DDS CODA Competencies



Graduates must be competent in the use of critical thinking and problem-solving, including their use in the comprehensive care of patients, scientific inquiry and research methodology.


Graduates must demonstrate the ability to self-assess, including the development of professional competencies and the demonstration of professional values and capacities associated with self-directed, lifelong learning.


Biomedical science instruction in dental education must ensure an in-depth understanding of basic biological principles, consisting of a core of information on the fundamental structures, functions and interrelationships of the body systems.


The biomedical knowledge base must emphasize the oro-facial complex as an important anatomical area existing in a complex biological interrelationship with the entire body.


In-depth information on abnormal biological conditions must be provided to support a high level of understanding of the etiology, epidemiology, differential diagnosis, pathogenesis, prevention, treatment and prognosis of oral and oral- related disorders.


Graduates must be competent in the application of biomedical science knowledge in the delivery of patient care.


Graduates must be competent in the application of the fundamental principles of behavioral sciences as they pertain to patient-centered approaches for promoting, improving and maintaining oral health.


Graduates must be competent in managing a diverse patient population and have the interpersonal and communications skills to function successfully in a multicultural work environment.


Graduates must be competent in applying legal and regulatory concepts related to the provision and/or support of oral health care services.


Graduates must be competent in applying the basic principles and philosophies of practice management, models of oral health care delivery, and how to function successfully as the leader of the oral health care team.


Graduates must be competent in communicating and collaborating with other members of the health care team to facilitate the provision of health care.


Graduates must be competent in the application of the principles of ethical decision making and professional responsibility.


Graduates must be competent to access, critically appraise, apply, and communicate scientific and lay literature as it relates to providing evidence-based patient care.


Graduates must be competent in providing oral health care within the scope of general dentistry to patients in all stages of life.


At a minimum, graduates must be competent in providing oral health care within the scope of general dentistry, as defined by the school, including:

a. patient assessment, diagnosis, comprehensive treatment planning, prognosis, and informed consent;

b. screening and risk assessment for head and neck cancer;

c. recognizing the complexity of patient treatment and identifying when referral is indicated;

d. health promotion and disease prevention, including caries management;

e. local anesthesia, and pain and anxiety control, including consideration of the impact of prescribing practices and substance use disorder;

f. restoration of teeth;

g. communicating and managing dental laboratory procedures in support of patient care;

h. replacement of teeth including fixed, removable and dental implant prosthodontic therapies;

i. periodontal therapy;

j. pulpal therapy;

k. oral mucosal, temporomandibular, and osseous disorders;

l.hard and soft tissue surgery;

m. dental emergencies;

n. malocclusion and space management; and

o. evaluation of the outcomes of treatment, recall strategies, and prognosis


Graduates must be competent in assessing and managing the treatment of patients with special needs.


Dental education programs must make available opportunities and encourage students to engage in service learning experiences and/or community-based learning experiences.