotations at local public schools.
Year 4 (D4)
The D4 year continues to develop the students’ clinical dental skills that includes service learning and applied public health themes.
- Students will participate in two 12-week clinical rotations over their D4 year, rotating to community educational activity sites that include Community Clinics, Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHCs) and Indian Health Service facilities (IHSCs). All these sites are located throughout Missouri, Oklahoma, Kansas, Arkansas.
- When not on an extramural rotation, students will return to the Oral Health Center to continue to provide patient care to their patient family, while working toward KCU case completion guidelines.
- Students will also participate in seminars, lectures, and/or case presentations during the year.
KCU CDM received initial accreditation in February 2022 from the Commission on Dental Accreditation (CODA).