Division of Behavioral & Population Sciences

The Division of Behavioral and Population Sciences offers a variety of didactic and clinical educational experiences to our students. These offerings begin in the D1 year with a course in Evidence-based Dentistry. We also teach community dentistry to D3 students to provide exposure to issues facing dentistry in the wider world including public health concerns such as community water fluoridation and epidemiology as well as introducing them to research, organized dentistry and dental advocacy. We also offer case-based learning experiences to each class of students in interactive small group settings where participatory learning about actual cases takes place.

Our division additionally coordinates all external clinical rotations for D3 and D4 students providing them broad exposure to patients in the community in a variety of settings including a community health center dental clinic, a county funded free dental clinic, a non-profit dental clinic that focuses on children and a retirement center and nursing home clinical experience. In addition, our division offers inter-professional training experiences for D3 students, a geriatric outreach program for D3 and D4 students and 1-2 week voluntary clinical experiences in more distant rural and underserved community health center clinics around the state for D4 students in the spring of their D4 year.

Courses

DENT 1140. Evidence-Based Dentistry

Course Director: Carly McKenzie, Ph.D. and Conan Davis, D.M.D.

The overall goal of this course is to provide the dental student with the necessary foundation for literature based learning by introducing basic concepts in epidemiology and biostatistics through a series of lectures and group projects. Critical thinking is emphasized.

DENT 1210. Case-Based Education 1

Course Directors: Carly McKenzie, Ph.D. and Hussein Basma, D.D.S., M.S.

This course presents clinical scenarios in order to give D1 dental students simulated experience with various aspects of clinical dentistry and to provide an opportunity to apply basic science and foundational clinical concepts to the practice of dentistry.

DENT 1290. High Stakes Assessments D1

Course Director: Michael S. McCracken, D.D.S., Ph.D., F.A.C.P.

Our faculty consider four areas of student learning to be critically important. These are clinical care, service, research, and professionalism. These are categories of achievement that may be difficult to evaluate in the traditional classroom environment. To reinforce competency development in each of these areas, four high stakes assessments (HSAs) have been implemented, one in each category. Service HSA will teach students that service is valuable to the community, and rewarding to the servant. The Scholarly Activity HSA will teach students to think critically and to utilize literature to answer a clinical or research question. The professionalism HSA will document and enhance ethical development. The Clinical care HSA will assess a student’s global competency and integrated knowledge of dentistry.

DENT 2110. Case-Based Education 2

Course Directors: Carly McKenzie, Ph.D. and Sonya T. Mitchell D.M.D., M.S.H.A.

This course presents clinical scenarios in order to give D2 dental students simulated experience with various aspects of clinical dentistry and to provide an opportunity to apply basic science and foundational clinical concepts to the practice of dentistry.

DENT 2210. Case-Based Education 3

Course Directors: Carly McKenzie, Ph.D. and Heaven

This course provides an opportunity for students to interact in small groups and discuss dental science with a discussion facilitator. This class will be comprised of approximately six cases and two informational sessions. Each case will last two weeks. A few lectures will be given, but learning will predominantly occur via self-study and small-group interaction. Students are expected to compile information from a variety of sources to answer questions about each case, to contribute in a facilitator-assisted discussion, and to develop appropriate treatment plans.

DENT 2215. Communications D2

Course Director: Carly McKenzie, Ph.D.

This course provides an opportunity for students to learn basic communication and interpersonal skills as related to both patients and dental team members. Each student will attend approximately 3 class lecture meetings and 3 small group meetings (labs). Out of class readings and exercises may be expected. Topics will cover non-verbal communication, patient interaction, and treatment plan presentation.

DENT 2220. Geriatrics D2

Course Director: Lillian Mitchell, D.D.S.

To develop the students’ understanding of the care of the complex older adult, the burden faced by the healthcare system due to the explosion of the aging population and how to address some of the needs of the elderly in relation to their oral health.

DENT 2290. High Stakes Assessments D2

Course Director: Michael S. McCracken, D.D.S., Ph.D., F.A.C.P.

Our faculty consider four areas of student learning to be critically important. These are clinical care, service, research, and professionalism. These are categories of achievement that may be difficult to evaluate in the traditional classroom environment. To reinforce competency development in each of these areas, four high stakes assessments (HSAs) have been implemented, one in each category. Service HSA will teach students that service is valuable to the community, and rewarding to the servant. The Scholarly Activity HSA will teach students to think critically and to utilize literature to answer a clinical or research question. The professionalism HSA will document and enhance ethical development. The Clinical care HSA will assess a student’s global competency and integrated knowledge of dentistry.

DENT 3215. Communications D3

Course Director: Carly McKenzie, Ph.D.

