Skip OSU and Dentistry navigation, view page content
The Ohio State University College of Dentistry  



NOTE:  We urge applicants to read the Frequently Asked Questions as we feel that it will answer most questions about the application process.

The Division of Orthodontics offers a program in specialty education at the graduate level, fulfilling eligibility requirements for The American Board of Orthodontics. This program, leading to a certificate and M.S. degree is accredited by the Council on Dental Education of the American Dental Association.  Students will be admitted to the Graduate School and as such will be eligible to register for all relevant graduate-level courses offered by the University.

The 33 month program follows OSU's semester system and its aim is to provide the graduate student with a thorough education in clinical orthodontics.  In addition, the graduate student will gain experience in conducting and evaluating research and have the opportunity to participate in pre-doctoral and graduate level teaching.

The program includes instruction and extensive experience in diagnosis and treatment planning, biomechanics, orthognathic surgery and other interdisciplinary procedures.  The resident will have the opportunity of treating the full range of different malocclusions in the child and adult.  Clinical facilities at Nationwide Children's Hospital provide a well-structured, interdisciplinary and clinically rewarding experience in the treatment of patients with orofacial clefts and other craniofacial anomalies.  The 33 month program enables the graduates to complete active treatment for approximately 80% of their patients.

All residents obtain a M.S. degree by completing and defending a research project that meets the requirements of the Graduate School.  Division of Orthodontics graduation policy includes a publishable form of the thesis for submission to appropriate peer-reviewed journals. Research topics include both clinical and basic sciences through a wide range of opportunities available within the college, including, but not limited to orthodontic and surgical outcomes, materials science, genetics and molecular biology.  The Division and College also encourage residents to present their scientific results at regional and national meetings.

Teaching experience is gained from involvement in laboratory and clinical instruction and from the delivery of a limited number of seminars and lectures on the pre- and post-doctoral levels.


Orthodontic residents, receive a stipend of $9,000/year.  In addition, half of the in-state tuition will be waived during the entire 33 month program.  The residents are on annual contracts during the residency programs.  We will continue to update our web site annually.  It should be the primary source of information including details on the current in-state and out-of-state tuition rates.  Health insurance, parking fees, meals and housing are not covered and must be paid by the individual.  In addition, there is a start-up cost of approximately $3,500.00 for equipment and supplies.


Outside employment throughout the program must be approved in advance by the Program Director.


The Division of Orthodontics participates in the Postdoctoral Application Support Service (PASS).  All applications must be submitted through PASS.  The application can be accessed online at or at:

Postdoctoral Application Support Services (PASS)
1625 Massachusetts Avenue, NW
Washington, DC  20036-2212

Telephone: (202) 667-1887
Fax:           (202) 667-4983

NOTE: For applications we now require 4 PPI's and one PEF (from orthodontic faculty).

Domestic (non-foreign) applicants must submit the following supplemental application materials directly to the OSU College of Dentistry:

 2x2 Photograph

Foreign applicants must submit the following supplemental application materials directly to the OSU College of Dentistry:

 2x2 Photograph
 Non-Dental School Transcript(s), e.g., undergraduate transcripts
 Official National Board Dental Examination Score Reports
 Official TOEFL Score Reports
 Official GRE Score Reports

These supplemental documents must be submitted directly to the program at the following address:

Laura Kelley
Program Coordinator
Office of Graduate Studies
OSU College of Dentistry
305 W. 12th Avenue
Columbus, OH  43210-1247

Telephone:  (614) 292-1421
Fax:            (614) 688-5470

To receive consideration, a completed application, including supporting documents, must be received no later than August 1.  Applications received after the deadline cannot be considered for that year.

After reviewing the applications, the Orthodontic Division selection committee will invite approximately 20 applicants for interviews.  Five first-year resident positions are available each year for the orthodontic program, which begins mid June each year.

The OSU Graduate Program in Orthodontics participates in the match program.  All applicants are required to register with the Postdoctoral Dental Matching Program. Information and applications can be ordered at:

National Matching Services, Inc.
595 Bay Street
Suite 301, Box 29
Toronto, Ontario  Canada M5G 2C2

Alternatively, information can be obtained at their website:

Applicants will be notified of the action taken before February 15 of the program year.

If you have any questions in regard to the application forms or your status, please feel free to contact The College of Dentistry, Office of Admissions and Financial Aid.


