This unique program caters to individuals interested in various scientific and research aspects of oral and craniofacial biology. Students in the program may be traditional bachelor’s graduates, dentists enrolled in clinical specialties, or individuals interested in enhancing their application to professional school.
Application deadline extended: Applications will be accepted until April 1, 2019.
The Oral Sciences graduate program is an academic, research-oriented program that leads to the Master of Science (MS) degree. Its overall goal is to provide background, expertise and current concepts of basic sciences as related to dental research in oral and craniofacial biology. Students in the program may also be independently enrolled in a clinical specialty and complete the program in conjunction with such specialty.
An enhanced pre-professional curriculum is also available to students who wish to apply to professional school (e.g. Dental School) after completion of the program. Such enhanced curriculum allows students in good standing to enroll in a limited number of basic science dental school courses.
Although the Oral Sciences program is full-time by design, students may be allowed to complete the program on a part-time basis under certain circumstances.
The program typically takes about two years to complete, but additional time must be allocated if the degree is pursued in conjunction with a clinical specialty program.
The Oral Sciences Program involves a group of faculty from several departments of the School of Dental Medicine, all of whom are members of the faculty of the Graduate School. Due to the multidisciplinary nature of the faculty, a wide range of research interests are represented which affords students the opportunity to engage in research that is especially suited to their individual interests, abilities, and career goals. Students may choose to pursue research from many different areas, including biological, clinical, and behavioral studies. The research opportunities are numerous and roughly represented by the faculty interests described in the Faculty Interests document.
Joseph P. Breloff
Department of Periodontics and Endodontics
250 Squire Hall
Phone: (716) 829-3845
Email: Breloff, Joseph
Students are required to enroll in required core courses as well as elective ones, to complete an original research project, and to write and orally defend a master’s thesis.
A minimum of 30 credit hours of course work, including the satisfactory completion of a written thesis based on independent research, are required for the MS degree.
All students must take the program’s required courses. Exemptions or substitutions may be granted by the program director only upon written request from the student based upon valid academic justification. The program director will inform the Graduate School of these substitutions. Each student may take credit hours of elective course work, usually related to the student’s area of research. Elective courses must be chosen after consultation with the student’s major professor and graduate committee.
This is a research-oriented degree program and does not include clinical training. As such, the didactic curriculum of the Master’s program in Oral Sciences may not necessarily be directly related to a clinical setting. The overall design of the program is to provide background, expertise and current concepts of basic sciences related to dental research and oral biology.
Due to the nature of the topics covered by the curriculum, students are often simultaneously enrolled in an advanced dental education clinical certificate program which complements their knowledge base. In addition, the enhanced curriculum allows students to take some courses alongside first year students in our DDS program. The scope of the enhanced curriculum is to prepare prospective dental school applicants in strengthening their application.
The program does not have any resources to support students. However, some participating faculty have research grants and may be interested in supporting students. Interested students should contact the faculty directly.
Students in the MS program pay tuition and fees applicable to Graduate (not dental) students.
The University’s Graduate Education Policies apply to all students enrolled in the Oral Sciences Program. They are compatible with those of the University at Buffalo’s Graduate School.
A complete description of Graduate School policies may be obtained from the Graduate School:
549 Capen Hall, Amherst Campus / (716) 645- 2939
All prospective and enrolled Oral Sciences graduate students must thoroughly review these Graduate Education Policies and retain them for future reference.
|Applications Accepted||June 15, 2018 - April 1, 2019|
To apply, please submit all documents listed below. Your application will not be complete until these items have been received and you have submitted your application for formal review.
In addition to the requirements listed above, please submit the following:
TOEFL score report must be at or above minimum of 550 (written) / 213 (computer based) / 79 (internet based) or better obtained within eighteen months of the application deadline.
Frequently asked questions
Is the Oral Sciences Program limited to applicants with a DDS/DMD/BDS degree?
No; while most of the applicants DO have such degree and are usually also enrolled in a dental clinical specialty, applicants with a traditional Bachelor degree are also allowed to apply.
How long does the program take?
It depends whether the enrollee is also enrolled in a clinical specialty. A student enrolled only in the Master Program usually takes about two years to complete the program, while clinical residents, because of their clinical obligations, usually take 3-4 years.
Does the Program require the GRE?
No; traditionally the program has not required the GRE.
What are the minimum requirements to apply to the program?
A Bachelor degree is the minimal degree required of an applicant. In addition, the Graduate School also required a minimum overall undergraduate GPA of 3.0 for all graduate programs, although a competitive academic record is one of the factors that are considered in the selection of an applicant. In exceptional circumstances, the Graduate School will accept a GPA slightly below a 3.0; but this is rarely done, and under extraordinary conditions.
Will the Master Program in Oral Sciences help me get an acceptance to Dental School?
The Master program and the DDS program are totally independent programs, so there is no assurance that completing the Master Program will guarantee acceptance in the DDS one. As for any Master Program, the Oral Sciences one may make someone more competitive for ANY dental school and, indeed, many of our graduates have continued onto the DDS program. In addition, the Master Program allows its student to enroll in some of the dental school basic sciences courses (which are also open to graduate students); these courses would be waived in the first year od dental school, should one of our student be accepted into the DDS program.
Will the Master Program provide any clinical training?
No. The Oral Sciences Program is an academic research-oriented graduate program; your enrollment implies a commitment to learn about and to engage in research. This means that the didactic curriculum of the Master’s Program in Oral Sciences may not necessarily be directly related to a clinical setting. Rather, the overall design of the program is to provide background, expertise and current concepts of basic sciences as related to dental research and oral biology. Your research project MAY involved clinical studies, but the overall scope of the research project is to concentrate on research design, experimental methods, and basic science.
What are the areas of research that the program provides?
Being a multidisciplinary program not affiliated with any particular department, the research areas are numerous and varied. Some examples are, immunology and host response, microbiology, biochemistry, salivary-bacterial interactions, biofilms, bone physiology, autoimmunity, physiology of pain, temporomandibular disorders, epidemiological studies, biomaterials, and lasers, to name some.
How soon can I start my research project?
No deadline is fixed for this. Traditionally, students connect with a potential research mentor after the first semester of classes; however, if a student has agreed to start with a research mentor right from the beginning, this is possible.
Will the Program provide financial assistance?
No. The Oral Sciences Program does not provide funds for student financial support via stipends, fellowships, assistantships, tuition waivers, or any other form of support. The Oral Sciences Program will provide the necessary courses and research training to fulfill the Master Degree’s requirements. The students are expected to be responsible for tuition, fees, and all other expenses required by the University for graduate students enrolled in a Master Program.