This course provides an opportunity for students to learn basic communication and interpersonal skills as related to both patients and dental team members. Each student will attend approximately 4 class lecture meetings and 3 small group meetings (labs). Out of class readings and exercises may be expected. Topics will cover conflict resolution, handling difficult conversations, and team building.

DENT 3220. Community Dentistry

Course Director: Conan Davis, D.M.D.

This course is an introduction to community and public health dentistry. It will cover a number of subjects related to public health, public policy and community dentistry. These subjects will range from public policy and legislation concerning the dental profession, to financing models for dental services for patients on public assistance programs. It will also include a review of practice-based research and why you should consider continuing to remain a life-long learner once in practice. It will include as well an overview of the science of population studies.

DENT 3235. Health Promotions and Non Surgical Interventions

Course Director: Nathaniel Lawson, D.M.D.

This course is designed to emphasize health issues, preventive methods, techniques and materials to enable dental students to have informed discussions with their patients and conversational knowledge of current dental topics. Presentations will be directed towards fellow dental students to teach them how to “talk to their patients”. All presentations will be shared with other class members to provide the recent dental graduates presentations that can be delivered to nursing homes, schools, office staff and other lay or professional audiences as a means to increase public awareness of oral health issues.

DENT 3290. High Stakes Assessments D3

Course Director: Michael S. McCracken, D.D.S., Ph.D., F.A.C.P.

Our faculty consider four areas of student learning to be critically important. These are clinical care, service, research, and professionalism. These are categories of achievement that may be difficult to evaluate in the traditional classroom environment. To reinforce competency development in each of these areas, four high stakes assessments (HSAs) have been implemented, one in each category. Service HSA will teach students that service is valuable to the community, and rewarding to the servant. The Scholarly Activity HSA will teach students to think critically and to utilize literature to answer a clinical or research question. The professionalism HSA will document and enhance ethical development. The Clinical care HSA will assess a student’s global competency and integrated knowledge of dentistry.

DENT 3510. Community Service Rotations D3

Course Director: Conan Davis, D.M.D.

The program provides the opportunity for students to have a community-based experience. It also provides an opportunity for students to improve clinical skills, learn about different delivery practices and materials, increase in self confidence, provide needed services to low-income and special needs patients and thus have a better understanding of the needs of low-income and more diverse populations in our state. It is important for students to be exposed to the needs of these diverse populations in the communities where they live to gain a better understanding of the issues and barriers they face every day. The expected outcome of this experience is for the student to have a broader view of the overall communities where they will be serving as dental providers upon graduation.

DENT 4130. Geriatrics D4

Course Director: Lillian Mitchell, D.D.S.

To build upon and further develop the students’ understanding of the care of the complex older adult as presented in the D2 course. The course is designed to provide additional knowledge and promote positive attitudes in the care of the complex older adult that complement the skills being developed by 4th year dental students in their comprehensive general dentistry and outreach rotations. Assessment and clinical management strategies for the care of the older patient with a broad range of complex health conditions, physical and mental disorders, as well as, psycho-social concerns will be discussed in the context of knowledge already developed in oral medicine and other related disciplines. Emphasis will be placed on the most common difficulties experienced by the aging adult population.

DENT 4510. Community Service Rotations D4

Course Director: Conan Davis, D.M.D.

The program provides the opportunity for students to have a community-based experience. It also provides an opportunity for students to improve clinical skills, learn about different delivery practices and materials, increase in self confidence, provide needed services to low-income and special needs patients and thus have a better understanding of the needs of low-income and more diverse populations in our state. It is important for students to be exposed to the needs of these diverse populations in the communities where they live to gain a better understanding of the issues and barriers they face every day. The expected outcome of this experience is for the student to have a broader view of the overall communities where they will be serving as dental providers upon graduation. The goals of this program are now part of dental school accreditation and have been included in the most recent update of CODA standards.

DENT 4210. Advanced Biomaterials

Course Director: John Burgess, D.D.S., M.S.

This course is designed to explore new restorative materials and alternate as well as controversial restorative dentistry techniques. Through a series of lectures in multiple topics, students will become aware of successful predictable materials and restorative techniques. This update will bridge the gap from materials used in the dental school to private practice by providing current evaluations of universal adhesives, amalgam longevity, preventive materials, bioactive materials, silver diamine fluoride, anterior composite resin layering techniques, bulk placement and restoration of posterior composite resin restorations, fluoride releasing materials, cements, ceramics, digital and conventional impression materials, provisional restorations and restoring endodontically treated teeth. Students will understand the materials composition, properties, and optimal manipulation of modern dental materials used in the fabrication of direct and indirect restorations.

DENT 4280. Communications D4

Course Director: Carly McKenzie, Ph.D.