Section 1:  General Questions

Section 2:  Foreign Applicants

1.  General Questions

Q:  Does Ohio State require GRE scores?
A:  Yes.  Applications submitted without GRE scores will not be considered. While there is no minimum score required, the exam must be taken no more than five years prior to the intended semester of matriculation.

Q:  Does Ohio State require any supplemental material in addition to PASS?
A:  Yes, a 2”x2” color photo should be sent directly to our Division.  The mailing address is:

Laura Kelley
Program Coordinator
Office of Graduate Studies
OSU College of Dentistry
305 W. 12th Avenue
Columbus, OH  43210-1247

Telephone: (614) 292-1421
Fax: (614) 688-5470

Q:  What is the deadline for the color photo?
A:  The deadline for the color photo is the same as the deadline for PASS.

Q:  Do I need a valid state dental license to be a resident at OSU?
A:  Yes.  Each resident, domestic and foreign, will need to apply for a Limited Resident's License.  All residents who meet the eligibility criteria (graduates of US or Candian Schools with DDS/DMD or equivalent foreign degree) can apply for a Limited Resident's License.

Q:  Who should I contact with questions regarding my application for the residency program?

Laura Kelley
Program Coordinator
Office of Graduate Studies
OSU College of Dentistry
305 W. 12th Avenue
Columbus, OH  43210-1247

Telephone: (614) 292-1421
Fax: (614) 688-5470

Q:  Who should I contact with Orthodontic Division specific questions?

Amie Reid, Office Administrative Associate

Division of Orthodontics
OSU College of Dentistry
Room 4088 Postle Hall
305 W. 12th Avenue
Columbus, OH  43210-1267

Telephone: (614) 292-5972
Fax: (614) 688-3077

2.  Foreign Applicants

Q:  I am a foreign applicant. I did not complete my DDS or DMD at a US dental school. Can I still apply?
A:  Yes, if you have an equivalent degree.

Q:  I am a foreign dental school graduate. Do I need to take the National Board Dental Exam (NBDE)?
A:  Foreign dental school graduates are required to take Part I of the NBDE prior to application.

Q:  Is there a minimum TOEFL score required?
A:  No minimum TOEFL score is required to apply.


To comply with the mission of the College of Dentistry and The Ohio State University.
The mission of the Orthodontic Program is contained within these statements:

  1. Provide quality service and efficient oral health care and respond to the needs of Ohio, as well as the broader needs of the nation and the world.

  2. Educate to the appropriate level in the discipline of Orthodontics dentists, dental clinical specialists, dental educators, scientists and dental auxiliaries who will be prepared to meet the oral health needs and demands of the people of Ohio and of society at large.

  3. Engage in research and scholarly activities that will generate new knowledge and solutions to oral and health-related problems through scientific investigations and research to extend the frontiers of knowledge.

  4. Provide continuing education programs to the profession.

  5. Make available to local communities and public agencies the expertise and educational services of the Division of Orthodontics in ways consistent with the primary functions of teaching and research.

  6. To assist the College of Dentistry in providing leadership and cooperate in the development of academic programs with public agencies and interdisciplinary activity to meet the educational needs of the region and state.


The Ohio State University Orthodontic Program prepares graduates as future clinician/scientists in the specialty of Orthodontics. The ability to identify and solve problems through a scientific approach is a goal of the program which also trains graduates to be outstanding clinicians. This 33 month master's program awards a Master of Science (MS) degree to graduates who complete all academic and clinical requirements of the program. A research project and defense of a Master's thesis in a publishable form are required for graduation.  This balance of didactic, clinical and research components is considered equally essential for graduates intending to be clinicians, teachers and researchers in the future.

The Ohio State University Orthodontic Program is committed to the training and education of specialists in orthodontics. It is philosophically dedicated to fostering a strong educational background in science and research methodology so that patient care decisions may be formulated on principles and procedures that have biological significance and clinical relevance. Students are prepared for advances in biomedical research and the changing needs and expectations of society to become the future generation of orthodontists responding to the emerging oral health needs of patients for the 21st century.

The graduate program for incoming residents begins the first of July and, for the graduating third-year class, ends in March at the end of Spring Quarter. Currently, five residents are admitted each year and stipends are available for graduate students throughout the 33 month program.


