Department of Pediatric Dentistry

The program in Pediatric Dentistry is a two year program beginning in July of each year. Six positions are authorized for the first year class. The program is designed to meet the requirements of the Council on Dental Education of the American Dental Association, the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry and the American Board of Pediatric Dentistry.

The curriculum is designed to encompass the progressive graded sequence of formal courses and hospital experiences in the theory and practice of pediatric dentistry at the postgraduate level. The program emphasizes the application of biological, physiological and psychological principles during the periods of physical and emotional development of the infant, child and adolescent and special needs patient. An appreciation for and understanding of the role of preventive measures, community dental health programs for children, exposure to hospital practice and research are also areas of emphasis.

The residents matriculate in a variety of facilities during the 2 years which include the following:

  • The Howard University College of Dentistry
  • The Howard University College of Medicine
  • The Howard University Hospital
  • The Children’s Hospital National Medical Center
  • The Spanish Catholic Center
  • The Prince George’s County Health Department 

Program Goals

To produce pediatric dentistry graduates who have clinical and didactic experiences that will equip them with the skills, knowledge and competence needed to practice and teach pediatric dentistry.

To prepare pediatric dentistry residents to participate in and successfully complete the American Board of Pediatric Dentistry (ABPD) board certification examination and achieve Diplomate status following matriculation from the program.

To encourage residents to participate in organized dentistry on a local, state and/or national level.

To prepare matriculating postgraduate residents to make meaningful contributions to the body of knowledge through quality evidence based research.

The residents participate in the evaluation, diagnosis and treatment of a variety of patients in the various clinics they rotate through during their matriculation in the program. They provide comprehensive and preventive dental treatment to the patients and make appropriate referrals to specialists as needed. The hospital rotations at Children’s Hospital National Medical Center and Howard University Hospital provide the residents with the experience in the area of anesthesia for the pediatric and special needs patients.

Pharmacologic and non-pharmacologic management of patient behavior is taught in accordance to the guiding principles of the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry.  Moreover, the Pediatric Medicine rotation at Howard University Hospital pediatric outpatient clinic allows vertical integration of diagnostic and interviewing skills in the practice of pediatric dentistry.

The program is school-based; the residents take a series of sequenced graded courses that provide the necessary didactic background for appropriate evidence-based dentistry.

The residents participate in community events which include but are not limited to: Special Olympics Special Smiles, Medical Mission at Home, and Health Science Outreach Program Yes (H.O.P.E. Yes) and the HSC Pediatric Center’s Summer Health Fair. Service is a core value of the University and the Program and the residents provide the much needed service to the underserved and uninsured of the local communities. Participation in organized dentistry is emphasized in the program along with service in the local and global communities.

The residents are required to conduct an original research project. Moreover, the residents must present their research to faculty, administrators and peers and complete a publishable thesis format paper on the research presented.

The residents must take the written Qualification Examination which is the first step in the process toward certification in the American Board of Pediatric Dentistry. Each resident is encouraged to continue the process of board certification and assured of support for their efforts after completion of the program.