This is the fourth and final course in the communications curriculum. The overall goal of this course is for students to develop practice management and leadership skills. In addition, students must demonstrate appropriate interpersonal and communication skills with a Limited Care Clinic patient.

DENT 4290. High Stakes Assessments D4

Course Director: Michael S. McCracken, D.D.S., Ph.D., F.A.C.P.

Our faculty consider four areas of student learning to be critically important. These are clinical care, service, research, and professionalism. These are categories of achievement that may be difficult to evaluate in the traditional classroom environment. To reinforce competency development in each of these areas, four high stakes assessments (HSAs) have been implemented, one in each category. Service HAS will teach students that service is valuable to the community, and rewarding to the servant. The Scholarly Activity HSA will teach students to think critically and to utilize literature to answer a clinical or research question. The professionalism HSA will document and enhance ethical development. The Clinical care HSA will assess a student’s global competency and integrated knowledge of dentistry.

DENT 5210. IDP Case-Based Education

Course Directors: Carly McKenzie, Ph.D. and Sonya T. Mitchell D.M.D., M.S.H.A.

This course provides an opportunity for students to interact in small groups and discuss dental science with a discussion facilitator. This class will be comprised of approximately six cases and two informational sessions. Each case will last two weeks. A few lectures will be given, but learning will predominantly occur via self-study and small-group interaction. Students are expected to compile information from a variety of sources to answer questions about each case, to contribute in a facilitator-assisted discussion, and to develop appropriate treatment plans.

DENT 5250. IDP Clinical Integration

Course Director: Sonya T. Mitchell D.M.D., M.S.H.A.

This semester-long course introduces the prep-term International Dentist student to fundamental clinical processes and foundational clinical knowledge prior to starting clinic the following academic term. This course consists of both didactic and hands-on clinical elements. Information covered in this course includes ethics in dentistry, evidence-based dentistry, infection control, sterilization processes, radiology technique, processing digital films, NOMAD training, patient communication, dental anesthesia, facebow exercise, ultrasonic scaler exercise, digital scanner training, CPR, etc.

DENT 5260. IDP Operative

Course Director: Sonya T. Mitchell D.M.D., M.S.H.A.

This preclinical course instructs the prep-term International Dentist student in foundational knowledge in operative dentistry. This course includes both didactic and manikin-laboratory components. Skills taught include both composite and amalgam preparations and restorations. This course prepares the International Dentist student to treat patients requiring operative dentistry in the predoctoral clinics.

DENT 5265. IDP: Fixed Prosthodontics

Course Director: Sonya T. Mitchell D.M.D., M.S.H.A.

This preclinical course instructs the prep-term International Dentist student in foundational knowledge in fixed prosthodontics and restoration of implant crowns. This course includes both didactic and manikin-laboratory components. Skills taught include diagnostic casts, crown and bridge preparation, veneer preparation, onlay preparation, post and core, final impression taking, pindexing and die trimming, interocclusal registrations, facebow, mounting the final working cast, and writing a lab prescription for fabrication of a restoration. This course prepares the International Dentist student to treat patients requiring fixed prosthodontics in the predoctoral clinics.

DENT 5270. IDP: RPD

Course Director: Sonya T. Mitchell D.M.D., M.S.H.A.

This preclinical course instructs the prep-term International Dentist student in foundational knowledge in removable partial denture. This course includes both didactic and manikin-laboratory components. Skills taught include surveying diagnostic casts, creating metal-based RPD designs, setting denture teeth, festooning the RPD, and writing a lab prescription for fabrication of a prosthesis. This course prepares the International Dentist student to treat patients requiring metal-based removable partial dentures in the predoctoral clinics.

DENT 5275. IDP: Complete Dentures

Course Director: Sonya T. Mitchell D.M.D., M.S.H.A.

This preclinical course instructs the prep-term International Dentist student in foundational knowledge in complete dentures and restoration of implant-retained complete dentures. This course includes both didactic and manikin-laboratory components. Skills taught include denture teeth occlusal schemes, setting denture teeth, and festooning. This course prepares the International Dentist student to treat patients requiring complete dentures in the predoctoral clinics.

DENT 5290. IDP: High Stakes Assessments

Course Director: Michael S. McCracken, D.D.S., Ph.D., F.A.C.P.

Our faculty consider four areas of student learning to be critically important. These are clinical care, service, research, and professionalism. These are categories of achievement that may be difficult to evaluate in the traditional classroom environment. To reinforce competency development in each of these areas, four high stakes assessments (HSAs) have been implemented, one in each category. Service HSA will teach students that service is valuable to the community, and rewarding to the servant. The Scholarly Activity HSA will teach students to think critically and to utilize literature to answer a clinical or research question. The professionalism HSA will document and enhance ethical development. The Clinical care HSA will assess a student’s global competency and integrated knowledge of dentistry.