Doctor of Dental Surgery

This is the first version of the 2024–25 General Catalog. Please check back regularly for changes. The final edition and the historical PDF will be published during the fall semester.

Professional degree: DDS


The Doctor of Dental Surgery program prepares students to practice general dentistry. The DDS is a professional degree awarded by the College of Dentistry.

Dentistry Licensure Examination

The State of Iowa accepts clinical examination results from all Regional Dental Testing Services including a manikin exam in lieu of a patient exam. Examinations are administered at several testing sites located at dental schools in the United States. A separate license application is then filed with the individual state board of dentistry.

For licensure, all states also require the National Boards, conducted by the Joint Commission on National Dental Examinations. Many states, including Iowa, also require a jurisprudence examination. For further details on licensure requirements for each state, refer to individual state dental board websites.

Dental student assisting patient cleaning teeth.

Student Organizations

The Academy of General Dentistry, the American Dental Education Association, the American Association of Dental Research (Student Research Group), the American Association for Women Dentists, the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry student chapter, the American Association of Public Health Dentistry student chapter, the Christian Dental Association, the Student National Dental Association, the Hispanic Dental Association student chapter, and the Tau Sigma Military Dental Club also have local chapters. The College of Dentistry also has interest clubs in oral and maxillofacial surgery, orthodontics, periodontics, and prosthodontics.

Students who rank in the upper 20% of their senior class are eligible for election to Omicron Kappa Upsilon, a national scholastic honorary dental society.

The national dental professional fraternity, Delta Sigma Delta, has a chapter at Iowa. The fraternity provides academic and social activities for students and their spouses.