In addition to earning a certificate in orthodontics, residents of the Graduate Orthodontic Program at The Ohio State University are required to prepare and successfully defend a Master's Thesis during the winter/spring term of their final year and submit a publishable form.  Residents are encouraged to choose a topic and major advisor during the first year and begin their research project in the second year. The University's resources permit the resident to consider a great variety of areas for investigation.


Residents have responsibilities for teaching, preparing and developing teaching materials which may vary during the 33 month program.  Pre-Doctoral responsibilities are coordinated by Dr. Firestone as Director of the Pre-Doctoral Orthodontic Program. These include:

  1. Preparation of teaching materials for the pre-clinical orthodontic component of the Pre-Doctoral Program.  These may include printed materials and audio visual instructional materials.
  2. Pre-clinical teaching to first and second year pre-doctoral students with faculty guidance.
  3. Clinical supervision of patient care to third and fourth year pre-doctoral students with the assigned faculty.
  4. Assist Drs. Deguchi, Fields, Firestone, Mercado and Shanker in the preparation of examinations and proctoring of examination sessions.
  5. Assist in monitoring student progress and provide reports at monthly intervals to Dr. Deguchi and other faculty involved in the Pre-Doctoral Program.


Residents complete a variety of didactic and technique courses.

The core curriculum courses of the graduate dental program such as statistics, oral pathology, developmental histology, research design and anatomy of the head and neck are taught by instructors outside of the section in a lecture/exam format.

Intra-division courses such as cephalometrics, biomechanics, growth and development, typodont technique, diagnosis and treatment planning, surgical orthodontics, periodontal/orthodontic interrelationships, case presentation and literature review are taught by the orthodontic faculty with emphasis on an evidence-based review and discussion of the orthodontic literature.

Case Presentation and Literature Review - All residents participate in Case Presentation and Critical Review of the Literature on a weekly basis. Every Friday morning residents and faculty meet for a formal presentation of a case by a second or third year resident. In this forum, treatment plans are proposed by the residents and critiqued by the faculty.  Following the case presentation, the residents and faculty re-assemble for a discussion of selections from the orthodontic literature. Each quarter, a different faculty member chooses an area or topic for review.


Orthodontic Clinic
Patients accepted for treatment in the Orthodontic Clinic are distributed equally among the first year residents throughout the year.  As new patients are assigned, the resident gathers records and then formulates a treatment plan with the supervising instructor.  Because the clinical instructors use a variety of techniques (Straightwire 0.018 and 0.022), patients are treated only by the assigned instructor.  Each resident can expect to start approximately 65-70 new cases and will inherit retention and active patients at the end of the first year.  An appropriate number of early treatment, adult and surgical patients are distributed to each resident.

Dentofacial Clinic
Screening patients who may benefit from orthognathic surgery are directed to the dentofacial program and their treatment planning and consultation is performed with both orthodontic and oral surgery faculty.  All cases from the dentofacial program are "worked-up" by the orthodontic and surgical residents for treatment planning on Monday evenings. Thus, all residents are exposed to the process of interdisciplinary treatment planning of the surgical-orthodontic patient.

Craniofacial Anomalies Clinic at Nationwide Children's Hospital
At Nationwide Children's Hospital in Columbus, orthodontic residents are responsible for the treatment of patients with a variety of craniofacial anomalies - predominately cleft patients.  Second and third year residents provide care on a rotating basis every other Tuesday.  Many of these patients need complex treatment plans including growth modification, bone grafting, expansion, orthognathic surgery and prosthodontic replacement of missing teeth. This care is coordinated with their other treatment needs through the Nationwide Children's Hospital Cleft Palate Team in an effort to optimize the results in an efficient manner.


Graduate Teaching Assistantships
At the present time, assistantships in the College are available as designated by the Division Chair and are paid with the aforementioned stipend.  Students may be assigned for limited teaching in the clinics as a part of his/her clinical experience.

If you are seeking financial assistance, please see the following website: or contact the Director of Student Financial at the College of Dentistry at (614) 292-7768.


A limited number of University one- and two-bedroom apartments are available for married students.  Lists of rental homes near the campus and in Franklin County are maintained at the Property Management Office, Neilwood Gables, 2080 Neil Avenue, Columbus, OH 43210.  For detailed information, write the Property Management Office.  Incoming students will find that graduate students, already in residence, are most helpful in finding a place to live.


Directions to Campus
The Columbus Chamber of Commerce
Columbus Citysearch